Custom Domain on Blogger - FAQ

{Read in Italian...}
Custom Domain on Blogger - FAQ
Some days ago I set up a custom domain name for the Italian version of my blog. Since then, I received lots of questions about the process: that's why today I'm going to answer some frequently asked questions on this subject. Hope you find them useful!
  • First of all, what the hell is a domain?!
    A domain name is an address that leads to a specific website, which is hosted on a specific server.
    For example, is the domain name that points to the Google server where my Italian blog is hosted.
  • Why should I consider buying a custom domain name?
    A good reason to get rid of the is that a custom domain looks more professional, compared to a standard domain that is clearly tied to a free service like Blogger itself.
    Let me clear this point: let's say that I'm looking for an information about weaning {since I'm comparing the authorship of two mommy blogs} and after my research Google gives me a link and the address to a website with a proper, custom domain. Which link will I click? Most of the times I'd click on the custom domain, because I expect the blogger who invested into her space to be more professional and reliable.
  • Where can I buy a domain name?
    I used GoDaddy, but there are many other options, like 1&1 and EasyDNS. Sometimes these websites have promotions going on, so check them out.
  • How do I buy my domain name?
    First, you need to choose the name. If you're interested in a top-level domain {which in most of the cases is what you're looking for your blog}, it will be a URL made of your blog name on the left {without dots in between the words} and an extension on the right, like .com, .org, .net, etc. If that domain name is already taken, you'll get an alert and you'll need to adjust to something slightly different.
    Domain names require an annual fee in order to keep their property. The cost is roughly 10$ per year. If you let them expire without renewing them, anyone can get their hands on your domain name.
  • But I wanted that domain name that is already taken! Why can't I buy it as well?
    Domain names are globally unique: it means that, worldwide, there can't be two domain names that point to two different servers.
  • I got used to Blogger interface and I love it... What's going to happen if I change my domain name?
    Absolutely nothing. Your blog will still be hosted on Blogger and the interface won't change. This would occur only if you switch hosting service, for instance if you decide to move to Wordpress.
  • What if some day I decide to move to Wordpress, after I set my custom domain on Blogger? Will I lose it?
    Nope! You'll just need to point your domain another time, to the server where your blog is hosted.
  • Will the custom domain mess up my SEO? Will I lose ranking on Google?
    No. When you switch to a custom domain, Blogger automatically redirects all of the traffic to your new URL, through a process called Redirect 301 {or 301 Moved permanently}. This way you won't lose any page rank and all of your links will still work.
  • Will my readers lose any feed?
    No. I was afraid of this as well, but soon I realized that everything was ok. I didn't have to change anything on Feedburner, etc.
  • What happens to Adsense ads?
    After you set up a custom domain, your Adsense ads won't be displayed anymore, leaving a blank space. In order to make them work again, you'll need to follow a procedure. I'm going to talk about it in another post, very soon.
  • What if I buy more domain names? Like "" and ""?
    If you want to prevent someone else from buying a domain that looks very similar to yours, which can be confusing for some potential readers, you should buy more than one domain name. Then you'll have to choose your "primary" domain name and point it directly to your blog, while the other names will be redirected to the first one. We'll see how in the next post about domains.
If you have more questions, leave me a comment: I'll add the answer to the FAQ.
Next time we'll see how to set up a custom domain name on Blogger. Since I used GoDaddy, I'll use some screenshots from that website. Then we'll see how to fix Adwords ads.

Blog Design for 'Carta e Cuci'

{Read in Italian...}

Today I'm happy to show you my latest blog design work, for Sabrina.
Blog Design for 'Carta e Cuci'
For some reason, her blog, Carta e Cuci, reminds me about myself. It is a very eclectic, but it always makes you feel at home. Working for Sabrina has been an authentic joy!

She has such a personal and original point of view on... like, everything. See how her son's toy car has become the inspiration for our color scheme...
Blog Design for 'Carta e Cuci'
In the end I used a brighter orange, because it was more readable on the screen.
When it came to creating her new logo, header and graphic elements, I wanted them to recall the main topics of the blog: tailoring and paper crafts.
So I used sketchy fonts, stitch-like dashed lines, washi tapes...
I tried to use the flat style that I love so much, giving it a playful, hand-drawn mood.

