As one of the most successful premium theme shops in the business, Elegant Themes is best known for its top of the line themes and plugins. Even on this blog, we tend to talk about how best to use those themes and plugins (or themes and plugins like them) to get the most out of WordPress. But today, I’m going to do something a little bit different. I’m going to roundup some of my personal favorite, free WordPress themes.
The Best Free WordPress Themes Available in 2015
The themes I’ve collected below are all available via the official WordPress plugin repository. I selected most of them based on a combination of their popularity, user rating, and design. Those that do not have particularly high download counts or that are relatively new and untested made the cut due to unique design and/or standout plugin compatibility.
Zerif Lite is the free version of a beautiful one page WordPress theme by codeinwp. It’s great for businesses, web agencies, personal use, portfolios, and more. It’s responsive, built on BootStrap with parallax support, and sports a modern design.
It’s also equipped for ecommerce with WooCommerce compatibility, opening up even more possibilities. Finally, it comes with WPML, RTL, retina-ready graphics, an SEO friendly setup, and the option to upgrade to a pro version.
Lovecraft is a beautiful two-column blogging theme (named, I’m assuming, after the writer H.P. Lovecraft) by Anders Noren. It features a beautiful full-width image (replaced with post/page thumbnail images when on those pages), responsive design, gorgeous typography, and much more.
Hemingway is another great looking blogging theme by Anders Noren; who seems to be really good at creating beautiful themes for (and named after) writers. This particular theme features two-columns, responsive design, retina-ready assets, a full-width header image with parallax scrolling effect, custom accent color, custom logo upload, custom widgets, page templates, and more.
Storefront is the stylish and extremely extendable free WooCommerce theme by WooThemes. It’s entire purpose is to be the ultimate free theme option for anyone using WooCommerce. It’s guranteed to always have up-to-date deep integration with the WooThemes flagship ecommerce plugin.
It comes with several layout and color options, responsive design, and a growing library of premium extensions for advanced features and functionality. A great way to start your next ecommerce project for free and scale with premium tools as needed.
Longform is a stylish and powerful theme built for storytellers. It is the only free WordPress theme with full Aesop Story Engine compatibility. As far as I’m aware, it may be the only free WordPress theme designed for telling interactive longform stories. It also comes with responsive design, retina ready graphics, an advanced admin panel, compatibility with WPML, and more.
Gridsby is a pinterest style gallery theme that’s perfect for photoblogging. It has responsive design, retina ready design elements, and includes an easy method for post photos to the front page gallery. It may be simple but that simplicity gives it a great look and feel that should be perfect for inspiration gathering, photo journaling, and more.
We have one final theme by Anders Noren for bloggers. I honestly didn’t mean to get three themes by the same person in one post but I’m a sucker for a great blogging theme and he definitely delivers.
This theme uses large full-width images and transparent post title sections to make a big design statement with the standard post archive. The, each post is given the readers full attention with a single column layout with nice spacing and great typographic choices. It’s a pleasure to read on.
Next up we have Serene; the first completely free theme from none other than Elegant Themes. It’s a beautiful single-column blogging theme with fully responsive design, custom colors for individual posts, and six different post formats to choose from.
Every post is easy to read with awesome typography, big header images (or not, if you don’t want them), and text spacing that is easy on the eyes. It’s a wonderful theme for sharing and consuming content.
I’ve always been a big fan of the next two themes on this list. I’m not a blind supporter of the default WordPress themes that come out each year, but I think at least two of the last few have stood out and will hold up over time.
In the case of Twenty Fifteen, I really like how it’s set up for writing extremely readable content (no matter what device someone is viewing it on). Its design is simple and gets out of your way both as a content creator and as a blog reader. It’s also probably one of a handful of side navigation themes that I enjoy.
I’ve always admired Twenty Twelve. I think its a highly versatile theme for a free default theme; something that can be adapted to a business website just as easily as blogging. Its responsive, comes with a front page template, its own widgets, option display font, styling for post formats on both index and single views, and an optional no-sidebar page template. With a bit of customization you can really make this theme work for you.
DW Timeline is a WordPress theme with a novel design by DesignWall. Inspired by the Facebook timeline, DW’s post archive template is designed to display post like events on a vertical timeline. This would be a particularly good theme for telling chronological stories or a blogging project with a time aspect to it–such as 100 Days of Pizza (or a similar idea).
