Nimble Theme Review

home 1
It is a little ironic given the choice of images on the Home page that (like others in the ElegantThemes range) the Nimble theme did not load properly when tested on a high-end smartphone. The animated banner however does look rather good, and uses the image slider shortcode to great effect

Part of the ElegantThemes range, Nimble bills itself as ‘simple and flexible’, which we suppose is a fair description. The ‘simple’ bit is reflected in the fact that this is a very feature-light theme, offering none of the shopping cart, portfolio or even image gallery options that you normally expect to find with an ElegantThemes theme. The ‘flexible’ part is taken care of with the full gamut of ElegantThemes shortcodes, which are used to sometimes striking effect to brighten up and enhance the look of what is a rather basic design.

Designers Opinion

The theme gives itself the subtitle ‘Bold & Beautiful’, to which there is a certain amount of truth. By eschewing dramatic backdrops and arty banners in favour of big, blocks of uniform color (Orange by default), offset with grey trimmings, Nimble is certainly quite bold, and while I would shrink from calling beautiful, it is pretty effective, giving the design a robustly no-nonsense feel. Fortunately the minimalism of the design can be alleviated through creative use of the various shortcodes, and the live theme demo gives a couple of great examples of this. The minimalism of features on show is a bit worrying, but I supposed that since Nimble is just one of a package of 86 themes, if you require extra functionality you would simply pick a different one from the pack.

Highlights

Other than some great blogging features (which we will discuss later), Nimble has few page templates and little functionality, so it is just as well that we like some of the special effects on show.

effecvts

This section shows off our two favourite effects (both of them rollover effects). It is difficult to describe, but the effect when you mouse over the images is very funky, and the jaunty bounce when you mouse over the rectangular button brought a smile to our faces

footer
The footer section, which includes images, shows effective use of the shortcode layout options

sitemap
The sitemap is functional, but not a lot more can be said of it…

search
… and the same goes for the Search dialogue, Contact Form and Login pages

about
This ‘About’ page demonstrates that there is plenty of space available to present text, but also that without any images or flashy shortcode effects to jazz it up, the basic theme itself is rather plain. The navigation sidebar however is a welcome addition to any page

shortcodes
A selection of shortcodes, the full category list (which as far as we can see encompasses the entire range of ElegantThemes  shortcodes) is:  Button Varieties, Content Boxes, Toggled Content, Tabbed Content, Image Slider, Easy Tooltips Social Media, Password Protect your Content, Author Info, Column Layouts, Custom Icon Lists, Corporate Lists, Corporate Pricing Tables, funky DropCaps effects, and Quotes. The live demo does a good of showing how these can be used in interesting ways to brighten up an otherwise very simple theme

customizer
The theme can be further customized by changing the color scheme (orange, blue, red, green and grey) and Header and Footer fonts. Given its use of big bold blocks of color, this can quite dramatically change the look and feel of the design

Blogging features and layout

The only area Nimble specifically addresses is blogging (although of course ‘blog’ pages can be repurposed in many ways). Fortunately it does this well, providing all the blogging features we could hope for, presented in a stylish and attractive way.

blog 1
We really like the layout of the ‘Recent Posts’ page, with its two columns of news headlines, each of which is illustrated with a circular image and a number count of the comments made, so readers can see at a glance how popular different posts are

blog 2
The main blog page is not quite as pretty, but an image header livens things up, and the navigation sidebar makes finding and sorting through blogs a breeze

 comments
Each blog page comes with a neatly laid out comments section that allows users to reply to individual comments. They can also add avatar pictures to their profile, so that their posts will stand out more

rss

A nice touch is the ability to add posts and comments to an RSS feed, so that users can follow subjects that interest them, and be notified when new material is posted

Features

  • Perpetual Updates
  • Responsive Design
  • Theme Options
  • Secure and Valid Code
  • Five Unique Colors
  • Shortcodes (see above for full list)
  • Page Template
  • Complete Localization
  • Browser Compatibility
  • Theme Options
  • Page Templates
  • RSS feeds

Price

As part of the ElegantThemes pack, which gives you 86 themes for just $39, it is hard to criticise Nimble on price. However, while some themes in the package are worth the price of admission on their own, others are unlikely to see much use, and act simply as ‘fillers’.  When looked at this way, Nimble falls somewhere in the middle – it has neither the feature set nor the style of ElegantTheme’s best designs, but is also by no means a dud, and with some great blogging features it could be ideal for small business and personal blog websites where simplicity is valued.

Conclusion

Although very simple, Nimble does have quite a lot going for it, and in terms of presenting a clean and fairly dramatic aesthetic this simplicity works in its favor. Basic templates are limited to those for blogging style webpages, but these are handled well, look good, and provide everything needed for this purpose. The lack of even basic gallery, portfolio or commercial features of course limits the utility of Nimble, but within its fairly narrow design parameters it performs very well. We also like some of the creative uses of shortcodes shown in Nimble, ideas that could be easily mined or adapted for other themes in the ElegantThemes range.

2013 Blogrid