New Look for Summer

June 29, 2007

With each season, the decor8 header changes, so it was only fitting to add a new look for summer. I recently asked the amazing Tara Hogan to design my latest business cards, so graphic designer Brent (my close friend in Minneapolis), spotted my new cards and decided to give the header a similar look for the season. (He’s also the man behind my last 2 blog headers here and here.)

New Look for Summer
Some of you wrote in recently concerned that changing my header damages my brand, and I know that you mean well, so thank you so much for your concerns. I realize that changing headers with the seasons may not be so great for “branding” but I’m not worried. Dooce swaps out her blog header monthly, along with Delicious Days, and I think they’re both pretty awesome blogs because they allow themselves some flexibility with their design and that, unlike large corporations, they do it because they can. I want to keep things fresh and inspiring here too, and because I came from corporate, I think I’m intentionally rebelling against anything that fences me in — right down to creating a set brand for myself. If anything, people know this blog by its contents and my voice, that’s “brand” enough for me. But thank you all for the nice comments you’ve sent in, and the words of advice, I really do appreciate that you’re looking out for my blog. :)

So with all that being said, I hope you like the new banner! I really love pods for their organic shapes and thought capping them in yellow would be nice. And of course, birds are always in style, so why not? Of course, in October this will all change when a Fall header is introduced, but for now, birds and pods work for me.

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  • Reply Patricia June 29, 2007 at 6:04 pm

    I love your new look! I would normally give the “brand” speech to my clients but in your case I think part of your brand IS changing your look according to the season. It keeps your blog fresh.

  • Reply Rachel June 29, 2007 at 6:07 pm

    i think decor8’s branding works great… especially with the rotating gallery of headers.

    just look at companies like Target. Even without prominently displaying their trademark red bulls-eye logo, the branded pieces are totally recognizable, you know?

    Similarly, Holly has a look and feel to her blog that is distinct and recognizable, through many other aspects, like type treatment, stylized illustration style, and consistency of elements.

    another thing to keep in mind is the unique nature of blogs, and their dynamic, constantly evolving state. we shouldn’t fight that to try and squeeze into some tightly-controlled box deemed “standard practice” by more traditional media. this is the wild west, folks!

  • Reply Daniel Sroka June 29, 2007 at 6:29 pm

    Agreed. Brand does not mean “static visual image”, it means “recognizable character”. In my pre-artist life, I was the creative director for Yahoo!, and one of my daily efforts was to convince people to reflect the spirit of the brand’s character, instead of being slaves to its literal form.

  • Reply Lisa Marie June 29, 2007 at 6:32 pm

    I love blogs that change their headers, it keeps it fresh and makes readers pay attention! Love the new cards.

  • Reply JHAYNE June 29, 2007 at 6:39 pm

    love the new banner! i recently read an article online about how the static, corporate branding is on it’s way out (i wish i remembered where!), so more power to ya! ;)

  • Reply j June 29, 2007 at 6:46 pm

    i love it! I come from an in-house corporate graphic design background and think it’s fine as long as your logo stays the same. love the new header.

  • Reply Melissa June 29, 2007 at 6:52 pm

    I think it’s gorgeous! I agree with what others have said. All of your banners have a particular style, and I would never think, “Wait a sec, what blog am I on again?” Kudos to you and your designer(s)!

  • Reply Claire June 29, 2007 at 6:54 pm

    I agree with Patricia (and everyone else for that matter). Changing the header does keep it fresh, especially when your blog is about design. It’s good to experiment and explore visually. It doesn’t hurt your brand.

  • Reply bussbsus June 29, 2007 at 6:59 pm

    holly – the new header looks great! super fresh.

    have a great summer!

  • Reply Leah June 29, 2007 at 7:25 pm

    *love* the new banner.

  • Reply Sarah Dennis June 29, 2007 at 7:28 pm

    Holly love the new look. “Happy Summer”!

  • Reply LauraB June 29, 2007 at 7:35 pm

    I already expressed how much I love your new header, but I wanted to say that it’s great you kept your decor8 logo the same. That provides some continuity even if you swap headers, and works for me!

  • Reply Jennifer Hill June 29, 2007 at 7:45 pm

    i too would normally give “the brand” speech to my clients, but i think that can be most critical when you are first starting out. decor8 is well established and i would think keeping it fresh would important now. i love the colors of the cards and banner. it’s like a fresh lemonade sitting in the sun. beautiful!

  • Reply elysa June 29, 2007 at 7:51 pm

    I love the new look as well. I think changing the header is fun and one of the benefits of being on the web. The internet makes changing sites look seasonally or monthly very easy. Look at Google and Yahoo they both have holiday logos.

  • Reply Madame M. June 29, 2007 at 8:02 pm

    I”m only an amateur on matters of design, but I think that as long as you do not change the main logo but simply play with the logo’s color schemes, it should be fine.

    As long as you can recognize your brand, playing with the layouts and with the colors in a tongue-in-cheek way is almost expected.

    I love your new banner– it’s very cute (but butterflies are still the best!) :o)

  • Reply jwh June 29, 2007 at 8:40 pm

    love the new look! very fresh.

  • Reply Monkey June 29, 2007 at 8:47 pm

    I agree with changing it too…one of the things I get excited about is going to Dooce’s blog to see what the new header looks like…it’s always like a little surprise present! :)

  • Reply Linda Merrill June 29, 2007 at 9:00 pm

    I like the new banner as well and wondered once you had new cards if you’d change your banner to coordinate. While I try not to be matchy matchy in my interiors, I do like coordinated marketing materials! But changing color schemes and patterns keeps things fresh! Good job!

  • Reply becky June 29, 2007 at 10:28 pm

    Love it – my favorite one of yours yet!


