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Fiktshun’s Had a Facelift

As I’m sure some of you have seen, over the past month Fiktshun has been getting some work done. It was inevitable. This is L.A. and even the most stunning blogs need a little beautification once in awhile.

While the process isn’t complete – after all, once you get a little work done, you want a little more, and more, and just a little bit more. A nip here, a tuck there. But I am just so amazingly happy with everything, that I couldn’t wait to give credit to the designer, who has been nothing but spectacular over the course of this project.

As I mentioned on The Annex, in a couple different posts, this started out with me wanting to get business cards. I think I’m the only blog over the age of six months without some. It was actually a really huge step for me on so many levels, firstly because it meant that I was actually making a commitment to what I’ve been doing. Secondly, it meant that I was actually not going to design them myself.

While I’m not a designer, I do like to play around in Photoshop a lot, and have actually made business cards for other domains I had purchased over the years. I was actually pretty proud of those designs at the time. So, handing the job to someone else was a scary process. But I did it.

The designer for the cards – and subsequently my websites – was Rachel of Parajunkee’s View and Parajunkee Design. And she has done a phenomenal job with everything. She took one look at my site and within such a short time she came up with the perfect ideas for the cards. And the bookmarks which I also decided to have designed at the same time.

She gave me a number of options and the bracketed Fiktshun just screamed “me.” I was ecstatic. From that point on, everything just played off of that and was a piece of cake.

And once I got over the whole control issues I had, it was on. And I really hope I haven’t been monopolizing all of her time. Because I just keep adding things. I think it was first the new button (shown above). While I love the purple flower, I wanted options, something darker. It felt as if it took minutes for her to come up with this, and it was is perfect.

So, of course I wanted a header for the blog to match, and of her own accord she designed one that fit the width of the post area perfectly, which is something I hadn’t even thought of with my previous image. Granted, it’s not obvious if viewed on Internet Explorer as my site has some issues with IE, even though the CSS is formatted for IE. But as I’m not a tech-spert I haven’t quite worked that one out just yet. Anyway…

Then I wanted consistent post images. While I liked the cutesy images I created in Photoshop, I only did those because they were free clipart images. Aside from covers, I don’t think it’s right to just use images I find on Google Images. They are typically licensed images and it’s just like downloading illegal eBooks. And so I’ve tried to only use the free ones that came with Microsoft Word.

Well, it didn’t stop there, as you may have guessed. I wanted a new rater system. I wanted new icons you could pop into posts. I wanted new social icons. Then some more images for my posts. Then images for the elements on different pages. Yeah, I tend to go all out. And if I was organized at all, I would have had a nice list put together before I started, but, well, I’m not that girl.

Then I decided that I was going to commit to Fiktshun’s Ramblings, a.k.a. The Annex. And since that was just a Blogger template, I went custom. I am so not a template girl. I love custom. I love things that have a personal touch. And while the design isn’t mine, with only the tiniest bit of my input, it’s so totally me. And it’s absolutely gorgeous. I couldn’t be happier. I do find myself staring at the design more than is probably healthy. But it’s so pretty and perfect.

And so, just as things were winding down I realized that I’d like a new Avatar for Facebook and for my Twitter background. Maybe something for my gravatar. On Twitter for now I’m still set with the purple flower, but I have updated my profile design, which I love. I wanted something to showcase my blog. And now I have two perfect girls that I can use interchangeably to suit my mood. And I’m sure I’ll update them seasonally…

Now I just need her help to figure out that sidebar – oh, and that other blog – and maybe, just maybe I’ll be done. (I may have emailed her a couple times since I started writing this post.)

But I can’t thank her enough for just how quickly she works, how beautiful her designs are, how effortless she has made all of this. I honestly wish I had more things to design, because I am a design junky and love seeing what she comes up with given the bare bones information I provide to her.

Oh and for the other blog, my direction so far is (and this is paraphrased, but pretty close to what I said), I think I’d like it white, light and pretty or maybe dark, black and grim. So, I can’t wait to see just what she does with that. But whatever that is, I’m sure it will be awesome.

So, my final thoughts are these: I’ve worked with a few designers in my life and I’ve found that when you find a designer that takes the time to actually think about your needs and not pushing their design wishes onto you, you sign on with them. The process will be a million times easier. You’ll be happier with the process and most importantly with the end result.

And when you find a designer who just gets you, immediately, don’t waste any time. Just go for it!

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