Pinnacle is a bold and versatile theme with beautiful parallax scrolling sections by Kadence Themes. It comes with a flat minimal design, fully responsive layout, and options that make it great for businesses, online stores, portfolios, or personal use. It is also fully compatible with WooCommerce.
Arcade Basic is a uniquely designed theme by c.bavota. It’s lightweight, fully responsive, and sporting big visuals combined with multiple post formats. You can use the customizer to add you own large header image as well as create engaging content with video, image, aside, status, audio, quote, link, and gallery formats.
To get the most out of this theme, pair it with JetPack, bbPress, BuddyPress, WPML, and WooCommerce.
Sparkling is a clean, minimal, and responsive WordPress theme by Colorlib. Developed using Bootstrap 3 and incorporating the latest standards of HTML5 and CSS3 (with an SEO friendly structure), Sparkling is an ideal theme for a wide variety of websites; from travel, to health, to business, portfolio, personal, and more.
It comes with options to change the theme layout, colors, fonts, slider settings, and a lot more. It is multilingual ready and optimized to work with bbPress, Contact Form 7, JetPack, and other popular free and premium plugins.
Optimizer is a multi-purpose theme by the folks over at layerthemes. It lets you customize each element without needing to touch any code: You get to choose between two site layouts (full-width or boxed); it has a beautiful image slider; easy logo upload; 600+ fonts; powerful theme options; custom CSS field; and lots of color options.
Optimizer is fully responsive–built with HTML5 and CSS3. It’s also SEO friendly, retina ready, optimized for mobile, and translation ready. It can also be easily paired with WooCommerce, bbPres, MailChimp, and Contact Form 7.
Virtue by Kadence Themes is another nice multi-purpose theme. It sports a clean modern design with a powerful options panel for customization. You can adjust the home layout, sliders, custom fields, fonts, and more without touching any CSS.
Virtue is built using Bootstrap to ensure a responsive mobile friendly website. It can be used for business, portfolio, personal site, or even ecommerce when paired with WooCommerce.
Amadeus is a simple clean blogging theme by FlyFreeMedia. It comes with fully responsive design, a parallax header image, metaslider integration, the ability to use Google Fonts, social icons, full color control, custom widgets, and more.
Oprum is a multi-purpose theme for creativity and business by DinevThemes. It can be customized easily via the live theme customizer. You can choose any colors, swap out header and background images, as well as upload a logo image, and more.
It comes ready to connect to JetPack, compatible with WooCommerce, supports post formats, and has built-in contextual help.
Harmonic is an automattic theme aimed at anyone who wants to make a statement with their bold full-width content. It’s ideal for anyone with a lot of high-quality, powerful images. A band, travel blogger, or storytelling could easily make good use of this theme.
Eighties by Justin Kopenpasah is a lovely single-column theme that can actually do more than just be a blog. For instance, it still has a sidebar and menu, but they stay hidden from site until the user clicks on one of the links in the upper corners. They then appear as stylish overlays.
You can upload a custom header image or opt to use individual featured images (from posts/pages) as the header image. Eighties also plays nice with JetPack, bbPress, and more.
You might be an internet marketer looking to promote your products or building your list, either way you must have an awesome landing page and high conversion rate. And if you haven’t found your desired WordPress landing page theme then you have came to the right place for the solution. Themify have built an amazing WordPress landing page theme for you which come with 23 Pre-designed Layouts. Amazing part is it comes with drag and drop builder, you can easily build your desired layout within minutes. Lets explore the theme.
The themes comes in handy if you are not a developer, with the 23 pre-made layouts. Just choose the layout and you are ready to go.
You can more layout Layout
After installing the theme you will see a new menu “Landing” in admin area. Go to Theme Settings->Demo Import menu to import default layout.
In Settings option you will get all the necessary option to setup your layout:
Go to Builders Layout menu to find the pre-made layouts. Just select a page and go to edit to see how you can build page by drag and drop module:
One Minor Con:
Though this might not be an issue for many users, but I found some options a little bit difficult to adjust. Like i feel “Theme options” could me moved over to the Settings page. I found this a little less user friendly specially for the novice.
All in all this is an excellent landing page theme. Go grab this WordPress landing page theme now and be an superstar inter marketer fast.
Recently, there has been a lot of posts on the Themeforest forums about the current theme review process, review times, hard-rejections, soft-rejections and lots of frustrated authors, so we thought we’d write a short post on the subject.
We’ve been a part of Themeforest now for over 4 years and we’re also Elite Authors, meaning we’ve had our own fair share of rejections over the years, therefore, as you’d expect, we have a fairly good idea of the main reasons for rejection and hopefully this post can help you.
Okay, so the first complaint we’ve started to see a lot of is the review time.
“I’ve been waiting 7 days, is something wrong, what should I do?!”
Well, firstly, you have to understand the marketplace has grown exponentially over the last few years, 4 million members, 6 million items for sale and a small review team.
You can already see where this is going, obviously the number of items being submitted is huge, therefore it takes time for you to move through the review queue, it’s just the way it is.
What should I do?
Nothing. Nothing at all. Submit your item and move on, take a break, start another theme, learn some new stuff, anything is far better than sitting at your Dashboard waiting for the review, use your time constructively instead.
Okay, let’s move on, the next complaint is the number of rejections an author receives.
“I got a soft-rejection for X and I fixed it, resubmitted, and then got aanother soft-rejection for Y, why didn’t they say that the first time?!”
Well, think about it, imagine that the reviewer sat down and went through every single theme and wrote a list of every single issue first time around, you’d be in the review queue for far longer than the current 7 day average, and you’d be feeling even more frustrated.
Or, how about the reviewers are only human?
They missed it the first time round, this is acceptable isn’t it? After all, you missed the bug too when you submitted.
There is an upside to numerous soft-rejections though, the bugs are being caught before your item goes live.
Imagine if they didn’t, yes you’d fix them eventually, but how many sales would you lose in the meantime, how many 1 star ratings would you receive?
We also get the fact that many authors like to know roughly when their item is going to be approved for marketing purposes, and maybe that is something Envato could look at, possibly an option for an author to set their item live whenever they want after being approved, this may just help with the review process as a whole.
The fact of the matter is, if your item has issues, then it’s going to have rejections, no matter what, the easiest way not to get rejections, or reduce the amount of rejections, is to make sure the item is right in the first place.
Hence the next section in the post, we’ll cover common reasons for rejection and a checklist of things you should be doing yourself before submitting your item.
Okay, so the review method is something like this:
- Awesome Design + Great Code = Approved.
- Generic Design + Great Code = Soft-Rejection.
- Awesome Design + Poor Code = Soft-Rejection.
- Generic Design + Poor Code = Hard-Rejection.
So, with that in mind, the first thing you’re going to want to check is the design, after all, if the reviewers see a really poor design they won’t even get into the code review.
Post it up on the forums and ask for a critique, but be prepared, sometimes you won’t hear what you want to hear, you may think it’s awesome, but in reality in may not be, but that’s part of being a designer, take the critique, make some tweaks and make it awesome!
Okay then, you’ve posted your item for critique, everyone says it’s as awesome as you knew it was, good stuff, now to checkout the code.
Much of this section focuses primarily on WordPress themes, but you can take away some of the advice for HTML templates too.
Validation: Your first check should be validation, does your code validate? Don’t get too hung up on validation though, yes you should remove as many validation errors as possible, but some errors are just going to occur no matter what you do, EDGE errors, or nesting issues because of a dynamic section being inserted, you just need to use your own judgement as to what is acceptable and what isn’t.
Some of our own themes have 10 or so validation errors, simply because of nesting issues, or WordPress doing it’s usual trick of wrapping elements in p tags where they’re not needed, it happens, but some themes have 200+ errors, which just isn’t acceptable at all.
Functions: When creating custom functions you should hook into after_setup_theme to run your functions once the theme is initialized.
function my_theme_setup() // your functions add_action( 'after_setup_theme', 'my_theme_setup' );
It is also good practise to prefix all of your functions to prevent any naming conflicts with plugins.
// unprefixed function the_excerpt_length( $length ) return 50; add_filter( 'excerpt_length', 'the_excerpt_length', 99 ); // prefixed function lovethemes_the_excerpt_length( $length ) return 50; add_filter( 'excerpt_length', 'lovethemes_the_excerpt_length', 99 );
Sanitize Data: This is very important, not only is it a big reason for rejection, it’s good practise to make sure your theme is as secure as it can be.
// escape custom variables esc_url( $logo['image'] ); // escape wordpress function esc_url( home_url() ); // sanitize callbacks when using add_setting in theme customizer $wp_customize->add_setting( 'lovethemes_styling[accent_color]', array( 'default' => '#862437', 'type' => 'option', 'capability' => 'edit_theme_options', 'transport' => 'postMessage', 'sanitize_callback' => 'sanitize_hex_color', ) );
Translation: Again, it’s good practise to make any static text throughout your theme translatable, this way, even if the user doesn’t want to translate the theme, they can change the values of static text throughout simply by using .mo/.po files rather than having to search through files.
// make static strings translatable <?php esc_html_e( "Read More...", "lovethemes" ); ?>
Default WordPress Functions:
Make sure you’re utilizing default WordPress functions correctly.
// enqueue the comment reply script in the <head> <?php if ( is_singular() ) wp_enqueue_script( 'comment-reply' ); ?>// wp_head() must be present directly before the closing </head> tag <?php wp_head(); ?>// wp_footer() must be present in your footer <?php wp_footer(); ?>// enqueue theme styles function my_theme_styles() // wp_enqueue_style syntax, $handle, $src, $deps, $ver, $media wp_enqueue_style( 'style', get_stylesheet_uri(), '', '2014', 'screen', true ); add_action( 'wp_enqueue_scripts', 'my_theme_styles' ); // enqueue scripts function my_theme_scripts() // load wordpress jquery wp_enqueue_script( 'jquery' ); // wp_enqueue_script() syntax, $handle, $src, $deps, $version, $in_footer(boolean) wp_enqueue_script( 'plugins', get_template_directory_uri() . '/assets/js/plugins.js', 'jquery', '', true ); wp_enqueue_script( 'application', get_template_directory_uri() . '/assets/js/application.js', 'jquery', '', true ); add_action( 'wp_enqueue_scripts', 'my_theme_scripts');
// use jQuery correctly with strict (function($) "use strict"; // your code )(jQuery);
Make sure your CSS file has a table of contents.
@Author: LoveThemes @URL: http://lovethem.es This file contains the styling for the actual theme, this is the file you need to edit to change the look of the theme. This files contents are outlined below. 1. Default WordPress 2. Base Styles 3. Preloader 4. Newsletter 5. Hellobar 6. Logo 7. Primary Navigation 8. Search 9. Social Module 10. Content 11. Slider Module 12. Twitter Module 13. Footer 14. Secondary Navigation 15. Contact Module 16. 404 Page 18. Posts 19. Social Share 20. Related Posts 21. Postmeta 22. Pagination 23. Postnavi 24. Comments 25. Sidebar 27. Widgets 28. Shortcodes & Classes
Checklist Overview & Tips
- Is your design unique and up to standard?
- Does your code validate?
- Is your code well documented?
- Are your functions prefixed?
- Have you sanitized data?
- Is your theme translatable?
- Are you using WordPress functions correctly?
- Are you enqueuing scripts & styles?
- Are you using jQuery in strict mode?
- Does your CSS have a table of contents?
- Have you tested your theme with unit test data?
- Have you tested all widget areas?
- Have you enabled debug in wp_config.php and tested with theme check plugin?
- Have you checked loadtime and improved by combining & minifying your CSS / JS?
- Have you checked loadtime and improved by optimizing images?
Links & Resources
- Validate Code – validator.w3.org
- Enqueuing Scripts – http://codex.wordpress.org/Function_Reference/wp_enqueue_script
- Enqueuing Styles – http://codex.wordpress.org/Function_Reference/wp_enqueue_style
- Data Validation – http://codex.wordpress.org/Data_Validation
- Data Validation – http://www.paulund.co.uk/data-validation-with-wordpress
- Data Validation – http://mikejolley.com/2013/08/keeping-your-shit-secure-whilst-developing-for-wordpress/
- Sanitizing – http://codex.wordpress.org/Validating_Sanitizing_and_Escaping_User_Data
- CSS / JS Compression – http://refresh-sf.com/yui/
- Compress Images – http://www.smushit.com/ysmush.it/
- Theme Unit Test – http://codex.wordpress.org/Theme_Unit_Test
- Test Widget Areas –https://wordpress.org/plugins/monster-widget/
- Theme Check – https://wordpress.org/plugins/theme-check/
- Themeforest Guidelines – https://help.market.envato.com/hc/en-us/articles/202822450-WordPress-Theme-Submission-Requirements
- Understanding The Review Process – http://marketblog.envato.com/general/submission-tip-understand-the-themeforest-reviewing-process/
- Visual Hierarchy – https://hackdesign.org/lessons/19/
- Inspiration – http://www.awwwards.com/
- Inspiration – https://dribbble.com/
Following this list won’t guarantee first time approval, but it should reduce the amount of rejections you receive. Hopefully you found this post useful and if we’ve missed anything you’d like to see included leave us a message in the comments.
Are you looking for a Blog or Magazine Style WordPress Theme? Then you have landed the right place. One of the main reason of huge popularity of WordPress is that there are so many beautiful themes out there to choose. You don’t need to hire an expensive web designer to build your site. You can build your blog almost immediately by using following 15 Best Blog or Magazine Style WordPress Theme. Let’s find out the themes:
Sahifa -A Responsive News, Magazine or Blog Style WordPress Theme. This is one of the best selling The in Themeforest Marketplace. This theme has every possible option you can think of. You can not only design your blog, also a WooCommerce store can be setup easily. Price: $58 for Single License.
Newspaper -Simple, and Easy to use. This theme mainly concentrating to keep the newspaper style. But also can be excellent for a magazine, publishing or review site. It also supports videos from YouTube and features a rating system. In addition, Newspaper supports responsive Google Ads and AdSense. Price: $58 for Single License.
SimpleMag -You already can guess this is a magazine style WordPress theme from it’s name. you can easily compose any page design by using page composer. There are so many top dog in the market are using this theme like www.theavantguardian.com, www.tevi-s.com, feel4nature.com. Price: $53 for Single License.
Gonzo – Another theme has been popular for many years. Also a less cheaper from above themes we mentioned so far. It is completely responsive and retina-ready too. Price: $48 for Single License.
SmartMag – Last year it was the most sold magazine style WordPress theme on themeforest. A fast, modern, clean, responsive and retina-ready WordPress theme. Best choice for magazines, newspapers, review sites, or your personal blogs. Price: $58 for Single License.
Valenti – This is the theme you might ant for future use for the advanced feature it has got. Users are already having fun creating a unique homepage and easily make modifications to it any time they wish. by exclusive Valenti Drag & Drop Builder. Price: $58 for Single License.
Jarida – One of the exclusive feature of this theme is that it has options to add iPhone and iPad app home scree icon to your website. Go give it a try. Price: $58 for Single License.
Newsmag – Similar to Newspaper theme. but you can have this the a little cheaper. Price: $48 for Single License.
True Mag – Also a popular magazine style theme. But if you want to build a video blog then you might consider this theme. It has been popular as video blog WordPress theme among the users. Price: $58 for Single License.
Made – If you are looking to build a review or rating site then you can try this theme. It has some awesome rating or review style design. Price: $58 for Single License.
BuzzBlog – If you are an artist and looking to build a personal style blog then this the theme for you.It has 15 custom page templates, 8 custom widgets, 60+ shortcodes, features 9 post formats and many more options. Price: $43 for Single License.
Hemlock – Simple and quality design. Users are loving this theme and price is also relatively low. Price: $38 for Single License.
deTube – This is a Professional Responsive Video WordPress Theme designed for video site. The design is inspired by the popular websites like YouTube, Vimeo and Dribbble. Price: $38 for Single License.
Goodnews – Another magazine style popular theme. This has been popular for its ultra light speed and unique style. Price: $58 for Single License.
Retro Portfolio – If you are looking for a vintage style one page blog theme then is is for you. Price: $43 for Single License.
Do you know about another Blog or Magazine Style WordPress Theme not in the list? We would love to hear from you. Please leave a comment below.