Do I look fat in this blog?

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** PLEASE NOTE: I’m asking for your feedback at the end of this post! **

.I have an ambivalent relationship with change.

When it comes to home decor, I love it, which explains why we have three billion nail holes in our walls and why, this weekend, our laundry room will be painted for the third time in as many weeks, much to Nate’s dismay.

When it comes to everything else in life, I loathe and despise it with the heat of a thousand suns, which goes a long way in explaining why I curl up into a fetal position in aisle 7 of Wegmans when the peanut butter is not where it was last week.

Blog decor kind of falls into both categories.

On the one hand, I love to tweak it because (1) I am a tweakaholic; and (2) my blog is like my second home and just like my real home, I get a really wiggly bug up my bum every so often and feel compelled to slap a new color on its walls and rearrange the furniture.

On the other hand, I hate it because unlike my real home, this simply cannot be done with only a can of paint, a paintbrush and a husband who had better find some way to make up for the PlayStation 3 he bought last week over his wife’s adamant objections.

Rather than using a blog template, I work with the Thesis wordpress theme which requires you to know a hefty amount of CSS and HTML to get it to look different than the default.

Did I mentioned that I am a CSS and HTML idiot to the tenth power? So I’m sitting here crossing my fingers and toes and hoping that this blog design is working and you all are seeing what I’m seeing and not staring at a bunch of crap that makes no sense, although I realize it may be hard to tell the difference on my blog. I hear you.

But Murphy’s Law governs my every move so while I’m crossing every appendage I own and forcing my kids to assume various yoga positions with their respective fingers, toes, arms and legs, I’m going to stop short of holding my breath because I’ve got a bazillion things to do this weekend and I can’t very well do any of them if I’m dead by asphyxiation.

You should be seeing something like this:

screenshot1_web

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screenshot2_web

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I know that everyone works with different monitor resolutions so some of you may not see all of the pink border on the sides, but I’m at least hoping that you can all see the header, navigation menu, posts and sidebar?

I’m going to ask you guys to do me a huge favor and let me know your opinions on this design – is it good? Bad? It has a nice personality but no way would you date it?

Would you mind leaving me a comment and letting me know what, if any, problems you are encountering on my blog? It would help me tremendously if you could tell me what browser and its version you are using and what problems you are having … can’t see something? Something is cutoff or overlapping something else (if this is the case, please tell me your monitor resolution.) Links aren’t working? Loads slower than my brain trying to comprehend fourth grade math? My picture is an abomination and I should go wither and die somewhere?

You can just keep that last one to yourself, if you don’t mind.

I appreciate any feedback you can give me – I’d send you homemade cookies but I happen to like you and I wouldn’t want to inflict that kind of pain on anyone.

Thank you!

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46 thoughts on “Do I look fat in this blog?”

  1. I can see it just fine.

    Am I in love with it? Not so much.

    But I don’t like change so….

    I liked the “clean” look of your old one.

    But its not my blog – its yours so make it the way you like it!

    Just keep blogging because I need the laughs more then you could ever imagine!

  2. well I”m glad to see this rather than the big warning message I got earlier today 🙂 Love the banner on the top, very awesome! I’m not a huge pink fan but on you it looks good 🙂

    and congrats on getting it up and running 🙂

  3. no you don’t look fat on the blog. I love the fall “wicked” color scheme. It perfectly fits you.

    You need to come over to my blog. I finally got something up that belogs to you…you’ll have to scroll down to see it. Plus, I have a press confrence.

  4. I can see it just fine! I like the dark bands across the top and bottom, and your header looks good (though I’d use a different font for the tagline). Love the little graduated bit above the header, too, and the menu is clearly available from the top (you might consider adding plain word links at the bottom, so people don’t have to scroll all the way back up if they want to go somewhere else on the blog).

    Fantastic job–can’t believe you’re quite the “idiot” you proclaim to be! =)

  5. Well you know what I think 😀 I LOVE it! It’s bright, eye catching and different. Something that bugs me and that I wanted really bad to try to get away from on my own blog/site was looking like everyone else. Well you don’t look like everyone else with this design 🙂 It suits you.

  6. I’m seeing exactly what your screencaps are in the most recent version of Firefox (whichever number that is). I love it! The background happens to be my absolute FAVORITE color!!! 😀

  7. Looks great! I am not smart enough to even understand what you did! I’m juat a simple computer person! I like the colors and it fits on my screen! You did great!!!!!!!

  8. I am viewing this makeover on my wide-screen monitor in the latest version of Firefox. It all works just fine.

    I’m not sure I’m in love with the purply-pink on both sides. But, I’m also PMSing and grouchy and hell, my whole damn blog is pink, so I am *not* one to talk. I love, love, LOVE the header right down to the tagline font.

