Blog Design - Series + A Question

Monday, September 21, 2015
part one: the question.

HELLOOO.
I just felt like shouting that don't question why.


I've been visiting a lot of blogs lately, and the FIRST thing you notice is their design. Blog designs (to me) are like judging a book by it's cover, and I, unfortunately, judge blogs by their designs.


Two blogs I ran across a couple days ago (The Vinyl Notebook and Six Impossible Things) really impressed me by their designs. Like I-don't-want-to-leave-this-blog-because-I-love-their-design-so-much designs. Go visit them and see for yourself! Both are very simple, but I think the simplicity makes it stand out.

Visiting those blogs made me go study my blog and it's design, and though I like some parts of it, I think it needs some changes. For example, the title of my blog: "A Writer's Faith" doesn't prominently stand out in the header. And the text on the sidebar is rather hard to read because of the red color.

So I decided to create a new design.

Don't worry! I haven't changed it suddenly without telling anyone -- I want you guys to have the final say in this, because you are the ones reading and looking at my blog. Besides my hundreds of visits checking for new comments.


I want you all to head on over to sample blog I created, a writer's faith designand go take a look. I won't be using this blog in the future -- no need to follow or comment since I'll probably delete it in a few weeks (or make it private for testing coding/designing things. Just go take a look, namely at the sidebar and the way things are positioned, and then come back here and vote on the poll below to tell me which blog design you like best! My current one, or the one over at a writer's faith design.

No hard feelings if you like the old/current one best... just wanted to try something new and incorporate my favorite color a bit more. *wink*

ALSO, do remember that I whipped up the new design in a day, so it's not the finished version, just take a look at the design in general. ;)


Which Design is Your Favorite?



pollcode.com free polls

(This is my first poll, guys. I feel so official.)
(Also if the poll doesn't some up for some super odd and random reason, here's a link: http://vote.pollcode.com/77473587#sthash.phRlJVKN.dpuf
(Also the suggestions could be something like: I like the design, but you should change the header/sidebar.) 
(I should really stop with the parenthesis.)
(*stops*)
(Hahaha kidding.)
(No seriously I'm gonna stop now.) 

What are you waiting for? GO VOTE! I will give you treats if you do. *nods*

part two: the series.

Now for the next announcement thingy. (I sound so much like I know what I'm doing. "Thingy?" Greaat, Katie.)

SINCE I have been visiting tons of blogs and fixing up blog design details on my blog, I'm going to create a new blog series. *ooooh* On blog design. *even more ooooh*

Introducing...

easy blogger tutorials for the blogspot blogger!
(Sorry, Wordpress users...)


More on this will come later, but mainly I'm linking to things that would be beneficial to bloggers with their design. Because every blogger wants a nice design, and it only takes a little bit of work to make that happen. ;) 

So, look out for this! 

Over and out. *salutes*

- Katie Grace

DID YOU VOTE?! What did you think? Tell me alll your thoughts even if you absolutely hated it. :p
What have you been working on with blogging/writing/reading this week?

68 comments :

  1. This sounds really awesome -- both the redesign and the coming series! Actually, I'm not sure how to vote because I prefer the fall colours of the old design, but definitely I agree that the header can be changed, and the sidebar has been simplified and that's awesome. But the autumn-y colour palette stands out a lot to me! So I wouldn't abandon the colour scheme completely, but that's just my two cents.

    PS: Topaz has the most amazing design skills. Just, ARGH.

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    1. I'm really excited about both! :D
      Yeah, based on comments I will probably just do some changes to the header and clean up the sidebar here. And maybe I'll try to make the red a little lighter on the sidebar so you can see the text easier.

      ARGH I know I'm so jealous. xD

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  2. Ahh, lots of exciting things! I really like your new blog design...I might suggest doing a header though? I did mine at shabbyblogs.com and they have a lot of great options. Can't wait for this new series! Have a great week!! =)

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    1. I know! :D It's awesome.
      Hmm, okay. *notes this*
      Same to you! :)

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  3. I like both designs, but I don't see the blog name immediately in the new design. Maybe do a header like other people have suggested. :) Blog redesign is stressful. lol!!

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    1. Argh it is stressful! Haha. I think no matter what I'll do people will like different things so I'll just try to go with the majority. :p

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  4. Ooo, your new blog series is something I'm definitely looking forward to :).
    About the new blog design .... hmm ... I really like the new one (blue is my fav color), but I would also suggest a header, and maybe a bit more color to it (lavender? pastel green?). But that's just my two cents :). It looks really pretty!
    On another note, I've been working on reading the seventh book in the Tales Of Goldstone Woods series, Golden Daughter. I've found I quite like it :).
    ~Savannah P.

