07 March 2013

Fabulous Design Resources

I once was told design is basically arranging multiple elements in a single space. I think it's a little more complicated than that, but other times it's not. You don't always have to be the most creative, artistic, or web-savvy person to be able to come up with a design, but to begin you should know your resources. I thought I would take a few minutes to put together a little directory of my favorite places to find all things design-related.

You have probably seen these color boards scattered around Pinterest boards, and for good reason. You can search by color, season, theme, or even a specific color value. I always recommend my clients to check out this site when looking for the perfect color combo inspiration.

Another great tool to explore, share, and create color schemes. It lets you play with different rules, for example, it can find the color that goes best with your favorite shade of mint. It even has a rating system so you can find some of the most popular palettes that suit your fancy.

Perfect for the visuals out there who respond to photos for color inspiration rather than swatches. This site is awesome because you can upload any hosted image and it will pull the colors automatically, creating your very own color palette.

As a designer I like using Google fonts because I can easily incorporate them into the CSS of my blog design clients code. If it's not a Google Web font, installing custom post, date, and sidebar titles can get complicated. If I know I want to use a fun font in the CSS, this is the first place I look for choices.

This is my go-to site when looking for new fonts, 1) because they are 100% commercial free so I won't have to worry about using them in my design work, and 2) because they have a high quality selection, so I don't have to search too hard to find the good ones.

If you're looking for a free font, this is usually where you'll find it. I like how they have them sorted into different categories and list by most popular - I've done many downloading sprees here! Just make sure you understand the definition of "free" and read the font's terms of use before using commercially.

Katrina is an amazing designer, inspires me on every visit, and leads by example. Not only a favorite to find great quality design elements, but also a source for everything design-related. Free downloads, tutorials, and resources galore, or just buy her Blog Bling Kit for $25 for a variety of the best.

Royalty-free stock photos! I was introduced to this site during school, and whenever I needed some good photography, textures, and high-res clip art this is the place I went.

I was first introduced to this site when looking for old vintage photography I could use for a project. A lot of the photos are shared by Flickr users that agree to release all copyright, but a lot of them are uploaded from old libraries and cities. If anything, it's fun just to have a look around.

If you've ever wanted to brush up on your Photoshop skills, this is the place to go. It has an assortment of the most helpful Photoshop tutorials out there and is probably the best resource for those who love our beloved Adobe program.

I honestly think everyone should have a basic knowledge of HTML and CSS, and this site provides that. I used it a lot in my web courses at school and focused on the HTML and CSS portions, but it also has all kinds of web development information, and is great to use as a guide or quick reference.

Whenever I get stuck on coding in Blogger and need to Google a quick tutorial, this site is the one I most often land on. It has a list of helpful and easy tutorials that anyone can do, and as long as you know how to read instructions and copy/paste, you can pull it off.

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I can't list them all, but bottom line - there are thousands of sites out there dedicated to creating, sharing, and inspiring - you just have to look and get inspired!


  1. Such a great post! Thanks! I am loving all of design week, it even inspired me to give my blog a bit of a face lift!

  2. This is so great! I've just started blogging and I think this is great advice and resources- thanks for sharing!
    I can't wait to use these- I had already discovered puglypixel- but was a little discouraged as I don't have photoshop.


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