Create a Mood Board To Help You Design Your Blog - dummies

Create a Mood Board To Help You Design Your Blog

By Melissa Culbertson

A mood board conveys a design idea by mixing textures, words, images, colors, and more. You may think that making mood boards sounds like a waste of time — but don’t underestimate them without giving it a shot. As a blogger, mood boards kick-start the creative process for designing your blog.

Back in your school days, do you remember grabbing a giant white poster board and pasting it full of cutouts from magazines and newspapers? That collage you made was essentially a mood board.

Techniques for creating a collage of ideas have evolved, but the purpose of creating a mood board remains the same: From fashion design to interior design to corporate design creation, people use mood boards as a way to explore creative inspiration and spark creative ideas.

You don’t have to know exactly what your blog design vision is at this point. That’s what your mood board is for! Use it as a tool to explore and play with your ideas. Your board doesn’t have to be logical nor does everything you add have to tie together. If something makes an impression on you, include it!

Regardless of who ends up actually developing the design, mood boards save time in the long run because through this exploration process, you can take those fuzzy ideas and begin creating a clearer vision of what you want to your blog design to be.

Using the words that describe your voice and the tone of your blog makes a good starting point for creating a design mood board. Start looking for images that represent those words.

Even if it takes you a while to create a mood board, consider it time well spent because you gain a better a sense of the look and feel you want to achieve in your blog design. And if you’re turning over your design to a designer, a mood board can give the designer a better idea of the blog you envision.

Compiling ideas by hand

Creating a mood board by hand might be a little old-fashioned, but you’ll find that doing something tactile can really spark ideas for your blog design. Plus, you can add certain elements to a mood board that you can’t do with digital versions (unless you have certain tools like a scanner or pen tablet).

Start with a large surface on which to place your ideas (say, poster board, corkboard, or even some wall space), some pens and colored markers, paper, scissors, and tacks or glue. Find a space in your home where you can spread out and get to work.

Here are a few things you can add to a mood board created by hand:

  • Pictures: Images from magazines or newspapers, personal photographs, printed screenshots

  • Words: Words, samples of fonts, phrases, or quotes

  • Color: Paint swatches, paper, paint, markers

  • Ephemera: Trinkets, memorabilia, or other things that relate to your blog topic (like your first opera ticket that turned you into an opera fanatic)

  • Doodles: Your own drawings or drawings from others


Brainstorming on Pinterest

Pinterest, one of the world’s most popular social media platform, works like an online pin board. You create boards around a specific topic and then add pins from your own image library or other things you want to bookmark from around the web. Pinterest is all about visual appeal.

As a tool for creating mood boards, Pinterest gives you an easy way to showcase your ideas and things that inspire you. You can see how a mood board can translate into design. Laura Mayes from Blog con Queso shared her Pinterest board with her designer, who then created an eye-catching design to reflect her love of color.

[Credit: © Laura Mayes, Blog con Queso]
Credit: © Laura Mayes, Blog con Queso

Pinterest has some advantages that make creating a mood board extra easy:

  • Secret Boards: If you don’t want your mood board to be seen by everyone, use Secret Boards, which stay private until you delete them or make them public. Visit your profile and scroll to the bottom of the page to click Create a Secret Board. You can also go on a pinning spree without overloading your followers’ feeds with 20 pictures of fonts you like.

  • Multiple boards: If you aren’t sure of the design style you want for your blog, make multiple boards, each with its own unique look and feel. You can play around with different styles without lumping them into one board.

  • Contributor boards: With Pinterest, you can invite other pinners to pin to your board. This comes in handy if your blog has multiple contributors who may want to contribute ideas to the blog design. You can even ask your pinning-obsessed friends to contribute to your board if they come across anything that really fits your style or personality.

When searching for ideas on Pinterest itself, don’t be surprised if your search query comes up short with results. Pinterest’s search function isn’t very helpful most of the time because it partly relies on pinners providing a helpful pin description.

Search engines can’t interpret images, so they rely on text. Try Google instead but add Pinterest to the end of your search query. You often get results for Pinterest boards or pins that you might not otherwise find through Pinterest.