    My biggest quibble is how the “About Me” with your picture are now waaaaaaay down at the bottom. I mean, *I* know what you look like (even though you’ve been ducking me for Zumba *and* lunch for weeks now, ahem) but new folks to your blog’s wondrousness (and I tell people about it all. the. TIME. by the way. Srsly. I do!!) might want to take a gander at who the hey is so fantabulous and learn more. I wouldn’t think to scroll all the way down to the bottom for such info – I tend to look for it towards the top in the sidebars.

    BTW, “wondrousness” is apparently a word I just made up. Ditto “wondrosity” but “wonderfulness” is apparently real. Huh. I’m sticking with wondrousness though, ’cause like I said, I have PMS and I’m grouchy and I’ve been staring at your PINKY PURPLE (or is that PURPLY PINK?) side bands there and now I want to put on some 80s music and dive headfirst into the pan of PB chip-chocolate chunk brownies I baked a couple of hours ago.

    Not that your pinky purple/purply pink side bands have anything to do with me wanting to put on some 80s music or eat brownies, mind you. Those were totally unrelated, to tell the truth. I think I need to sprinkle some Midol on those brownies. Or maybe scotch.

    Peace out.

    😀

  9. Can see it perfectly and everything seems to be working ok, but I liked the old look. Just sayin! I’m not good with change either and coming to your blog was like putting on my comfy familiar slippers and feeling right at home. But like everything, I’ll get used to it.

  10. Well I’m not going to pull any punches – really don’t like it. Too garish and stark colors – they immediately pop out and make me look at them and not the content, which is the success of your blog. hate the recent post and categories buried at the very bottom. As you tend to have long posts and then a lot of comments this totally buries your most valuable asset – content. Sidebar content is really spread out and “the good stuff” that gets you and keeps you readers (Feed, tweets, blog roll) is below the fold – making someone scroll makes them go away and not stay.

    Small side note – the “Get Smart wit the Thesis Themes…” is cut off in IE 7. Displays fine in Firefox.

    Sorry to be so honest but I think that’s what you want.

    Stan at Scrappers Workshop
    http://www.scrappersworkshop.com

  11. Well, this is my first time here so I can’t say if I like it better than it was before. ;0P

    I can see what you’re seeing though and it looks good to me.

    And thanks for stopping by on my SITS day!! =)

  12. Cathleen Monique

    I can see it fine and I LOVE it. Maybe I’m a little biased because my favorite color is pink but either way I think it looks awesome. Your old one was nice too though. But sometimes change is good (even if you are a little against it.haha). Can’t wait to read your next post. I’m new to your blog but I spent a whole day reading your posts instead of doing my homework for school once.lol

  13. Ok, since you asked and you are my most favorite blog I feel compelled to share my thoughts because I love you so. Too much pink and the side bar is too wide and black which makes it all too distracting. Your content is the best, you are another Erma Bombeck. Please don’t take away from that. I liked your picture at the top, made me feel like you were talking to me. Maybe tone it down a notch? I’m only telling you this for your own good. Isn’t that the Mom’s creed anyway??

  14. I am viewing on a MAC with Safari and it looks fine. I only glanced at the other comments but I agree with Heather that the about me stuff needs to be above any sponsors or ads. Along with the subscribe and twitter stuff.

  15. I like it, but then again I like anything except earth tones…. I am just wondering why the “V” is so big in the word creative. Is there some hidden symbolism there? Is it a feminist thing? Does it symbolize the existential angst of 21st century life? The repressed English major in me needs to know…

  16. No, you don’t look fat, but I’m not a big fan of the bright pink. I do, however, LOVE your banner and the black background for the sidebar. Also, good to know what you’re saying about Thesis. I’ve been wanting to try it but I promise, I’m even more clueless about the blogging code stuff than you are, which is why I haven’t made that jump just yet. Kudos to you for doing it.

    Also, I tagged you over at my blog with a creative meme. I hope you’ll participate. 🙂

  17. I like it. But I’m weird apparently.

    I think it is different and you certainly managed to change the look enough so I don’t say “oh, the Thesis theme again” kWIM?

    That being said, I wonder how the purple background would look as a subtle pattern?

  18. Admittedly, I like the topper, I like the colors.

    I don’t like that when I’m reading your comments section- it gets cut off to the right.

    I’m not sure that I like how B-I-G it seems. However, if that’s the ‘design theme’ you were going for, you rocked it!

    No more ‘tweeking’, ok. Makes me nervous when I can’t find you tweeting. LOL 😛
    ~Lisa

  19. I guess some people arent liking the new look. I like it, though. Looks like some others do too. So, it looks like you may be still stuck in the “should it stay or should it go?” mode.
    Might be just mine, but comments are getting cut off a bit.

  20. I’m a “clean design” kind of person, so this doesn’t work as well for me as your previous design. I don’t think it’s the colors though. I think the stark differences between the pink/white/black are what I’m most uncomfortable with when I’m viewing it.

  21. I LOVE IT!

    I love the dark, bold colors. Makes your site more memorable than the pastel ones out there. I use Thesis, too and I love what you can do with it.