  • Reply Dacia June 29, 2007 at 11:26 pm

    those cards are gorgeous!

  • Reply JHAYNE June 29, 2007 at 11:52 pm

    i found the article i mentioned earlier, right here if you’re interested.

  • Reply yasmine June 29, 2007 at 11:55 pm

    urban outfitters changes the look of their logo/branding every once in a while, yet you’d know it was still urban outfitters.

    besides, static branding can be pretty boring. for creatives, i think it’s important to come up with new looks yet still retain whatever makes them who they are.



  • Reply yasmine June 29, 2007 at 11:56 pm


    i think your business cards are adorable!!!

  • Reply decor8 June 30, 2007 at 12:21 am

    Who would have thought that mentioning a topic like branding as it relates to blogs would reel in a slew of comments. I sometimes feel like I need an entire blog devoting to the “business of blogging” or something along the lines of web 2.0 and what’s going on in terms of these giant communities we all know and love, called blogs. It’s a fascinating topic, but what’s even more fascinating is that I’m not the only one in the room that finds this stuff interesting to talk about. I have such a strong business background, and also a very creative side, and sometimes I have to hold my own hand over my mouth to NOT talk about some of these things on my “design” blog. But every now and then, I have to just throw out what I’m thinking, and you know what? You guys GET IT and add insightful comments that give me such a great feeling of community and togetherness that I sometimes want to sit in a room with all of you and discuss everything that we sometimes cannot discuss with those closest to us in our immediate circles.

    My husband “gets” all of this, but some of my family members are pretty successful and have no clue what a blog is and never care to find out. Others are so involved in their non-web worlds that when I start going off on web-related topics, they glaze over and get this deer-in-the-headlights look on their faces — And I realize I’m only wasting both of our time so I quickly start talking about their jobs or topics we can both relate to.

    So, keep the comments coming – I’m reading them all, and appreciating every single one of them.


  • Reply Sion June 30, 2007 at 6:48 am

    Hi Holly, I love the new banner. I smacked my self on the head when I realized they matched your business cards (lightbulb goes on … now!).

    As for branding, I think you’ve successfully moved beyond having your brand exclusively tied to a look; Decor8 is not the blog that looks like X, Y or Z but the blog that every day I can count on to find fresh, quality content that INSPIRES. You could probably paint the blog purple with yellow stripes (not that I’m saying you should) and it wouldn’t matter, because the content, the imagery and YOU will still be there.

    Decor8 is also uniquely positioned because it is a design and decorating blog, which gives you the freedom to reinvent your look from time to time — a freedom that other companies/businesses simply don’t have. Most have to take baby steps for fear of alienating their customers, but you are so closely attuned to your readers that you can take them along for the ride — why? Because they trust you and even more so, they support you (just look at all these wonderful comments!).

    There’s a great song: “We are family!” that I think does an excellent job of communicating the warm feelings I (and your readers) have for your blog.

  • Reply vineeta July 1, 2007 at 6:00 am

    the changing banners absolutely work, aslong as its coming from ‘decor8’, i would log on to it religiously & be delighted to see a new header :) and talking of community- when i 1st discovered yr blog- i felt- wow! there are so, so many women like me. there is this sense of belonging- which is unbeatable.

  • Reply Nicky July 1, 2007 at 9:15 am

    Dear Holly,
    Totally love the new look (those cute business cards!) and the fact, that it will change with the seasons! Now I can’t wait for the next season to arrive ;)

  • Reply danielle July 1, 2007 at 4:40 pm

    I love your new business cards & matching header Holly! They fit perfectly with decor8’s content, tone of voice and your warm personality. So great branding!

  • Reply Anonymous July 1, 2007 at 9:10 pm

    Absostinkinlutely adorable!!!

  • Reply simply olive July 2, 2007 at 3:31 pm

    love the new banner.

    and cheers to you for doing what you want and rebelling against the corporate mindset! it is very freeing to be in control of your own creativity–as i’m recently finding out starting my own blog and upcoming website.

  • Reply dai July 2, 2007 at 4:38 pm

    Hey I really like this new header…more than the Spring one!:)

  • Reply a.k. July 2, 2007 at 9:44 pm

    i LOVE it! the business cards are amazing looking too.

  • Reply Rachel July 3, 2007 at 1:01 pm

    For those of you interested in continuing this discussion about branding blogs, I’ve posted an article about this as it relates to color over on my blog. I’d love to hear your additional thoughts on the topic.

  • Reply true nature July 3, 2007 at 2:40 pm

    i love the new designs holly! :) very pretty work tara…

  • Reply Jess July 3, 2007 at 7:44 pm

    This is a fascinating discussion! Holly, I’m embarrassed to admit that I never noticed that the actual “decor8” wordmark and tagline have always stayed the same typeface through all the header changes. I don’t think it was large enough before to catch my eye especially. I’m liking this larger size.

    I think if you keep it consistently sized and positioned in the same place, and change the rest of the header whenever you want, you’ll end up with the best of both worlds: the fun variety of seasonal changes, and the instant recognition people will have when they see the “decor8” wordmark. That’s my totally unsolicited 2 cents. :) I like everything you do, though, and you have some talented people working with you, so carry on and do whatever makes you happy! Love it.

  • Reply James March 6, 2008 at 5:50 am

    I love it…The business cards are amazing….!

  • Reply Jen April 3, 2008 at 3:16 pm

    I love how you switch out the header from season to season. It always feels like you and gives a nod to the fact that time is not stationery. We are all always changing, moving forward, learning more, and reacting to the world around us…

    Regardless of all that, whether you change your top from season to season or not, the body of your business is consistently the same, good solid inspiration!!!

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