Blog designing is something I’m totally impressed by. The simple fact that you can turn font into something stunning and engaging, coding a site to work seamlessly and creating a really great experience for the end user is beyond impressive. How I wish I took a few coding classes in college because this fashion blog forces me to rely on others to do things I don’t know how to do. But thankfully there are some amazing designers out there and I’m so glad I discovered Whit from Heart & Arrow Design. A little bit about how we got to turn My Style Vita into a whole new experience and some tips on figuring out what you like.
I of course was craving an update to the blog. I had my old layout for over a year and a half, and although I used to love it, I feel like I grew out of it. There were just more things I wanted from a more creative title, a cleaner layout, easier functions like the new SHOP page, navigation bars etc. Back when I first started blogging, sticky navigation bars weren’t a thing. And neither was a SHOP page since rewardStyle didn’t exist then. It’s amazing how the blog design industry changes so quickly. And thankfully my gal Whit was up for the challenge.
A few things I knew I wanted with this new site, a great logo and a supplement logo inside a shape. I was stuck on it, I have no idea why. But I wanted a damn shape and not just font. I also (thought) I wanted my logo to have the shape as well. An interactive shop page that was organized was also top priority. I didn’t like how every blog has a general shop page with all their favorites just crammed in. It’s messy, unorganized, and not how anyone shops online. I also wanted the site to feel different. How, I don’t know, that was up for Whit to figure out. And thankfully she did.
After several emails back and forth and a few inspiration photos like this blue and mint Paris picture, Whit sent me back this brand board (okay there were a few more emails with back and forth, but she pretty much nailed it). It was perfection. How would she use the logo, no clue, that geometric print, wished her luck. I couldn’t figure out how it would come together. After a few days of tweaking, she came up with the most incredible design layout. I loved it. I was beyond excited for my sticky nav bar, the chic logo, and the bits of hexagon in places across the site that wasn’t too overdone. I also loved the geometric print. Something about it just made the whole site look different and new. It was something no one else is doing and gave it such a modern twist.
A few of my tips on helping to create an effective wish list for your web designer
- Find blogs you love and figure out why you love them
- Whether you love the logo, the function of a certain page, or a sidebar feature, be very specific about why you said you liked that site. Come up with a handful of these and try to cover all your bases. Colors, fonts, function, layout, etc. The easier it is for your web designer to visualize what you are visualizing, the more likely you’ll be satisfied with the result.
- Come up with color combinations that interest you
- I knew I wanted mint in my site in some shape or form. It was on my old site, there’s a touch of it on Southern Blog Society, and it just felt natural to include it going forward.
- Browse Pinterest for color inspiration; home decor pins are best for this if you ask me.
- Come up with other options as well, don’t just show your designer one color combination (unless you love it). I also was pondering the thought of neon yellow and Whit was easily able to swap out colors to show me what it would like it. It was a quick decision from there which helped validate I was going in the right direction with my colors.
- Fall in love with fonts
- You can search in Pinterest for fonts and see lots of great inspiration with them paired together. It helps to see what you like and don’t like. I knew I didn’t like anything too girly or frilly, we even took down the “frill” factor on the cursive in my logo because it just wasn’t me. Now it’s perfect, duh.
- Figure out what’s most important
- The whole point of me switching to WordPress were two things, sticky navigation bar with a great easy drop down menu and my SHOP page. I was willing to negotiate on other things, but this wasn’t one of them. Prioritize your design and make sure your designer knows this too so they know what to work on and perfect first.
These are all essential tips for working with web designers when creating your perfect fashion blog. Communication (and patience) is key!
The process of transferring from Blogger to WordPress was a bit overwhelming too. Sure, Whit dealt with all of it and my 200 plus emails, but for me as the blogger who’s focused on traffic and end user, it was definitely a lesson in patience. I just wanted all my links to work, all my photos to be perfect and everything to be seamless. It took some time, but we’re there (about 99% there, you may find a wrong link here or there, but promise, the post is still on the site). This brings me to my next topic, Blogger vs WordPress. Check back next week for my tips on which platform to use and which Plugins I’m obsessed with.