Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Intro to Blogging: Headers & Backgrounds

In my first previous post about blogging, we explored five of the most common blogging platforms for authors. Today, we will discuss how to personalize the look of your blog using headers and background themes.

Theme Templates

The background and layout of the blog, or the theme template, can capture the tone of what you write about and bring in a bit of personality. The benefit of creating a template for a blog is being able to customize and personalize it so it looks exactly how the user likes. The downside is the time that will have to be put into it and being knowledgeable enough to create the code for it to work.

It’s important to find (or create) a background that isn’t too busy. You want your readers’ attention on your content, not the image behind it. Luckily, several free templates are available online—a simple search will yield many results. To make it easier, we’ve provided links to a few good places to start. Below are theme templates for the three most common platforms: Blogger, WordPress and Tumblr.

Theme Template Resources for Blogger
Listed below are a few resource sites for bloggers who use Google’s Blogger platform:

Theme Template Resources for WordPress
Listed below are a few resources for bloggers who use WordPress:

Theme Template Resources for Tumblr
Listed below are a few resources for bloggers who use Tumblr:

What’s a ‘Header’?

Some theme templates have options for headers. Headers are usually images at the top of a blog, sometimes with writing over them. Headers can be simple or complex, depending on the blogger’s style and purpose. Headers usually have the name of the blog or tagline written across them. Picking the right Header adds more visuals to a blog while also expressing what the blog is about. You should test headers before making your blog live to make sure that any text that goes over the header doesn’t blend in with the image.

Below are 4 great places to find a header that works:

Finding the right theme and header for your blog will take some experimenting, but it will all be worth it in the end.

Note: When using tiled images as a background, avoid bright colors or complex patterns. In general, the simpler, the better. If you’re worried about your backgrounds or themes being ‘boring,’ don’t worry. They’re called backgrounds for a reason.


—Jessica Winn, publicist at Cunning Relations & Jolly Fish Press.

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