blog buttons: a tutorial

I've gotten several requests lately on how to make a blog button. Because I think it's something every blogger should know and because I love ya, here's a tutorial on how to make your own blog button with a grab box. It's really very easy - honestly, the hardest part for me is coming up with the design ;)

To design my button, I used Picnik, but you can use any software that lets you resize and add text.

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Upload your photo to Picnik. Make sure it's something very simple that lets you read the text easily. You could always use just a plain solid color background as well.

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Once your photo is finished uploading, select the crop button.

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Select the square crop. You could leave it rectangular (or whatever shape you photo is in), but I think having a square button just looks cleaner. Go ahead and drag the cropping box to as large as it'll let you.

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When you're finished cropping, go to the "create" tab...

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...then click on the text button.

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Now is when you add your text. If it's a button for your blog, it would make sense to write the name of your blog :) I just wrote "I love pumpkin bread", since this is just a sample button.

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You can play with the fonts - there are plenty of options. Just make sure you don't put too much text on the button, since we're going to be resizing it to a much smaller size.

After this step, I like to round the edges of my buttons (which you can do under the frames tab), but you don't have to.

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When you're all done fixing your button to your liking, hit the "save & share" tab. Under dimensions, we're going to resize the button. I chose 160px, as it fits in my sidebar quite nicely, but feel free to use a bigger size. I wouldn't recommend going above 200px, though.

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After resizing, go ahead and hit the "save photo" button and select your desired destination for the button.

Now for all the HTML junk... ;)

Upload your button to an image hosting site such as Imgur, Photobucket, or Flickr.

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Whatever you use, make sure you copy the direct link - if you don't, your button won't work.

<center><a href="PasteBlogURLHere"><img src="PasteDirectLinkForPhotoHere" /></a><textarea>&lt;a href="PasteBlogURLHere"&gt;&lt;img src="PasteDirectLinkForPhotoHere" /&gt;&lt;/a&gt;</textarea></center>

Paste in the direct link and your blog URL (which you must copy directly from the address bar -- if you type it in, it won't work) in the spaces I specified.

Go to Blogger > design > page elements and select "add a gadget". Select the HTML/JavaScript gadget, paste in your code.

(Don't be like me and make your font way too small...hehe. Oh well, it's just a sample button.)

Congratulations! You've just successfully made your very own blog button - that wasn't so bad, was it? :) If you have any questions, don't hesitate to ask, whether via the comments or email