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    1. Good! Quick question since it doesn't like to your profile -- do you have a blog?
      (I knowww. Blue is my favorite color, too.) Okay! Thank you for your two cents. ;)
      Ooh, really! o.O YAY! That is a rather thick one compared to the others, but it is epic. Who's your favorite character?

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    2. I do have a blog, but it's private :). If you would like to be added, you can email my mom (theperrans AT cox DOT net). I'll warn you beforehand, I post some of my stories on there (unedited and quite messy) and some of my friends can get a little bit wild when something excites them :).
      I haven't read very far into Golden Daughter yet, though I'm guessing Eanrin will be my favorite ... he normally is :).
      ~Savannah P.

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    3. Ah, I see. ;)
      He's my absolute favorite character ever. *hugs him* I love his humor and wit and he never fails to make me laugh. I need my own personal Eanrin, methinks.

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  5. *deeply offended* We Wordpress users have rights too. *sniffs*
    Just kidding. xD I think WP is generally easier to use than Blogspot anyway. As for your design, I really like your current one -- maybe because I'm more used to it, but I really like the colors which make it stand out more. Although I think if you add a header on the new design which has the color scheme of the new design, it would look great. But I do think that the new design is great in its own way.

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    1. Sowwwyyy. ;)
      I kind of feel like it's that way, too, but maybe that Blogger has more customization options? I'm not really acquainted with Wordpress, so I wouldn't really know. :p
      *nods* Thank you! I think I might end up making some changes to the header and sidebar on this one -- nothing significant, but it seems like the fall colors is the way to go. ;)

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    2. Mhm, yeah. I'm thinking of starting sort of a test/dummy blog on Blogspot and seeing how it works so if people ask me which platform is better I can tell them specifics about both.
      Autumn is the best. ;) Go with what works for you -- it's your blog, so you have the final say.
      Oh! And I did the tag you tagged me for. *points to my blog*

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    3. That is a great idea. Sometimes people ask me which one is better, and I have no idea since I have no Wordpress experience. xD
      Yes! Autumn! It's my favorite season everrrr.
      *dashes to your blog with a flurry of excitement*

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  6. I pursonsonly love your blog the way it is, with the basic desin. But I think it would be really cute if you maybe re-did the colors, and maybe the pictures at the top. Whatever you decide I'm sure will look great!
    -Mikayla-

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    1. Thank you for commenting, Mikayla! I already have a few new fall/bookish pictures that I could use, so I'll probably end up doing that.

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    2. I am looking forward to seeing whatever you do, no matter what that is! =D
      -Mikayla-

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  7. oh oh oh, love the new design. I loovee simple designs... ;P I love the text you chose for your blog title on the sidebar...but something about the top..it feels a bit empty..maybe, what you need is a very, very thin line (in the color blue you have) going all the way under your tabs, it's an elegant way to simply separate things. it's very easy to do actually, and I think it will make your design feel finished.
    Or, you need extra space from the tabs to your post title. Of course, I know your design wasn't finished. ;) I just love designing. lol. I like the coding stuff, and making blogs different. *grin*

    This week I plan on writing more, I'm starting a new story..and I feel like a traitor after six months of my other one. noooo. I'm working on it. :P How is your writing going? With this story, I want to focus more on the quality and word choices. Ya know, those words you just drool at? ;) I also want to focus on making my scenes longer. It's hard for me to stay in one spot for a good amount of time. LOL.

    Have you ever heard of an Alphasmart, or an Alphasmart Dana? :D

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    1. I knowww. Simple designs are SO, SO pretty!
      Ooh, that's a great idea. Both of them to give more space. I didn't think about that, so thank you!
      Designing is awesome. Coding is very frustrating (I spent two hours on something yesterday that DIDN'T WORK, gah) but can pay off.

      Ooh, new story? *hands chocolate* Can I hear more? Yeah, I always rush through my first drafts, so writing a different novel by hand will hopefully slow things down and teach me to use better word choices. Good luck with writing more -- you can do it!

      I HADN'T, but then when I looked it up, I totally recognized it from Pinterest and one of my authors that I read has used it! It seems like a great way to deal with distractions... Do you use it or plan on using it?

