Archive for the ‘Accessories’ Category

What to Wear to a Luau – 5 Hawaii Vacation Outfits

Going to a Luau? Whether you’re hosting or attending, the Luau-style party is all about enjoying friends, food, and tropical fashion. Showing up in your everyday garb represents a missed opportunity to experience the island vibe—even if you’re away from the beach. Luau fashion echoes the natural surroundings of the island lifestyle: palm trees, tropical fruit, Hawaiian flowers, and bright, breathable pieces. So if you’re looking for ideas on what to wear to a luau, here are a few outfits you’re going to love and hopefully get some inspiration from.

Outfit #1: Palm Tree Elegance

Reminiscent of the traditional grass skirt outfit, this look pairs a long green maxi with a complementary coral lace crop top. Gold detailing in the woven sandals and palm tree clutch help create a unified metallic theme, while the multicolored charm bracelet unites similar tones and adds a simple touch of shimmer.

What to wear to a Luau - Outfit with green pleated skirt and a lace top.

Top | Bracelet | Perfume | Clutch | Skirt | Shoes

Outfit #2: Tropical Glam

Perfect for a day-to-night event, this simple Hawaiian print tube dress fits comfortably and flatters any figure. Add matching peach jewelry and nail polish that highlights the tones of the dress, and you’re accessorized! Pair with nude espadrille wedges, aviators, and a neutral shoulder bag.

Beach Dinner Outfit - Navy floral dress with fun accessories.

Dress | Sunglasses | Lip Balm | Bracelet | Clutch | Earrings | Sun Spray | Shoes | Nail Polish

Outfit #3: Luau Beach Party

If you’re on the beach or poolside, you’ll want an outfit that transitions easily from swim-ready to party appropriate. This look brings together a color palm print swimsuit with the perfect swim coverup. Dangling earrings, a pineapple phone case, and yellow slide sandals help embody the casual elegance of island style.

What to wear to a Luau

Swimsuit | Coverup | Earrings | Phone Case | Shoes | Nail Polish

Outfit #4: Hawaiian Festival

This casual looks is perfect for a low-key day in the sun or festival atmosphere. The vintage-style Hawaii tee and palm-leaf shoulder bag echoes the island theme in perfect harmony, while multicolored huarache sandals add practicality. High waisted jean shorts and a multicolored flower crown make this look instantly modern and on-trend. Last but not least, the gold dipped pink studs add a touch of polish.

Luau outfit idea - cropped denim shorts and floral accessories.

Top | Earrings | Flower Crown | Clutch | Shorts | Shoes

Outfit #5: Polished Pineapple

Fun and functional, this fruit-inspired look combines the trend-conscious pink skater dress with the yellow print of this unique pineapple clutch. To build on the colors featured in the clutch, we’ve added yellow sunnies and an elegant green necklace. Strappy sandals and pineapple perfume make this outfit instantly adorable and right on theme.

Pastel dress perfect for a beach vacation

Dress | Necklace | Perfume | Sunglasses | Clutch | Shoes

Which Hawaiian resort has the best Luau you’ve been to?

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Fashion News – Our Favorite Outfit Posts from Around the Web

Fashion News, August 2015 – This month’s fashion news roundup takes on tricky August outfit planning, fashion app technology, and one bizarre burst of viral tweets that set off a national debate about the right way to wear earrings. Sounds juicy, right? If you’ve been snoozing lately, here’s all you need to know about the stylish news you missed in one quick and easy rundown.

 #1: Lauren Conrad’s New Tuesday Ten: August Style Tips (Lauren Conrad Blog)

Lauren Conrad Style tips 2015

Lauren Conrad discusses some of the latest trends for staying fresh and fashionable this August. Her delightful top ten list features bold swimwear, palm prints, and a number of super-easy wardrobe hacks to put a little added pep in your (overheated) step. She’s got a great eye for simple, everyday fashion that anyone can adapt to meet their own tastes.

#2: How to Wear Trends Like a Fashion Editor (WhoWhatWear)


Sure, we don’t all have the budget of a top NYC fashion editor, but that doesn’t mean we can’t look like we do. Nicole Kliest from WhoWhatWear draws inspiration from a number of street style experts to isolate trendy items that can be purchased (and effectively rocked) by any aspiring fashionista.

