I’m sharing some of the best—and more interesting—minimalist WordPress themes that are publicly available. Many may react to these by thinking of all the ways they could be enhanced, altered, etc., and I think that’s a big reason so many people are searching for a “simple” theme.
There are some lovely minimalist WordPress Themes highlighted.
Many ignore simply designed blogs. There’s an assumption that blogs must be busy and colorful, jammed packed with every bell and whistle. I love clean and simple looks. Since blogging is mostly about the words, creating a clean and simple look to showcase the words lends more credit to their wisdom and value. Minimalist WordPress Themes are almost zen-like in their presentation, with complete emphasis on the text.
However, one of the myths of minimalist designs is that inexperienced web page designers think they are a good starting point for designing their own Theme. This is not the best way to go about choosing a WordPress Theme.
Turn off or remove the CSS stylesheet from any WordPress Theme and you have a minimalist web page design. This is one of the myths of a minimalist Theme. Many Themes may look simple, but trust me, there can be some serious design work underneath the clean and simple look. Some minimalist WordPress Themes actually feature highly complex styles and coding to create their simple look. Don’t assume clean looking means simple web page design. It often doesn’t.
A WordPress Theme has three elements you need to consider when choosing.
- Structure: Forget colors, forget pretty, forget everything in the design except the structure. Do you want a single column, two column, three column, or four column layout? Do you want a small header, or a tall header? Or no header at all? Do you want the page to sit on the right or left side of the screen, or in the center with space around it, or stretched across the wide of the screen? Go for the structural layout first. The rest is just frosting.
- Look Under the Hood for Coding and Programming: Part of the magic of WordPress is to make every page look different, and to showcase all kinds of looks, features, and elements on the different page views. Go through the front page to see if it looks like what you want a front page to look like. Is the content on the sidebar(s) what you want to see on your blog? Look at the single post view? Is it different or the same? How about a Page, category, search, archives, or author page view? Do they change or are they all the same. If they change, you are seeing the programming and coding at work under the hood of the WordPress Theme.
If it doesn’t change, do you want it to change? Then you will have to create the code that makes the changes? Are you up to it? The code and programming under the surface of every WordPress Theme controls what the visitor sees when they visit. Look at every detail in the Theme to see if the Theme has the features you want.
- Design ALL The Design Details: While a minimalist Theme might be minimalist because it hosts the bare minimum of design details, it might not. Don’t make that assumption until you’ve looked under the hood. Your web design might need a better reference as a template for filling in all the design details. Make sure you include every design detail to ensure every element on your WordPress Theme design is designed.
Not every WordPress Theme is easy to work with, no matter how minimalist it looks. Every WordPress Theme looks the same when you take away the stylesheet. So start with the structure you like, strip away the rest, and you have a seriously minimalist WordPress Theme to start your WordPress Theme design process.
- WordPress Design Details
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- Designing a WordPress Theme – Building a Sandbox
- Attention WordPress Theme Designers: Designing Themes for WordPressMU
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- WordPress Tips and Tricks for Template Files
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- A Guide to the WordPress Codex, The Online Manual for WordPress Users
- CSS: Studying Your CSS Styles
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- WordPress Theme Designers: Slapping You Upside the Head
- Breaking the Limits of Customizable WordPress Themes
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- When the Blog Breaks: Fixing Your Broken Blog
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- WordPress.com Custom CSS – All The Styles for the Sandbox Theme
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Copyright Lorelle VanFossen, member of the 9Rules Network