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    2. I loveee the simple lines. It adds a lot more to the design. Your welcome. ;) AH. Yes, it's SO frustrating when it doesn't work. But you can't just leave an unfinished design...your kinda stuck. OH. One thing that saved me a TON of work is on your design blog SAVE THE DATA, very easy to do-and upload it onto your current blog, then you don't have to do any of the work switching over the design. I did it last time, it saved my hours of work.

      lol. Katie, you know better than to ask a fellow writer about their story...there is no answer...but I am feeling very inspired at the moment...so it includes and underground world, a forgotten kingdom that has turned into a thriving garden (so excited to write about that) and a missing queen. So yeah, excited. ;)

      It's AWESOME. And yes, I do own it. I got it for Christmas last year. ;) I want to get the Dana, because it has a larger screen and a thesaurus and a wordcount. The word count thing killed me last year because my 3000 doesn't have one, so I counted by hand for the whole month of camp nano. ;)
      I really do love it, and suggest it to all writers. You can get it for $20-30 on ebay. It's awesome for writing on, 'cause it's portable...and the batteries last a lifetime. I'm not kidding. I've used it for 9 months so far and the battery life is still at 98%, they are only AA batteries. lol. People have also dropped it from 4-feet in the air, multiple times to show how durable this thing is. It's very easy to transfer words, and I use it got guest posts, letters, emails, writing, and even my own blog posts. It's pretty awesome. :D

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    3. I JUST figured out how to save the template a couple days ago and am so happy I learned how just in case I mess something huge up. :p Thanks for reminding me in case I need to update something again. ;)

      Haha. I knowww. *hides* But I'm curious! (I hate it when people ask me about my story, too. Just... no.) Ooh, but that sounds awesome! Underground world especially. :D

      That IS awesome! :D Uff. o.o You counted by hand? Dude, that's... insane. xD How easy is it to upload the files to your computer?
      Huh. I should look into this. Does it come in blue? (Kidding, kidding. ;) That battery life is AMAZING and I love how people purposefully dropped it. xD *hugs computer protectively* No dropping this!
      About how big is it?

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    4. yes, I'm glad I found that out, it's saved me lots of time. ;)

      hahahahaaa, yeah, I do it too.... :P Well, I've been brainstorming and I came up with this: One kingdom divided. Splitting into the World DownUnder, and The Upland world (a world in the trees) Battles rage, until they split apart leaving the kingdom-their traces being lost forever.
      So, yeah, that's something I just came up with...so far I like it. ;)

      uhh..yeah, manyyyy people called me crazy. :P haha, it had to be done. No kidding, it's said to last about 900 hours. :O haha, me too, but I wouldn't. ;) The keyboard is the size of a normal keyboard, and the screen is about 2-3 inches in height and 6 inches long I'd say. I wish the screen was larger...the Dana's screen is larger-that's why I was looking into it. But the screen is workable, and there is a spellcheck and such. It's pretty nice, I like it because I can do back and edit rather I can't do that when I write. And out family shares computers, so, yeah, that wouldn't really work for writing. ;) I love it, and I recommend it to you...I think you would like it better than writing by hand because it's still distraction free, and you can take it anywhere.

      Each file I'd say takes about a minute to load. The words can be typed out anywhere, Gmail, FB, even google search. Wherever you can type it will type it out for you. Basically, it just goes as really, really fast typing. I like it, 'cause I can read my work as it loads. It doesn't take long to load it all, and it saves time in the end. :D You should totally look into it. My friend just got one, and she loves it. ;)

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    5. BTW, it comes in a blueish black....if that counts. I was saying they SHOULD have made colors though. ;) lol. http://www.ebay.com/itm/like/261951827576?ul_noapp=true&chn=ps&lpid=82, that is what mine looks like. I just did the link so you could see. ;)

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    6. Ooh, I like what you came up with brainstorming! You did that fast. Blurbs are always so hard for me, haha. xD

      900... hours. o.o Wow. I would be seriously impressed if someone ever used it for that long, hehe. And that totally makes sense if you share computers, since you can't hog the computer all the time. ;)

      That's not bad at all. I love that you can see the words being typed up. That would be so fun to watch. xD (And maybe discouraging that you can't write that fast? Haha.)
      They definitely should make more colors. *nods* Thought by the looks of it (and that you can only buy them on ebay) are they not making them anymore? 'Tis a shame, because I think a lot of writers would buy them.

