How to Launch a WordPress Blog

how-to-launch-a-wordpress-blog-in-4-easy-stepsWhether you are a new blogger or a seasoned Blogger blogger wanting to switch your blog over to WordPress, setting up a WordPress blog can be a bit daunting, so today I’m going to teach you how to launch a WordPress blog on Bluehost (our preferred web host) in four simple steps. Bluehost is one of the largest and most trusted web hosting provider’s out there. They have very affordable pricing, stellar customer service, are incredibly reliable, and make the installation of WordPress as simple as clicking a single button! Follow these four simple steps and you’ll have your WordPress site set up in a jiffy.


Step 1: Domain Hosting

The first step is to get your hosting in place, so head on over to Bluehost and click on that big green button.

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Select a plan. The “plus” plan is the most popular and really does give you the most bang for your buck, but if you want to start with the “starter plan,” know you can always upgrade in the future if needed.

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If you haven’t thought about what you want to call your blog, now’s the time. Try your best to match your domain to the title of your blog (e.g. our site name is Designer Blogs, so we chose the domain www.designerblogs.com). If the domain you are wanting isn’t available, try using different variations of your title (it will offer you some suggestions). If you already own a domain that you’d like to use, enter it in the area provided.

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Now follow the instructions and enter in your account information, select your package details (the only one I recommend checking is the SiteLock Domain Security because it keeps your personal details private), and then enter in your billing information. Follow the remaining instructions and then your hosting account will be in place!

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Step 2: Install WordPress

Now that you have a hosting account in place for your domain, it’s time to install WordPress. This is where Bluehost makes things super simple. Navigate to the “Hosting” tab at the top of the page and then click on “Install WordPress.”

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Click the big green “Install” button.

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Then select the domain you want to install WordPress to (you can leave the “directory” part blank). Then click “Check Domain.”

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Click “Show advanced options” and enter in your site title (you can always change this later), choose your WordPress username and password. Check the box about creating a new database and check that you’ve read the terms (be sure to review them first). Then click “Install Now.”

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You’ll see the progress of the install at the top of the page.

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When the install is complete, click “View Credentials” and write down the login information so you will know how to log into your site. Now WordPress is installed to your domain and you can log in and get blogging! Easy peasy, right?

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Step 3: Configure Settings

You can log into your site by going to yourdomain.com/wp-admin or by following the link from your credentials. This will bring you to the login area on the backend of your site. Enter in the login info you wrote down from the previous step and then click “Log In.”

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First, let’s get your basic settings in place, so in your dashboard go to “Settings” and then “General.”

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Enter in your site title, tagline, url, email and the other information it asks for and click “Save Changes.”

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Now I highly recommend that you change your permalink settings for SEO purposes, so go to “Settings” and then “Permalinks” and then select the “Post name” option and click “Save Changes.” I also recommend that you click through each of the options under “Settings” to get the additional options set up like you want. You can also visit our tutorials page for additional help in getting the other areas of your site set up.

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Step 4: Make it Gorgeous!

Now it’s time to get your blog looking fabulous! You have a few options when it comes to the look of your site:

1) You can use one of the free generic themes that are included with your WordPress install. Go to “Appearance” and then “Themes” to find them. As you can see, they aren’t much to look at and there isn’t much variety, but if it’s not in your budget to spend money on a theme right now, then it’s a good place to start.

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2) You can purchase a gorgeous StudioPress Theme. StudioPress has a huge collection of professional, minimalist themes that will take your blog to the next level. Click here to view all of their amazing designs.

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3) You can hire a blog design company (like Designer Blogs!) to create a fabulous design for you. We offer very affordable premade blog themes or if you want a one-of-a-kind blog design, you can consider purchasing a custom blog design or a custom website design. With this option, we do all the work and you just get to sit back and enjoy your fabulous new design!

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I hope you’ve found this tutorial helpful. If you have any questions, please leave a comment below and I’ll do my best to answer!

Posted by: Erin

Color Love | Coral + Teal

CoralBlueimage source: The Caldwell Project

I don’t know about you, but I’m craving some sunshine right about now. Here in Dallas, we’re hunkered down in the middle of an ice storm. I’m wearing knee-high Christmas socks and right after this I’m headed to the tub to try and thaw out a little bit. It’s COLD! So, today, you get my favorite beachy color scheme in an attempt to warm you up! I love how the bright coral and cool teal tones play off each other. They seem to highlight the best of one another, don’t you think? To see this coral + teal color scheme in action, check out our Jake and Dani design found in our $15 Blogger template shop.

JakeandDaniBlog
Posted by: Kristin

Now on Instagram

dboninstagramDesigner Blogs is now on Instagram! Follow us at @designerblogs and share your photos with us using #designerblogs.

Pattern Guide

There are so many different patterns out there that are fun to incorporate in web design. Patterns can add personality and charm in places that sometimes feel empty.  Many times, though, clients aren’t quite sure how to explain to their designer which pattern they would like to use. So today we wanted to share this handy dandy pattern guide so you’ll never again need to try to describe a pattern–you can just use its name. Easy, right?
 
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Which pattern is your favorite? I am really into the Grunge look right now, but I’m also loving Ikat and Greek Key. It’s hard to pick just one!

Posted by Erika S.

