The recent update to WordPress (Version 3.8) set the design world on fire as authors and developers raced to modify themes and create more advanced versions that benefited from the new features in WordPress 3.8. Hundreds of new WordPress themes were introduced and more keep arriving on the scene every day.
I can barely keep up the pace ~ I simply cannot write that fast!
Curious to see what was new, I took a sneak peak of what the amazing author’s over at ThemeForest have been working on. I found some pretty amazing themes and I am looking forward to sharing them with you.
While I normally spend a great deal of time reviewing themes, I only took a quick look at these and will base the review solely on my first impressions. Please note, none of these themes have been released long enough for a proper review and a reasonable amount of live testing, so please make sure to research them further before purchasing, especially if you are not an advanced user.
Like me, I am sure you will be blown away by the stunning designs and “off the hook” features that are included in some of these themes.
For designers who like to “tinkle” with newly released themes and see what really makes them tick, this one’s for you! ~ Pete
Tempest Magazine – Captivating
I have fallen and cannot get up and I am blaming it on the bold and beautiful design of the Temptest Magazine WordPress theme.
Crafted with extreme care and attention to detail, it’s minimalist design, is simply captivating. Tempest’s full screen slideshow, larger than life content areas and huge images are offset by a very clean and transparent interactive design that is perfect for high end fashion magazine designs.
Highlights: High resolution, responsive, widget ready, short-code builder, advanced admin panel, WP 3.8, custom post types such as videos, galleries, portfolio and slideshow.
AIDReform ~ New Hope for Non Profits
Finally, a non profit theme that does not actually look like one!
Far to often, non profit websites are geared towards donation collection and while your organization may want to solicit for them, it should not appear that your website was built solely for that purpose. It will deter a great number of people from deciding to donate to your cause. AIDReform, NGO Donation and Charity WordPress Theme does an amazing job at balancing itself between a modern corporate theme and a not for profit church, organization or campaign theme. Best of all, it comes complete with all the features you would expect to see in a charity or event theme.
Highlights: Event and Cause Management,WPML support, E-commerce suppert, responsive, widget ready, short-code builder, advanced admin panel , WP 3.8 and unlimited customizable features.
Alia ~ Corporate Perfection
Whether you choose the boxed or full width version of the theme, Alia’s Responsive Multi-Purpose WordPress Theme from author; beopen is so clean, it is should be wearing a suit and tie. This is not a bad thing, it simply means that Alia is best suited to be used as a corporate or business theme. Highly customizable, it can be used to create a variety of different stylish websites. I must be honest, I am not normally fond of very business like themes, but I find this one very soft and appealing.
Highlights: Visual customizer, Revolution slider, lightbox touch, clean and responsive design, backgrounds, short-codes, 5 skins, High Resolution and WPML support.
Bed & Breakfast ~ Luxury Travel
One of the first hotel style themes to arrive on the market with a one page responsive design concept, the Bed & Breakfast WordPress theme is a great start to what is surely going to be the newest trend in the industry. The ability to book or reserve a room right from the home page is a money making prospect and it won’t be long before others follow. An elegant design, the theme is clean, fresh and has an amazing full screen gallery for larger than life pictures that will make your users want to visit the locations. A smaller room gallery sets the stage for what clients might expect when they arrive at the hotel.
The posts page is a bit out of place, it acts as though its not part of the continuous scrolling home page and I am not certain that I like this feature. It does suit its purpose and some people may want their blog to appear as though its not part of the website.
Highlights: Flex slider, 7 custom plugins, datepicker/calendar, widget forecast tool, directions widget,touch optimized gallery plugin, responsive.
Blog A Porter ~ A new Standard in Design
“Blog A Porter” literally translates to mean a ready made Blog, and while it might be considered minimal, it is anything but. It is one of the most unique and bold “blogging” designs I have come across in a long while. The 3D menu system is one of a kind and reminds me of an older flash design. You remember, back in the days when websites used to dance, flip and do circles. Unlike flash, new designs are streamline, quick to load, responsive and great for SEO.
The theme itself is very translucent with large text, bold designs and really cool interactive hovering effects. Blog A Porter is an amazing easy to use theme for bloggers who really want to stand out.
Highlights: custom CSS, favicons, 2 homepage layouts, 7 templates, social status embeds, easy to use colors and fonts, responsive, ready to use for blogging.
BrainGuys ~ Design Intelligence
By far one of the most unique corporate, business or employment type themes, BrainGuys puts your company’s employees up front and center as the main focus of your brand. Its’ uniquely designed content area really lets your content “stand” out. It does not take a brain to figure out how incredibly smart this theme is for a variety of business needs.
It gets two thumbs up for most creative design.
Highlights: responsive, contact page with Google Maps integration, social media integration, custom, easy to use admin, Blog variations, innovative team- and homepage, easy color changer, creative gallery solution with backend drag and drop and Zilla shortcode plugin ready.
Buzz ~ What’s the word?
Buzz WordPress theme from Themeapt is a simple, minimalistic multi-purpose business theme that is fully responsive and comes in both a single and multi-page version. Fully customizable with an easy to use admin panel, it has six homepage variations, unlimited short-codes, MailChimp integration and the ever popular Revolution Slider for making layered design effects.
A nice clean overall design, Buzz is adequate enough for creating a variety of different websites, however to be completely honest, in the default mode, nothing really stands out about the theme.
