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Carrie Cousins

Carrie Cousins

Carrie is the chief writer at Design Shack, with years of experience in web and graphic design. Sports fanatic. Information junkie. Designer. True-believer in karma.

What Is a Pitch Deck? (And How to Make One)

PowerPoint Templates / 17 Sep 2021

What Is a Pitch Deck? (And How to Make One)

It’s a tool that every startup business or entrepreneur needs – a great pitch deck. A pitch deck is a presentation that you’ll use to help explain or showcase your product or service and potentially drives sales or investment. It needs to be polished and professional to do the job well.

Today, we’ll take a look at what a pitch deck is, how to make one, and how to establish a design that will wow people who come in contact with your new business.

We’ll also feature a few stunning pitch deck templates along the way, to help you get started fast.

Best Free T-Shirt Design Software in 2021

Software / 10 Sep 2021

Best Free T-Shirt Design Software in 2021

When it comes to designing a shirt, you have two primary options – design it yourself using graphic design tools such as Adobe Illustrator or use software made for the job. The good news is that there are plenty of free t-shirt design software options to consider!

There are a growing number of platforms that specialize in t-shirt design and can help you create something that people will want to wear. Some of these tools integrate with a t-shirt sales portal as well, making the process even easier.

Here, we’re going to look at some of the best free t-shirt design software options available and how you can make these tools work for you.

What Is a Font License? (And Do I Need One?)

Font Collections / 8 Sep 2021

What Is a Font License? (And Do I Need One?)

Almost every design project you encounter will include type of some kind. And it’s very likely that that type will start as a font on a computer, unless you create it yourself. With using specific computer fonts, come some very specific rules regarding their use, which can vary by project.

So what is a font license? Do you need one? And where can you find the tools and resources you need to make sure you are using fonts properly?

Lucky for you, we have a primer. (And the images in this post include fonts that you can license to use in your projects.)

Breaking Down the Costs of a New Website: Tips & Rules

Business / 7 Sep 2021

Breaking Down the Costs of a New Website: Tips & Rules

It’s a common question: What does a new website cost?

It might be for a new brand or company that’s never had a website before or for an existing organization looking for a website design refresh. And the answer is a bit complicated.

It all depends on the path you want to take and your timeline for getting a new website online. Here, we’re going to break down the options available to you and the costs associated with a new website.

Plus, a few tips and rules to follow as you begin the process.

Pitch Deck Design: 10 Tips to Stand Out

PowerPoint Templates / 3 Sep 2021

Pitch Deck Design: 10 Tips to Stand Out

A good pitch deck is designed for specifically one thing – to help your startup get funding from investors. But how do you stand out from the crowd, and make a memorable impression?

There’s a delicate balance to creating a deck with just enough slides to entice potential funders, without providing so much information that they are overwhelmed.

Most pitch decks contain less than 20 slides. So how do you create a pitch deck design that stands out? Here are our ten tips to help you get started.

Everything You Need to Know About Design Tokens

UX Design / 2 Sep 2021

Everything You Need to Know About Design Tokens

Design tokens are a way to easily identify and understand the elements in a design system. As more designers and companies adopt use of design tokens, their value will continue to grow.

The key to design tokens is that they facilitate cross-disciplinary collaboration. More people on a team can understand and use design values without specificity, but with accuracy. They’ve already been adopted by design giants such as Adobe.

Here’s everything you need to know about design tokens.

Get All the Design Assets You Need From Creative Fabrica

Reviews / 2 Sep 2021

Get All the Design Assets You Need From Creative Fabrica

Almost every designer is on the lookout for tools and resources that can make work quicker and easier. A solid fonts and graphics library platform can be just that resource.

Creative Fabrica is packed with design tools for designers, crafters, and more. Whether you’re a crafter, a hobbyist, or a professional designer, there’s something that’s worth taking a look at.

Here, we’re going to take a closer look at the platform and how you can use it in your daily routine, all while building up your library of graphics, assets, and more.

Design Trend: Frosted Glass Effect in Web Design

Trends / 30 Aug 2021

Design Trend: Frosted Glass Effect in Web Design

With just the right combination of blur and transparency, you’ve got one of the hottest trends in website and app design – the frosted glass effect.

It is a design technique that uses a gaussian blur, shadows, and transparency to create an element that mimics looking through real-life frosted glass.

Let’s dive into seven different ways to use this design trend.

And, if you need more inspiration, it’s no surprise to know that Dribbble is packed with frosted glass design ideas!

10 Tips for Working With Bold Colors in Web Design

Graphics / 26 Aug 2021

10 Tips for Working With Bold Colors in Web Design

Designing with bold color is a lot of fun.

It’s also a little dangerous.

Bold color choices can evoke emotion, draw attention, and create just the right vibe for a design. On the other hand, bold color can feel frenzied or off balance. Users are instantly drawn into color or turned off by it.

Here’s a look at a few ways to use bold color in web design. We’ll walk through how to bring personality and vivid style into your projects, while keeping a sense of balance and accessibility that makes the site easy to use.

Instagram Grid Templates: 10 Examples + Tips

Instagram Templates / 25 Aug 2021

Instagram Grid Templates: 10 Examples + Tips

A secret used by some of the boldest visual brands on Instagram is to use a grid or puzzle template. What this style of template does is create 12 cohesive panels that come together as a single image when someone visits your Instagram profile page.

The trick here is that the panels have to work equally well as single image posts and together as a whole. It can be difficult to pull off if you are not careful.

A template can make it a lot easier to figure out and manage. You can create one yourself, or download a ready-made option (best if you are looking for quick and easy). Here, we are looking at 10 great Instagram grid templates with tips for how you can take the inspiration from each and use it with your images on your social media account.

How to Balance “Good Design” vs. a Functional Website

Graphics / 23 Aug 2021

How to Balance “Good Design” vs. a Functional Website

It’s the chicken and egg debate of website design: What comes first “good design” or functional design?

Both answers are right… and wrong.

Unlike much of what we share on Design Shack, this is more of a personal essay on the benefits of each type of thinking and why I’ll design with function over “good design” almost any day of the week.

And I’ll back up my thinking with some examples that have made a difference for real-life projects.

Choosing the Best Font for PowerPoint: 10 Tips & Examples

PowerPoint Templates / 20 Aug 2021

Choosing the Best Font for PowerPoint: 10 Tips & Examples

There’s a fine art to creating a great PowerPont presentation that wows. With so many tricks and features in this little bit of software, it’s more likely to see a bad presentation than a good one (and you don’t want to be that person!)

While there are a lot of factors that contribute to the overall design, choosing a suitable font for PowerPoint is near the top of the list. The audience needs to be able to read the words on the screen with ease, to ensure that your presentation is as effective as possible.

So how do you do it? Where do you start when choosing a font for PowerPoint? We have 10 tips for you with a few examples of PowerPoint slides (and templates) that will impress your audience.