This will be the first in a series of non-food related entries. You might (or might not) be interested in following a fledgling blogger starting out. Ok, so..where do I begin. I love food. Check. I want to write about food. Check. I got WordPress running. Check. Hmm, so where do I go from here? I cannot help but feel a little lost like for instance writing about this when i really should be writing about food. Here are perilous first few days of the long journey ahead. Nobody said giving birth was easy. Read on….
Last night a thesis saved my life. You know I always thought themes were an easy thing, I mean, its just a case of creating frames and boxes in a gui-style interface, how hard can it be. Right? Wrong. It’s hard. And its more like css and html rather than gui. I have new found respect for blog designs now. Its not just the content, you gotta be a bit of a jack of all trades too. It’s funny because now I start looking for the details, like the different shades of border colours in the footer, the placement of the logo, the background colours, my favourite: how they designed their ‘subscribe to me’ widget, what kind of ads are on the site and how the sidebars help ease navigation..wow, so much work. I bought a new book, ‘WordPress Complete’ by Hasin Hayder. Great guide, detailed explanations of everything. Yup, and then Thesis came into my life. 50 quid poorer and many sleepless (albeit addictive) nights later, I arrive at what looks like a new blog.
What you see here is a clean theme that’s easy on the eyes and hopefully a pleasure for your reading. It’s SEO friendly and its got excellent follow on support from its creators (hours upon hours on that forum). I think there’s massive customisation potential, but I know next to nothing about coding, so it’ll take me a bit of time to master it. You’d be pleased to know that a beginner like myself can get into it quite easily. Watch for continual improvements and upgrades. If you like what you see, then go here to see more. (Shameless ad flogging, I know.)
My Host. So I chose to go with hostgator on the back of good reviews from various sources. Things are great so far, it took less than a day for my URL to start working, it has auto-install options for WordPress and built-in FTPs. A pretty complete package and that does what it says, I’m happy. Since Im on the other side of the pond, I reckon a co.uk would be good to own. I use Heart internet to register the domian, 3 squiddies per year for londoneater.co.uk. Yes, try it too!
The Basics. It’s taken me a few days to finally get the site up. Added my sidebars to feature the RSS feed (yeah, I really am proud), some standard stuff like an archive calendar, recent posts and a ‘about’ widget. I also managed to generate a xml sitemap and have opened both Google and Yahoo accounts to track the indexing of this site. So far, it’s not appeared yet. Any tips?
The Logo. I had alot of ideas swirling in my mind about what kind of image I wanted. Firstly I wanted something simple but quite telling. Most of all, I just wanted you to remember me. I initially thought about getting some professional help..but since i had already splashed a good fifty quid on this theme, I thought I should probably hold back on this until I build up a reasonable readership (so please do come back again).
I started fiddling with just different styles of text and played with stronger banner colours. Started out with a big arial texts, but really wanted something striking, I have to admit I was stuck. To gain some inspiration, I surfed round for blogs dedicated to designs and came across ilovetypography. Their logo is a stunningly large font of the word ‘Typography’, what a great logo. The rest of the site looks great, everything looks like it is correctly spaced, the pictures are colourful and so vibrant and the texts just looked awesome. This guy also loves his craft so much and its very evident. I think I’d just become a fan.
Taking note of this, I scanned some texts till I got to Haettenschweiler. Now, I’m not an expert on fonts, I can never really tell the differences, but I knew I wanted a strong look, but kind of with its hair down you know. I was thinking about a colorful cartoon of maybe cutlery, plates, maybe candles, a piece of steak, bottle of wine..well you get the picture. Instead I chose a big orange. At 3am, an orange is pretty epic stuff. I eat oranges and I live in london. Simple enough. But does it work? Only you, my beloved reader can tell….