Monday, 20 October 2008

New Bear

As you will see Tory Bear has undergone an overnight makeover. TB is very grateful for the services of

Mike Rouse
who has done a fantastic job.

For those of you who might be interested Mike explains some of the technical aspects to the redesign:

"One of the many freelance things I’ve been busy on recently is a new template for Tory Bear. I had the great honour of going to the Bear’s party at conference after being commissioned and it was a great insight into the potential future that lies ahead for this blog. The bear understands branding - hence the heavy use of the blue teddy bear graphic through the blog.

The colour scheme we agreed on was, naturally, blue with white, and few shades of grey. This keeps the blog looking simple and spacious, yet the blue is the dominant colour. It’s designed for resolutions 1024×768 and higher running on Firefox 3, Internet Explorer 7 and/or Google Chrome/Safari. I’ve tried to accomodate Internet Explorer 6 users as much as I can, but ultimately you guys are going to have to

upgrade your browser
sooner or later.

This job also required me to work with Google AdSense and ensure good placements for adverts. There’s a 768 Leaderboard at the top of the blog and a 300 x 250 Rectangle underneath the video player, which itself is a YouTube video embedded in a DIV that’s got a background image of an old TV-video combi with some minor modifications. The downside, however, is that the YouTube video has to be resized in the HTML, but this is made easy with’s “Page Elements” editor. My customer doesn’t have to touch the raw HTML at any point.

There are two sidebars underneath ToryBearTV and the advert. One is big enough to accomodate a standard Skyscraper banner and is better suited to things like archives and small videos as well as a few widgets. The other can contain some small adverts and is suited to links and buttons.

The main post area uses some bold text for headlines and is plenty big enough for images and videos to be included in posts. Comments pop up in a new window, so no real work has been needed there.

In all, I am pleased with the outcome thus far, but warn that the job is not yet 100% finished. When is a website ever finished?! I’m hoping to spend some time over coming weeks tweaking the sidebars and other elements, but need to see what feedback comes in first.

I hope you enjoy reading the blog and like the new design. Your comments are very welcome."

TB is well chuffed with the new design and hope you all like it...


Donal Blaney

Great work by a great web designer.


looks great!

Alex Agius

New Bear.
New Danger.

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