#3: Teen’s Tweet Teaches Thousands of Confused Jewelry Lovers How to Wear Earrings (People Magazine)

Screen Shot 2015-08-06 at 6.16.17 PM

On a decidedly more bizarre note, a tweet from 19-year-old Chelsea Smith went viral this week after Smith claims to have discovered an earring-related life hack. Days after posting, Smith’s original tweet received over 44,000 retweets, filled with equal parts indignation, awe, and admiration. The story of her tweet has reached a number of high profile publications and even a few national news stations (Today Show on Chelsea Smith’s Earring Tweet).

#4: How to Mix Your Summer and Fall Pieces (Refinery29)


Transitional seasons present all kinds of outfit planning difficulties. While fall may still feel far away, August is the perfect time to start planning those tricky transitional fall looks. NYC fashion blogger Charlotte Groeneveld shows us a number of easy and affordable ways to make your summer wardrobe stretch, kicking off some awesome looks for fall.

#5: How Online Retailers Predict Your Perfect Outfit (Wall Street Journal)


Have you ever wondered about the interior life of outfit planning apps? Mixing practical sizing questions with more creative inquiries like: “Who is your favorite female role model?” or “Do you like this photographed outfit?” fashion apps have developed complex algorithms to deliver the perfect clothes to your doorstep. Wardrobe delivery services like MM.Lafleur’s Bento Box ask users to complete a brief survey, then ship 4-6 curated items free of charge. You get to try everything on at home and only pay for what you keep. What magical sorcery is this?

#6: The Late Summer/Early Fall Trend You’re Going to Want to Try (Glamour)


This summer has marked a sweet spot in the recent history of new and exciting fashion trends. From the retro 70s resurfacing to new boho-chic urban trends, we couldn’t be more thrilled to see some of these carry over into fall. So, what’s the hottest new trend on the block? Check out this fabulous piece from Glamour to find out.

#7: Fashion Bloggers Reveal Secrets to Mobile Deal Hunting (ABC News)

Screen Shot 2015-08-06 at 6.06.51 PM

Why is it that mobile users frequently tend to browse but not buy on their devices? A recent study shows that most mobile shoppers will actually go out of their way to switch to a desktop before purchasing, which may cause them to miss out on hidden deals. Top fashion blogging experts dish on the best way to browse and buy safely on your mobile device. The results may surprise you!

#8: Celeb Tricks for Upgrading Your T-Shirt’s Style Profile (InStyle)


There’s nothing like throwing on an old favorite T-shirt, except maybe finding a way to make that T-shirt look fashion-forward. Don’t worry, this isn’t a dream: a recent piece from InStyle reveals a number of smart ways to class up your typical tee, as demonstrated by a number of sartorially-minded celebs. Goodbye drab weekend wear, hello fast fabulous!

#9: How to Wear Short Suits that Look Pretty, Polished, and Professional (Huffington Post)


Between the scorching temperatures outside and the typically frigid summer office buildings, outfit planning can get a little complicated. The Huffington Post brings us a number of timely looks that transform the typical pair of shorts into a chic and professional item in the ultimate August wardrobe. Complete with removable layers for easy wear, HuffPo covers the brunch outfit, date night look, and work shorts.

#10: 8 Chic Outfits to Try with What Remains of the Summer (Marie Claire)


No matter how old you are, the end of summer never ceases to bring a certain dose of heartbreak. Part of that pain is saying goodbye to summer styles and the warm weather that precludes them. Not to worry! If you’re having end-of-summer anxiety, check out Marie Claire’s latest guide to all the best seasonal outfits to rock before the summer ends.


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New Theme: Independent Publisher

On this Theme Thursday, we’re happy to announce the latest addition to our collection of free themes.

Independent Publisher

Independent Publisher Screenshot

Independent Publisher is a clean and elegant theme by Raam Dev, with a clean and responsive layout ideal for personal bloggers and writers alike. Featuring clean and readable posts, the theme can be enhanced with Featured Images.

Your personal Gravatar can be used as your site logo, which gives your site a personal touch, and icons to your social accounts are displayed prominently. Independent Publisher also adapts to your device, providing a seamless experience at any screen size.


Get to know Independent Publisher in the Theme Showcase, or give it a spin by activating it from your dashboard.

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Heather Matarazzo’s Personal Stories from Inside and Outside Hollywood


Actor Heather Matarazzo has only published a few posts on her new blog, but each one has stirred up an incredible response from inside and outside the community.

Her first essay in February, “What the F— Is F—able,” took direct aim at what it’s like to be a woman in Hollywood — an industry she’s worked in since childhood, and as a teen starring in 1995’s Welcome to the Dollhouse, which earned her critical acclaim. In her essay, Matarazzo reveals an industry ruled by sexism, and she talks about what it was like to be a teenager working in it while growing into her own self-confidence:

For me, I had to stop sitting shiva, remove the blanket from my mirror and look. I had to look at my gorgeous face, with my piercing blue eyes, my pouty lips, small chin, slightly crooked nose, full teeth and smile. I had to really look at myself and see my beauty, and once I could accept the harsh reality that I was indeed, not only f—able, but f—ing beautiful, everything started to change.

Following the community’s reaction to the post, Matarazzo confessed:

“Originally this piece was a lot angrier. I called people out, and it felt good, but then I realized that this is not the kind of person I desire to be. I’ve spent quite a bit of time recently being angry. Theres a lot to be angry about, but sometimes it can cause one’s soul to atrophy into a dark mass of negativity, and that’s not what I want for myself. It’s hard to stay positive in this business — hell, its hard staying positive as a human being, with the state of the world right now — but I see that even after writing this, I feel more more hopeful, and I hope it brings the same to you.”

Matarazzo’s latest piece is a very personal childhood story about her quest to discover who her biological parents were, and how her mother reacted:

Back at home, my mother is leaning against the counter, arms crossed, staring at me. The ice out has begun. I stare back at her, my eyes inadvertently causing her head to look shrunken. I’m waiting for her to say something, anything, but she just continues to stare. Her eyes begin to well with tears as her head shakes in disappointment. When she finally does speak, she asks what she’s done wrong that would make me do something like that. She proceeds to tell me that I have everything, and keeps asking, “What did I do? Tell me.”

She also begins with an admission that will resonate with many writers and bloggers: the desire to be so personal in expressing herself, and the fear of doing so in public: “I have been hesitant to write anything about my life that is deeply personal, because that requires an incredible willingness on behalf of the writer to be vulnerable and honest.”

I spoke with Matarazzo via email about what led her to decide to start sharing these stories. “There wasn’t a specific moment where I decided to start a blog. I had been toying with the idea for awhile, and had no idea how to do it, or where to begin. I talked to a friend of mine (Lexi Alexander) who told me to just go for it. I also have to credit her for giving me the title and suggestion to write ‘What the F— is F—able?’

“I have been writing since I was a child. I make it a point to write every day. It’s not always personal, sometimes it’s a script or a play.”

As for the response to her stories, “I was overwhelmed.”

“In any kind of storytelling, whether it’s film, blog, or fictional narrative, what speaks most to me as an artist and human being is the relatedness of feelings,” she said. “For example, I’ve never been alone on a planet battling aliens, but I do relate with the characters feeling of aloneness, fear, etc. That’s what storytelling is all about. We are continually looking for ourselves in others (subconsciously or not), whether it’s on the screen, in a book or on a blog. And I firmly believe that we all have stories to tell along with experiences to share. That’s one of the ways that we create change. One story at a time.”

Follow her blog here.

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2015 Blogger Trends to Beat the Heat: Summer Skirts, Rompers, and Dresses

It’s easy to get in a fashion rut, especially when what you’re wearing works at beating the summer heat. Those cute high waisted denim shorts and go-to crop top that you’ve been rocking all summer are adorable—but if you’re wearing them every weekend, it might be time to spice things up. After all, being fabulous means keeping your wardrobe routine fresh and exciting.

Enter stage left: delicate skirts, dresses, and rompers in chiffon, lace and other materials. Their lightweight fabrics and loose-fitting shapes make them flattering on any frame while adding a dose of playful femininity. They’re also effortless, breezy, and polished, making them an excellent stand-in for your usual favorite summer outfit. Bloggers are taking this fabulous fashion statement to the streets, proving that these feminine-ethereal looks will never go out of style. Here are some brilliant ways to keep cool during the dog days while adding new looks to your summer wardrobe:

1. The Chiffon Pleated Skirt

Fashion Blogger Trends 2015

Brazilian blogger Carolina Burgo flourishes fashionable on Small Fashion Diary, which is a veritable feast of amazing style. This looks fuses gritty femininity with classic soft lines, making this a street style home run. Her graphic tee, head scarf, satin starter jacket, and hoop earrings add a playful dose of old-school urbanity while her delicately pleated chiffon skirt and pointy crochet flats add timeless girly textures. Her photos can nearly speak for themselves, but you can also check out the English translated version of her blog here.

2. The Lace Romper

Blogger Trends Fashion Summer 2015

Check out blogger Kim Le from Lace and Locks in this fabulous lace romper! As an elegant take on effortless summer chic, this look transitions seamlessly from day to night and pairs easily with a multitude of styling options. The nude lining makes the sheer white lace pop, while scalloped edging creates a perfectly balanced silhouette. A delicate ribbon belt and V-neckline flatter the torso with subtle feminine details.

3. The Boho Lace Shift Dress

Blogger trends this summer

This amazing lace dress on Fashion Vibe is the perfect mix of bohemian shapes and polished fabrics. The beige color palette pairs perfectly with any accessory scheme while effectively staying on-trend. The loose fit and scalloped hemline makes this piece effortlessly chic and comfortable, even in the hottest of days. Pairing neutral colors with a black shoulder bag, watch, and heart-shapes sunglasses, this street-ready look is the perfect outfit for any summer occasion.

 4. The Pastel Playsuit

Summer fashion trends

This pastel watercolor romper from One Small Blonde is simply stunning. Featuring a thin yoke neckline, cascading top and bottom, and gorgeous printed fabric, this piece is an instant summer classic. Increased shoulder exposure means you can bronze those arms and keep your cool through the worst heat waves. The loose, billowy fabric adds a level of comfort without losing its flattering shape. It transforms quickly from day to night, and the short-style bottoms prevent any fluttery mishaps in the wind. Brilliant!

5. The Side-Slit Maxi Skirt

Side slit maxi skirt

This excellent look from Just Another Fashion Blog proves that NYC fashionista Lisa Dengler is more than just another street style blogger. Her elegant and airy maxi skirt gets the modern treatment with high side slits, a fresh pair of loafers, a blazer, and vintage necklace. Add some tortoise shell sunnies and a white tee, and you’ve hit the good vibes motherload. Emblematic of the hustle and bustle of NYC life, this unique look is at once polished and practical.

6. The Two-Piece Skirt Set

Two piece skirt set

Greta Eagan from Fashion Me Green shows off some airy items from her new line. Inspired by “classic sensibilities an movement,” this two-piece skirt set draws inspiration from old school silhouettes and makes them new. While the high waisted a-line skirt has its roots in classic feminine styling, the loose boxy crop top makes the look instantly modern. Pair these shapes with luscious fabrics and you have the perfect look to beat the heat.

7. The Bright Maxi Dress

Bright blue summer maxi dress

Blue has been having an absolute heyday in fashion lately, and cobalt is among the most fashionable shades. This royal blue maxi dress from A Piece of Toast is equally suited for Sunday shopping or an outdoor wedding, making it an instant style favorite. The dress offers a little extra coverage and space while a delicate v-shaped neckline flatters your shoulders and torso. You can pair it with virtually anything and will wear this piece over and over again. In summer, there is truly nothing better than a reliable maxi dress.

8. The Printed Floral Romper

Printed floral romper

If you’re looking to really spice up your wardrobe routine, this printed playsuit featured on Sazan is a serious find. The bib-front neckline flatters your shoulders and adds to the vintage vibe of the overall look. Its bold floral print, high waist shaping, and muted pastels make this summertime staple a fun and adventurous fashion statement. Accessory selection is easy, as pretty much any shade is on the table. For an extra dose of relevance, pair with metallic mule slides and rounded frames.

Which one’s your favorite outfit? Hope these outfits gave you some interesting ideas to mix and match pieces in your wardrobe.

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New Theme: Blask

Today I’m happy to introduce Blask, a free portfolio theme designed by Mel Choyce.


Blask - minimal portfolio theme

Blask is a modern portfolio theme that uses a clean, minimal layout to showcase your work. The bold grid design keeps the spotlight on your projects, and scales to fit any screen size. Blask also lets you share your thoughts and engage in a conversation with your visitors through the beautiful blog page, which shares the same minimal look.

Blask - single post view

Blask – single post view

You can make Blask your own by adding a logo, customizing the menu, and adding links to your social networks.

Whether you’re an illustrator, designer, or photographer, Blask is the perfect outlet for your creativity.

Read more about Blask on the Theme Showcase, or activate it on your site from Appearance → Themes!

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Whimsical Worlds: Artists to Follow Now

From colorful journal pages to creatures made of salvaged materials, here’s a glimpse at the imaginative worlds of textile and multimedia artists on

The Pale Rook

We discovered Glasgow-based textile artist Johanna Flanagan after stumbling upon her post, “Artist’s Statement: Part Two,” and were immediately pulled into her curious world of dolls that are hand-drawn, sewn, and embroidered. We love her delicate, narrow-waisted figures in cross-legged positions, many of which are created with recycled fabrics and threads she’s collected over the years.

"Odette," The Pale Rook, Johanna Flanagan

“Odette,” The Pale Rook, Johanna Flanagan

The free Sketch theme and built-in portfolio feature showcase Johanna’s characters in a simple yet sophisticated grid, which is separate from her blog posts. (You can enable a portfolio on a number of free and premium themes.)

Anouk de Groot

The world of Anouk de Groot, a folk artist based in Edinburgh, Scotland, is full of fantastic creatures — ones you’d encounter in fairy tales or eerie dreams. Think mermaids on jaw bones. A sheep skull with gold and black illustrations. A textured painting of a folk tale bride.

"Horned Mermaid Jaw Bone," Anouk de Groot

“Horned Mermaid Jaw Bone,” Anouk de Groot

Anouk’s imaginative world spans multiple sites: in addition to her website, she houses her label of textile and paper art dolls (Pantovola: Cabinet of Childhoodand a blog “where wild things are drawn” (Baba Yaga Landboth on It’s important for artists to establish their brands online, so we like how the winged woman illustration on her website’s left sidebar transforms the premium Studio theme into her own, via Studio‘s custom logo feature.

Busy Mockingbird

Mica Angela Hendricks’ blog name says it all: she’s always busy working on art projects, from custom portraits to resin monster puppy dolls to her well-known series of collaborations with her young daughter. She often shares her own takes on characters in popular culture, too (check out her recent Mad Max illustrations).

"Collaborating with a 6-year old," Busy Mockingbird

“Collaborating with a 6-year old,” Busy Mockingbird, Mica Angela Hendricks

On her blog, Mica displays a custom background of select illustrations in circular frames. A custom background is a simple, immediate way to showcase your style (and it’s a free feature on many of our themes).

The Smallest Forest

“I feel compelled to articulate living and loving with my hands,” writes Nat at The Smallest Forest. The bookbinder and illustrator, who is currently exploring Venezuela with her husband, observes new places and cultures and translates them in vibrant ways, splashed across personal journal pages.

"Making Money in My Spare Time," The Smallest Forest (CC BY -NC 2.0)

“Making Money in My Spare Time,” The Smallest Forest (CC BY -NC 2.0)

Like Johanna at The Pale Rook, Nat uses the Sketch theme, but her front page displays her recent posts in a traditional blog format — so, you can see how this theme works in different ways. Nat also publishes photography of her wanderings, and Sketch‘s full-width template displays both her images and artwork beautifully.

Get inspired by more art in the Reader, and explore related tags like textile art or multimedia art.

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Blogger Style: Off The Shoulder Tops!

