Does This Look Less Terrible?

Filed under administrative

I’ve sort of been thinking about changing the layout of my site, because I basically had no idea what I was doing when I chose my WordPress theme and only later discovered that mine was built for WordPress version 1.1 or something and was so messed up that it took the smarts of every programmer at my software company to make it look reasonable. And even now, its a complete wreck internally.

So, I’ve chosen a new layout and done a little work on it to make it suit me more, but basically all of my friends think it’s too emo for my subject matter. I like it, though!

Click to enlarge.

What do you think? You know I can’t make decisions on my own.


  1. Serial says:

    I hate the body text. Can you put one lil ole serif in there?

    Otherwise, it is not emo. Much less terrible, if ya ask me.

    • You hate the body text?! But it’s Arial, the most simple and beautiful font ever! And the one I currently use on this site.

      Do you have a font suggestion? Because I’m slightly open-minded.

      • Serial says:

        Well, if you like simple sans serif, Helvetica’s generally agreed upon to be superior.

        But I like mixing in some serif fonts with the sans, like Garamond, or Savon.

        Not that I know anything about design. I just think I do.

        And I think some of those fonts you have to pay for.

        • I tried to switch to Helvetica today just to see how it looks, but my blog kept loading Arial. I think it’s a sign.

          Using a font that you have to pay for only works if everyone else has it, right? Back in, oh, 2001, I designed a Geocities site that used Rockwell, and I directed everyone to a page where they could download the font, because absolutely no one had it. I’d love to know if more than 10 people downloaded it.

          I still appreciate your skills, faux or no.

  2. Kim says:

    I like the pink. Though I am not enamored with the fonts in your banner, and prefer the one on the emo layout. But I really like pink. And the potatoes.

    But you know what, the emo one’s not THAT emo. It strikes me as very “gender-neutral bedroom.” Which is, you know, fine, except the Future Mr. Kim will just deal with a gold ceiling and damask linens, that’s all I have to say.

    This wasn’t helpful, was it?

    • You know, it’s funny you say that, because my current background is obviously damask, and I’ve never heard any complaints about it. But when I showed my potential new layout to one of my graphic designer friends with a damask background, he was like, “No. No way. It looks like wallpaper.” Which is, um, sort of the idea.

      But it was still enough to convince me to switch the damask for the stripes. Although now he says it looks like a construction zone. But screw him.

      The pink is definitely going in there as I work on it more, and you can bet I’m trying to fit the potatoes in. Although you and Kamran are the only ones who like the potatoes, I swear.

      Very helpful, in fact.

      • Jack says:

        I agree that the new layout seems very neutral and could easily be mistaken for a blog by a 14 year old boy from Michigan. The current layout, with all of its flaws, gives off an aura which is unique to your . . . umm . . . personality*.

        I think you should go with something that has a lighter color pallette, maybe even aligning it with that new logo of yours, although that actually comes off a bit dark and Halloween-ish. In any case, the new black theme sucks in my opinion, and makes me dizzy just looking at it.

        *I am in no way or form implying that you actually have a personality, but the current theme makes it seem like you have one, whereas the new one doesn’t.

        • “A aura”?

          Oh, wait, I fixed that. I also fixed your ellipses. Come to think of it, maybe Charles should give me access to his blog so I can fix all of his posts to suit myself.

          It’s funny how this comment is totally irrelevant now that you spent all day making my blog look AMAZING. I still have terrible memories of that fire theme, though.

      • Serial says:

        (I like the potatoes, just not the cursive with the white outline)

      • Kim says:

        Damask FTW. Don’t listen to graphic designers! Next thing he’ll be all, “You know what you should name your first born? HELVETICA!”* Also wearing a KERN sweatshirt. Okay, so I like the KERN sweatshirt.

        Whatever, I am just happy to hear the potatoes are still be considered for a transfer.

        * This scenario may or may not bear resemblance to actual events. No names have been changed to protect the guilty, because I didn’t use any.

        • The potatoes are IN and are sexier than ever in black and white, thanks to the genius of commenter Jack above, who says he wants my blog more colorful and then totally greyscales my ass off.

          We should watch the Helvetica movie on our first double date with Kamran and Jack.

  3. kimz says:

    The stripes make me dizzy. You should put a big ol’ picture of Kevin Youkilis as your background. Can’t go wrong there. Not a Youk fan? How about a big ol’ picture of Michael Roberts.

    • I don’t understand how we could have the exact opposite taste in men and yet somehow find common ground with Michael Roberts. I wrote him a Facebook message the other day, you know, to find out if he’s single. Not that I would, you know, drop Kamran like a hat and fly to Charleston to make out with Mike in your old bathroom. I hope he doesn’t have a Google alert for his own name.

  4. Generally, I like it, though I agree with Kimz – the stripes might be a bit much. And I think the theme fits your subject matter quite well.

  5. kat says:

    I strongly dislike light text on a dark background. I might even go so far as to say I hate it. Fortunately, I mostly read your blog through a feed, so it doesn’t really matter. ;)

    However, I do love pink, damask, and the potatoes!

    • I kind of had no idea that dark backgrounds were so hated until all of my co-workers referred to 1998 and the very first homepages when I showed them this. So that sucks. But I will not be swayed!

      I apologize now if you ever have to leave your RSS reader to come here. And will pay for your future eyeglasses.

  6. Cristy says:

    I *love* the potatoes. Please don’t take them away! That was what won me over when I first visited. And, I really liked the fact that your site (the current one) had a contrast of feminine-looking wallpapery w/bright green titles and “in your face” messages.

    I’m not crazy about the stripes, either. The whole thing kinda’ looks bland, in my opinion. I think your posts are so much more interesting than what one might expect from what that site looks like. Does that make sense?

    But, since I’m already a fan, I’ll prob’ly still read it, regardless. :)

    • “Probably”?! I had no idea this was going to cause such an outcry. I think I’m settled on the layout changes I made today, which include the wallpaper, plenty of pink, and the potatoes.

      Anyway, thanks for your input and the compliment!

  7. Stephanie Patenaude says:

    I have to say-The new one reminds me of geekologie. I like your potatoes picture-it’s reminiscent of your Ashville upbringing. You are a colorful girl with lots of sparkle to share with the world. I like your current layout better.

    • It’s soooooo funny to me that you’re about the third person to mention the potatoes specifically, because when I first added them to my header, one of my co-workers whose taste I value said, “I would never read a single post on a blog with award-winning potatoes at the top.” Apparently she isn’t my audience, eh?

  8. Noel says:

    That new layout makes me want to slit my wrists. And I mean that in the nicest way possible. But ignore my opinion. I don’t like change.

    • Oh, man, speaking of being emo, I read this blurb about this suuuuuuuuuper teenybopper emo kid’s band named Never Shout Never today, and I was thinking about how you and I would’ve liked him in college from the sound of things. I’m scared to actually listen to his music, though.

      • Noel says:

        One of my favorite students who is kindasorta an emo kid himself was just telling me the other day that I should check out Never Shout Never, so yeah, I probably would have loved the band back in the day and would still secretly love them now.

  9. Julie says:

    I like it, but instead of black and white, it should be pink and white (which I totally thought of before reading all the pro-pink comments, btw).

    However, I *heart* damask. And damask isn’t for wallpaper. It’s for curtains. Like the ones in my bedroom.

  10. anne says:

    Can’t handle the light font on dark background. I have to Ctrl + A the whole thing just to make it thru a post, and then I see stripes everywhere. Otherwise, it looks good!