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    7. lol. Pinterest helped me extremely, the most ever in fact. ;) haha, when I get inspired, the inspiration lasts for a while...I just got out of Writers Block, so yeah. ;)

      haha, I might...in my writerly lifetime. ;) LOL. Yes, and I couldn't just be stopped in the middle of writing...and I'd be worried about someone deleting it-or reading it, that's just as bad. ;)

      Yes, it's pretty neat. haha, yes...that would be awesome. I'm a pretty fast typist, but inspiration doesn't always flow as easily as the words. :D One thing I wish it did have, was italic...but I do these symbols * on the outside of the sentence just to remind myself to change it. You do have to format it on the computer, but I'm find with that.
      Yes, they were made in...2002 and the Dana was later. I don't know why they don't make them anymore..probably because most writers have laptops and such now. I never even knew about them, somehow my parents found out and got it for me for Christmas, I was SO surprised. It's pretty awesome...it's probably saved me from stopping writing. Because I was frustrated with writing by hand (my hand isn't fast enough for my brain, and I highly dislike re-typing it on the computer) and I couldn't always be on the computer, so I was super happy to get an Alphasmart. :D They are super cheap for the durability though, awesome for writers who can't afford $200+ laptops. Plus...internet is distraction. lol.

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  8. I love the new design (not that I didn't like the old one). I can't wait for your new blog series--it sounds like it's going to be really helpful, and a lot of fun!

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    1. No offense taken, haha. ;)
      Good! I'm super excited for it. :D

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  9. I voted. I like the new design, but I'd suggest moving the title- I'm not a fan of how it's on the side.
    Looking forward to your series. I've been thinking of making some modifications to my blog as well (not a complete overhaul, mind you, just some smaller changes) and I could use the tips.

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    1. *nods* Interesting how everyone can be so split in what they like. But thank you for telling me!
      Ooh, awesome. Hopefully this will be helpful... :)

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  10. To be honest, I do like the red. Just because it adds a touch of color. ;) But I also love blue.

    A series on blog design sounds awesome! I would definitely read it. :)

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    1. Thank you! I think I'll end up keeping it the way it is. ;)

      Yay! That's good to hear. :D

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  11. Hmm... To be entirely honest, I like the new design, and I like simple, crisp designs, and all that, but I like your current one better because /it's different/ and /it stands out/. I know the simplistic, minimalist design is in style right now, but that's why I'm not big on it-- so many blogs look that way and *whispers* I can't keep them straight. They all look the same to me? And I like a blog design I remember with a title I remember and a lovely blogger and awesome content that I remember and don't get confused with anything else.

    But that's just my two cents. If you do decide to change it, it will still be lovely.

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    1. Thank you for your honesty! Seriously, I'm so glad people are speaking their minds. It looks like most people like this design better (which I was surprised about, but ah well) and I want to respect that because you guys are the ones visiting. So, again, THANK YOU! :D

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  12. Ooh the new design idea is pretty o.0 It's really weird without a header on top, though, so that would be something I'd consider -- it makes it seem kinda empty. And I'm always a fan of clean designs. xD

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    1. *nods* Thank youuu! Yeah, I wasn't sure if it would be weird or not. I think some people like them and some people thing it's odd, so it kinda depends on the person.
      I totally wouldn't know that from your blog... ;)

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  13. I love tutorials! Excited to see how you do them.

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    1. Huzzah! I'm excited that you're excited. ;)

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  14. Oo I like both designs, the current one because of the fall colors but I also love the new one.
    I love the idea of a tutorial I need that. :D

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    1. Thank you! :D
      Hehe, well I'll help out with that! :)

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  15. *hides in shame because I couldn't resist commenting on your design template blog* But I really LOVE the new design. I definitely think it's more, I don't know, techy feeling? And anything that feels modern and sleek and streamlined is going to be right up my alley. It's definitely clean, and it doesn't distract from the content or anything, so that's a plus. And I like what you've done with the title.

    Also, I'm looking forward to your blog design series. I've considered redesigning mine, and I opted for a couple changes, but I'm still open to any new thoughts--so I'm interested to see what your series might bring to mind. No pressure. :P

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    1. So you win the award for best comment ever and I can't stop laughing. Oh goodness, you're awesome. xD
      Thank you! Ugh I'm torn because everyone likes different things it's hard. :p

      Good! *gulp* Just... a bit of pressure. ;) Hopefully they'll help, because I love dealing with design things. :D

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  16. I like it. :-) I like both designs, actually... Maybe you could combine them? So... I like the cleanness (is cleanness even a word?) of the new design, but I've always really liked the header in the current design. I know the colors don't fit, though. Maybe a new header...? Ooh! I could make one! xD
    It looks good, even though it's not finished. ^-^

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    1. A banner like... This, maybe? https://storyoffire.files.wordpress.com/2015/09/a-writers-faith-logo.png :-P
      I was really only playing around... You can have it if you want, though. xP

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    2. Thank you! I think I'm going to make a new header for this current blog design (keeping the same colors) just to change it up a bit and make "A Writer's Faith" more visible.
      Oh my goodness! You whipped that up quickly. Thanks so much. :) Except, I'm probably going to keep the theme of this current one, so the blues don't really work... But otherwise thanks! I like the ink and quill pen or whatever it's called. :D

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    3. xD Yeah, I like the colors of this one. Fall colors are my favorites.
      :-P No problem. I could do the same thing with different colors if you like...

