I’m not here to talk about naming your blog and creating a tagline. Today, I wanted to focus a little more on brand design for your blog. I have a degree in Graphic Arts and specialised in branding during my 2nd and 3rd year so I like to think I have a little bit of knowledge to share!

Trying to design a brand for your blog can be hard. There are so many themes to choose from, so many colours, so many fonts etc. I actually like to change my blog design up a fair amount as I find I just get bored after a while. I thought I would share with you my 5 tips that will help you create your brand design.

Create a mood board 

I love a good mood board! When you’re trying to design your blog make a mood board with everything that you love. Flick through magazines and papers and cut out things that catch your eye. You may look at something and really like the colours or you may look at something and find the font visually pleasing. The idea of this exercise is to give you an idea of what you like. Eventually, you’ll probably find trends in what you like. You may notice that you really like pink and blue together and you can use this as a guideline for a colour scheme for your blog.

Look at other websites and blogs for inspiration 

Never copy someone else, that’s not cool. However, looking around for inspiration is fine. Take a look at your favourite blogs and websites and write down why you like them. Maybe it’s because they’re colourful. Maybe it has a minimalist feel to it that you find appealing. This is going to help you discover more of what you like and it’ll help you with creating your brand design.

Use no more than 3 fonts and colours

To build a brand you don’t want to have too many fonts and colours. You want your brand to be recognisable and if you’re using 15 different fonts and 10 colours then you aren’t going to stand out. I always recommend having a Scripted font and then a Serif or Sans-Serif font to go with it. Below is an example of these types of font. A scripted font is always more difficult to read so you wouldn’t want large bodies of text to be written in this way. This is why it’s good to have a Serif or San-Serif font as part of your branding as it’s easy to read.

Serif and san serif fonts

Don’t do what everyone else does 

You want your brand to be unique to make you stand out from the crowd so there’s no point in doing what everyone else does. You’re probably all going to hate me for saying this … Ages ago I started using the Playlist Scripted font on Canva for my Pinterest images … But now literally EVERYONE uses this. When I browse through blogging group boards on Pinterest it’s just a whole load of images with the Playlist scripted font. It’s a lovely font which is why everyone uses it … but now everyone’s brand looks very similar. There are so many other typefaces out there that will make you stand out and be different. I’ve recently rebranded my blog and used Creative Market to buy a font as I know very few people will have the same. You can also check out Da Font for free fonts. Just make sure you check the license agreements… I’m now starting the fun task of updating all of my Pinterest images to get rid of the Playlist Script font haha.

Playlist Script font - canva

Photographs don’t have to be flat lays  

I sometimes feel like there is a bit of an obsession with blog photographs having to be flat lays! They really don’t. Just experiment and see what works best for you. If you need a little inspiration; try searching for blog photography on Pinterest and it’ll help you with so many ideas. Over time you’ll develop a photography style that you really like and then this style will become recognisable to other people that it’s your photograph.

I hope this has helped you all with branding design and given you some ideas of how you can go about branding your blog so that it’s unique and true to yourself.

If you have any questions feel free to ask away!

Charlotte xx

 

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Autumn update

Somehow we find ourselves in October? I’ll be perfectly honest, I have no idea what happened to the last 9 month?! Time is literally flying by. This year has been a pretty crazy year for me. Having bought and renovated a house, started a new job and booked a holiday to Disney World for next year it’s definitely been a rollercoaster. But I wouldn’t change a thing. I thought that now would be the perfect time to do a little update on things and catch up with you all.

My new job 

Well, I guess it’s not really that new anymore. But I started my new role back in May and it’s honestly changed my life. I’ve gone from someone who used to dread going to work every day and always come home crying to someone who doesn’t mind going to work at all. I’m not saying I love my job because it’s kind of boring but it’s way better than my old one.

My blog 

I’ve still been regularly posting on my blog but I feel like I’ve been a bit absent on social media recently. I’ve actually not been that well. To cut a long story short my doctor has just put me back on medication that I used to take so I’m hoping to start feeling a lot better soon! I can’t wait to spend my evenings chatting to you guys on social media again and putting more time back into my blog once I’m feeling better. Also, I’ve completely redesigned my blog and I’m so happy with how it looks! The Graphic Designer in me felt like it was time for a change. (I have a degree in Graphic Design if you were wondering haha).

The rest of the year 

I love this time of year and I’m so excited for the next few months. Bonfire night has been one of my favourite nights for as long as I can remember so I’m really looking forward to that. And I’m really sorry to use the C word this early … But I’m very excited for Christmas! I love the build-up to Christmas, buying gifts, going to Christmas markets and decorating the tree. I’m also really enjoying the colder nights and snuggling on the sofa with my hot water bottle and a good film.

Things I’ve been loving recently 

Baking is something I haven’t done properly for ages but I’ve been really enjoying it over the last few weeks. I made an amazing Marble Cake; you can check out the recipe here. I’ve been loving watching girly chick flicks on Netflix. I really enjoyed To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before and Sierra Burgess Is A Loser. I’m also still making lots of Christmas cards and really enjoying doing that.

I hope you all have a wonderful Autumn – do you have much planned?

