Exploring WordPress Theme’s

I am going to update my site to premium (at some point in the future), and my initial exploration is to explore different theme’s. The intention was to preview several theme’s by using them live on my site, so that I could get used to them and discover which I prefered. However, many of the themes that I like are premium, so I can’t trial them live without paying for them. I’m happy to pay for a theme, when I upgrade.

With all theme’s you can see a non-live preview to see how your site adapts to them, so I have taken screen shots of my favourites, which I can look through at my leisure, and then make a decision. With the premium WordPress upgrade you can alter CSS (a code which sits on top of HTML), so I will be able to alter text colour, nudge the layout a little so that it suits my taste (such as reducing the width of the side bar), and other little tweaks here and there.

Here are a few of the screen shots (I haven’t made any alterations, so the backgrounds and header photos are not included in some of the previews.

19 Replies to “Exploring WordPress Theme’s”

  1. Interesting experiments. Some of them are very similar aren’t they but presumably they offer different possibilities. You used to be able to pay a one-off fee for some of the themes but I don’t think they offer that now – or do they?
    I’ve often wondered why it is that I prefer to have categories etc down on the right-hand side rather than the left.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. I think that buying premium will mean there are some paid for themes for free. Some are similar because I had pre-drawn what style I wanted before hand. I prefer the categories above and the side bar to the right (but I’ll make it smaller. They are all customizable in different ways, but then these can be adapted further with CSS.
      I’m wondering if you prefer the categories on the right for the same reason I prefer the sidebar there. In the west we read from left to right. So have visual impact (feature image) and text on the left feels natural (and I think the presentation is sharper this way).

      Liked by 2 people

  2. Good idea to take screen shots and take your time to decide. I upgraded to Premium a while back and changed my theme to “Traveler” last week. I like the clean look and large photo display. Widgets are at the bottom. WP support helped me with one little glitch.

    Liked by 3 people

      1. I did take a look at my site with a preview yesterday, but it wasn’t quite what I’m looking for. However, I do think it’s a good theme, I only previewed around 10.

        I’m glad you like it, it’s a good site that you have.


  3. You are very considered! I just clicked and selected my favourite within my first 5 mins! I still like it though, and I suppose I don’t know any different. It took me ages to get around to putting in some features, like a search box.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I was trying to decide whether to self host WordPress or pay for an upgrade. As I’m going to pay for an upgrade I wanted to take my time. I had been frustrated at times with my original theme.

      If you’ve got something that works then there’s no need to change.


  4. I am not sure I dare try to make any alterations to my blog!

    I do like very clean minimal designs however where navigation is obvious and the important thing – the post, is most prominent and easy to read. Of the ones above I would probably favour Watson

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Hi Richard, I like your current WordPress Theme, and also the Handmade and 2017 Themes. I run lots of blogs and this year I paid for a Premium plan for my blog Book Reviewers International ( at https://bookreviewers.online ) and that means I get to use a Premium Theme called Broadsheet. I like Broadsheet because it has the date at the top and a traditional Sidebar and a Footer. It has an optional small left located Sidebar (but this left sidebar does NOT appear on my ipad etc.) AND it allows for Featured Blog Posts !

    To answer a question made by one of the other Commenters to your post, one can just buy a Premium WP Theme outright, e.g. I could have bought the BROADSHEET Theme for around $79 USD (more for me in Australia) and stayed on a free WordPress Plan.

    I opted for an UPGRADE to a WordPress Premium Plan although I could have moved to a self-hosted site, costing around the same per year as a WordPress.com Premium Plan, because I’m too busy to set up and maintain a self-hosted site. So I’m letting WordPress.com do my hosting!

    Plus my blogs really don’t need Plug-ins that a self-hosted blog allows for.

    The WP Premium Plan also permits a PayPal button, which is great (I have one on the pinned post of my Book Review site) – it’s just a Simple Payment Button – but it doesn’t allow for an instant digital download. Good thing about though is that a consumer can pay by PayPal OR by a credit / debit card.

    I run a WordPress Guidelines blog separate to my WordPress Beginners blog, which uses the Apostrophe 2 Theme and find that I have to have the images just right (same size and resolution) and use a Featured image for every blog post, so the presentation of all the blog posts on the Home page looks good.

    I’m sorry if this Comment is too long. That’s me – I love writing as you do, and I love information (and blogging) and sharing. Best wishes, Celine / StarWise

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I really appreciate your in-depth comment, and like you I have decided that I will upgrade to WordPress premium because I need the simplicity.

      Future sales that I could potentially make would be of individual photos or so people can make a down payment to commission photography from me, and neither of these requires a shop in the same way that an online retailer would.

      And I will probably stick with this theme. I really like it

      Liked by 1 person

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