May 17, 2007

Crafty Blog School!

Crafty Blog School

Are you wondering how to have a crafty blog of your own? Or maybe you have a blog, but you're bored with the layout, wish you knew how to make a header, or wish your pictures looked a little better. Let's face it, we're not all crafty mamas with amazing graphic design skills or fabric designers with mouth watering photos. But, we've got our crafts, our things we do, and we want to share it with others. Welcome to Crafty Blog School!


Crafty Blog School is a series of posts on how to start a crafty blog of your own, add pictures to your blog, set up blogging from Flickr, create a header, choose a template, etc. Also, I'll do a post on how to take better pictures of your crafts! So, let's get started with the basics, and that is how to start a blog of your own...


Where do I blog ?
You can blog just about anywhere these days. But these 3 blog sites top my list because they're easy to use, customize, and integrate with Flickr:

Blogger (free)
Wordpress (free)
Typepad (paid)


Paid vs. Free Services
Typepad has a lot of nice templates to choose from, and many crafty people use it. But I think free services like Blogger or Wordpress are perfect for beginners - they're great to get your feet wet. After you know what you like you can switch to a paid service. All my blogs (including this one) are hosted on Blogger and I still see no reason to switch to a paid service. There may be other perks, but for me it's hard to argue with free!


What's the Difference?
Do Blogger blogs, Wordpress blogs, or Typepad blogs look different? Well, you be the judge! Here's a list of sample blogs arranged by blog service:

Blogger blogs:
kup, kup land
freehand sketching
paper flower girl

Wordpress Blogs:
losabia
craft daisy
lorelei

Typepad blogs:
this vintage chica
buttons magee
gooseflesh



Remember that no matter what service you choose, you can edit your template to look however you want. But if you have no interest in learning HTML or CSS, choose a service with templates you love so you won't have to mess with them at all.


So how was your first Crafty Blog School class? I hope you enjoyed it! Is there anything you want to learn in the next class? Leave a comment, and see you next week! :)

All Crafty Blog School Posts:

week 1: Where Do I Blog?
week 2: Choosing a Template
week 3: Name Your Blog & Create a Header
week 4: Blogging Photos from Flickr
week 5: How to Put that Darned Thimble Guy in Your Sidebar
week 6: How to Take Better Pictures of Your Crafts

22 comments:

  1. do you have to ask to add a blog to your sidebar as a favorite that you want to share with your readers?
    I love your blog and would like to add Softies Central to mine.

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  2. Hi Eydie - I wondered about that too when I started blogging - I actually thought people might not like it if I linked to their blog and I was scared to!

    But if you like a blog and wank to link to it in your sidebar, just do it! It's a great way to meet other bloggers since most of us have site statistics that tell us how people found our blog. Don't be surprised if they find your blog that way and comment on one of your posts!

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  3. this is a great idea! I'm always looking for tips on taking better photos, especially with a standard digital camera, not a big fancy professional one with lighting and the whole bit. I'll look forward to that one. :)

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  4. aimee, I think your pics are wonderful - I'm always so inspired by your embroidery! Also, I LOVE the design on your website - those illustrations are gorgeous...

    I hope you'll enjoy these posts! I'll just show off the few tips I've learned along the way... :)

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  5. This is a really good idea for a series. I'm looking forward to your future posts...

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  6. thanks --- i've always wanted a blog of my own.

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  7. This is great. I have a small blog but get frustrated at how to make it look nice.

    Thanks.

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  8. This is a great idea Flor! I'm sure some of us that have a blog can still learn a thing or two :)

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  9. Oh I have a suggestion, maybe you can explain how to place a badge in a blog. Some save as html some don't. How could we place the "feeling stitchy" link/badge in our blog?..When you have the time, thanks :)

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  10. I have a question about comments- like why some people can't leave a comment on Typepad when they have Blogger? I have several friends who just email me because they say that "it won't let them comment" This just mystifies me completely. Maybe you can help me understand that? It makes me crazy with the captcha thing too- I hate having to enter that stupid code...but I guess I must prove I am not a robot, eh?

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  11. thanks floresita!, this is yet another great idea you've come up with. i'm still relatively new to this blogging thing, but slowly starting to like it and would definitely appreciate all your posts. thank you!

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  12. Thanks Fern and Rebekah! I'm excited that people like this idea! :)

    Amy: I know exactly what you mean - I'll try to email you the directions this weekend, and for the rest of you, that will be a future Crafty Blog School post!

    Hi Kimberly! Hmmm... I'm a Blogger user, but I have made comments on Typepad blogs! You just have to enter all your information once, like URL, email, etc and it usually "remembers" you after that. My best guess is maybe there's a setting to ONLY allow Typepad users to comment? I know there is a setting like that for Blogger and Flickr...

    Yay Claudia! Hope these posts are helpful! :)

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  13. Yes, I appreciate all the help that I can get with my blog. Thank you for your help

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  14. How did you know I needed blogging classes? I've been blogging for 2 years and I still don't have a clue what I'm doing. :o)

    Thank you!

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  15. Great tips here, very easy, straightforward and extremely useful!

    I'm the product manager of http://i.ph a small but steadily growing, free blogging service based here in the Philippines. We've made blog customization a simple point and click affair, so a blog can look pretty without messing with CSS and HTML. You can upload and use your own photos as a header or background image, re-arrange the layout via drag and drop, and integration to flickr and other sites is a cinch. I was hoping you could give it a look see. Anyway, I don't want this to seem like spam so I'll cut this short. And I'd understand if you delete this comment. I'd love to hear from you though. Thanks! I'm linking you up. Blog on!

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  17. Thanks Jane and Chelle, hope you find these posts helpful!

    Hey Adam, I did have a look around just now, thanks for the comment! He he, I won't delete you so people can click through and see what you have to offer... rock on! :)

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  18. Thanks for writing this up! A friend pointed me in the direction of your crafty blog school, and you provided me with all the information I needed to get going.

    Come check out my new blog at:
    http://kittenslosthermittens.blogspot.com

    And I hope you don't mind, I'm going to put a link to this post in my favorites. Let me know if that's not ok...

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  19. Thank you so much for your Blog School. It sure makes blogging a whole lot easier for new bloggers like myself. I really struggled before to get a header that looked just right, so didn't have one at all... which made my blog look extremely barren... I still don't have photoshop on my computer, but with a bit of tweaking, got a header up that I really like. For the festive season in any case:-). I Just have one question. I blog in blogger too, but my layout seems very narrow. Is there a way that I can use more of the screen at all (in other words make it wider).... sorry, I really am very new at this.
    To view my blog, go to:
    http://likejellitots.blogspot.com/
    I would love to hear some of your comments.
    I am also going to try and take some new pics keeping your tips in mind!

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  20. thanks so much! this is so cool. i've started a blog. so far it's been pretty much for myself. but it'll be fun to play with now that i have these great tips!

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  21. You are simply 'The Best'. In a crafty nutshell, you have answered many of my basic questions of how to get online and look good!!! Thanks for sharing, very gracious of you, and keep the series coming.
    Trudi

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  22. We are new to blogging..what a wonderful world it has opened up to us...had no idea...thanks for blogging tips...will check in often to see more
    Warm regards from south Africa
    Shannon
    http://incomparablebuttons.blogspot.com

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