Inside the Design: The Cecily Template
This Summer we are introducing our first of our Classic Template base design’s — The Cecily!
The Story Behind the Design:
The idea behind our template shop is NOT that you come out with ONE possibility for the design of your website, but instead you have a really clear and classic base in order to transform your business. We believe that you should be able to have a great design, but ability to grow and change your website without a subscription to photoshop or even canva if you don’t want one.
Mix and Match - what is that?
The idea of mix and match is that you will be able to choose your base design. The first release is The Cecily (and more coming soon) and then you will be able to use our tutorials to up your game beyond just that with your website. For an example - you could choose The Cecily and then decide you want to do a portfolio page and a shop. You can choose the base of Cecily - and then follow our universal add-ons for a shop design and portfolio design. See how cool that is? It’s actually getting what you want in the design.
The idea originally came from our well known template design from the studio The Naturalist - which is a retired template. We love The Naturalist, but in the end it was EVERYTHING you might want in a site, and very specific for the end user. Instead of creating 100 website designs, the main content sections that change homepage, blog and about are the mainstays of our classic base templates.
The Cecily Design Features
The Cecily design came out of the idea that minimal can sometimes be an incredible way of showcasing your work, but with a few custom tweaks you get a significantly better design in the end. Some of the features we are bringing to this site:
Index Page Gallery on the Homepage - creating a custom title and button on the slider which is VERY mobile friendly!
Left-Right Layout on the Homepage - the homepage includes a left-right layout where you can have an image on one side and content on the other - one of our signature css courses - that’s right in this template! It allows a beautiful homepage design, and without the restrictions of the other methods to achieve this design.
Overlapping Logo in Navigation - this optional addition (we will show you HOW to implement, but not necessary).
Card-Style Summary Gallery on Blog Intro - the card style blog intro is something we exclusively are teaching here in the Cecily template!
Why templates? Isn’t the market saturated?
Let’s answer that in two parts. Part A: Isn’t the market saturated with templates? Yup. There are lots of them. However, I think they lack a minimalist style. That or they require too many graphics, or lack a css solution to an easy problem. That doesn’t mean they aren’t good, they are just different from my web solutions for Squarespace.
The answer to the second part of that super loaded question (lol, I’m asking it to myself) is that I really wanted to create something for my inquiries that are out of budget. While I have a premade (aka template that I exclusively install) it’s not the solution for everyone. The site is super-loaded with awesomeness, but the issue there is that it’s also got the price-point to match it. Then you get 100 emails about how you don’t have a shop or a blog, or a portfolio or a team, so you don’t need those 4 very customized pages so this person wants a discount. But the design doesn’t work without those things, and the clients dont't want to pay for pages they don’t use. So the mix and match was born. The goal is to have a small collection of BASE templates that have Home + About + Blog —> then you can add on your other wants/needs for the site. We hope to have a Shop, a few portfolio design options, and a few others before the end of the year, so the template can grow WITH you.
Business License vs. Standard License
The other key part of our templates is that they include a biz license upgrade. This was part of my brainstorming of what could make Mastermind even better - the idea came that if we added in something that shows the process from A to Z - including the XD file and then the site, that those who weren’t able to complete the hw, could try out the css, or try out XD to get them up to speed or further along in the hw process and know they could execute the site easily.
The business license is to re-use the designs, ! We do ask all designers purchase the business license version. Currently Circle members have access to a JSON upload (aka upload of all the site style settings with one file) so we are including that as a bonus! It’s not guaranteed it will stick around or ever get un-beta’ed (I suspect it’s purely beta because they want it to be circle-only) so we are adding that in for those who are circle members. The JSON upload also works with the SquarespaceSites Chrome Extension PRO JSON/Site Styles upload.