I would suggest creating a site linked to a hobby, if you have one. That way you will, hopefully, have interesting and original things to say, as well as gaining experience. Basically content is more important than technique. I've created a few sites that reflect my interests:
Relativity Myths - concerning myths about special and general relativity.
Philosophy musings - various topics.
Voting power - an idea for making UK MP's voting more proportional without changing the "first-past-the-post election mechanism.
I've also created:
A dummy page for an imaginary travel site using original photos that I've taken on holidays in France (more visual than my usual content).
A "sentencing abacus" which helps unify and automate the various guidelines issued by the (UK) Sentencing Council for offences tried in County Courts. That was an exercise in structuring information in PHP (using arrays).
There is no end of small and big projects you can do, limited only by the time you have available, and your imagination. They've also provided valuable experience in writing reactive web pages. There is no substitute for experience.