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Old 01-02-2008, 01:33 AM   #1
Mike
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Default Site built with RapidWeaver

After two years of having a holding page for my picture framing business I decided it was time to do something about it.

So I booted up my very old copy of DreamWeaver and started to think about how many columns and rows I wanted in my first table.

Now I've read enough here to know that tables are dreadfully out of fashion -- but did I really want to dig out a book about CSS and start from scratch learning stuff that I knew something about a long time ago? Interesting as that might have been it would have been a sure recipe to not have a web site up and running this side of next Christmas.

Anyway, to cut a long story short, a quick search in Google unearthed RapidWeaver and I got to work. This is what I managed to produce with two days' work. Most of the photographs already existed but everything else was authoured during Monday and Tuesday.

Seems to me that it's a great credit to RapidWeaver that I could go from zero to a reasonable site in two days. There are some frustrating limitations in RapiWeaver but there are generally work-arounds. I guess that's a result of its simplicity -- if you want a click-and-go website builder then you have to resign yourself to its boundaries.

It's a Mac-only application.

Anyway, I'd be interested in any comments on the website.

PS. I've just added a favicon which, in Safari on the Mac, seemed to work first time. I think it needs a redesign to make it clearer but at least it seems to work.

   
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Last edited by Mike; 01-02-2008 at 01:45 AM. Reason: new material
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Old 01-02-2008, 03:07 AM   #2
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Excellent. Especially the large black dogs in the drive. Couldn't live with the picture of the village street at an angle; I would be walking round with my head on one side. <g>

Small point. Why not put your name, address, email, and phone on the homepage where I can see it at once.

And the META Description ought to have the name of the company.

   
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Old 01-02-2008, 03:46 AM   #3
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Congratulations!! Overall I like it very much -- just about everything about it. I could make some knit-picking suggestions, but I'll skip them.

Are you expensive?? Perhaps, you should have a hint about pricing.

The "before and after" link came up blank. The light gray font on black was hard to see.

The homepage is very nice but small, and it takes a minute to think of going to the links. Maybe, you could bring a quicker focus to them.

I really like the portfolio page, the friends page, the overall color and layout.

The site makes you seem very professional and top quality.

George

(I tried your suggestion on using a document cleaning pad on an old print -- dang, it came out so beautiful, and an historic print company gave me a brand new beautiful mate to it, but it's not even as nice. So thanks for that.)
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Old 01-02-2008, 05:20 AM   #4
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Default Excellent work

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike View Post
After two years of having a holding page for my picture framing business I decided it was time to do something about it.

...

Anyway, I'd be interested in any comments on the website.

PS. I've just added a favicon which, in Safari on the Mac, seemed to work first time. I think it needs a redesign to make it clearer but at least it seems to work.
Excellent work. Both the XHTML and the CSS validate at W3C, which is all too rare these days.

As to content, I can't say much, either. You might say something about acid-free paper, though.

The next step is search engine optimization. Perhaps some of the sites you link to would return the favor.

Last edited by dthomsen8; 01-02-2008 at 05:23 AM. Reason: Addition
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Old 01-03-2008, 12:48 AM   #5
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Many thanks to all for the replies. I'll be fiddling with the site today so many of your suggestions should be incorporated by tomorrow.

<<Excellent work. Both the XHTML and the CSS validate at W3C, which is all too rare these days.>>

Well, that's no credit to me, it's entirely down to RapidWeaver. I did insert a couple of tables for the price lists, though.

<<As to content, I can't say much, either. You might say something about acid-free paper, though.>>

I'm planning on a whole section about quality in framing but a mention of acid-free in the main pages might not be a bad idea.

<<Are you expensive?? Perhaps, you should have a hint about pricing>>

Mmm, expensive is a relative term. Asking how much a frame costs is like asking how much a house costs -- it depends on lots of factors. If I gave the prices for the frames featured some people might think them expensive if they're looking for a cheap frame while others might think them very cheap. I'm still pondering that one.


<<The "before and after" link came up blank.>>

Oops! That's one of the irritating limitations of RapidWeaver. You can add a link to another page and RW will update it if the name of the target page is changed. But you can't put links in a sidebar unless they're written in html and RW won't update those. Yuk!

