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March 2013

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anime - amatsuki - smile - summer

gossymer in noveltybox

Questions & Answers...

...about noveltybox and me:

...on layouts:

Community Answers

What is noveltybox?

It is a community for layouts, icons, banners and profiles by gossymer. Additionally, icon tutorials, css guides and recs to various shiny graphic related stuff may also get posted. Layouts can also be found here on freelayouts and screencaps for various shows can be found at diminishcap

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How do I join the community? How can I friend it? Can I friend you?

Membership to the community is closed but all posts are public so feel free to watch instead. If you'd rather just get a notification when a layout is posted, you can always just track the community.

Friending is open for both my personal lj and the comm, though I should probably mention that on my personal lj, I don't do automatic friending back. Check my profile for more info.

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Can I use the stuff you share on the community?

The entire purpose of setting up a comm was so that people can easily get access to and use the stuff posted, so yes! Only rules are to comment and credit.

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Do I have to credit?

There's nothing I can really do if you don't do it - well, besides message you with a reminder if I ever notice the lack thereof. But that rarely happens and I don't go looking XD Still, credit is appreciated, if simply so others who like the layouts/graphics can find my stuff easily.

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How do I credit?

Crediting is quick and easy:
  • For icons: when uploading them, copy/ past <lj user="gossymer"> @ <lj comm="noveltybox"> into the Comments text box.
  • For layouts: if you're using them on Livejournal, make sure you at least have Layout from <lj comm="noveltybox"> at the bottom of your bio area of your profile. If on another site such an insanejournal (or any others) it should be something along the lines of Layout from <a href="http://noveltybox.livejournal.com">noveltybox</a>
  • For all other graphics: A mention and link back in your resources post is sufficient :)

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Will you ever get around to responding to my comment(s)?

I realised a long, long time ago that if I were to respond to comments received, I'd never get anything else done. But I appreciate the comments (like mad) and they do get me psyched to keep churning out stuff. I'd probably still do layouts even if there's weren't any acknowledgement, but comments are an added bonus -___- Comments basically cause squeeing and crazy flailing ^^

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Will you be accepting affiliates?

Am not sure yet. If I ever decide I want to, I'll probably ask the communities myself if they'd like to affiliate. You can always respond with your comm (since I may not have come across it yet myself) but I don't think I'll be doing open affiliating anytime soon though. I think I should probably focus on getting this community off the ground first >_>

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Layout Answers

Can I edit your codes?

Yes! All my layout are freely available for customization! I myself first used absonant's and interlinea's layouts when I started out with CSS in 2006 so I understand if you'd like to play with the codes.

Some of the layouts, like Lines and Express Yourself come with complete guides to help with customization too! Just remember to comment and credit :)

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How can I get help to change/fix something?

There are a number of ways a layout can break: sometimes its your browser, resolution or operating system. Sometimes LJ changes the original styles they're based on (in the past this has caused mini user icons to stop working or titles for entries to look weird.) Sometimes there are problems when customizing the layouts.

Each situation can be different and I really don't have the expertise nor the time to whip open firefox everytime to figure out the issue. After the first week or two of posting a layout I stop responding to problems with it. Instead, there are communities with guides and tutorials and you can even make posts on them asking for help. The people there probably have a MUCH better understanding of what happened to your layout. For a list of helpful communities check this post @ mintyapple

I know a lot of other layout makers do provide support but for me it's a trade off. By not providing support, I get to churn out a lot more layouts and graphics instead. I hope this policy doesn't become too much of a hassle for you :(

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Can I use your layouts on other sites?

Yes, just comment and follow the crediting instructions for non-lj sites over here

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Can I make and share layouts using your codes as a base?

I follow the Creative Commons Attribution-Non Commercial licence policies. You can edit and share the codes on LJ if you:
  1. Do not make money off of the codes
  2. Comment, telling me about it
  3. Credit me in the post where you share the layout AND in the altered CSS sheet
  4. Ask people who use the codes to credit me for the base codes

Just ask me if you have more questions about sharing the codes with others.

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What styles do you use?

While Flexible Squares was the first layout I used, it was Smooth Sailing in 2006 that first made me fall in love with CSS - it has a lot more customizability IMO. Later, thanks to weekly contests at freelayouts I decided to branch out and try out Classic, Component, Dear Diary and Opal in mid 2007.

It wasn't until this year that I got around to Bloggish and Expressive/Mixit which are definitely my favorites at the moment. Bloggish 'cause it can be used on the LJ clones like Insanejournal and Expressive because its brilliant when it comes to functionality and customization. Though I can't wait to try Minimalism in future!

I also have a timeline of all past personal layouts made. My current personal lj's layout is on Expressive. The community layout is on Bloggish.

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What resolution do you design for?

I try to ensure my layouts work in 800 x 600 resolutions but certain ones, like three column layouts, are usually made with 1024px wide resolutions in mind. Just check each layout for resolution requirements!

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What browsers do you test in?

I design my layouts using the Web Developer addon for Firefox and my primary browser is Opera. After getting the layouts to look right in those two browsers, I check IE to make sure things work alright. I'll make sure it doesn't break, especially since most of the web is still on IE, but my layouts are optimized for Firefox and Opera.

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There are images in your layouts! Do I need to reupload them?

I got a permanent lj account with LJ this month and all my images are hosted on LJ's scrapbook. They'll never be deleted and its likely that if Scrapbook were to go down, it would be because LJ went down - since that's so rare, y'all can use the images as is. Though if y'all want to host them yourselves, feel free!

