Blog Design Essentials: Create A Visually Stunning Blog

blog design essentials

When someone visits your blog, you want them to be wowed. But if you don’t have the capital to pay a Web Designer, how do you make sure your blog design doesn’t keep readers from taking you seriously? I have good news, you don’t have to be a professional designer to create a visually stunning blog.

Don’t get me wrong, your writing is the most important part of your blog. Creating great blog content is where it begins. And once you’ve got that part down, it’s time to work on your blogs design. If you’re not a designer this process can be frustrating, confusing, time-consuming, and after all that you can end up with something that completely works against your great blog content.

It’s time for you to learn how to make your blog look and feel like it was done by a professional.

I’ve already written 5 keys to making your blog visually awesome, but this series is going deeper. I’m going to dive into all of the core elements that I incorporate into my own blog design, as well as every blog design project I work on. Even better, I’m going to be using my own blog as a living example. I’ll be putting my own work on the dissecting table and exposing all of my best design techniques.

The goal is to help the non-designer understand the basics principles of creating a blog that is visually stunning without spending a fortune. I also hope that any designers who are reading can revisit these principles with me, and offer insight of their own via the comments section.

Each post in this series will be constructed with simplicity in mind. It’s kind of my thing– I like life to be simple. Some people like life to be complicated– those people are weird. Not that there’s anything wrong with that.

This post will serve as the anchor of the series. Think of it as an index for all the posts in the series. It might be good to bookmark this page if you want to reference it in the future. You may also want to subscribe to my email list (if you haven’t already) so that you will be notified every time I publish a new blog post!

Want a quick-start way to having a stunning website? I recommend starting with a theme from Studio Press [aff link]. Their themes are the base of every site I build and the only ones I recommend to clients.

Without further ado, here is a working list of topics I will be covering:

Okay, that last one wont actually happen. But the others are pretty set. I’ll be adding a few more to the list, but these will be the first of the series.

I’m going to enjoy this series a lot, and I hope it proves to be awesomely helpful to you!

Are there any specific topics you’d like me to cover, issues you’d like me to address, or questions you’d like me to answer in this series? You can leave a comment by clicking here.

Dustin W. Stout Avatar

21 responses to “Blog Design Essentials: Create A Visually Stunning Blog”

  1. Dustin W. Stout Avatar

    I’m so glad you enjoyed it thus far Vanessa! 😀

  2. Vanessa Avatar

    Holy cow! This is probably the smartest thing I have read so far on blog design. You got it down! Thanks for the info(:
    *Starting to read your series now!*

  3. Dustin W. Stout Avatar
  4. Devi Avatar

    It is your blog which is visually awesome!

  5. Dustin W. Stout Avatar

    I probably won’t get into the functional aspects (ie. creating a Landing Page/Hone Page) in this particular series, but I will mark that in my “Future Posts” list. Size guidelines on the other hand are going to be something I focus on intently more than once! 😀

  6. Dustin W. Stout Avatar

    That’s what I meant Chris! There are maybe a few tips I can give in this particular area that would help someone who doesn’t have an eye for design, but there is a bit more natural skill involved in graphic design. I have seen people who have gotten a degree in graphic design and still don’t have a sharp eye for creating something uniquely beautiful.

  7. Chris Wilson Avatar

    Custom pages would be pretty cool, so that you could make a landing page homepage or something like that (though you might have to do a few other things before that) something like general size guidelines would be really useful (I’m sure they can be found). I never know what size I should use for a logo/header image etc. Anyway I’m looking forward to the rest.

  8. Chris Wilson Avatar

    There is Aviary which is a chrome app that has many of the functions of photoshop or gimp which are both free image editing programs.
    I think Dustin was referring to the fact that making a great logo isn’t just about knowing how to use photoshop et al but involves having that creative spark (which is much harder to teach) [don’t want to put words in his mouth though]

  9. Brandon Avatar

    With your expertise, I think you could do it. Mainly, I think it would be beneficial to show how you can do it without paying a fortune for photoshop. I am having trouble doing it because of the lack of software. I am sure you can do it without photoshop though…just dont know how.

    Good news is that my dad has photoshop, but it was erased when the computer crashed a few yrs ago. Can you get it installed again if you payed for the full version?

  10. Dustin W. Stout Avatar

    You know what Scott, if I knew everything then I’m sure I would try to find the simplest way possible to compile it into a series of blog posts that eventually turn into a book that sells Billions of copies. But alas, I don’t know everything… yet. 😉

    And thank you for your kind words! 😀

  11. Dustin W. Stout Avatar

    Thanks for your input Brandon! I’ll think on this one… could be tricky since this takes more “skill”, but I think it could be teachable.

  12. skottydog Avatar

    Wow! I was just thinking how intimidated I am of HTML code and all things other than “click here” buttons! I have not updated to ST 3.0 yet, and feel like I’m missing the boat.

    I have a suggestion. Could you go over, say, EVERYTHING! ha-ha.
    That would be a heck of a series. If you posted multiples tips throughout the day, every day, you still would not cover it all!

    But we’ll take whatever advice you offer! It’s always gold! Thanks for thinking of us!
    Love the updates on your site, by the way. It looks very crisp and inviting.

  13. Brandon Avatar

    Love the series! I would like to see something on how you design logos/banners. That is something I am having a hard time with.

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