How important is a blog design to you? Do you even read a poorly designed blog?
I know for me personally website design is everything. If you look at my website it looks professional and my blog is using a free blog skin that I customized. Same with my forum I am using a $25 generic forum skin that I customized and it looks professional. And I spent a little over $75 on graphics, so my whole website design was $100 and it looks like a $1,000+ website design.
So in my honest opinion there is no excuse for a poorly designed website. Anyone serious about their website can at the very least use a free skin a customize it. I won't even bother reading a poorly designed blog no matter how good the content is. How important is a blog design to you? Do you even read a poorly designed blog?