<<The site makes you seem very professional and top quality.>>

Well, I think that's largely down to my wife who helped write the copy and RapidWeaver that provided the templates. As I was in such of a rush I used one of RapidWeaver's standard templates. Once I've got some more of the site done I'll have a go at tweaking the template but that will mean getting to grips with the css and whatever else is going on under the hood.

   
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Old 01-03-2008, 12:53 AM   #6
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The "before and after" link came up blank.
Ignore my previous reply to this point -- looks as if I'd removed the link in the sidebar.

What platform and browser are you using?

   
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Old 01-03-2008, 03:27 AM   #7
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Quote:
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What platform and browser are you using?
Oh my! I wasn't thinking. I use Firefox on XP. But I set my font very high. So looking at it again, with adjustments, I found the font too small on the linked pages and in the link bar of the home page. But I have a high default due to my different notions about size. Still, you might review the size options a little more.

Quote:
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Mmm, expensive is a relative term...I'm still pondering that one.
Well, my impression was that you are expensive -- but there could be cultural factors involved -- I don't think so, but maybe. I think you still need a comfortable invite on how the viewer conceives your pricing. If it suits how you do things, I would say you might give indication of a flexible price range, but that can be swayed to what works best for you. Still, then you draw the buyer into thinking more about the factors involved with price, which can turn out to be an advantage for both of you.

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Old 01-03-2008, 05:55 AM   #8
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I’m impressed. I have RapidWeaver but haven’t looked at it closely in a while; maybe I should.

My only comments: I hate horizontal formats that make me scroll; if you weren’t a friend or someone offering me a tantalizing reward, I wouldn’t bother. Does RW have provision for creating liquid layouts that resize to suit a viewer’s browser?

And the grey-on-black text at the top is too small and the letters are too crowded (and my browser is set at the default 16 size). For the latter problem you could consider the CSS letter-spacing property (and then use 0.1em or something). But it could be a bit larger as well.

But overall, that is a fabulous looking page, especially done in just a day or two. Bravo.

   
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Old 01-03-2008, 06:40 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by George View Post
Oh my! I wasn't thinking. I use Firefox on XP. But I set my font very high. So looking at it again, with adjustments, I found the font too small on the linked pages and in the link bar of the home page. But I have a high default due to my different notions about size. Still, you might review the size options a little more.



Well, my impression was that you are expensive -- but there could be cultural factors involved -- I don't think so, but maybe. I think you still need a comfortable invite on how the viewer conceives your pricing. If it suits how you do things, I would say you might give indication of a flexible price range, but that can be swayed to what works best for you. Still, then you draw the buyer into thinking more about the factors involved with price, which can turn out to be an advantage for both of you.

George
The front page uses 18pt type for the text and I thought that was rather large so I made it smaller for the other pages on the assumption that once someone had clicked a link they'd made a committment to read on.

Interesting that you should think I'm expensive. I think I'm pretty cheap. A 10 x 8 inch watercolour or print framed with conservation-quality window mount and packing board and a stained wood frame (with a nice gold site edge) with standard glass would cost around £20–£25 (about US$50 or less).

That would include:

::the use of conservation quality materials throughout,

::an encapsulated package (see my website in a week or two to find out what that means)

::a moisture-proof backing board sealed with tape (which is the way we normally finish picture backs in the UK – unlike the US where they text to use paper to cover the back)

::hanging cord attached with D-rings to the frame.

Is that expensive?

   
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Old 01-03-2008, 06:43 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ktinkel View Post
I’m impressed. I have RapidWeaver but haven’t looked at it closely in a while; maybe I should.

My only comments: I hate horizontal formats that make me scroll; if you weren’t a friend or someone offering me a tantalizing reward, I wouldn’t bother. Does RW have provision for creating liquid layouts that resize to suit a viewer’s browser?
I set the page width to 900 pixels on the assumption that everybody had screen at lest that wide these days. Are you using a smaller window that that?

Anyway, I'll set it to be flexible later this evening and ask you to look again.

   
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