If you're familiar with C++, then did you know that you can create some stunning widgets with it using an application like wxWidgets.
wxWidgets is a C++ programming environment which enables the creation of multi-platform applications with and without a graphical user interface. The developer says that he was motivated to design the program after the failure of other similar programs to help create dialogs visually. In particular, it was the limited set of widgets and impossibility to include non-graphical components which wxWidgets skillfully sidesteps. The key to the appeal of wxWidgets that most programmers will appreciate is the fact that it stores information in XML documents which, as the developers point out, eases the modification of both the properties of an object and the generated code without needing to recompile. In this way, the code creates templates which can be used over and over again to create variations on just one widget. If you're not familiar with C++, none of this will mean much but if you're in the know, it's an effective way to create some truly impressive widgets.
Stay away if you don't know C++ but for professional programmers, this is one of the fastest ways to create good looking desktop widgets.