  22. I like it. The pink shows up purple-ish. It is the same color as my laptop.

    My blog looks like crap because I have no skillz to spruce it up. You did great on your own!

  23. I think it’s excellent! I love the pink, but then I have a pink and grey site myself, but I wasn’t quite as daring. One thing you absolutely have spot on is your content text area; it’s clean, and easily readable and just the right line length.

    The only problem is that the comments overlap your content area by a few pixels. Bring that in, and it’s perfect.

  24. To be honest with you, I really like it. It doesn’t scream thesis to me, the colors blend well…everything except that pumpkin in your header. 😉

  25. Not liking it too much…the black cuts off about the last four or five letters of the sentance…..plus everything seems really spread out….

  26. Well, I love the header…the colors are great. But the sidebar seems a little uneven to me…like the words and pics are pushed too far to the right. But other than that I think it looks fabulous! Oh and I’m using IE 8.

  27. I am using Firefox and a semi new Gateway lap top. Your screen shots are what I ‘m seeing everything looks great. Your doing an awesome job and I luv your header and pic.

    Momdot blog hop My internet keeps going out so I’m still making rounds 🙂

  28. I use Google Chrome for the PC. The only thing that isn’t looking exactly the same is that the fun and funky graphic that is below the header does not align with the black horizontal bar that runs the width of the screen. If you are really curious, drop me an email and I can send you a screen shot.

    However, I probably wouldn’t have noticed if I wasn’t comparing it to your screen shot 🙂

    -Connie

    PS – I like the look!

  29. I love it. I also feel that it is YOUR design, designed to fit YOUR personality. If you like it, who cares what anyone else thinks? Anything creative will make SOMEONE unhappy, simply because that is the very nature of art. I mean, everyone is entitled to their own opinion, but the question was whether or not your readers could see what you designed.

    Not their opinion on art.

  30. Unlike your picture and other Firefox users (3.0.1 here), I see what is in the lower left of your picture example (your face and about me) at top of the column on the right.

    Then a ton of ads/promotion.

    The most important elements, the search and categories is as in your picture, at the bottom, but way below all the comments (currently 17 screen pages down). If I wasn’t looking for them for you, I wouldn’t know they existed. Left to right there’s Search, Categories, then Recent Posts. Oh, I see “previous post” down below the leave a comment box too now.

    The bottoms of the letters in your “The Creative Junkie” header are cut off by a black horizontal stripe.

    There is a white hairline above your multicolored “spirograph” graphic below the aforementioned black stripe.

    For me, subjectively, it makes your blog look very commercialized, removing the most important feature (search) and only showing advertisements.

    Practically, there is no way to navigate your blog, since search, previous post, and all that is completely buried. From a design standpoint I guess the impression is you value your content less than ads?

    I hope this doesn’t sound overly critical, I just wanted to give you some practical feedback beyond “pretty colors”!

    -Randy

    PS: I read this post in my RSS reader so didn’t realize this critical problem, on your page the black text extends over the white background box onto the black ad panel so the rightmost words (about the last two on each line) can’t be read! (Obviously without highlighting them with the mouse or doing a ctrl-a.)

    PPS: Likewise, if you’d like a screen grab, just let me know!

  31. Andi – love the color scheme, but here’s my two cents (ok, maybe a nickel here):
    Your strength is your content. But this design makes it hard to get!
    1. your header (while astoundingly cute) is kinda big, pushing the good stuff down on the page.
    2. The subscribe button is ‘below the fold’ – could it be smaller but visible at first view?
    3. the search box and recent posts are buried WAY at the bottom. Gotta have those first thing. The ads can go below them. You want to give your advertisers good value, but you have to keep the interest in our content, and the extra page views that the ‘recent posts’ widget can provide will more than make up for moving the ads lower.
    4. Don’t love the black sidebar, but could live with it if there weren’t so much blank space. The jewelry ad is forcing it wide, that ad needs to be the same size as the others. If they want a bigger ad, make it taller, not wider, so it won’t mess with your columns.
    5. The Home, Who Am I etc stuff is lost at the top. As soon as you scroll past the header to get the content in view, they’re gone. If you can, move them to below the header, right above the content.

    You’re on the right track, and if you need help with anything PLEASE ask Stan. I’ll happily loan him out if it keeps him from baking bread and messing up my kitchen. I’ve made him fuss with our blog enough that he’s gotten pretty good at this stuff, and though we don’t use Thesis, it’s similar to the one we do use.
    Above all, keep writing! We’ll read whatever you right, not matter how crosseyed it makes us!! {hug}

  32. I am like you, I am always changing the colors of my blog. (damn having a layout that allows 200 changes to the layout and colors) and then I found this website http://www.colourlovers.com and it just made it that much worse.
    Having said that, about your blog: No it does not make you look fat. I don’t see the pink sides but maybe you’ve removed them? And I’m not sure I would scroll all the way to the bottom to find a search bar or recent posts. Other than that? Looks good.

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