30 March, 2010

More fiddling with technology

Is there anything, anything, that sucks up more time than fooling around with your blog layout? I'm having 'fun' with the new Blogger Template Designer available over in Blogger-in-Draft and yes it's more flexible but it's also driving me batty with the bits that aren't! Oh if only I knew html properly and could just whip up a snazzy blog and make it exactly how I want it. But then I wouldn't be an archaeologist so I guess I'll just live with someone else's template. I've also started adding in menu tabs just under the header to try and get some of the clutter out of the side bar but I'm darned if I can figure out how to move the Blogger gadget things like blog roll up there without having to do it all manually! I tried just moving the gadget but of course it wants to show them all rather than having them on a separate page. If anyone's done it successfully I'd be more than grateful if you'd pass on the trick!

On a happier note, if you're on Blogger have you seen the background images they have available? There's some really lovely ones, including a nice quilt and a stack of fabric. Almost a good excuse to ditch the custom header and go with something plain so I can have a lovely background! I suppose you could probably put in your own image and get it to work in with your header but that would be like the ultimate black hole of time wasting for me :)

I decided that once the crafting ethics poll below hit 100 I'd do a wee summary but it's sitting at 93 responses - maybe in the next day or so? If anyone hasn't voted then please do! Though you can anticipate my upcoming post quite easily by just looking at the results :)


  1. yes yes, I spent way too long the other night changing and changing and then back again and something else again on my blog. I do like the new aspects, and that it really is so easy - but then, of course there are always things that I want it to do more and better. (and I keep forgetting that it's free, and I haven't forked out some amount per week or something!).
    If you work out how to get all those bits up the top, and onto one page - please do let me know.
    And I haven't yet worked out how to put my own background, do you know that one? There are heaps of excellent backgrounds - but of course, of course, none are just exactly what little miss fussy Petalplum wants!!
    Also - it appears as if you've passed 100 on the survey, can't wait to read your summary.

  2. There are some good topics on inserting backgrounds on Blogger Help,
    it doesn't look like you can do it from the simple layout pages. I
    gather you can either have a whole big image that shows down the
    margins or put in specific images to the sidebars that only show
    there. It involves putting in the image URL to the html but most of
    the instructions seem fairly simple. The trick appears to be making
    sure you have the right URL to get the image to display. I always have
    a hell of a time with the Picasa URLs though Flickr seems fine.

    I've searched and searched on Google and in Blogger on how to put
    widgets into blog posts/static pages but can't find anything. Perhaps
    I'm not using the right terminology! I need to browse around some
    other blogs and see what they've done.

  3. !!! I didn't know they had the gadget to add pages along the top!! What would I do wihtout you Jacqui!??!? I was going to just hire a company like blogfairy to create that for me -- she only charges like $20 for that, which is well worth the cost if you ask me.

    For something like creating a custom background, I'd just look into having someone do it for you. I've found that blog designers almost always have a la carte options that are rather decently priced if you look at the cost(maybe as much as $40???)-benefit(sanity, time, less swearing) analysis.

    I've got to go now & play with adding some sweet menu tabs!!!!

  4. I think the tabs thing across the top is fairly recent, like within the
    month. I noticed it a couple weeks ago in the posting section but didn't
    have time to explore. Then I realised that if I used Blogger in Draft as my
    default dashboard then I'd be more on to the new things they're trying out,
    plus signing up to their blog.

    If I ever get around to shifting to my own domain (but get Blogger to host
    still I think) I might look at going more custom. I didn't realise you could
    get designers to just do bits 'n bobs so that's really great to know!

    I'll have to pop over and check out your tabs :)



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