Charlotte xx

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I remember as a child that my mum always used to spend a cold Saturday afternoon sat at the dining room table writing her Christmas cards to send. She had an address book with all of the people that she used to send cards to and would sit for hours and hours writing the cards out. In fact, my mum still does this now. Older generations (not trying to call my mum old haha) seem to still be really good at sending cards; but for younger generations, it’s definitely a dying tradition. I’m 26, I live with my boyfriend and every year around Christmas we receive hardly any cards. The mains one we receive are from family and very close friends.

I actually think it’s really sad that people just don’t send cards any more. I’ve grown up in an era where technology has become huge. Facebook and Twitter have taken over. It seems that instead of sending cards people just write a Facebook status that says ‘Merry Christmas everyone’. This is by no means a personal way of wishing someone a Merry Christmas!

I love going to my parent’s house at Christmas. The mantle piece and shelves are full of cards that they have been sent from family and friends. It makes the house feel so much more festive and cosy.

We live in a world where communication is instant, but wouldn’t it be nice to keep things a little more traditional for Christmas and actually make an effort to send cards to friends and loved ones?

I make handmade cards (as seen above) and I love doing it so much. I’m not saying you need to make your own cards to send; you can buy really nice ones that are reasonably priced from most shops around Christmas.

I’m going to set you all a challenge this year to try and send at least 10 cards to different people…. And in the grand scheme of things 10 cards really isn’t a lot. You still have 2 and a half months to prepare a list of people to send to. Let’s try and stop Christmas cards from completely dying out.

Happy card writing.

Charlotte xx

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Marble cake recipe

A few days ago I posted a photograph on Twitter of a very delicious Marble Cake that I had made. I then received a load of comments asking for the recipe so I thought I would share it with you today.

Ingredients for the sponge: 
  • 225g unsalted butter
  • 225g caster sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 225g self-raising flour
  • 3 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 2 tablespoons milk
Ingredients for the topping: 
  • 100g dark chocolate
  • 50g white chocolate
  • 40g unsalted butter
Method for the sponge: 
  1. Preheat the oven to gas mark 4 / 180c (160c for a fan assisted oven)
  2. Line the base of a loaf tin with greaseproof paper. (The loaf tin I used was roughly 26x12x7)
  3. In a large bowl cream together the 225g unsalted butter with 225g caster sugar. I used an electric whisk for this and also made sure I had taken the butter out of the fridge to soften before using it.
  4. Add the eggs 1 at a time and beat into the mixture after you’ve added each one. The mixture should then be light and fluffy.
  5. Sift the self-raising flour into the mixture and mix together. I always do this in stages by putting in half the flour and mixing and then the other half. This helps prevent a flour explosion!
  6. Now that your sponge mixture is complete you need to take half of it and move it into another dish and leave it to one side. With the remaining half of the sponge mixture; add in the cocoa powder and milk and mix together. This will create the chocolate half of the sponge for creating the marble effect.
  7. Using 2 spoons, put alternate spoonfuls of the two mixtures that you have created into the baking tin. Once this is complete take the handle of a spoon and gently swirl the two mixtures together to create a swirled effect.
  8. Pop the cake into the oven to bake. Mine took around 60 minutes but make sure you check it’s fully cooked. I always do this by sticking a knife through the centre of the cake; if it comes out clean then it’s cooked. If it’s not then it needs a little longer.
  9. Leave the cake to cool.
Method for the topping: 
  1. Melt 100g of dark chocolate in the microwave; it’ll take roughly 1 minute. Make sure to keep stirring the chocolate throughout the 1 minute to prevent it from burning.
  2. Once the chocolate is melted; add 20g of unsalted butter to the chocolate and mix together. Make sure the butter is softened and at room temperature. Once this is mixed together it’ll thicken the chocolate up to spread over the top of the cake.
  3. Now do the same with the white chocolate – melt, add the 20g of butter and mix.
  4. spread the dark chocolate over the cake and then using a teaspoon; drizzle the white chocolate over the top.
  5. Use the handle of a spoon to swirl the chocolate together.

Hope you enjoyed this recipe; happy baking!

Charlotte xx

 

 

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Thomas Kinkade is honestly every Disney lovers dream. His artwork is the most beautiful and stunning thing that I’ve ever seen. I was so excited when I was browsing Amazon for Adult Colouring Books and stumbled across this Gem. This Thomas Kinkade colouring book cost £8.19 from Amazon and it’s probably the best £8 I’ve ever spent!

Thomas Kinkade colouring book

For the past few years I’ve loved adult colouring books; I find them really therapeutic and perfect for my mental health. If I’ve had a stressful day a colouring book is always one of my go to items. I think we probably all know how much I love Disney so this is like the perfect colouring book for me.

What I love most about this colouring book is that on the left hand side it shows the coloured picture and what it should look like. This helps when colouring as there’s something to follow so you don’t have to think too much.

The detail in the pictures are incredible. I actually used a sketchy technique when I coloured the picture. This was a really quick and easy way to colour but I love how it turned out. As a child you always get taught to colour inside of the lines, but I think theres something much more fun about colouring outside of the lines and it can give a really nice look.

There are so many wonderful pictures that you can colour in this book ranging from Mickey and Minnie, Beauty & the Beast, The Lion King … You name it and it’s probably there. I’m really excited to try out more colouring techniques and create some really lovely pictures.

If you’re a Disney lover and you also like colouring books then this is an absolute must for you!

Charlotte xx

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