Aug 13, 2014

So you want to start a blog..

I really enjoy writing helpful blog posts.. Especially when I can share some tips about blogging! I get asked a good bit for help from girls who are thinking about starting their own blog.. I wanted to just publish a basic tutorial for anyone who is planning on starting a blog! Let me know if y'all like this post, and please feel free to share a link to your own blog in the comments at the end of this post or request to join the Bloggers With Class Google + community so you can connect with other bloggers like yourself:) 

So.. You want to start a blog? First things first. Come up a creative name for your blog! Stay away from using brand names..You want it to be a name that people will remember, and something original. Something you and/or your readers won't get tired with. Like with my blog, Classy Cathleen, I can write about basically any topic under the sun! If you pick a title that's just completely fashion centered... Then fashion is about the only thing you can really write about. Not saying that's a problem, but I like being able to know that I can write about anything, and it doesn't really matter a whole lot. 

After coming up with a name.. Create your blogger account. I recommend using Google's Blogger as a platform until you're ready to take the next step, and purchase a custom domain. Then, I would suggest switching over to Wordpress! 

Now it's time to design your blog:) If you are the type of person that likes fun, bright, patterned blog backgrounds, I recommend you check out Design Love Fest- Dress your tech .You can always find tons of great patterns and backgrounds there! Or you can always keep your background basic and white, or another color!

Once you download your background.. Go to your blogger account and click where it says template and then find Customize 

Find background and upload your background image to your blog! Don't worry about doing this if you plan on keeping your background white.

After uploading, adjust the widths of your blog. There's not really anything specific to keep in mind at this point.. it's whatever you like! I suggest at least 1000, but at the end of the day, it's up to you!

Go to Picmonkey . It's time to design your header! {If you use another program to create graphics.. Use that instead} Click design, Custom, and then type 800x300 Once the editor opens, be sure to click the box next to Transparent canvas. Then go to text and make sure that the color matches your design and the font matches your personal style. Be sure to SAVE your header! 

Go back to blogger. Click "Apply to blog" and go Back to blogger. Then find Layout on the side. 

Click edit next to where it says Header. Now, upload your header to the blog. 

Be sure you click "Instead of title and description" Now go back to Template, then Customize and readjust your widths to make sure they go along with your header. 

Here's where you need to break from blogger, and start a few accounts! You need to start a bloglovin account, Facebook page, google plus, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, and Polyvore for your blog. Be sure to have your blog linked to all of your bios on social media. 

Now go to your blog and start a new post. Make the title something like "Social Media Icons DO NOT PUBLISH"

Now follow this link Scroll through until you see a post with social media icon colors that match your blog design! Once you find a color that you like.. Download the file! Then open the file to view the folders inside.. If you don't find anything here that you like, just run a google search for free social media icons and whatever color you're looking for. 

​Drag the images out of the file and put them (individually) on your desktop! Now go back to the blog post that you started

​click the picture frame button and upload your social media icons

​Be sure that all of the images have blue squares around them, then upload them to the post!

​Drag all of your images into one row

​Click the first image.. in my case the + for bloglovin. Then click link. Click on the image again.. and click link again! Your screen should look like the above image! Open up your bloglovin account page and paste the link in the web address block
Do the same for all of the other images until they are all linked to your social media accounts. Just when you get to the email icon.. Click on the bubble next to email address: and put in your email!

As you are linking each image drag them next to each other in a horizontal line 
Highlight them all and center them on the post. Then click HTML 

​Copy all of the html code except for the breaks at the beginning and the end

Now save your post and click layout on the side

​Click "add a gadget" and then scroll down until you find "HTML/Java Script. here you will paste your code.

If you used a Dress Your Tech or other pattern/background from a site, be sure and credit the source either on the Attribution or on an about page. 

Remember to Save and now write your first post! After your first post.. You can edit and change the fonts and colors of your blog by going to Template < Customize < Advanced 

To see the Classy Cathleen tutorial blog.. Click here. This is where I will demonstrate different coding actions for blog posts on Classy Cathleen.

I hope this helps y'all! Feel free to shoot me an email at any time if you need any help with your blog or even if you just have a question for me!