Do I Have to Know CSS to Create a Blog?
Do I Have to Know CSS to Create a Blog?

Ugh, another article about CSS.

I know, I know. But the experts say to write what you know and I, well, know CSS!

Ever since I learned how to code with CSS, I’ve never looked back. When it comes to web design my mind automatically goes, “Blog Layout HTML CSS”. I get excited about taking control of my designs and making them look totally unique!

But the question remains: Do you really need to know CSS in order to create a blog?

Let’s figure that out together!

Do You Really Need to Know CSS?


There, I said it. Even though I write tons of articles about CSS and the benefits of using it for your blog, the truth is: you don’t NEED it.

But knowing how to use it comes in handy!

Now, before you bounce off my site and go about your day, take a moment to learn more about how CSS can improve your blog as well as how you can create a nifty blog without touching a lick of code.

Still here? Great! Let’s go!

How CSS Can Improve Your Blog

Personalization and Uniqueness

I’d say that free WordPress themes are a dime a dozen but, to be honest, many of them are free!

That’s fantastic for the cash-strapped blogger but that means that every other cash-strapped blogger is using free themes. Suddenly, your site isn’t that unique anymore.

Sad face.

Instead, by learning how to use CSS, you can take any theme and personalize it to make your site unique. That’s right! You don’t have to build a site from scratch to enjoy the many wonderful benefits of CSS.

Brand Recognition

Using CSS to build your blog gives you the opportunity to create a layout and color scheme that is easily recognizable. You can then use these schemes in your social media graphics such as Pinterest pins and Facebook posts!

Brand recognition is super huge right now, especially where many people are scrolling through visual forms of social media such as, again, Pinterest and Facebook. When something becomes recognizable, it more easily catches the attention of the person browsing.

By knowing how to use CSS code to personalize your site, you can make some very simple changes that will impact the connection between your site’s look and your brand.

Complete and Total Control

When you apply CSS changes to the look of your site, these changes are applied to THE ENTIRE SITE!

This means that, once you make a change in your CSS stylesheet (the file that holds your CSS code), you don’t have to go page to page making changes.

CSS also gives you complete and total control over your site from the color of the fonts to the shadows around images and even where things are placed in your layout.

How to Learn CSS For Beginners

1. Where Does CSS Go?

Typically, you’ll find the CSS code of your site in a file called “stylesheet.css”.

But for the sake of simplicity, we are going to use WordPress’s Customizer (Dashboard->Appearance->Customizer) to make changes to CSS. This way, if you mess it up, you don’t trash your entire site!

When you access the Customizer, look for a section that says “Additional CSS”. Here you can add and change code without overwriting the stylesheet.css file of your site.

2. CSS Selectors

In order to style elements of your site, you have to “select” them through CSS by using – you guessed it – selectors.

Let’s start by first looking at the “element”. This is the HTML tag floating around on your site that says, “Hey, there’s something here,” whether it be a paragraph, header, link, image, etc.

We use these tags in CSS to say, “Hey, make that thing look like this.”

For example, a large header on your site is likely surrounded by these HTML tags: <h1></h1>

When we refer to these in CSS, we simply use: h1

h1 {font-size: 48px;}

That’s it. That’s a selector! It allows you to make changes to HTML tags across your site.

3. Fonts and Colors

Without going into the nitty-gritty about exactly what CSS can do (because I already have, like, a thousand other articles about this), let’s just take a peek at how you can use CSS to change fonts and colors on your site.

First of all, you need to know what selector to use:

  • Paragraph: p
  • Header: h1, h2, h3, h4, h5, h6
  • Link: a

From there, you can make changes to these elements by placing the following inside the curly brackets:

  • font-color: color name/hex code
  • font-size: px/pts
  • font-family: ‘Font Family Name in Quotations’

Here’s an example of changing the look of a large header:

h1 {font-color: red; font-size: 50pt; font-family: ‘Arial’}

Each thing you’re changing inside the curly brackets is separated with a ;. Also, in order to override the CSS in the stylesheet.css file, you may have to add !important in front of the semi-colon.

h1 {font-color: #000000!important;}

Not so scary, eh? If you’re interested in learning more, here are some articles I highly recommend you check out:

Building a Blog Without Knowing CSS

If I don’t have you convinced, it’s okay! You can definitely build a blog without knowing a lick of CSS coding. Here’s how to do it:

1. Get Familiar With WordPress

If you’re going to use an out-of-the-box theme, it’s best to know your way around WordPress in order to make the limited customizations you can to increase the uniqueness of your site.

First of all, introduce yourself to the Customizer. This handy tool that comes with WordPress allows you to do some easy customizations to your site such as adding a logo and changing your link colors.

Plus, you can see the changes in real-time in the preview window.

There’s a nifty little plugin called Kirki you can install as well to extend the power of WordPress’s Customizer tool.

2. Choose a Theme

There are many, many, many free themes out there to choose from, as I mentioned before. When choosing a theme for your site, try to pick something unique but also something that represents your niche.

You can check out these free feminine WordPress themes or check out sites such as ThemeForest for ideas.

Just make sure the theme you choose is mobile responsive – more and more readers are accessing blogs from their phones!

3. Readability and Good Content

No matter which route you go – CSS or no CSS – it’s important to make sure your site is user-friendly. Many visitors will bounce if the content is hard to read or the site hard to navigate.

You also want to make sure you’re writing some good content. All in all, unless your layout is an absolute mess, readers are more interested in reading what you have to say and learning from your site.

Yay! CSS!

I’ll never stop loving CSS and I’ll never stop trying to convince you how awesome and easy it is to use!

Hopefully, this article has given you a better idea of how CSS can benefit your blog.

Do you use CSS code on your blog? How does it work for you? Let us know in the comments below!

Coding, design, and writing are my happy places. I can lose all track of time when I’m working on my blogs.

I hope here at MNC you will find the answers to your questions and some inspiration to make your blog or site really totally cool!

Learn More.

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