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Welcome to MTM – Version 3!

December 5th, 2010 31 Comments

Seriously please excuse my scruff.  It’s been a LONG week. And there is nothing sexy about website development.

I hope you enjoy the new layout and getting to know the contributors – they’re awesome people with a lot to share.  I’ll be giving you more details on them personally in the next week.

ALL of the content from the previous versions is still here, so go to the above menu bar to search the archives.  It’s categorized in detail so hopefully you can find what you’re looking for quickly!

There are a few more things that need to be added over the next month (right now I see the contributor emails and the transparency policy page are missing), and I’m sure there will be some tweaks that need to be made.

Of course I want to hear your thoughts, so comment below!

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  • The new look (while familiar… there are some aspects from the old design, right?) is super cute.

    Version 3 FTW :)

  • Allegra

    Congratulations! I know it’s a long time coming. The site is simple and beautiful, and content is good, as always!

  • Jo Jo

    Looks great, Mary! Congratulations!!!

  • Jill

    Congrats! Will you still be reading reblogs/replies to your posts on Tumblr? Or will Tumblr just be for cross-posting your content?

    • You will still find my full posts on tumblr so you can read them on your dashboard. I love tumblr too much to leave :)

  • Yay! I’m so happy MTM is back :)

  • LizT

    Mary, welcome back. But you asked for honest feedback so here goes: I am really shocked THIS is the redesign. It’s infinitely sloppier than the last incarnation. Very busy and kinda clunky. And that photo of you on the top left side: are you purposely putting up the worst photo of you ever? You are such a pretty girl and that’s the first photo of you I’ve seen where it looks like you actually NEED the Botox. Sorry.

    • I’m not sure what you you mean by sloppy and clunky…I tried to dial it down from the last iteration and make it clean and simple.

      None of the pictures in the top left corner have been photoshoped, so I guess you can see now for yourself, I do need botox. No shame in that, just how I’ve aged.

      No need to be sorry for your feedback – I welcome your honesty and constructive criticism. Thanks for taking the time to comment.

  • AK

    Hooray Mary! The new design looks terrific and I really applaud your persistence and hard work to improve MTM.

    Also, are those sparkly hoops? Gorg! :)

  • Erin

    Mary – Love the categorization and browsing through the archives this way. Thanks a bunch for that extra effort! Like the new look too. Congrats on the re-launch.

  • Jane

    Mary. Your URLs from page to page aren’t even set up. The page layout is too wide for most monitors. The layout isn’t clean and intuitive. It looks like you did your best to brand a free theme with a very rudimentary level of skill. Did this honestly take months and months? Truly can’t tell. Does this looks like a professional site to YOU? Competitive with other lifestyle sites? I’m sorry but this is really not a good example of your alleged social media expertise. This is awful.

    • I’m sorry you feel that way. There are definitely things I will change to enhance the experience.

      My goal was to keep it simple and easy to navigate.

      The reason it took so long was due to design issues. I went through several designers offer up many iterations. Even some of my expert friends were stumped when it came to the challenge of laying out all of the content, contributors, etc.

      Hopefully it will grow on you.

      But if not, you can join tumblr and read the posts as part of your dashboard.

      Thanks for the feedback.

  • Anne

    Hi Mary!

    I’m a long time reader, first time commenter. I like the new site a lot– the only thing I’ll say is are you going to change the font? Event something like Calibri would look nicer than Arial. It makes it look… I don’t know. Unfinished?

    Anyway,that’s literally the only thing that turns me off. Maybe it’s because I have a PC?

    Otherwise,I love your site!! xoxo

    • The font isn’t my favorite either honestly. It’s on my list of changes :)

      Thanks for the feedback and I’m glad you enjoy the content!

  • Caz

    What Jane said. And each time I visit and see the photos of you, I am more perplexed. These are the worst photos of you I have ever seen. Are you trying to appeal to just Houston? You look like like 50-something trophy wife at best. There is nothing natural, chic, interesting, fashion-forward about those looks. it doesn’t even look like the expression you normally make. you were a former model!

    • The point was not to be “fashion-forward,” glamorous, or photoshopped. I write a lifestyle blog that chronicles my life. At this point, I’m not going to events and walking the red carpet anymore. I’m living a more “normal” life, so that’s what I’m going to show you.

      You’re right, these aren’t the best pics of me, but they’re of me right now. And if I’m being totally honest, the photographer didn’t really follow through with the work. Raw pictures are never very flattering, and he did not enhance them as he promised. In the end though, I think it was for the best. If for no other benefit, now maybe you all won’t give me such a hard time for getting botox.

  • Jane

    Not really sure how it’s so challenging to such experts to sitemap categories and topics like pretty much every other blog has. I’m curious, Mary, who was the designer who is responsible for this “iteration” of your site?