In the dog days of summer, there’s nothing quite as wonderful as putting on a light, breezy top—especially when enjoyed with an ice cold drink in hand. Top fashion bloggers across the globe are taking to the streets in the latest off the shoulder tops. These styles give you the freedom to bare your shoulders (no tan lines!) while maintaining a polished and put-together look. Stretchable necklines sit perfectly on the upper body and provide plenty of coverage along the chest and torso. Equally elegant, romantic, and practical, these drop shoulder looks are the perfect way to beat the heat.

1. Cutouts and Scalloped Edges: Lace Off the Shoulder Top

Blogger Style - Off the shoulder tops

Jennifer from Joie Girl knows a thing or two about dressing with with joie de vivre! This adorable off the shoulder top features trapeze style cutouts, billowing sleeves, and a scalloped hemline. Its light and airy shape makes this top perfect for keeping your cool in the hottest summer days. Jennifer pairs her top with neutral skinnies, an adorable woven shoulder bag, and tan espadrille wedges.

 2. Soulful Solids

Blogger Style - Off the shoulder tops

In ethereal white, vibrant fuchsia, and metallic details, Alina Dinh from Style by Alina shows us how to fuse color blocking with boho elegance. Her off the shoulder top mixes cropped shapes and long, fluted sleeves for the perfect dose of vintage styling. She pairs light tones with a pop of pink and a comfortable pair of silver ballet flats. As the perfect summertime outfit, this look pairs simple lightweight pieces with flattering shapes.

 3. Transitional Tones: Olive Off the Shoulder Top

Blogger Style - Outfit with an Olive Off the Shoulder Top

Kacie from Elements of Ellis demonstrates the best way to combine light and dark fabric tones in this fabulous multi-seasonal look. Perfect for Spring, Summer, or early Fall, Kacie’s olive drop shoulder top and black fringe purse are on-trend and versatile. She pairs them with white textured skinny jeans and gold sandals for an instant summer classic. Last but not least, her long elephant charm necklace and delicate gold jewelry add just the right details to this outfit. Bravo!

4. Denim Drop Shoulder Top

Black off the shoulder top

Denim shirts have been all the rage lately, but we have yet to see one quite as fabulous as this drop shoulder top featured on Atlantic-Pacific. Like a tempestuous summer romance, this top is hard to forget. Its elastic off the shoulder neckline, slouchy cut, and sleeve ties make it perfect for a casual day on the town or by the shore. Paired with a classic leather saddlebag, tortoise shell glasses, and sun hat, this look is perfect for soaking up the sun!

 5. Off the Shoulder Crop Top

Lace off the shoulder crop top

Courtney Quinn from Color Me Courtney combines the drop-shoulder trend with an old favorite: the crop top! This gorgeous lace top adds delicate femininity to the boldness of the studded shoes and yellow skirt. Courtney’s delicate gold jewelry and hyper structured shoulder bag stay on-trend, while her short-brimmed straw sun hat invokes an old school Annie Hall vibe.

 6. Vertical Stripes


Stripes and jewels and jean shorts, oh my! This look from Sugar Love Chic combines some of the best trends of summer with a few timely updates. Krista’s adorable off the shoulder top adds casual elegance to the traditional summer outfit, while her silver statement necklace effectively balances the low neckline. Add a high pony, delicate earrings, and jeweled slides, and you’re ready to take any summer event by storm.

 7. Boho: Fringe Lace and Crochet Details

Boho Outfit - Lace off the shoulder top with white flare pants

This delightfully retro look by Heather from Style by Fluent is so perfect, it’s hard to know where to start. First, the all-white color palette highlights the warm leather tones of her shoulder bag and the platforms peeking out from her flared bell bottoms. White is also an instant tan-enhancer (viola!) and therefore an ideal summer move. The crocheted texture of her drop shoulder top adds dimension and comfort in the heat of summer.

Do you wear off the shoulder tops? We hope these outfits gave you some ideas on how to mix and match these tops.

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Google Fonts: Free Typefaces for Your Site

We’re really happy to announce that we’ve added over 30 free Google Fonts to your Theme Customizer. Even better, you don’t need any upgrades to access them; these fonts are free for everyone.

Go to → Customize to see the new Fonts section in the sidebar. From there you can browse and preview typefaces like Gentium Book Basic, Libre Baskerville, Merriweather, and Ubuntu. When you select a font, you’ll immediately see your site in the preview with that font applied. For most font choices, you can also change the size and style of the text.

Click to view slideshow.

Have you always wanted your headers to be rendered in Fondamento italic? How about Cinzel bold? Now they’re just a few clicks away, for every site on

If you are still looking for that perfect typeface and Google Fonts aren’t for you, all the Typekit commercial fonts are still available for those sites with the Custom Design upgrade.

We can’t wait to see what you do with the new Google Fonts on your site! If you have suggestions for other typefaces that you’d like us to consider adding, please let us know in the forums or in the comments below!

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WordPressers Making a Splash

We read hundreds of blogs and websites every day, from up-and-coming voices and established pros alike. We love visiting those sites on, but it’s just as rewarding to see other platforms embrace the work of writers, journalists, and artists who regularly publish here, introducing it to new audiences.

Here’s a selection of bloggers who recently made a splash.

A mathematician at work

Terry Tao is a veteran blogger, publishing prolifically on his site since 2007. He also happens to be a Fields Medal recipient and one of the leading mathematicians working today. The New York Times Magazine just ran a fascinating profile of Tao and his work by Gareth Cook. Cook follows Tao around the UCLA campus as he explains his most important contributions to the field.

Even those who experience great success through their college years may turn out not to have what it takes. The ancient art of mathematics, Tao has discovered, does not reward speed so much as patience, cunning and, perhaps most surprising of all, the sort of gift for collaboration and improvisation that characterizes the best jazz musicians.

Tao has earned a reputation for being a gregarious, generous colleague — and the piece is studded with testimonies of his collaborative spirit (including a cameo appearance by Izabella Laba, a fellow mathematician and blogger).

Highbrow laughs

The Toast, a humor site with a literary, feminist bent (and a self-hosted WordPress site to boot) has been one of the web’s favorite destinations for satire and witty writing since its inception. And just in the past few weeks, two bloggers had pieces in the site’s lineup.

Author Lauren James, a young adult writer with a physics and chemistry background, recently wrote The Hogwarts Houses of the Periodic Elements: A Critical Analysis,” a post as full of unrepentant geeky fun as its title suggests. And last month, linguist, internet language specialist, and blogger Gretchen McCulloch published her most recent essay, “A Linguist Explains How We Write Sarcasm on the Internet” (essential reading for all bloggers, naturally).

Via Gretchen McCulloch's essay at The Toast, a proposed early-20th-century "irony mark."

Via Gretchen McCulloch’s essay at The Toast, a proposed early-20th-century “irony mark.”

You should visit Gretchen’s earlier contributions to The Toast, as well as her frequent articles at Mental Floss.

Beyond hot takes

Bloggers share writing in a variety of genres and tones on their sites, from short, impassioned reaction pieces to probing longreads. The same versatility is easy to discern in the pieces we highlight here.

Tressie McMillan Cottom, a sociologist and blogger renowned for her powerful prose, recently reviewed Ta-Nehisi Coates’ Between the World and Me, one of the season’s most talked-about titles, at the Atlantic.

My mother once told me that black progress meant fighting for your children to never know you. Coates knows his son’s body is vulnerable but he worries first here about his son forgetting.  He is afraid of losing his son to the “new black” of multiculturalism that absorbs blackness and spits out beige history, beige politics and beige faiths.

On Manliness and Joan Didion,” a thought-provoking blog post by writer and teacher Frank Strong, patiently explores the murky boundaries of gender in Didion’s writing voice, as well as in discussions of her work. Frank’s essay was picked up last month by The Millions, a prestigious online literary magazine.

Lastly, just this past weekend Rebecca Schuman, who blogs frequently at pan kisses kafka, scored a viral hit with her Slate column, “I Am Terrified of Taking My Child Literally Anywhere.” It’s a raucous, absorbing piece on parents, misbehaving kids, and the people who mistreat the latter — and especially on our dangerous tendency to react to these stories online with unnecessarily extreme rhetoric. It’s a great read for anyone who ever sat behind a crying baby on a flight (or for anyone who was ever the parent of such a baby).

Was your blog just featured in the media? Has a recent post generated a healthy dose of buzz? We’d love to know about it — share your story with us in a comment.

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