If you have read this blog a little you would maybe know that I have another blog called TwoFeetFirst (I blog about remodeling our home on a budget). I have been blogging with this blog for 4 years. But something I was never happy with was my brand style (logo & website design). I have switched my logo and website design so so many times because I had NO brand design. Then one day I found out how to create a brand style for a blog. Some links in this post are affiliate link for your convenience, click here to read our full affiliate policy.
DO I NEED A BRAND STYLE?
YES and here is why. When you think of a brand, what comes to you mind? Probably a company or product, right? Can you see their logo and colors? I want you to think of Nike, what brand style do you think? I can think of two: their logo and their motto “Just Do It”. And whenever I see either of those two things I know it’s Nike or I think Nike. I recognize the brand. This is why you need a brand style, so people identify your blog plus it helps make everything look pretty and organized!
WHAT IS BRAND STYLING?
Brand styling is about bringing out the personality in your blog/business. Give your brand an identity! It’s about emphasizing your niche and appealing to your viewers. It’s about creating a cohesive and gripping look.
STEPS TO CREATING A STYLE
In the book called “How to Style your brand” by Fiona Humberstone, she shares the steps to create your own brand style and I loved the book! I am going to share with you the steps to take to create your own brand style. These steps are very simplified (you would have to read the book to get more) but hopefully this will help you start designing your blog!
You need to define the purpose of your blog/business. Sit down and really think about how your blog should be recognized. Here are some questions to answer:
- Why are you styling your brand?
- What’s your niche?
- What makes your blog stand out?
- Who is your audience? And why do they visit your site?
- What do you find exciting about your blog?
- What are your values for your blog?
- What do you want to be recognized for?
- How should your ideal audience feel when they look at your new brand style?
Now let’s look at color options.
This will provide insight and guidance to create a consistent design. Everyone responds to color differently and understanding it the feeling of each color with help design a style. In the book “How to style your brand”, Fiona has you pick a season in which your business falls into. This is an amazing way to look at color! It will determine the color tones, shapes, and fonts to choose. Here are a couple of examples:
|SPRING –||Is: fun, youthful, creative, inspirational, approachable, bright|
|Colors: light, bright, and clear|
|Shapes/Fonts: circles, dots, busy patterns|
|SUMMER –||Is: organized, logical, efficient, creative, understanding, elegant|
|Colors: cool, delicate, and muted|
|Shapes/Fonts: flowing, lines, delicate floral|
|AUTUMN –||Is: ambitious, focused, nature, connection to outdoors, learning, passionate|
|Colors: warm, intense, muted|
|Shapes/Fonts: squares with rounded corners|
|WINTER –||Is: decisive, luxurious, precise, simple, serious|
|Colors: cool, strong, and clear|
|Shapes/Fonts: geometric shapes|
It’s rare that a blog will be only one season. It will have one dominant season with at least one secondary. Look back at your answers to the questions above and you will probably find that one season stands out more than the others. And again Fiona does a wonder job of explaining this in more detail in her book. A thing to note is your color palette will come from the dominant season then you can pull the other elements from your secondary seasons.
CREATE YOUR VISION
In this step, you will create a vision board to gather your thoughts and things that spark ideas. Remember your brand needs to be unique, so DO NOT replicate! Look at your competitors and other blogs that inspire you, note the things that you like and the things you don’t. Think of how you want your brand to look and feel to your readers. Gather images, fonts, colors, patterns, and other ideas that spark your creativity. After you will have an idea of the sort of fonts, colors, and patterns/textures you would like to incorporate into your design.
SIDE NOTE: I used a secrete board on Pinterest to create my vision board. But if you do better with visual then print everything out and display it.
CREATE YOUR LOGO
A logo is important to help people recognize your blog from anywhere. It should be timeless and not too busy. It is the first and last thing a visitor will see, catch them with it! Usually, the best logos are simple.
At this point you will have a vision board with a good idea of your colors, now it’s time to brainstorm the logo. Sit down and sketch out as many logo ideas you can in thirty minutes. Walk away for a while then come back and pick your favorites or have another brainstorming session (It took me about 3 sessions to get something that I liked). After you find a design that you’re happy with its time to design it for real. Sketch out your logo one more time on a white piece paper. Then take a picture or scan it into your computer. It’s best to create your logo as a vector file, like in Adobe Illustrator (they have a free trial) or Inkscape (it’s free). In these programs, you can tweak your logo to look the way you want (add color). I will be sharing a video on how to do this soon with Inkscape!
SIDE NOTE: Fiona from “How to style your brand” shares even more tips on creating a logo in her book plus picking the right colors, fonts, and other illustrations. So be sure to check it out!
PULLING IT TOGETHER
This is where something called a brand board comes into play. It’s an instant visual reference of your blog style you just created. Here is mine for this blog and also my home remodel blog.
Can you tell I have some favorites that I used in both?
And because I love to share, I have a FREE Brand Board Template that you can use for your blog, this is a Photoshop file. You just need to be a subscriber to my blogging email list (signup below!); this is different from my regular email list. You will receive emails about the tips and tricks I have learned from blogging, really anything blog related.
After downloading, you can add your blog design elements to the board. I find this board very nice to have to look up my colors and fonts. It helps keep your blog style consistent!
CREATING A BRAND STYLE FOR A BLOG
Creating your own style for your blog can be fun and very rewarding. It will help you have a consistent look for your site. If you are not sure you can do the designing of your blog, Fiona book gives you tips to help you choose the perfect designer for your blog.
If there is one thing we should all know about blogging, is that design matters to draw that reader in. And design consistency helps them recognize your blog easily, whether it’s a pin on Pinterest or a search through Google.
I hope this will help you find your blog style. Do you have any other tips? Or questions?
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