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    4. I already have a new header for this one, but thank you for offering! :D

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  17. I have to say the new design looks kinda empty to me but that's just my opinion and maybe that's something you plan to fill up. I like it but I think it needs a little bit more blue or something :) And maybe something towards the top....a picture or something in between the page options and the top. But of course what matters most is that you love it! :D

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    1. *nods* It seems like a lot of people think that, so I'll just keep the old design and change a few things. ;)
      Aww, but I do want to make sure my readers love it, too. ;)

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  18. YES YES YES PLEASE DO THAT SERIES.

    On another note, I really like the new design! I think it looks a little empty, but I really like it otherwise.

    xoxo
    Grace Anne
    http://totallygraced.blogspot.com/

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    1. I WILL DO THE SERIES DON'T WORRY. ;)

      *nods* Okay. Thank you!

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  19. Darling, the new design is FAB!!! Simple but still so stinking pretty! :D If I were to make any change to the new design, I would make your sidebar pictures into circles. I think it would create a softer look, if that makes sense...? (But that's just me! Do as you please! lol!) Cannot wait to see the finished product!!! <3

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    1. OH!! And I am SO PUMPED about the blog series!! XD It sounds super fun!

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    2. Aww, thank you! *hugs* Looks like I won't be using it, but if I ever need another blog for some reason, I'll use that design. ;)

      Glad you're looking forward to the series! So am I. :D

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  20. I like the new blog design. It's sleek and easy to read and sometimes a new blog design can boost your zeal for blogging! Best of luck to you and I'll keep an eye out for the new post series!

    storitorigrace.blogspot.com

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    1. Thank you! I'm trying to make this one look a bit more sleek. ;)

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  21. It looks good! The text is much easier to read now. :-)

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  22. Gotta say, it hard to say which one i like better, i LOVE the blue on the new one, blue and green are like, my colors, and it is very organized. But the current one i think expresses more about you and your life, specifically in the top pictures, now if you don't want people to know all about you right after they find the blog you might go for the new design. Both are awesome though, so, just you know, whatever you feel more comfortable with

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    1. yeah, i just went off into a tanget about the design and completely forgot about the series. I think it is a great idea, this could definately help my in the future if i ever decide to start a blog

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    2. I knowww. Blues and greens (especially light ones of each) are my favorite colors, so I really wanted to do a design with them, but I think this one suits me better like you said, so I'm going to stick with this one and try to clean it up a bit. ;)

      Yay! You should totally start a blog someday. They're a bunch of work, but also a lot of fun, and hopefully the series could help with the designing part of it to make it all pretty. :D

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  23. The new design looks brilliant, Katie! You hit the bulls eye in getting that simplicity right. :) Also, your new series sounds awesome. Can't wait for its first post. :D

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    1. Aw, thank you! <3
      Yay! I'm excited for people to read it!

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  24. I'm having a giveaway!!

    https://maddysdigitaldiary.wordpress.com/2015/09/23/giveaway/

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  25. A series on blog design would be absolutely awesome. I for one can't wait to see what you come up with for it. As someone who seems to be regularly re-designing things (and who really struggles with blog design in general) I know I would find it useful. As to the design, I am a huge fan of the new blue and white look. Though I am in agreement with those who have suggested you add a header. It can be as simple as the blog title in that lovely fancy font you used for the title at the top of the sidebar, but I think you should consider some sort of header just to clue readers in on what the blog is called at first glance. Can't wait to see what you do with the blog!

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  26. Oohh, I love the atmosphere that you've created on your blog! It's the first time I've gone on it, but I can't wait to dive into the community you've created here!

    As for the design, I favor the cleaner look. The sample you provided looked very clean and fresh. I'm not sure how I feel about the header not heading the page, though. It feels a bit off-centered, but it is also unique.

    Can't wait to get to know you more, Kaite!

    Hannah from Grace in Everything

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  27. Hoo boy, I can't decide! But I think I'm of the opinion that combining your current design with aspects of the new one might be a good idea. (Then again, it's YOUR blog, so design it however you wish! Plus, I'm a newbie when it comes to such things...)

    By the way, I don't know if you do tags, but I nominated you for the Infinity Dreams Blog Award! Totally up to you, though. ^_^ http://traceydyck.blogspot.ca/2015/09/the-infinity-dreams-blog-award.html

    ReplyDelete

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