For a while now, I’ve been increasingly conscious that the design of Law Actually has become a bit long in the tooth. I’ve occasionally tinkered with the look and feel of my blog over the last few years, but there’s been no escaping the fact it was based on a (now pretty primitive) blogger design from six or seven years ago. The last major refresh I’d made to the design was in 2012. Yikes.
I made a few minor changes earlier this year when I suddenly remembered I used to do (and quite enjoy) something called blogging. Don’t look at me like that: apparently, blogging simply isn’t such a big thing any more. Despite, the need for a visual change, I rather sadly recognised that it was well beyond my web design skills to produce something half-decent myself. Although blogger templates are available from third parties, they tend to be infested with problems – including advert placements and other awkward elements which are difficult to remove or modify. After a few very disappointing attempts to find a free blogger template from elsewhere, I gave up.
Given that Google hadn’t released a new blogger template since 2011, I figured something new might be coming before long. Despite a bit of digging on the blogger blog – that’s almost mind-bendingly recursive, isn’t it – I didn’t find any indication of when this might be.
I was truly delighted, therefore, when, earlier today, I visited blogger to check out my recent visitor stats and saw that Google had made a range of stunning new themes available.
The new theme categories – called Contempo, Soho, Emporio and Notable – are all stunning, modern and functional. I’ve tried a bunch on Law Actually and I had a really tough time deciding which to pick. That really speaks to the quality of options to choose from – all for what is, let’s not forget, a service that Google makes available for free. I’m no Google fanboi – heck, I use Bing in some sort or perverse act of contrarianism (or is it self-harm?) – but there’s no denying they do some good stuff from time to time.
In the end, I went with a slightly modified version of the white Soho design. The acid test was my wife’s reaction when I first showed her the new theme: “wow, that a looks a bit more modern”, she said.
Enough said, I think.