Tidbits, Tips, and Codes for DIY Blog Designing

My DIY Blog Design series is coming to a close, and we’ve covered a lot of ground…
like headers, social media icons, post dividers, and linking multiple URLs to one image.

But I’ve still got all sorts of little tips and tricks that I use all the time, but I haven’t been able to find just the spot in my previous posts to add them to.
So this is going to be sort of a random hodge podge of important tidbits you won’t want to lose!
Tidbit #1: Quicklinks
These are some of my favorite quick links when making changes to the blog:

Tip #2: Avoid Grainy Images
Always save your design images as .png not .jpg 

Code #3: Remove Image Drop Shadows
This code removes the drop shadow from behind your images. Insert it in the CSS section of Advance Settings in ‘Design’ or “Layout’

img {
-moz-box-shadow: 0px 0px 0px rgba(0, 0, 0, .1);
-webkit-box-shadow: 0px 0px 0px rgba(0, 0, 0, .1);
box-shadow: 0px 0px 0px rgba(0, 0, 0, .1);

Tidbit #4: Learn How to Google
I found everything I’ve used in blog design by googling. Seriously. There are so many awesome design blogs out there, and they’ve got all the information you need. The trick is searching the right words to find the tutorial that will help you the most.

For example: I found image-maps.com by googling. I wanted to add my social media icons to my header, but I couldn’t think of a concise search to enter into Google. So I gave up on the “concise” part, and just typed in exactly what I was looking for, “I want to put my social media icons on my header in blogger, how.” Seriously. That’s what I typed in.

And that led me to lots of hits that contained key words like, “multiple links,” “one image,” “map coordinates.” Once I could identify the “techy words” for what I wanted to say, I was able to type those into the search engine, and the led me to exactly what I was looking for.

Moral of the story: google, google, GOOGLE! The information you need is out there!!

***Also– make sure you use the keywords “in blogger” or “in wordpress.” It makes a difference in the results.

Tip #5: Be a Copycat
Don’t be afraid to be a copycat! If you see something you like on someone else’s blog, don’t be afraid to try and re-create it (in your own way, of course) on your blog! And if you’re nervous about copyright infringement, there’s usually a link to contact the designer at the bottom of the blog. But as long as you aren’t copying and pasting images, you should be safe.

Code #6: Lock Post Title Color
This code should lock the color of your post titles– so they don’t switch from that pretty color you’ve picked out to black when you’re on the page. Be sure to insert the color code in place of the #000000.
h3.post-title a, h3 {
color: #000000;

Tidbit #7: Where to Find Clip Art
While I’m a firm believe that having a beautiful blog doesn’t need to cost you a penny– I’m also a clip art fiend. I love it. And You can find some of the BEST clipart packages on Etsy. And many of the shop owners offer BOGO type sales all the time! Simply go to Etsy.com and type in whichever kind of clip art you’re looking for. Or even just type in “cute clip art.” You’ll be stunned at how much cool stuff is available for $5.00 or less! And all you have to do is save the clip art to the computer and then pull it right up in Picmonkey!

Some of my favorite Etsy clip art designers are:

There’s also a lot of free clip art out there on the web– just google it! Again, it’s a simple matter of learning the key words to search for. Example: ‘silhouette’ is a helpful keyword to search for. Silhouette clip art is extremely useful because it’s solid and usually black– which means you can customize the color to match your blog settings using Picmonkey.

Tip #8: Reach Out
Don’t be afraid to email other bloggers and ask them “how they did something.” It might take them a while to get back to you, but, in my experience, they almost always do– and they almost always have a helpful answer for you!

Code #9: Remove Blogger Navbar
This code removes your blogger navbar:

#navbar {
height: 0px;
visibility: hidden;
display: none;

Tidbit #10: Do Your Homework
Get to know some of the “techy” blogs out there! There are tons and tons of helpful blogs solely dedicated to creating blogger plugin codes, writing how-to articles, and answering your blog design questions! Some of my favorites are:

I have officially divulged all of my secrets! So it’s back to the kitchen for me ;)
Don’t worry– I’ll still do blog designs posts on a Q&A basis, 
so feel free to shoot me an email if there’s something you’d like me to cover!

And as I find more goodies that I can’t wait to use on Something Swanky, I’ll be sure to PIN them to my Blogging Tips & Designs Board or my Blogging Re-design Board!

It’s been fun folks!
Thanks for the love :)

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Ashton Swank

Ashton is the owner and author of Something Swanky. Although first and foremost a wife and mother, she considers herself an online entrepreneur, freelance writer and photographer, and brand ambassador. Her focus is in food styling, food photography and recipe development.