How to overlay one div over another div

I need assistance with overlaying one individual div over another individual div.

My code looks like this:

<div class="navi"></div>
<div id="infoi">
    <img src="info_icon2.png" height="20" width="32"/>
</div>

Unfortunately I cannot nest the div#infoi or the img, inside the first div.navi.

It has to be two separate divs as shown, but I need to know how I could place the div#infoi over the div.navi and to the right most side and centered on top of the div.navi.

Answers


#container {
  width: 100px;
  height: 100px;
  position: relative;
}
#navi,
#infoi {
  width: 100%;
  height: 100%;
  position: absolute;
  top: 0;
  left: 0;
}
#infoi {
  z-index: 10;
}
<div id="container">
  <div id="navi">a</div>
  <div id="infoi">
    <img src="https://appharbor.com/assets/images/stackoverflow-logo.png" height="20" width="32" />b
  </div>
</div>

The accepted solution works great, but IMO lacks an explanation as to why it works. The example below is boiled down to the basics and separates the important CSS from the non-relevant styling CSS. As a bonus, I've also included a detailed explanation of how CSS positioning works.

TLDR; if you only want the code, scroll down to The Result.

The Problem

There are two separate, sibling, elements and the goal is to position the second element (with an id of infoi), so it appears within the previous element (the one with a class of navi). The HTML structure cannot be changed.

Proposed Solution

To achieve the desired result we're going to move, or position, the second element, which we'll call #infoi so it appears within the first element, which we'll call .navi. Specifically, we want #infoi to be positioned in the top-right corner of .navi.

CSS Position Required Knowledge

CSS has several properties for positioning elements. By default, all elements are position: static. This means the element will be positioned according to its order in the HTML structure, with few exceptions.

The other position values are relative, absolute, and fixed. By setting an element's position to one of these three values it's now possible to use a combination of the following four properties to position the element:

  • top
  • right
  • bottom
  • left

In other words, by setting position: absolute, we can add top: 100px to position the element 100 pixels from the top of the page. Conversely, if we set bottom: 100px the element would be positioned 100 pixels from the bottom of the page.

Here's where many CSS newcomers get lost - position: absolute has a frame of reference. In the example above, the frame of reference is the body element. position: absolute with top: 100px means the element is positioned 100 pixels from the top of the body element.

The position frame of reference, or position context, can be altered by setting the position of a parent element to any value other than position: static. That is, we can create a new position context by giving a parent element:

  • position: absolute;
  • position: relative;
  • position: fixed;

For example, if a <div class="parent"> element is given position: relative, any child elements use the <div class="parent"> as their position context. If a child element were given position: absolute and top: 100px, the element would be positioned 100 pixels from the top of the <div class="parent"> element, because the <div class="parent"> is now the position context.

The other factor to be aware of is stack order - or how elements are stacked in the z-direction. The must-know here is the stack order of elements are, by default, defined by the reverse of their order in the HTML structure. Consider the following example:

<body>
  <div>Bottom</div>
  <div>Top</div>
</body>

In this example, if the two <div> elements were positioned in the same place on the page, the <div>Top</div> element would cover the <div>Bottom</div> element. Since <div>Top</div> comes after <div>Bottom</div> in the HTML structure it has a higher stacking order.

div {
  position: absolute;
  width: 50%;
  height: 50%;
}

#bottom {
  top: 0;
  left: 0;
  background-color: blue;
}

#top {
  top: 25%;
  left: 25%;
  background-color: red;
}
<div id="bottom">Bottom</div>
<div id="top">Top</div>

By using a div with style z-index:1; and position: absolute; you can overlay your div on any other div.

z-index determines the order in which divs 'stack'. A div with a higher z-index will appear in front of a div with a lower z-index. Note that this property only works with positioned elements.


Here follows a simple solution 100% based on CSS. The "secret" is to use the display: inline-block in the wrapper element. The vertical-align: bottom in the image is a hack to overcome the 4px padding that some browsers add after the element.

Advice: if the element before the wrapper is inline they can end up nested. In this case you can "wrap the wrapper" inside a container with display: block - usually a good and old div.

.wrapper {
    display: inline-block;
    position: relative;
}

.hover {
    position: absolute;
    top: 0;
    left: 0;
    right: 0;
    bottom: 0;
    background-color: rgba(0, 188, 212, 0);
    transition: background-color 0.5s;
}

.hover:hover {
    background-color: rgba(0, 188, 212, 0.8);
    // You can tweak with other background properties too (ie: background-image)...
}

img {
    vertical-align: bottom;
}
<div class="wrapper">
    <div class="hover"></div>
    <img src="http://placehold.it/450x250" />
</div>

This is what you need:

function showFrontLayer() {
  document.getElementById('bg_mask').style.visibility='visible';
  document.getElementById('frontlayer').style.visibility='visible';
}
function hideFrontLayer() {
  document.getElementById('bg_mask').style.visibility='hidden';
  document.getElementById('frontlayer').style.visibility='hidden';
}
#bg_mask {
  position: absolute;
  top: 0;
  right: 0;  bottom: 0;
  left: 0;
  margin: auto;
  margin-top: 0px;
  width: 981px;
  height: 610px;
  background : url("img_dot_white.jpg") center;
  z-index: 0;
  visibility: hidden;
} 

#frontlayer {
  position: absolute;
  top: 0;
  right: 0;
  bottom: 0;
  left: 0;
  margin: 70px 140px 175px 140px;
  padding : 30px;
  width: 700px;
  height: 400px;
  background-color: orange;
  visibility: hidden;
  border: 1px solid black;
  z-index: 1;
} 


</style>
<html>
  <head>
    <META HTTP-EQUIV="EXPIRES" CONTENT="-1" />

  </head>
  <body>
    <form action="test.html">
      <div id="baselayer">

        <input type="text" value="testing text"/>
        <input type="button" value="Show front layer" onclick="showFrontLayer();"/> Click 'Show front layer' button<br/><br/><br/>

        Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text
        Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text
        Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing textsting text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text Testing text
        <div id="bg_mask">
          <div id="frontlayer"><br/><br/>
            Now try to click on "Show front layer" button or the text box. It is not active.<br/><br/><br/>
            Use position: absolute to get the one div on top of another div.<br/><br/><br/>
            The bg_mask div is between baselayer and front layer.<br/><br/><br/>
            In bg_mask, img_dot_white.jpg(1 pixel in width and height) is used as background image to avoid IE browser transparency issue;<br/><br/><br/>
            <input type="button" value="Hide front layer" onclick="hideFrontLayer();"/>
          </div>
        </div>
      </div>
    </form>
  </body>
</html>

I am not much of a coder nor an expert in CSS, but I am still using your idea in my web designs. I have tried different resolutions too:

#wrapper {
  margin: 0 auto;
  width: 901px;
  height: 100%;
  background-color: #f7f7f7;
  background-image: url(images/wrapperback.gif);
  color: #000;
}
#header {
  float: left;
  width: 100.00%;
  height: 122px;
  background-color: #00314e;
  background-image: url(images/header.jpg);
  color: #fff;
}
#menu {
  float: left;
  padding-top: 20px;
  margin-left: 495px;
  width: 390px;
  color: #f1f1f1;
}
<div id="wrapper">
  <div id="header">
    <div id="menu">
      menu will go here
    </div>
  </div>
</div>

The new Grid CSS specification provides a far more elegant solution. Using position: absolute may lead to overlaps or scaling issues while Grid will save you from dirty CSS hacks.

Most minimal Grid Overlay example:

HTML

<div class="container">
  <div class="content">This is the content</div>
  <div class="overlay">Overlay - must be placed under content in the HTML</div>
</div>

CSS

.container {
  display: grid;
}

.content, .overlay {
  grid-area: 1 / 1;
}

That's it. If you don't build for Internet Explorer, your code will most probably work.


Here is a simple example to bring an overlay effect with a loading icon over another div.

<style>
    #overlay {
        position: absolute;
        width: 100%;
        height: 100%;
        background: black url('icons/loading.gif') center center no-repeat; /* Make sure the path and a fine named 'loading.gif' is there */
        background-size: 50px;
        z-index: 1;
        opacity: .6;
    }
    .wraper{
        position: relative;
        width:400px;  /* Just for testing, remove width and height if you have content inside this div */
        height:500px; /* Remove this if you have content inside */
    }
</style>

<h2>The overlay tester</h2>
<div class="wraper">
    <div id="overlay"></div>
    <h3>Apply the overlay over this div</h3>
</div>

Try it here: http://jsbin.com/fotozolucu/edit?html,css,output


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