The Easiest and Free Design Program For Your Business -Canva

PART TWO OF THE HOW TO RUN A HANDMADE BUSINESS ON A BUDGET SERIES.

If you are running a small business, or thinking of running a small business, you have probably needed graphics at some point. Maybe you needed a graphic for your Facebook cover photo, for your YouTube video thumbnail photo, or to advertise your new coupon code. Maybe you need to design some business cards, or inserts to go with your orders. Maybe you want to design your own logo and start making your business more branded. All of these things and so much more, you can design yourself, in Canva.

This post may contain affiliate links, meaning I may recieve a small commission from items purchased at no extra cost to you.

I am a big advocate for outsourcing when necessary/possible, if graphic design and computers aren’t your “cup of tea”, maybe it’s worth it to you to hire someone to make them for you. But if you are just starting out, trying to save money where ever you can, designing your own graphics is going to be way more cost efficient.

If you would rather listen to this post instead of read it, you can watch the YouTube video here.

Canva is a super user-friendly, FREE online design program. You don’t have to download anything to your computer and you don’t need any sort of techy techy knowledge to start creating graphics. Canva makes it very easy!

The best thing about Canva is all the free templates that are available for you to use. They are already sized for different things, like Facebook cover photos, newsletter banners, Instagram posts, flyers, YouTube thumbnails etc., so that takes out a lot of the guess work right there. To find the templates you just click “Find templates” on the left hand side of the screen.

You will see the giant list of all the templates Canva has to offer there on the left.

Let’s click on Web Banners, then select Facebook Covers.

Choose one that you think matches your brand (or what you would like for your brand to look like). Don’t worry about the specific image, font or colors being used, we can customize almost every aspect of the template! I’m going to choose “Grand Makeup Sale”. Then click “Use this Template” in the top right corner.

Now you are on the design page. You can click on the wording to change the words, font, font size, font color, or word placement.

Let’s change the name and tagline but keep the font the same. If you wanted to change the font just click where it says Selima (that’s the name of the font currently being used) and there will be a bunch of options that drop down for you to choose from.

Let’s change the background color to something a little more branded for Ash Creates. If you click on the background color (pink), you will see the color square pop up in the top left corner of the page.

Click on the square and more color options will pop up. The first three squares you see are all the colors that are being used in this design. The third square is kinda hard to see, but it’s the light cream color behind “Ash Creates”. You can either click one of the provided colors, or click the plus sign (+) to add a new color.

This will take you to the Color Picker. Click and drag on the two dots until you find the color and shade you like. You can see the HEX color code at the bottom of the color picker window. This will come in handy when you are trying to match the other in other designs or when using other programs.

Now I like our Facebook cover, but I feel like it’s missing some texture. Let’s copy our color hex number so it’s saved to our clipboard, then click on the background tab and add a fun textured background instead of just a solid color.

Scroll until you see a background you like. I really like this Magenta Gradient Background!
Quick Tip: If you click on the three dots in the corner of an image it will tell you the images name. This is also good to know for when you want to create multiple designs using the same background image (aka be on brand)

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Now click the color square, then the plus sign, highlight the hex number at the bottom of the window, and paste your color’s hex number.

It still feels like it’s missing something, let’s add some graphics! Click on the elements button on the left-hand side.

Use the search bar at the top to search for a type of graphic you would like. I’m gonna search yarn. There isn’t a lot of free yarn images, but I really love the first one that popped up. If you wanted to search just graphic type images you can click the “graphics” tab at the top, “photos” tap for photography type photos, and just keep it at “all” to see everything that’s offered. Each image will either say FREE in the bottom left corner or show a price. If there is a crown nex to the price, that means if you upgrade to Canva for Work (12.95/month) you would get those images included as well.

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Click on the yarn image and it will appear on your design. I’m going to use the corner dots to adjust the size of the yarn to be as wide as the cream box behind our words. Then double click on the image to crop it and use the dots to size the image down to be the same width as the cream box. So essentially I am adjusting the yarn image to be the same size as the cream box.

Click on the image, then click the “Position” button and click “Backward” until the yarn image is behind the text on our banner. This looks pretty good, but now the words are hard to see.

Click the gradient-looking button to the right of the “Position” button. This will adjust the transparency of the image we have selected. You can do this same thing for words as well. I’m going to drag the button down to 40% transparency.

I still feel like the words don’t stand out enough, so I’m going to click and highlight the letters and change the color to black instead of dark gray. I’m going to do the same thing for the tagline.

This looks much better, but I kinda think it needs a picture of my face on it.

I’m going to click on “Uploads” on the left-hand side. Then select “Upload Image” at the top. I’m going to choose a photo from my computer that I like by double-clicking, then it will begin to upload in the uploads window.

Just click and drag your photo from the uploads onto your design wherever you would like for it to go.


Quick Tip: I removed the background of my image using another program and the skills I learned during the Debrosse MasterClass.

Now I REALLY like our Facebook cover, but since I added the picture of my face, I’m not really feeling the colors of the background anymore. I’m going to change the color to be more like the pink color in my hat.

Tada! Our brand new Facebook Cover image! To download this image to your computer, click the arrow that looks like it’s pointing down, at the top right-hand side of your screen. Choose your preferred file type, then click download.

Now you have a custom made, branded Facebook Cover you can upload to your business’s facebook page. If you create other things using the same fonts, colors, backgrounds and images you will start to develop your brand. You don’t have to use ALL the same components on ALL the designs you make, just pick and choose some, while adding new ones, and soon you will have a pool of design attributes to pull from.

This tutorial was created to introduce Canva to you and familiarize yourself with the program. There is so much more you can do than what we just went over. You can save and upload images from online (just make sure they’re not copyrighted) or upload digital files you may have purchased or created using other design programs. If you purchase Canva for Work you get even more options (like being able to save images with transparent backgrounds).

Do your research. Look at the type of graphics that are catching your eye and figure out what is making them stand out to you. Are they using a calligraphy font and a bold sans serif font together? How many colors are in their color palette? Start picking apart all the aspect of things you like and put them all together, like a puzzle, to define your own unique brand.

If you want to listen to a great, quick podcast episode on using Canva for your BLOG, check out this episode from The Blogging Millionaire

I highly recommend the Pretty Pinnable Pics Made Easy online course by Taylor at Taylor-Lynn Crochet. She goes over step by step how to create an account on Canva, use and modify templates, and specific instructions on how to make pinnable pics for pinterest. Even if you don’t have a blog yet you could still make a pretty pinnable pic for your newest creation and link it to your business Facebook, Etsy shop, Ravelry shop etc. Use coupon code ACRAFTYCONCEPT to save 10% !

I hope you guys liked this post and found it helpful! Nice, branded graphics can really give your business a step up, and when making them is free, why wouldn’t you? Good Luck learning Canva!!

Happy Designing
❤️Ashley

5 thoughts on “The Easiest and Free Design Program For Your Business -Canva

  1. Kim Ladouceur says:

    Thank you for this tutorial! I’m dipping my toes in the waters of Facebook sales & need to design my page. This will be a big help 🙂

  2. Jessica Gragg says:

    Thank you for the info! My friend and I just started a small business for our crafts. This will come in handy for our online marketing. Some of your other things are coming in handy for our first vendor event at a craft show! I am so excited you had those printable forms.

  3. Paula says:

    Thank you for this very interesting article. I really can use any of this information .I am a 68 yr. old crocheter and have been crocheting for 50 yrs. All self taught. I so enjoy making things but don’t have an aveneer to selling . Have tried Epsy and craft shows with no sales to speck of, so i can really use some help.

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