Today I’m sharing how to move from Google Reader to BlogLovin over on my personal blog Priceless Adventure. Google announced yesterday that they are closing down Google Reader as of July 1, 2013. I was totally bummed because Google Reader has always been how I keep up on my blog reading. For now, I’m switching to BlogLovin, but I’ll keep you updated if I find something better!
Custom Blog Design
I am just overjoyed with how this custom blog design for Blogger turned out! We stretched Blogger to it’s limits by adding a full width menu bar, custom blockquotes for book reviews, lots of social networking buttons, and a custom book rating system. You really must visit this blog to appreciate it.
In her design homework Jennifer requested a “vintage, romantic feel” with “some gray or black to give it an edge.” After searching high and low, I found the beautiful watercolor flowers from Angie Makes which we used throughout the site.
This blog was built for a team of three contributors and we created separate social links and signatures for each of them. Because it’s primarily a book review blog, they also needed a way to rate and categorize their books. Jennifer and the girls came up with a really cute rating system to help categorize their books.
Most of the book bloggers I’ve worked with have also requested custom blockquotes to use for either their book reviews or to offset the book synopsis’s. These blockquotes can be styled numerous ways and I absolutely love how the top border of this one mimics the blog’s full width header.
I want to thank Jennifer especially for her easy communication and wonderful design ideas. I wish all the ladies at A Love Affair with Books the best as they embark into the world of book blogging!
I can’t say enough good things about working with Katie and the amazing job she did on our blog. I am so glad I found Priceless Design Studio! As a new blogger I was really starting from scratch, she was so helpful from the very beginning and patient with all of my questions and concerns. She made sure the blog reflected our taste and was something we absolutely loved, I’m already getting many complements on how pretty it turned out. We are completely in love with the finished product and couldn’t be happier! Thank you so much Katie!
Custom Blogger Design
I had a lot of fun creating this custom blogger design for The Boston Author Event. Knowing that Megan (from The Book Asylum) would also need promotional materials for the event, we discussed creating images that would double as both site graphics and printables. Not only did this make it more affordable for her, it had the added bonus creating a unified brand for the event.
In addition to the blogger design, I also created matching graphics for t-shirts, mugs, book-bags, and printables. Event-goers can go to The Boston Author Event’s Cafe Press store to order swag for the event before they even get there!
Custom WordPress Blog
When Natasha told me she was ready to take the plunge and upgrade to a Custom WordPress Blog for her book blog design, I was so excited for her! There are just so many more possibilities when working with a self-hosted WordPress blog, in terms of both design and content.
The title of Natasha’s blog says it all: Natasha is a Book Junkie. She writes in depth reviews and interviews authors among other things on her blog. Self-hosted WordPress is perfect for a book blogger because of the category and tag system which allows her to organize her posts, widgets, and menus easier than wordpress.com or Blogger would.
The design we created is totally unique to Natasha and I had a lot of fun working on something different from my usual. Natasha’s request of a dark colored background and integration of a photo into the header challenged me to try something new.
I love Natasha’s philosophy on book reviews, that they are completely subjective and what matters most is the enjoyment of the reading experience. For that reason, she decided to go with starfish instead of the traditional star rating system.
Working with Katie was the most enjoyable experience I could have imagined. I loved her portfolio, loved her structured designs and attention to detail, but I also knew I needed to take her out of her comfort zone in order to get the website I envisioned. Most designers would have bolted, told me to lose their number at the incessant and detailed requests I made, but not Katie. She listened, asked questions and then one day sent me a prototype idea. I was floored. She managed to create everything I wished for and then blew me away with her incredible creativity! I watched my little site take shape, day by day, and when it was all completed, so much earlier than expected, I had the perfect blog. I still look at it today, months after it was finished, and I can’t believe how much she got me.
Katie is a gem and I have recommended her to so many people I have lost count. She is currently working with one of them and blowing them away as well. She is still answering my emails every time I do something she told me not to do and I need her to fix it, and she never loses that smile of hers. Thank you, Katie, working with you was and still is an absolute pleasure. Thank you for giving me MY blog, something I’m so proud to show off to everyone.
When I read this review from Natasha, I seriously teared up. I really can’t thank her enough for all of her encouragement and kinds words. We made an awesome team!
Custom Blogger Design Makeover
I love everything about this brand new Blogger design for Megan from The Book Asylum. We all know about ‘life + style’ bloggers but I’d consider Megan more of a ‘life + book’ blogger. The Book Asylum is a great mix of current reads, music faves, random acts of kindness, and day to day life.
When explaining what she was looking for in a blog design, Megan said she wanted The Book Asylum to feel like a destination. By adding the sign hanging from the top and lush foliage surrounding the content, we hope that you feel like you have actually arrived at a place.
Some fun features for this Blogger design include a unique background (try making your screen larger & smaller!), custom rating stars, custom “search by stars” interactive widget, and a custom blockquote that frames her book synopsis content from Goodreads. She also has a custom menu bar that incorporates social networking icons, custom dates, custom fonts, sidebar titles and a signature. Megan and I also worked together to create banners and headers for her various weekly features.
In addition, Megan asked that I make her some promotional materials including matching custom two-sided business cards and bookmarks for her to share at various events and local bookstores.
Both Megan and I are thrilled with the results of her new site. This is what Megan had to say,
Working with Katie at Priceless Design Studio was the best decision I could have made as a new blogger. Choosing to work with her was an easy one to make. Her designs are all unique and beautiful, and the layouts very intuitive and easy to navigate. As a designer and blogger herself, she knew all the right questions to ask in order to create the perfect site for me. She was also a tremendous resource to me, helping me to shorten my learning curve and get right to what really mattered to me – sharing my thoughts on great books with the bookish community.
Throughout the design process, Katie was very easy to work with and extremely detail-oriented. Every time I had a change or suggestion, I felt heard and Katie did an amazing job of turning my thoughts and visions into what is now The Book Asylum. I can’t say I made her job easy as I am a big picture gal. I literally sent her link after link after link, and somehow she sifted through all the information and was able to glean my true wants and needs from it. The other thing I noticed is that when I had a special request, she went above and beyond to get the information she needed to make it happen for me. I cannot tell you enough how wonderful and design savvy Katie is. Her discerning eye and amazing talent translated into a beautiful site that is uniquely me. In addition to the website design, I have worked with Katie on marketing materials for The Book Asylum like business cards and bookmarks. Her work has helped me to create a strong brand that I can be proud of. I get compliments on it all the time and I owe it all to her!
I must admit that this is one of the nicest testimonials I’ve received and I thank Megan for her kind words and encouragement along the way. It’s been fun to learn more about the book blogging community and I really admire Megan’s tenacity in jumping right in!
Custom Blogger Design
This light and bright Blogger design for my IRL (in real life) friend Heidi of Happily Hickman was so much fun to make. My favorite part of this design is how the blog header wraps the site like a ribbon. Heidi has such great taste and I’m always inspired by her interior design ideas and mad baking skills! Definitely check out her carefully curated Pinterest boards 🙂