So recently I was working on a project that required image based navigation AND drop down menus. From the get-go I decided to use CSS Sprites for the tabbed menu for the normal, active and hover styles. I also decided the best way to implement the drop down was to use the “Son of Suckerfish” drop down menus heavily modified from the original code to fit in with the original programming I had done for the menu.
I’ve explained before how to use CSS Sprites for changing images, so I won’t go into too many more details on how to accomplish this, but to recreate this for your own site you will need to create one sprite for your normal tab, hovered and current/active tab. That’s three sets of tabs in one file.