20 Free Fonts that won’t fail you

Let’s face it.  There are loads of free fonts out there.  When I started collecting fonts several years ago I was so thrilled to find so many available for free.  If there had ever been a Hoarders: Font Edition I would definitely been on the first season.  It was a problem.

As I did more and more design work I realized that not all free fonts are created equal.  While several are fun, some are more dependable than others.  I slowly began deleting fonts that weren’t very professional or were a little sloppy in their delivery.

At Designer Blogs we are always here to help you make the most of your presence on the web so today we are sharing 20 free fonts that won’t fail you when you are in a typography pickle.  These fonts will always look clean and tidy and will make a great impression, no matter your project.

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Posted by: Emily

Featured Design | The G-Free RD

CarolineMoodBoardWe were ecstatic to have the opportunity to work with Caroline of The G-Free RD on her custom blog design. Caroline is an aspiring registered dietitian (RD) who learned in high school that she has severe gluten intolerance. She now lives a gluten-free life and shares all of her mouth watering gluten-free recipes on her blog. As a nutritionist and future RD, she not only shares great recipes, but valuable nutrition facts and insights that give credibility to her recipes. Our talented designer Kristin was assigned to Caroline’s project and worked closely with Caroline to create an absolutely stunning blog design. Here’s a look at the finished product:

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Kristin’s take on the project:

I wish I could adequately express how much I enjoyed working on this design. It was such a mix of serendipitous inspirations and calculated searching for specific design elements. When we tracked down the perfect deer, we were both like kids at a birthday party treasure hunt. I’ve never met Caroline, but we worked so well together and really caught the same vision. I adore the feminine watercolor washes and the quirky flower crown on that beautiful deer. Caroline has a fantastic style and communicated it beautifully. She made this project a total dream to work on. Go check her out!

about-meCaroline’s Testimonial:

I loved how quick and simple the redesign process was. Kristin made my vision come to life and I truly love it! I was impressed with how quickly it was finished and loved the creative design and mood board she made. I felt like my voice was heard and she was quick to answer any questions I had. I highly recommend Designer Blogs, it was money well spent! I can now be proud of how clean and professional my blog looks.

Be sure to check out The G-Free RD for all of your gluten-free recipe needs!

Posted by Erin

Free Seamless Striped Backgrounds (Part II)

striped-backgroundSince we received so many requests for additional color choices with our last set of free seamless striped backgrounds, we thought we’d throw some more at ya! This pack includes six more ready to use .jpg files and six Photoshop pattern files with instructions on how to use them. You can find part I HERE. Enjoy!


 
Posted by Kate

Don’t Ever Change | Valentine Printable

In place of a Valentine’s Day class party this year, my 2nd grader is having a “Manner’s Luncheon” where they will be practicing good manners. All of the students have been told to wear their Sunday best clothes. The gentlemen will be serving the ladies their lunches, soft dinner will be playing and a special dessert will be served. How stinkin’ cute is that? Although they aren’t having a class party, they will still be exchanging Valentine’s that day, so I thought I’d share the Valentine my little guy will be passing out this year:

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To create them you will need:

  • the printable linked below printed on bright white card stock paper (I recommend having them professionally printed for the best quality)
  • scissors
  • stapler & staples
  • milk chocolate gold coins (you can find them at Zurchers)
  • 2.5″ wide x 6″ tall plastic baggies (also can be found at Zurchers)–however, you’ll need to cut about an inch off the tops

 
Don't-Change-Printable

Enjoy!

Featured Design | Frugal Mom Eh!

FrugalMomMoodBoardWe thoroughly enjoyed working with Elizabeth of Frugal Mom Eh! on her new custom blog designFrugal Mom Eh! was started in July of 2012 and has quickly grown into a trusted Canadian parenting blog. Elizabeth offers top-notch parenting advice alongside brilliant DIY projects and delicious recipes! Our talented designer Kristin was assigned to Elizabeth’s project and worked closely with Elizabeth to create a sophisticated, yet stand out blog design. Here’s a look at the finished product:

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Kristin’s take on the project:

I really loved working with Elizabeth on her new design. She was a dream of a client, always responding to my e-mails quickly and thoroughly, and she really knew what she wanted–though she didn’t know it when we started! :) I love being able to take different components and mesh them into one cohesive design. She knew she wanted to have a circular watermark, but not necessarily a circular logo, so we worked together to give her something that could seamlessly connect the two and included some great pops of red with her neutral layout as a nod to her Canadian home. Go check her out!

Elizabeth’s Testimonial:

I was incredibly impressed by my experience with Designer Blogs and Kristin for my custom blog design. I really had no idea where I wanted to go with design other than a clean look. Kristin was able to quickly come up with a header and design that perfectly meshed with my blog and my personality. This wasn’t my first blog design, but it was my first with Designer Blogs and I was blown away with the quick turn around, friendly but professional communication and of course the quality of the design. I will definitely be coming back for custom designs with my other blogs and definitely recommend both Kristin and Designer Blogs if you are looking for an affordable yet professional looking custom blog design!

Be sure to hop on over to Frugal Mom Eh! to check it out!

February Desktop Background

february-desktop-backgroundHappy love month! Today we are bringing to you our free February desktop background inspired by the adorable Valentine’s bag toppers we shared on our blog last year. Stay tuned for this years free Valentine printable.

5XOXO!

For personal use only.