Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Blog Design

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This is the backward edition of Works For Me Wednesday. The idea is to ask for advice instead of giving it.

If you are a regular reader, you may have noticed that I have been changing things up around here and then changing them back. And then shuffling them around until I decide I should change them again.

Annoying? I think so.

That's where you come in. Tell me. What do you find appealing in a blog's design? What do you find annoying in a blog's design?

I'm not talking about content, because around here the content will pretty much be limited to babies in a bag and hush puppy recipes, and it doesn't matter how annoying that may be.

Because that's all I've got, friends.

I'm talking about design. As in the look of the site. I have noticed that a lot of the big name blogs have a white space for the printed word, which is black text. Does that make a blog easier to read? Is it less distracting than a color background for the text?

I know, for me personally, if I click onto a blog that has lots of things scrolling and flashing and rowdy music playing, I find it overwhelming. Another thing I don't like is when a blog takes FOR. EV. ER. to load.

Tell me what you think and then go to Rocks in my Dryer to tell lots of other people what you think!


Sheila said...

I think your current design is great. Very easy to read. Clean design which is what you want.

Tanya said...

I agree about the clean design you currently have...easy to read! I saw when you recently switched to the design background and narrow text column. I had also made that switch, but changed back to a basic blogger template to get more space for text and a cleaner look.

Amy B said...

The white background and black text is much easier on the eyes and you can use more images since they are created on white backgrounds.

The look you have now though is pretty great!

Michelle said...

Personally, I like your look. It's easy to read and not too busy like some blogs. Besides, your content makes it worthwhile (oooooh brownie points).

I absolutely cannot stand in any way, shape or form, blogs that play music. For the record, I love music. I was a music major in college. I just find music on a blog highly irritating. I try to read a few blogs either before the children are up or after they've gone to bed and to be assaulted with music when I'm not expecting it just really irks me.
I'm not passionate about it or nothin' though.

Totallyscrappy said...

I don't like anything that makes the blog slow to load. Not good at waiting, I guess.
I love clean, easy design without anything that flashes.
I like pictures and black text.
I think you look good!

Phyllis Sommer said...

i agree with you - i hate too much clutter. yours is easy to read and easy to follow. that's key.

Col @ Gigablonde :: things to do in ny when you're [not] dead said...

Stick with the colored lettering ... I love it! It works beautifully with your image and really "says" YOU. Don't change a thing!


Marcia said...

I also like the clean design.

Things that annoy me are:

lots of action in the sidebar where I feel assaulted :)
when I have to strain my eyes to read something - too small font or difficult colours

Hope this helps!

~marcia~ takechargeofyourlife

Amy said...

Personally, I find blogs with the sidebars a different color from the text easier to read. I think I need the visual seperation. (I was a college art major, enough said, LOL!)

I like your design. If I changed anything, I might try making the background/ sidebars a light blue. But that's *my* thing... yours works well the way it is! :)

Annette said...

Your question was "what don't I like on a blog design". headers or sidebars that prominently flash. Also unsolicited music that automatically starts playing that you can't shut off! anything else pretty much goes. Some colour combos don't work for me...but then I just highlight what I want to read, that changes the colour and makes it doable. :)

We are THAT Family said...

I like your design too. I just had mine redone yesterday! I change it around probably too much. So, you doing it-doesn't annoy me. Makes me feel at home!

Jeni said...

I'm a big fan of light background and dark text. If I read too much on one of the dark background/light text sites, I have an afterimage in my vision for several minutes afterwards.

Kara said...

I like the changes you have made. The color text and all doesn't bother me. My Christmas colors I put on my blog for a couple of weeks really messed up my eyes, I think holiday cheer threw up on my blog...whooops!! And I also think there is a fine line between ads and blogs. Some sights overwhelm me with their ads...but that is just me!

Mom2fur said...

I like the current design. I like that it is black letters on a light background. Nothing drives me as nuts as pink on pale blue, for example. Some of us around here are getting old and our eyes are going on us!
PS...hope no one is offended, but I can't stand music, either. If I want to hear music, I've already got my own on, and blog music just interferes!

Edi said...

Blogs that are "busy" bug me - whether it's flashing screens, music playing or advertising every which way. I don't like patterned backgrounds or black backgrounds - too hard to read.

Angie said...

A few things I don't like on blogs have already been mentioned: music that starts right up, dark background with light text, and the like.

Yours looks nice. :) The only thing I might change on yours (if it were mine) would be to make the sidebars a different color than the main text portion. But, that may just be me -- I just like the visual break that it offers up. (I just did this on mine when I redid my blog into three columns.)

Kristy said...

Thanks for the feedback on my wedding gift post.

As to your question, I've been a web developer for over 10 years and have seen lots of good and bad designs. Design is a personal choice, but I think simplicity is best. The best thing to do, especially if you're opting to design the site completely yourself without using a template, is just to make sure you view your site on lots of different computers and browsers, because that can all affect how it looks.

You can also create a second, private blog and use that to test your design before changing the one everyone reads.

Jenn said...

i love flashing lights, sounds, advertisements for anyone who'll pay me to put it on my blog and loud, obnoxious music!

just kidding....

so, you think i should take my music thing off? i had no idea they were disliked so much. i like my music but that doesn't mean that everyone else does, right?

Smockity Frocks said...

Jenn, The thing about music is if your kids had been on an ABC game at maximum volume just before you click onto a blog playing music, it can scare the bejeebers out of a person!

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