Highlights: Responsive, retina ready, unlimited layout variations, single and multipage, WPML support, tons of short-codes.
Aplus ~ Business in the palm of your hand
In keeping with the trend that seems to be emerging in modern designs, Aplus is a very clean and responsive multi-purpose theme.
Multi purpose themes are extremely easy to use, filled what a host of options and are highly customizable. They were created for use in just about any website design you can think of.
Aplus’s overall design is very “boxy,” giving it a corporate look and feel. It is best suited for a mobile application or business theme.
Highlights: Visual composer, revolution slider, short-codes, WooCommerce ready, 10 custom and valid HTML5 templates, 6 homepage variations..
Fixy ~ Simple and Sexy
Just as its creators boast, Fixy WordPress theme is a very sexy one page blogging theme that is really quite unique. It has a large sidebar transparent navigation to the left, that is offset by the large content area to the right, which fills in the entire remaining screen area. The user simply scrolls through each post almost like a “roll a desk.”
Brilliant, and made just for blogging, it may look very simple, but make no mistake, Fixy has a huge amount of features.
Highlights: responsive, contact 7 support, short codes, social widgets, child theme, tons of colors, web fonts, and header choice.
Haven ~ Graphic Excellence
There are nice one page themes, and then there is Haven.
Haven WordPress theme is in a class all by itself when it comes to high resolution graphics. Its creators boast that it was, “Designed to give your brand or service an air of esteem and confidence,” and I could not agree more. Haven is perfect for high end retail blogs, personal sites and a multitude of businesses.
I like everything about this theme. It is loud but elegant at the very same time.The spacing, font and overall design elements adds the perfect touch to create one of the nicest one pages themes ever.
Highlights: Fully responsive, AJAX masonry portfolio, expanding projects area, retina ready icons, theme colors, admin theme options page, short-code, editor, drag and drop gallery management.
Vegas ~ Fun Times for All
Like its namesake, Vegas WordPress theme is living large and just like in sheer “over the top” Vegas style, this theme has over 30 home pages. Now, that is rich!
The dark, colorful and bold offsetting scheme blends perfectly together to create an overall design that is simply stunning to say the least. I encourage you to see it for yourself.
WooCommerce ready, Vegas is the perfect theme for the entertainment, luxury travel or hotel industries.
With over thirty dollars worth of plugins alone, this theme will make you feel like you just hit it big.
Highlights: Layerslider and Revolution slider, portfolios, high resolution, responsive, visual short-code generator and so much more!
Marketify ~ Purposefully Loud
Designers have been attempting to build digital download sites that would be easier to use, require less server power and still offer the same services as websites like E-Bay, Amazon, and ThemeForest. The challenges really were two fold, creating an easy to use theme and finding a design that did not end up looking like the website was created by a “hacker” on a home based server.
Recent advancements in web technologies and WordPress, in combination with plugins like easy digital downloads, have finally made this possible. Marketify WordPress theme is one of the best examples of how a modern digital download website should look. Think about it this way, would you want to download a file on a website like this or one that looks like a community based forum?
Marketify is bringing digital download websites into the new age.
Highlights: Easy Digital Downloads, Marketplace bundle, responsive, high resolution, admin panel, short-codes and WPML support.
Nano- Grid Style
Nano WordPress theme is the latest release in a popular style of blogging that uses a masonry grid layout effect to display posts. The idea is to display your posts in an easy to locate grid style that puts all your work front page and center into neat little boxes that are highly responsive.
The styling comes from the different elements that are added to the boxes, its background and unique interactive hovering effects. Nano is a somewhat minimalistic approach to this style with an easy to use theme.
The one thing that it has to offer that many other grid themes do not, is three different layout choices including; dark, light and light with a larger font and content area.
Highlights: Responsive, short-codes, optional slider, advanced theme options, post formats and colors on a per-post basis.
OOK – Photoblogging Excellence
OoK Premium WordPress Theme is a portfolio based, photography or photo-blogging theme that has a large, bold and clean content display layout area that truly stands out because of the full screen background image that surrounds it.This theme is suitable for any type of personal or professional site that needs to display huge amounts of image content.
Ook is the newest portfolio theme to hit the ground running and I bet it won’t be long before it is on the top ten lists of a few review sites.
Highlights: Responsive, short codes, widget ready, high resolution, unlimited menu levels, theme options panel, unlimited colors, custom header, drag and drop gallery and slider.
Quidditch ~ Hauntingly Beautiful
Quidditch is one of the newest one page multi-purpose themes to benefit from parallax background scrolling effect technology. The use of parallax creates for one truly amazing large, bold and impressive one page design. Not only is the theme great looking, its pretty darn smart too. It uses Smart Management system to ease your work when creating pages. This SM system was based on the powerful drag & drop GT3 page builder plugin.
Bold and beautiful, Quidditch is going to be one of the newest design to watch out for.
Highlights: Responsive, short-code, optionally one page or stand alone, WMPL support, Easy color management, advanced theme, parallax and so much more!
With names like Quidditch, Ook and Nano, it is not hard to see that many of the new designs are being developed by a younger and more “hip” brand of designers. I take my hat off to them and say that I am pleased to know that the future of design is in their capable hands. If these themes are any indication of what’s to be expected in the future of webdesign, I say the world is in pretty good shape.
Well done, everyone!
There were so many beautiful designs to choose from. I could talk about them all day long, but I thought it would be better to simply show you some of the best ones instead. Enjoy!