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Custom control rendering

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This might seem like a very stupid question, but I'm looking at applications like Google Talk, WinAmp, etc. that have specialized controls, the buttons are different, the window frame is different, etc. Also, Google Talk has some subtle-yet-neat transitions with their controls that make me wonder how they did it all. It cannot be that hard, because I see it in applications everywhere, but I can't seem to find any resources on Google on how to do so. Are there any resources for C++ or C# on doing custom controls? Is it easier with WinForms to do custom rendering for window frames, etc?

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