Working on this project gave me the possibility to learn so much.
I'm quite proud of the washi tape date headers, slightly tilted {CSS3 magic!}.
I'm also happy about the contact form placed on its static page, with the privacy policy check {which is mandatory by law, in Italy} and an anti-spam filter that doesn't rely on annoying captchas. The standard contact form widget available on Blogger doesn't feature these options, that's why I had to make a new one by myself. I was able to make it work by uploading on my personal server space the "engine" that delivers the messages.
Blog Design for 'Carta e Cuci'
For the first time, I created a custom mobile version of a Blogger blog.
Actually, it is half a mobile version and half responsive {media queries and fluid elements involved}... Maybe there are better solution and I hope to learn the as I keep learning, but the important thing for now is that it works!
Blog Design for 'Carta e Cuci'
On a side note: look at the app-like icon on mobile devices!
I also associated a new domain name to Sabrina's blog, as I did for my own some days ago. I'm going to publish a tutorial about this next week!
Lastly, I created some images for Sabrina's social network profiles: she'll upload them soon...

Thank you so much, Sabrina, for giving me so much trust on this project. I hope that we'll keep in touch as we did during these days for a long time because you're special. I also hope that my work for you will help to make your projects come true very soon!

PS. Thanks to Simona for her tips and all of the support she gave me during this project!

Cake Stand Pendant

{Read in Italian...}

I have a confession to make: I would spend hours on Pinterest, drooling on all of those stunning cake pictures...
When we talk about quality food photography, we know that there's a damn great amount of work behind the scenes. It is not just a matter of getting the perfect slice of cake with the right illumination. A lot of care for the detail is involved, like choosing the perfectly matching dish, a cute tea cup, or a beautiful cake stand...
These are all of those things that make me forget that time flies away when I walk into shops like Ikea or Maisons Du Monde. My boyfirend is always very happy about that...

Today I'm going to show you my second slice of cake made with polymer clay. I crated this pendant about one month ago, for a present.
Cake Stand Pendant
I was crazy about these mini cake stands when I bought them, and finally I used one!
Cake Stand Pendant
For the first time, I attempted to create a sort of glaze with Fimo Liquid. To be a totally new technique to me, I'm quite happy with the result.

Have a very sweet day!

How to find the measurement of blog columns

{Read in Italian...}

Remember this post, when we talked about a CSS code that would preset the maximum size your blog images? I didn't explain how to find out the width of your blog columns, without margins/padding.
This is a very simple procedure: trust me, it is waaaaaaay more complicated to explain, rather than to apply.
We're gonna use Google Chrome developer tools, but if you only have Firefox, it is quite the same thing.
Just please, don't tell me that you browse the internet with an old version of Internet Explorer. Pretty please!
  • Visit your blog with Google Chrome.
  • Place your mouse pointer over your blog content, right click and select “Inspect element”: the dev tools interface will pop up at the bottom of your page.
  • From this interface, on the left, look for a magnifying glaass icon: click on it.
  • On the right of the same interface, look for the “computed” button. Click on it and you'll see some colored boxes: they'll contain the measurement of your selected blog elements.
How to find the measurement of blog columns
Click on the image to enlarge it.
  • Now, place your mouse pointer over your post body: you'll see that the text and the images will be selected and you'll see the name of the element as well. Look at the blue box inside the “computed” window: the first measurement is your post body width.
How to find the measurement of blog columns
Click on the image to enlarge it.
If you understood this procedure, you can apply it for your sidebar(s), or any other blog element as well.

Hand-drawn line patterns {freebie}

{Read in Italian...}
hand-drawn line patterns (free)
For my current blog design commission I'm running lots of tests: I have a clear design in my mind, but I need to try a lot of things out in order to put it in place.
Sounds like a paradox, I know...
For this project, I'd like to use a background pattern. I created these lined patterns and I like how they look... but I realized that I want something slightly different for that blog.

That's why I'm going to share these patterns with you. There are different color options, including a greyscale and a sepia. You can download and use them freely, if you wish!

I just ask not to claim my work as your own, nor redistribute and/or resell it.

I'd be happy if you drop me a comment to show me how you used these patterns {as a blog background, or any other digital graphic project}.
Ad remamber: sharing is caring ;)

Need help to set a blog background? Here you can find some tips.
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