So I recently decided that I was going to change up my blog design. I wanted it similar to my Frugalityville website... more simple looking. (No more cutesy backgrounds... I wanted to just use a few embellishments instead.)
For my blog I decided to use the Minima Stretch Template... it stretches my columns across the whole page instead of putting them in a smaller column down the middle. I then designed a header with the graphics and fonts that I liked using photoshop. I created a signature that will automatically post on new posts, I added a graphic to the front of my Blog Post Titles, I put a cute divider between my posts and then changed my font colors to match my header and other graphics. I am pretty pleased with how everything turned out... for now anyway! ;)
It occurred to me that there might be some of you out there who would like to know where you can go to get information on how to do some of this stuff, so here are some of my favorite sites that will get you on your way:
For really cute scrapbooking type graphics for your web pages that are free for non-commercial, personal use, Summer does a fabulous site with lots of scrapbooking kits to choose from. Visit http://summertimedesigns.blogspot.com/. (I used the Happy Mothers Day Kit to make my header, my line dividers and the little graphics at the front of each post title.)
If you want a ton of new, extremely cute free handwriting and scrapbooking fonts, Amanda offers a brilliant selection at her website. Just visit http://www.kevinandamanda.com/fonts/ and look for the buttons that let you download the entire collection in one swoop. These fonts will work in your graphics programs as well as Word. (If you don't know how to install them on your computer and you live near me, I would be happy to come over and show ya! Creative I am not... Computer literate, I actually am!)
So once you have gotten your graphics and fonts, how do you put everything together? What size new graphics do you make for each element? How do you upload them or change the HTML code on your page? Well, there are some really good tutorials out there to help, (as well as a lot of free already made stuff if you don't want to make it yourself!)
The girls at Cutest Blog On The Block not only have tons of free backgrounds, but they have a section called "Blogging Secrets". Here you can learn how to make your own background, how to add a cute signature to your posts, how to add an image next to your sidebar and post titles, how to remove those pesky border lines that never line up properly from behind your header and much, much more!
Megan at Shabby Blogs teaches you how to put a divider between your posts instead of that boring line! Need a cute header or divider but don't want to spend the time making it? Check out her EXTRA's page which lets you download some really cute ones. Need to know how to install them? She tells you HERE how to do it.
There are lots of sites out there that have free backgrounds and headers if you just want to upload pre-made one's on to your blog. A couple I like (other than the ones mentioned above), are: