5 Ways To Freshen Your Website

Posted on September 15th, 2013 by Jean

I spent the weekend giving my blog a whole new look! Goodbye cleavage, and hello “Skies-the-limit” children.

Here are 5 ways I gave my site a fresh look.

1. Design a new header. Use a favorite photo and a new font in a contrasting color to build a header in Photoshop or other photo-editing program. Free fonts are available at fontspace. Here’s my post to walk you through the steps, PhotoShop Tips.

2. Change background color. I used Color-Hex to identify the colors for my site. I chose sky blue #60b0ff. Depending on your theme, you may need to change the code in your stylesheet.css file.

3. Add a gradient. Scrolling from the top of my site to the bottom, the background color gradually changes from blue to yellow. I accomplished this by following the instructions at ehow.

4. New social icons. Onextrapixel has freebies including the Round Social Media Icons Pack. Upload them to your library, and place the url addresses in your header.php file. When you link to Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest and the like, be sure to enter the Four Little Words to keep your readers from straying.

5. Declutter the sidebar. I removed campaigns that weren’t working for me (adsense, amazon associates), code that had a glitch (networked blogs), and links to peers who are no longer blogging.

TIP: When your website makeover is complete, freshen your social sites too!

• Have you recently freshened your site?
• What one thing would you change on your website?

Make A Party Invitation in 20 Minutes

Posted on November 5th, 2011 by Jean

Friday morning I was given the assignment by my soon-to-be 9 year old to create birthday party invitations for her to hand out THAT MORNING. No, I hadn’t planned ahead. She’ll have a handful of girlfriends over next Saturday, and I intend to just phone their parents. But, none the less, I was up to the challenge.
 
Step 1: Visit Dreamstime. This is my go-to source for graphics.
 
Step 2: Search for party invitations. You’ll find a wide variety, from “free” to “you’ve got to be kidding me”!
 
Step 3: Buy a few credits and download your favorite image. I found this cute invitation for 3 credits (approx. $3.75).
 
Step 4: Edit in Photoshop. See notes below. When editing is done, choose Layers, Flatten Image to merge all layers into one.
 

 
Step 5: Save & Print. I created a new, blank Photoshop page, 11×8.5 landscape orientation, and dragged (with my pointer tool) the invitation to it twice. Two invitations fit on one page. I used brochure paper (heavy stock with a nice finish).
 
Step 6: Cut. Remove the white border, and cut out the 2 invitations. Repeat as necessary.
 
For an in-depth tutorial on adding text, view my post Photoshop Tips V: Add Text to Photos.
 
• Do you have a go-to source for graphics?
• Store-bought or home-made invitations?

Fiverr Review

Posted on July 20th, 2010 by Jean

Fiverr is a new site where you can offer or purchase services for $5.00. Fiverr makes money by keeping $1 of every sale. There is no fee to open an account, and no fee for placing an ad.
 
Offering your services is simple. Just fill in the blank.
 

 
S E L L I N G
 
Within 24 hours of placing my ad for photoshop services, I received four job offers.
 
• Job One ~ Create a banner for a website.
This client was easy to work with. He provided a sample, dimensions, favorite colors, and a vision for his end product. I created his banner and allowed for two revisions. He liked both samples, and asked if he could hire me to create an entirely different look for $5.00. I declined, but he contacted me a week later, saying he liked my work the best, and hired me for one more revision.
 
• Job Two ~ Create a button for a website.
It was a little trickier understanding what this client needed. He directed me to two “iffy” websites. One site had multiple pop-up windows, and the other was a blank template. He finally sent me a jpg of what he wanted, which I easily recreated. This is a good time to note that Fiverr is not responsible for any viruses you may download.
 
• Job Three ~ Photoshop a sign.
The client provided one of his real estate listings, asking me to change the business signage. I didn’t feel I could do so believably, so I turned down this offer.
 
• Job Four ~ Create 5 banners.
This client wanted 5 banners in various sizes for her gecko related website. She really expected more than what I was offering, so I turned her down.
 

 
B U Y I N G
 
One year ago, I paid CartoonMe $5.11 to cartoon me, and to be frank, it stunk. (Original post here.)
 
I thought I’d try my luck at Fiverr.
 
I browsed the ads, found an artist, placed my order, and paid through Paypal.

 
The artist’s ad promised completion of work within 4 days. She contacted me immediately and shared that she was extremely busy. Five days after placing my order, she claimed her Paypal account was frozen, and canceled my job.
 
My second artist offered to transform me into a Spongebob character. One day later, well under the deadline date, Beck sent me this work of art.
 

 
I love it!
 
If you want to hire Beck, click here. For all the ins and outs of Fiverr, check out their website here.
 
• Can you see yourself using Fiverr?
• Can you see yourself as a Spongebob character?


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