  • HS

    I like it overall, but the one upper left picture of your dog licking you on the mouth almost made me lose my breakfast. Might want to be aware that it could gross some people out.

    • I realize not everyone is into puppy kisses. But I’m a huge dog lover! And whatever germs they might have, I’m immune to them by now :)
      Sorry if it’s not your thing.

  • Caz

    Also, why on earth are you blaming everyone else? Your programmer, your designer, your photographer? What about YOU? I thought the whole reason it took so long was because you were taking ages to approve it all. And yet, it looks like you don’t approve still! Take responsibility for your own trash.

    • I’m not “blaming” anyone. But I did go through several different designers and programmers. As I also noted in the video, I am picky. I don’t want to put up something I’m not proud of. You and I can both see, there are things that need to be fixed or added. Nothing goes live and runs perfectly. In my opinion, it is good enough to be live and I will continue to make it the best experience possible for my readers.

      Furthermore, I don’t think calling anyone’s work TRASH in a public forum is necessary, do you? Offer up the things you don’t like or agree with specifically and I will be glad to address them. Generalizations aren’t helpful and also decrease your credibility.

      As for the “bad” pictures of myself, I don’t believe they’re bad. They’re real.

  • Caz

    Also, I have to say it sounds a tad crazy to say you put bad pics of yourself to justify getting Botox. please see a therapist.

  • Sara Langridge

    I love the new site Mar and your pictures are beyond beautiful. You should be very proud of all the hard work you have done to relaunch your site. P.S Mason is so photogenic and the puppy kisses are sweet :)

  • I love it! Great job Mary!! I know how hard you have been working on this and I think you’re done a fantastic job! Congratulations! And by the way, you look gorgeous in the photos! Most importantly you look happy! Enjoy this exciting week!

  • Jenna

    I have to agree with others… I don’t see what took so long with this redesign. While I love how easy it is to browse through the categories, the layout itself is too wide for my 13″ macbook monitor (which makes scrolling horrrriiibbble) and it’s just so…top heavy. I don’t know, it’s just nothing new or exciting.
    Really love the content of your blog though!

    • Hey Jenna,

      The design itself, once I settled on one, is not brilliant. I posted MANY of the designs I was presented with during the downtown, and readers agreed, none of them fit. Finding a design that suited the content and my goals while still being SIMPLE was much much harder than you would expect. That’s why a lot of blogs focus on ONE topic – and for that reason, they’re cleaner and more successful. I started off as a fashion blogger, but I felt so cornered and eventually burned out. By widening my focus, I lose the analytics, but I am MUCH happier posting regularly about everything I love. I wasn’t going to give up passion for pennies, if that makes sense.

      I too have a 13″ MacBook and in order for me to read it I have to zoom out on the screen (on the mouse pad move your pointer finger and thumb together with the mouse in the middle of the screen – it will make it smaller so the scroll bar on the bottom goes away).

      The blog is top-heavy, totally agree. The left side should have more pictures, and I hope to bring on sponsors and put more links on the right. Let me tell you, it’s REALLY $$$ to do everything you want at one time so I had to pick and choose.

      At the end of the day, the set up is supposed to support the content you enjoy, and it seems from your note that I haven’t strayed from that.

      I appreciate you hanging in. And I promise, it’s all gonna get better from here :)

      Thanks for your feedback Jenna.

  • Hi Mary. The pictures are definitely not bad. My one real complaint about the site now is I find that on my monitor (13″ Macbook Pro, running Firefox) that the categories are running off the edge of the centre panel both at the bottom and the top (where it just says “Fu” and then “to” on the next line). Best thing about the new look? Totally the Mason pic at the bottom!

    • Hi Diane,

      As I told Jenna, I too have a 13″ MacBook and in order for me to read it I have to zoom out on the screen (on the mouse pad move your pointer finger and thumb together with the mouse in the middle of the screen – it will make it smaller so the scroll bar on the bottom goes away).

      Mason is the man! He will have his own page soon so you can see more of Mase!

  • I have to say, I love these photos, and the fact that you chose them specifically because they spoke to this particular moment in your life, and how you look/feel/live NOW. i agree re: the font looking a little unfinished, but other than that i think that the site is clean, streamlined, easier to navigate, and overall a completely positive change from the former version of MTM. Congrats :)

    • That’s exactly right Jordan.

      The photos I use on my site are always exemplary of how I feel in my own skin at that particular moment. I’m sure I’ll be running back to photoshop soon!! haha

      Glad you like the design. I LOVE your blog!!


  • Ah, zooming it out makes it fit, thanks Mary. Look forward to exploring the new content!