I’m always on the prowl for well built, well designed and well… free wordpress themes. A recent project has me on the hunt again for the best new themes to be released this year. I try to not only find themes that are hot design wise but have all the latest back end bells and whistles. Enjoy. I did the dirty work and here is what I’ve found.
Below are the top 10 of the first quarter or so of 2011 (in no particular order).
WOO Themes – Placeholder
Release Date: 19th January, 2011
A “pre launch” countdown theme. This is a great idea and I’ve seen them popping up all over the place but of course WOO does it the best and they were smart by releasing it for free.
WPCrunchy – BizPress
Release Date: March 20, 2011
WP Cruchy continues to put out quality premium themes for free, one of the few. This theme has a sweet slider, shortcodes, multiple page templates as well as a clean design that makes it easier to mod.
Renova – Just words, your words
Release Date: March 31, 2011
This theme looks simple at first glance, but when you learn what it’s all about this thing is sweet! Best of all, it’s MOBILE READY!
Whiteboard Theme Framework
Release Date: Feb 10, 2011
Whiteboard is more of a framework than a theme but still at it’s core it has a bare bone theme which gives a quality design team the ability to develop their own themes. What draws me to this framework is it’s ability to go mobile instantly via the Less Framework, an adaptive CSS grid system.
The Scoop from wpStyles.org via Speckyboy
Release Date: Feb 15, 2011
Everyone loves a quality magazine style premium WP theme for free right? I love the styling on this theme, has a high end news blog feel with an interesting 4 column layout.
Modern Theme via Dessign.net
Release Date: April 5, 2011
If you like clean, Swiss-like minimalist design you’ll like this theme. Not a big fan of the cross out hover states but that’s an easy fix. This theme puts the featured image front and center and has a unique layout that I find appealing. It needs some modifying but it’s close.
Release Date: Jan 10, 2011
Spectacular is a heavily designed theme released exclusively on Smashing Magazine. I typically try to stay away from graphic heavy themes as it makes them more difficult to mod, but there is something the color scheme in this that draws me in. With some great typography, great textures and muted color scheme this theme stands out form the crowd. I also really like the form design on the post pages. Good stuff.
Release Date: April 9, 2011
Simple WP Themes puts out a ton of “decent” themes but their latest one caught my eye. It’s really not a magazine theme (seems they just name everything “magazine”). To me this would make a nice sleek traditional blog theme, which we seem to be seeing less and less of.
Garuda Di Dadaku – Tumblrish Theme
Releast Date: Jan 29, 2011
This one of the best free Tumblr-like wordpress themes I could dig up. I think it’s awesome how developers were able to take the functionality and theory behind Tumblr and transform it into wordpress themes. WordPress has many advantages over Tumblr and if you’re already into WP and don’t want to switch to Tumblr this is a great option. Not a huge fan of the graphics on this theme but that’s easily fixed.
Release Date: March 7, 2011
I love to see WP tweaked and pushed to the limits and it’s always interesting to see how a good designer/developer can use WP to make it do what they want it to . Easy Docs is a great example of that. The author needed a theme to help him document a project he was working on so BAM! a new way to use wordpress. Awesome.