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I need to upload the CSS sheet to my own server? What? How? Why?

Sometimes the CSS codes can be too long (LJ has a limit to size) and causes errors if pasted directly. Also, some hacks in the CSS (to get linkbar icons to show up in some cases) can throw errors too. So for certain layouts, like those on Bloggish, I request that anyone who decides to customize the layouts should download and then reupload the style sheet(s) onto their own web server. In the past I've used awardspace.com and definitely recommend it.

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How do I get rid of ads?

You need to downgrade to a basic account (over here) or buy a paid account. Ads only show up for Plus accounts and for people not logged into LJ.

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How do I get rid of the nav bar at the top?

Go here and UNcheck Always show on my journal/community

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How do I disable the custom comment pages?

Go here and select YES for Disable customized comment pages for your journal

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Credits: The format of this Q&A post is modelled after grrliz's own FAQ


cool. good luck =)
Lol, thanks ^_^
May I ask a question? This sounds so stupid but...what're differences among those styles ^^"? I searched in somewhere, but I can't find the answer. Thanks so much.
Probably not the best person to ask but each style structures/organizes the information given in a different way, which is why on flexible squares you don't have the edit link for entries or why you can add far more images to expressive - the pages are set up/built differently depending on which s2 style you use. If you want the FAQ answer, its here:


Though I probably just confused the issue even more ^^
I've got it. Thanks a lot for your help♥.
Do you do requests?
Not really, unless I'm offering for a comm of interest to me or a friend. Had a few people interested in commissions but that depends on how much spare time I have.
Oh, ok.
Hi, this is a great FAQ and it answers most of my questions. I do have one practical one. It has to do with mood images. I tried some of your layouts in the past and I noticed you mostly disable mood images. Me, I'm addicted to them and I use moods extensively.

You recommend linking to your css. What if someone wanted to enable moods but doesn't have access to a server but can only make modifications in the css box? Would those modifications override the linked style sheet?

The same with images: if I wanted to change/add some, would pasting the code in the css box override the style sheet?
The layouts that disable the mood images are the Bloggish ones with the base codes from grrliz. I'm not sure if the css box would override the style sheet but you could give it a try in any case :) If worse comes to worse google free web hosting servers to find a site to upload the css :)
Thanks! Sorry for not replying sooner, work sometimes takes precedence. :sigh: I'll try your suggestions once things calm down.
Did you try gossymer's suggestion about the CSS input? Did that work to get the mood images in? I was just thinking about this same question.
No, not yet, we've been very busy at work and I barely had time to check if my post was answered. I managed to get my current layout (a Smooth Sailing one) to look fairly close to the way I wanted, but I wanted to know if this could be done in case I decided to try another one.

I will try it on my testing account once I have time to tinker with it and see what happens.

[ just a friendly heads up ]

hi. yesterday, i stupidly commented on one of your latest noveltybox posts, asking whether you still reply to questions about old layouts. today, i discovered your faq page and got my answer.*

still, i thought this might be of interest to you: there is a problem with the showcase layout when viewed in ie: the navigation links are displayed as two lines, causing a tiny scrollbar on the side. the problem is in the original code, not caused by customization.

i figured out how to fix it on my own, by looking at the noveltybox stylesheet -- since the layouts are almost exactly the same. the issue can be nixed by replacing:

.module-viewlinks a:link, .module-viewlinks a:visited {
display: block;
float: left;
width: 22%;
margin: auto !important;
margin: 0px 6px !important;
border: 1px solid #dfdfdf !important;


.module-viewlinks a:link, .module-viewlinks a:visited {
display: block;
float: left;
width: 22%;
margin: 0px 6px !important;
* margin: 0px 5px !important;
border: 1px solid #dfdfdf !important;

anyway, i thought i would let you know -- just in case you want to post this as a fix for others using that layout. if you decide not to, though, that's entirely your call. :)

i also want to say, again: thank you for all of your hard work; and on my part in particular, thank you for creating a layout that turned out to be so perfectly suited for me, when i couldn't find anything else fitting. so i hope this doesn't come off as me being pushy or ungrateful. please know that none of it is meant to criticize; on the contrary, i greatly appreciate everything you've done! <3

(i also apologize for the tl;dr.)

* just a suggestion: even though it's already in your profile, it might still help if you make a note at the bottom when you share a layout, referring people to the faq if they have questions. (i know, it was silly of me not to check the community profile right away... but i know i'm not the only one who's made that mistake).

it's up to you, of course. hope i'm not stepping on any toes by suggesting this.

Edited at 2009-06-20 07:36 pm (UTC)
Hi, I'm hoping this is the right place to comment. I'm using your Minty Apple layout for one of my community 50ficlets and I was wondering if you know how to change the tags to a list rather than a scrolly-box?

Wondering the same thing.
Does anybody know how to change it?
Hi, I'm using your S2 Flexible Squares - Web 2.0 for my journal and for one of my communities.

Since LJ changed there's been a few issues that I've noticed:

1) In the boxes that says "leave a comment" only about half shows.

2) The ability to go back a few entries has disappeared and been hidden by the ad (it wasn't like that before)

I'm not that good with CSS so I wondered if you knew a way to fix it? I really love the layout and would hate to change it.
Sorry to have bothered you. A friend of mine fixed it for me.