Sunday, August 30, 2009

Upgrade to Blogger Layouts features

Blogger's Layouts FeaturesHooray....finally my blog has been upgraded to a new template with the new Blogger Layouts features!

Simply cool and fantastic, ready to use with all the user-friendly features incorporated to customize the page elements, fonts and colours, edit HTML and pick new template, to name a few.

All can be so easily done with a few mouse clicks, needing no knowledge of HTML or CSS. Isn't that wonderful?

If you're still using the old template, and would like to customize your blog, let Blogger Help guide you through with the following links:
  • to use the Layouts features, you have first to upgrade your old template;
  • if you change your mind about the template chosen, you can easily switch to another;
  • learn more about the Layouts features here, and how-to use them, especially the Page Elements and Fonts and Colours, which really do wonders to style your blog as you desire;
  • adding the Adsense ad units via the Monetize button is such a breeze now, not necessary to know HTML. Subsequently, more ads units can be inserted using the Add a gadget element at Layout > Page Elements;
  • the New Post Editor is another great addition, a feature that should not be ignored for easier composing and editing.
I just love the new coat of paint given to this sky-blue with complementary light grey! Previously, the old template was a pink one, 'Thisaway Rose' by Dan Rubin, now it's 'Stretch Denim Light' by Darren Delaye. Frankly, I had fun playing around with the various template styles, Layouts > Fonts and Colors tab and splashing/juggling around the various desired color paints before settling down to its final display as seen here.

Nonetheless, my first new template choice was 'Harbor' by Douglas Bowman...a charming and serene style but was forced to switch to the present one, due to an unexpected problem that surfaced...will share in my next post. (update: it's here!)

Why had I suddenly decide to change to this new template, you may ask?

For a long time, I had seen the 'Customize your design' tab on my dashboard but dare not attempt for fear of getting stuck halfway through. It did warn that old customized details may be lost on upgrade...a deterrent for me as I'm not at all html-savvy!

But destiny decided that it had to be done when I volunteered to assist a lovely friend to start her No-frills recipe blog here. I encountered problems along the way and had difficulty assisting her as features of her newly created blog and my old-template blog were at odds. Thus, the best way to redress the pressing issues was to create another blog, a new test blog to experience for myself the Layout features available. After all, Blogger allows us to create any number of blogs for free!

Wow...was I blown over with what the new Layout had to offer! Besides, this new blog can be used as a testing ground to boost my confidence in converting or upgrading my old template. And, the rest is history, so to speak.

Of course, there were some teething problems as I familiarized myself with the other Layouts features pain, no gain, yes? But if there's a will there's a way! Nothing is so easy, but with patience, determination and perseverance, they can be overcome.

Hence forth, I hope to be sharing some blogging tips here. For sure, there'll be someone out there who may encounter similar problems and if a tip from my blog can put a smile on his/her face, mine will surely shine too! :-)

Update:  January 23, 2010
I've created another blog, titled 'Jacq's Blogger Tips' since October 1 2009, solely for the purpose of sharing whatever I've learnt along my blogging journey. Check out Jacq's Blogger Tips here!

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