Saturday, 9 July 2016

Blog makeover - new about page

In my last post about this blog's makeover I wrote that I've made some changes around the pages, rearranging them, offering new contents and giving them a better look.
But, honestly, something wasn't so good in them, expecially in the "about" page.

Last sunday I was travelling by bus to work (art exibition "Museo della follia" in Catania) and I was looking at Pinterest on my smartphone, when I saw an interesting pin with this title: "How to write an epic about page for you blog".

If you click it you'll be in the collective mill blog to read the whole article!
So good and full of right considerations and suggestions!

I decided to make some changes in my about page following what the author said in that article and see what happens :)

What I did

Here's a screenshot of the upper parts of my about page before (on the left) and after (on the right):

write a new about page by madamerenard

There's a big difference!
At first glance they're different only in their look, but the most consistent work I've done is on the content.

I've completely reorganized it and divided into four sections:

  • eco-friendly sewing + rural life + creativity
    It's important to start with your blog's topics at first. People need to know if your blog is for them or not, before going on exploring.
    I've understood that starting from their needs and curiosities is better than starting from you and your story. It's a  way to capture interested people, but also to be helpful and clear to readers at their first visit.
  • where to start
    The idea is to be helpful to your readers. They don't know you so much, so offering them some directions to follow is very good.
    I've linked some blog posts I'm proud of, some I think can be useful to my readers, some other to get some informations about me.
    I think I'm going to change them here and there, to get up-to-date directions.
  • my story
    Of course, interested readers would like something about you and your story. They would probably be curious about who you are in "real" life.
    Without being too rambling, I've tried to tell something about my story, my job, my other passions. There's a real person behind the blog!
  • let's be friends!
    We live in a very social world. Interaction is what we look for when we write our blog posts (nobody starts a blog to act a monologue).
    So I left some ways to connect with me.

I've done a good job, I think.
Some banners, illustrations and photo help in offering a lovely view to the readers; I imagine them like people who are going in a new place for the first time: visitors need something beautiful, cozy and well organized to feel like at home
I've used the colors of my palette (lilac + dusty blue + some black accents) and picmonkey to make photo collages.

What I didn't

There only one thing inside that article that gave me difficulties: the suggestion "Show Them Why You’re Unique".  Uhm, well, coff coff, I'm not so sure!
What I need is some work on personal branding!
I know that I sew, I like nature, I'm doing my best to save the world, but, honestly, are these things making me unique?
I don't know.

I hope this post could be helpful to ther bloggers.
Visit my new about page and let me know what you think!
And, to help me in solving my problems with uniqueness, answer this question: where (or how) did you find your uniqueness?

Tuesday, 5 July 2016

5 new (to me) amazing zines to read

More than three years have gone from my last post about zines! 
Can you believe it?
I was addicted to zines reading in the past and, though I still love this kind of self-expression form, I haven't bought (and reviewed) one in years.

I was surfing Etsy some days ago and I had the idea to look for some zines that appeal to me (you know, I need something to read this summer, expecially because I've recently discovered that I love to read near the sea).

I found a lot of new (to me) zines I like. 

Five of them are amazing, in my opinion, for their topic, or the style, or the quality of the illustrations.
I haven't bought them yet, because I'm still doing some researches, but I decided to tell you something about them, just to spread the zine love :)

These zines are about some of my favourite topics:
  • plants
  • cats
  • being a woman
  • being an introvert
Want to know something more? I'm introducing them to you!

1. Winter wild, a zine about plants life in winter, by Kriski

share the zine love!

I love the topic, but most of all, the style of drawing and lettering. So tidy and organized, but funny and modern.
The colours too are lovely, among my favourites!
And it's a big zine: 20 pages to look and read!

Kristyna Baczynsky, the author, says in the description: this book is a blend of writing, research, drawings and comics about ten different plant specimens; all drawn in detail for identification. An illustrated selection of historical, scientific and mythological facts.

It sounds good!

2. Self love zine, by LollieWorley

share the zine love!

First of all, you can download it in .pdf, if you like!
Very good! Expecially for people who don't like to waste paper and like eco-friendly solutions like these.

The topic is amazing: self-love, a thing a lot of people need to work on.
Inside it has a cut&paste style I really like: it gives to the zine a handmade look, very well arranged here.

3. Illustrated women in history, by Apalelandscape

share the zine love!

The one with the most professional look in this selection.
It looks so well organized and rich in text! It's more similar to a printed book than to a zine, but I appreciate it the same, because I like to read other women's stories and to be inspired by them!
21 biographies of talented women inside!
And (shame on me!) I know only a few of them.

4. Cat state of mind, by Nathalie Moore

share the zine love!

I love cats! Not only mine, all cats!
And I also do my best, here and then, to draw their lovely faces and tails and paws, but I'm not so good in cats' drawing! -___- 
(I go on and go on filling my Moleskine with flowers!)

So it's very interesting for me that in this zine there are 20 pages of doodles about cats' world to be inspired byAnd the title is quite funny for all people who know cats and do their best to read into their mysterious minds.

The author is Nathalie Moore (click to go on her blog).

5. Creativity for introverts, by BusyWeekends

share the zine love!

This one is part of a serie of zines dedicated to creativity into the life of introvert people (like me). You can start from here or from other zines of the serie.
Great idea + cut&paste style I love + very interesting topic.

Don't you think they are lovely?

All these zines have english text.
I'd really like to found interesting zines in italian, too, but I haven't found nothing remarkable yet. Zine making is not common in Italy, probably because we have been too busy in making different kinds of art for centuries, ahaha :)

Let me know in the comments if you know italian good zines
if you have zines to suggest me (you know what I like to read: crafts, books, nature, art, eco-friendly life, travelling, growing as a woman).
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