If you want to create a small web project, a approach would be to use a combination of bootstrap (frontend), lumen (backend) and jquery (interaction between the two). It is a very strong combination with a very low owning and maintenance cost that can easily scale (by upgrading to laravel) if needed. You can also use angular with does not add a lot of overhead.
While you are trying to implement the above, the following pattern is encountered a lot of times: you need to call a web service via js while the data are filled by the user via a form on the html page. While the web service is being called, you need to show a spinner on the page so that the user understands that he needs to wait until the call has been completed.