When starting a new blog design there is an email that I always send that describes the process we will go through along with a set of questions so I can get some info to get the feel and personality of the blog (and writer). Today I'm starting a new series of posts chronicling the process of the design for the Sometimes Sweet/Adeline's Daddy giveaway winner Brandilyn and Cats and Cardigans. I'll start by showing the questions that I sent along with Brandilyn's answers, then I'll show you a little of the though process and finally the rough draft.
QUESTIONS / ANSWERS •What is the title of your blog as you would like it top appear in the design? cats & cardigans
• for your blog makeover, do you want to keep any elements from your current look? not particularly...i'm pretty flexible when it comes to changing things up. i've designed my blog myself using picnik.com, paint, and googling "how to.." so it's kind of a hodge-podge mess right now.
• do you have a color palette that you are leaning toward / any color combinations that should be avoided? I always love blues and greens (especially pea soup green or turquoise), although i really can't think of any color combos i wouldn't like (maybe pink...i generally don't do lots of pink). i like crazy color combos, and i also like subtle, muted palettes. so i guess whatever you think will look awesome, i'd probably be cool with!
• is there any imagery or elements that you would like to see involved? I am a bit of a crazy cat lady, so i'd be pretty excited about something cat-themed in the header (or really, anywhere else on the blog).
• what are your favorite things about your current blog design? I like that it's fairly simple, but once again, i'm not terribly attached to any one thing on the blog and i'm ready for some change.
• what are your least favorite things about your current design? I have like 12 different fonts going on; i'd love a more streamlined look in that regard. i'd also love more color and a little more personality. it feels very vanilla and messy to me right now.
• do you have a list of blogs that you would like to reference for design inspiration? I scrolled through the "blog design" section on your blog, and seriously, i love all the blogs you've redone. my favorites are probably the Paper Mama, Small House by the Sea, and Nice Girl Notes.
• Is there anything special that you would like to add to your blog that isn't there already? Like buttons, links, navigation. I'd love a nice, organized way to get to my twitter, pinterest, etc., similar to what you did for Nice Girl Notes (i love the little buttons).
• Please include anything else (including photos) that you think would also be useful. I've attached the picture i have in my "about" button thing at the top right of my blog right now. i like that one to have on the blog as a "hello" kind of thing, although it definitely doesn't have to be as big as it is now.
I started by looking at her current blog to see what she has going right now and to reference her notes against it. IT's not offensive, kinda cute, but I do agree there isn't a cohesive feel to it. I see we have a cute stylish type and also a self proclaimed "crazy cat lady" so I'm envisioning so cool fabrics, sewn buttons, and of course some cat themed graphics. I don't want the cat themed aspect of it to overwhelm the overall feel or make it look frumpy, so I want it to be more subtle and mostly in the accents. So, here is the sketch I put together and the notes.
• The top section will be a fabric that is almost like a sideways button up sectioning off the header with fabric patches sewn on for the navigation and logo.
• The logo patch will be something similar to the sketch with an "&" symbol in cat nose with whiskers to the sides.
• there will be one sidebar to the right of the content, with a background color that goes top to bottom of the blog.
• for sections in the sidebar I'm thinking that sound cool cat oriented accents like a cat collar that wraps around it with cat tags hanging that will contain the social media links. Also other collars with bells.
• This is just the rough, so let me know if you liking it and I will do some more elaboration. Keep in mind that the Sometimes Sweet site started here and ended here.
QUICK COMPUTER MOCK
• Here is a mock of the feel and colors I was thinking.