I have been struggling with this question in my mind for almost the past 6 hours! I have been testing with various themes and probably screwed up some of my blog traffic on the go!
I was with twenty ten theme for quite some time. Actually the theme is very nice with all those widget ready side bars and footers. In fact, nothing to complain! But.. as I have already confessed about my nature, I got bored with Twenty Ten for no reason! For the past 3-4 days, my mind started complaining about the look of my blog saying something like it is very limited in expression; doesn’t give an expanse feeling or something like that! Hmm… thus started my theme hunt!
In a way, the theme hunt wasn’t that difficult because, my options were very less to begin with. I was looking only for those themes which have “custom-menu” option. (I had converted all my categories into custom-menu options long back! And of course, I am so impressed with this option that I was not ready to let it go!) There were only 33 themes in wordpress.com with custom-menu option! And, when I added “custom-background” option as well in the filter, only 9 were returned! So, obviously I didn’t have much options!
My mind was already leering at the custom-background option (again, for no reason!) and was focussing only on those 9 options returned by wordpress! At times, I guess my mind enjoys making life difficult for me! Crazy mind!
I did not like many of the themes because:
- The fonts are not readable and nice in many of them. The theme “Modularity Lite” was looking great but then its fonts were so small! Moreover, it was a theme mainly for photo blogging rather than writing! The theme “Oulipo” was again nice, clean and impressive but small fonts!
- Another problem was that many of the themes were not able to display my custom-menu completely in one single line! “Oulipo” theme was probably designed for just 2-3 menu options in mind. And the “Koi” theme. “Modularity Lite” passed this test but then the fonts were really small and weren’t that reader friendly at all!
- Even if I have the above 2 points, the widget area was creating another problem! No other theme provides as many widget areas as Twenty Ten!
- Photo display was not good in some themes. One of the main reason why I had to reject Paperpunch was this difficulty. It was not displaying my photos properly! Some of the photos were extending beyond their area.
In fact, I was almost settled with Paperpunch for it has this wonderful feature which I long for: It displays all the article titles alone on clicking a category. So, you can actually lists all articles when you click on a menu option rather than browsing through the “older articles” and “newer articles” buttons! But then because of the point 4, I switched back to Twenty Ten! 😐
I was switching to some theme and then immediately reverted back to Twenty Ten! No theme could match the features offered by Twenty Ten except for this one last one: Coraline. In-fact at the first shot, Coraline did not impress me at all! I did not like it. But then, it had this transparent foreground and showed the beauty of background image in its entirety! Coraline and Twenty Ten are the only themes which can give you :
- WYSIWYG editor. So, you can really see how your blog post will look like when editing!
- You get the categories “asides” and “gallery” which are really amazing for displaying a list of articles!
- 4 widget areas at the footer and primary & secondary side bar widget areas (In addition to this, Coraline provides a feature widget area in addition to the ones)
- These are 2 themes among the other 9 themes which provide both custom-menu and custom-background! And Coraline is one of those which has transparent foreground!
- I am really impressed with the font style of these 2 themes! No other theme has this clear, attractive and well-sized font! Either they are too small or they are too bold and big! (I hate the theme Bueno because of its big big title and custom menu fonts!)
- Picture/Photo rendering! And, as far as I can see, these are the 2 themes in which my blog post pictures show correctly within the post area!
So, finally I changed my theme to “Coraline” for the change I wanted! Because, its either Twenty Ten or Coraline and nothing else – after almost 6 hours of research! With white background, Coraline looks like a combination of Twenty Ten and Vigilance and I did not get the change I really desired! So, I changed the background to display this light cool sky!
And to make it further cool, I enabled the 2 side bar widget area and also the feature widget area (where the gravatar is being displayed now!). I have finally satisfied my mind with its demands for a new look and change! But I am not really sure if I haven’t screwed up with the readability factors!
Will check out my blog stats and see if I can keep this background to make it look cool or remove it to make it more readable! Lets see how long this background stays with me! 😉