Today I’m getting down to the nitty gritty. I’m not on of those bloggers that has a craft room or a really put together kitchen (I blame being in a rental) or even my very own space in my house…far from it. We’ll talk about where the magic happens, how I tweak my pictures, and about blog designs. This is my happy place.
So here’s what things are really like here. I’m not showing you the mess, everyone has a messy house. These are just the places I visit most often for the blog.
I don’t have any high tech or primo photo editing software. I’m intimidated by PhotoShop, even though I know I should probably go out and buy it. Instead I go for the best shot I can, take too many pictures, and pick the best.
For little photo editing needs, I use IrfanView. It’s free software you can download online. I resize, change gamma, contrast, and saturation really easily. Contrast is my favorite to boost the colors.
I use plain old Paint to crop my pictures. Nothing special, it’s just a little easier than cropping with IrfanView.
I use PicMonkey.com for my watermark, creating buttons, collages, and other design type elements. A lot of features are free, but your own overlay (watermark) is not. There are other sites where overlays are free. I’m just too comfortable with PicMonkey, so I paid the $4.99/mo and will most likely be changing to the $33/year plan.
On the computer I have everything filed, and filed, and filed. It’s an addiction, but it makes me feel sane.
My original blog binder has become the home for all kinds of ideas I print and rip. I also keep completed recipes in the front pocket so I can just grab them whenever I’m ready to blog about it.
What the heck is a brand? It’s you, it’s your blog, it’s what people think of when they hear your blog’s name. Why does it matter? I never thought about a “brand” when i started blogging. It’s not usually anyone’s first thought. But if you want to me remembered and if you hope to make money, it’s going to be important.
When I started my blog I didn’t know exactly what I was going to write about, I just kind of dove in. I wanted a name that wouldn’t back me into a corner. Now that I have a niche I have mixed feelings about my blog name. Don’t get me wrong, I still love it, but WLOW doesn’t scream “FOOD!” when you hear it like Mom’s Test Kitchen does. Then again I feel like the WLOW name doesn’t limit me to food only, I can do crafts, sew, and talk about goofy stuff – which I like.
I wanted clean, blues and grays, and that was all I really knew.
I saved up all my paid blog post money and took the dive. I had a better idea of the little things I wanted for my design, but I was no where near ready to do it myself. Maddie was a dream to work with. I picked her after being a reader of her blog for sometime and seeing the design she did for her sister. You can read about the process HERE.
I also got Maddie to design my business cards. Why not? She already had all the formats and colors and what not. Wanna see? They’re just so cute!
Now, after OBC I took the plunge and did a hybrid design of my own. I love Maddie’s design and didn’t want to loose the essence of what she did. So I took a color inspiration: