Monday, May 28, 2012

How to Make a Blog Header in PicMonkey {Beautify Your Blog Series}


how to make a blog header


I wanted to update my header to be smaller so it would show off more of my first blog post and sidebar. I also wanted to give it a cleaner look with a design that I could use to make a blog button. I decided to use Picmonkey to make the new header. My last one was made in Picnik which we all know has sadly closed.

You can customize this header to your liking so hopefully this tutorial will give you the tools to make it your own.

I use Blogger so if you use Wordpress or Typepad then you may still be able to use this tutorial to make the header but I don’t have instructions for uploading it to your blog.

In order to determine the sixe of my header googled blog header sizes and determined I wanted to make it 80 long (if you want a bigger header you can increase this length.) Since the width of my blog is 1100, I decided to make it 1080 wide. This was after a little trial and error to determine that the size of the header didn’t work if it was the same length as my blog width.

I started out by going to Picmonkey.com and clicking Edit Photo. Then I selected a photo off of my computer. We are going to be covering over the photo so it doesn’t matter which one you pick. I tried to use one of the Picmonkey stock photos but found it wasn’t long enough.

picmonkey

Once you have your photo up, click on the top icon (that looks like a molecule) on the left hand toolbar. Then pick crop, enter your dimensions and hit Apply. Mine was 1080 by 80 but you can change the size to suit your blog width. This is going to give me a long and skinny header.

crop

When you crop your picture you might find that you want to use it as your background. I have done that with previous header versions. If you like the look of your picture as your background you can skip covering it up. I’ll show you an example at the end of this post. I wanted to have a solid colored header so I covered my picture up.

Pick the fifth option down that looks like a heart, word bubble and star. Then pick Geometric. Pick the rectangle shape and find the color you want your background to be. I picked a dark gray.

rectangle

The colors you pick are important to remember if you want to use them again. In the little Overlay box there is a number for the color you chose. This field is editable. I copied this number into a spreadsheet I use to keep track of my blog stuff so I would be able to use it again. You can also type or paste a number into this field to bring up the color you want.

color

Stretch the rectangle until it covers up your picture. Then click the combine button. It’s the one the arrow is pointing at in the bottom left. This will prevent you from moving the solid background around. You also can’t change the color anymore at this point so make sure this is the color you want!

combine

Next, it’s time to add text. Click the P on the left hand side. Enter your text in the top box and click Add. Find a font that you like. You can scroll through and change the fonts to see how each one looks with your text.

Text

Resize the text by grabbing the box that is around it and making it bigger or smaller. You can also adjust the color.
If you want to add more text, click off of the text you just resized and type in the text box again. I added a tag line to my header.

text 2

Now it’s time to decorate! Click on fifth option down that looks like a heart, word bubble and star again. Scroll through the list and click on the headers to see the different shapes options. I played around with some of the shapes you can choose from in the picture below. You can change the color of the shape too by choosing a new color in the Overlay box. When you find a color you like, don’t forget to save the number.

shapes

I decided to use circles for a polka dot effect. Under Geometric I picked a circle. I resized it until it was the size I wanted. Then I right clicked on the shape and choose Duplicate Clipart from the menu that popped up. I made four copies.

shapes 2

Then I picked out the colors I wanted by clicking on the shape and picking out a color from the Overlay box. I made sure to write down the numbers I liked.

shapes 3

Then I used the duplicate clipart to make a copy of all the colored circles to repeat in the other corner. The hardest part was trying to make them line up. I just played with it until I felt like they were fairly even.

shapes 4

Once you have your header the way you want it then click Save in the bottom left corner. Give your header a file name and double check the size is correct before clicking Save Photo.

save

Now that you finished your header it’s time to upload it to your blog. Go to your blogger dashboard and go to Layout. The large top box should be your header. Click edit.

blogger header

Under Image click browse and find the header your just saved. If you already have an image here you will have to remove it first. Under Placement select Instead of Title and Description. Then click Save.

blogger header 2

Tadah! You just put your new header on your blog.

Here’s an example of another type of header you could make. I used a picture as the background for the header. I just cropped a larger picture and then added text to it.

sample blog header


Previous posts:
How to customize your Blogger background

Upcoming posts:
How to make a blog button using Picmonkey
How to make social media buttons using Picmonkey
How to use Windows Live Writer
How to make a Facebook cover photo
How to make a blog header part II
Blogging Resource Roundup

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