Yeah, we all know that WordPress themes and designs just plain suck. It is the one thing that Blogger is winning at; the customisation options for those blogs are endless and simple and- I’m getting emotional just thinking about it. WordPress themes are what Trump is to America. You know – an easily solved problem!

Solution being: someone put a bullet through his big, red head. Please.

Seriously, where are assassins when you need them? Oh, you wanted the solution to WordPress theme pain? Or just general blog design tips and advice? I mean, I personally think my Trump related advice is priceless, but sure whatever.

This post idea came from day . . . 2 . . . of the 30 Day Creative Self-Improvement Challenge – updating my blog branding! So many people have been asking me for blog design tips because we people living that “Free Plan” life on WordPress suffer. And, if I can alleviate some of your pain, it is my duty as a fellow human to try. And I’m going to do this alongside you because, quite frankly, I’m terrible with instructions and you might appreciate the help.

So this is my current blog design graphics pack, I guess. (And you can see it in all its high definition glory on DeviantArt here)

Step One: Gather inspiration! I personally head straight to my tumblr (which is here, by the way) or Pinterest to see the kind of colours, images and whatnot that inspires me/makes me up, but you can draw inspiration from other blogs or magazines.

new blog theme

Step Two: Answer some questions about your blog. These are to get an idea of the type of blog you have and the overall image and feel you want to present.

What Is Your Blog About?

Fashion, art, entertainment, life

What Do You Want To Be Known For?

Personality, humour, sarcasm, creativity, helpful

(Minimum of 3) What Unique Features Does Your Blog Have?

Voice, life advice, random-mid-post-ramblings

What Inspires You?

Tumblr, wildlife, plants, art, buddhism,

Words Associated With Your Blog?

Cynical, sarcastic, funny, interesting, alternative, bohemian

Serious or Personal?

Both

Step Three: Taking all these answers into consideration, start filling out these sections. Remember that right now you’re just fleshing out ideas. Just jot down everything you can think of or possibly want to incorporate then jot it all down.

Colours

Black and white, faded red and yellow, green, brown

Logos

Skull

Words

Sass, sarcasm, cynicism, spiritual

Images

Roses, tombstones, skeletons, mandalas, ivy, windows

Ideas

The skeleton as a character

Symbols

So one of the many things I’m loving to do at the moment is create manifestos – so naturally, at the beginning of this little blog revamp I tried to create a manifesto that I thought would fit with the new blog. I was very, very wrong. You can laugh at me (it’s encouraged, actually) but I think it’s a good example of how you should think about your branding and what not before you jump in.

 Step Four: Create a template. So this is just a sketch of your possible blog layout. Include your widgets, any kind of imagery you might want- just get a nice visual of where everything is going to end up.

 wp-1465338816619.jpg

Step 5 – Start To Create Your Graphics. Regardless of if you’re like me and just love having random images everywhere, (because pretty things are soulfood) you’re going to need some blog graphics. Buttons, logos – now is the time to create them.

logo

This is such a painfully long step that I’m not going to drag you through all of it with me – but as you can see, I narrowed my ideas down and started to create my graphic elements with a uniform feel; I prefer my buttons to be illustrative, so that took a ridiculous amount of my life but you don’t have to drag it out like I have.

Step 6 – Pick a theme and edit your widgets.

Okay, so you have a rough idea of what you want your blog to look like and where you want your widgets to go – now is the time to actually sort the placements and whatnot out.

new click here

How I personally lay out most of my widgets is with an image widget that’s hyper-linked to a page; for example, the above image is for my landing page for new viewers. This is how I create my category sidebars as well, in case any of you were wondering.

Step 7 -Tweak and tinker. And that’s it! 

All you have to do is think up a theme that fits your blog, plan it out and you’ll realise that getting it onto the screen is way easier than you originally thought. I hope this was helpful, but writing it was like pulling teeth because this shit is hard to explain so if you want any extra help or advice just let me know below!

Feel free to follow me on social media (and if you like this post – share it!):

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31 thoughts on “{ How To Slay Your Blog Design and Branding // Blogging 101 }”

    1. Thank you lovely! and for a hyperlinked image you create an image widget (you upload your image to your library right click it and click copy image address to copy the image location to paste in the widget) then copy the link to the page you want the image linked to in the widget & thank you lovely! I had to experiment with it…A LOT xx

          1. ohh, im really crap at photoshop:)u must be really good at art!!i only just got a pass in my Visual Arts test:)i think some ppl call visual art sgraphic desgn? its basically comes with DT!

    1. Ugh it’s not easy it’s long and confusing I just tried to simplify it to make it easier for other people to learn so they didn’t live the struggle😪😪😪 thank you though it means a lot x (but you can totally do it – holla me if you want help though I gotchuuu )

      1. I will do when I figure out how to even afford photo shop and how to make space for it on my tired, already-pensioner-slowly-nearing-end-of-life-laptop and then I’ll learn some artistic skills other than stickmen😂

        1. hehe okay yeah maybe just draw your graphics then scan them in xD if you did ever want to use photoshop, a lot of schools and libraries have it to support work so you could find it…but thats a bit long, lets not lie 😀

  1. This was really great, been waiting for this! I really want to fix my blog.
    I swear I’m going to get on top of the blogging thing but every time the school year comes around… Well, here’s to summer! This time I promise I’m in for the long haul.
    Please tell me you are still up for collab?

    🙂 Aisha

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