Whether you’re a web developer whose clients need a great look and feel for their blogs, or just someone eager to bring a fresh new look to your own web site, there are literally hundreds if not thousands of free WordPress themes out there to consider. A number of those themes have been built by professional designers and talented amateurs, and are as easy on the eyes as they are easy on the wallet.
Whether you need a great photoblog layout, personal lifestream, or more business-oriented design, there’s almost surely an existing theme out there worth checking out for your next blog or blog upgrade. And if you’re already a developer or are willing to acquire a small set of template editing skills, you can always modify an existing theme to taste.
Have a look at some of our picks for great themes to either drop in as is or use as a starting point for your own tweaking and twiddling. Keep in mind this is only the tip of the iceberg — be sure to let us know about your other favorite themes in the comments!
For a more magazine-style theme, check out the free premium Demet theme. This 3-column layout is fixed width and banner-ready for 125×125 and 468×60 pixel ad units.
The P2 theme was inspired by Twitter, and was designed around allowing a group of bloggers to post short updates. It’s a great option for a cohesive group blog as well as for sites that do frequent liveblogging. Featuring dynamic page updates, threaded comment display, live tag suggestion, real-time notifications, and in-line editing for posts and comments, P2 is a powerhouse for blogs where real-time updates are critical.
4. WPESP Portfolio
WPESP Portfolio is a minimalist theme designed primarily for artists, photographers, designers, and others who need more of a portfolio showcase for their work. It combines the benefits of easy and frequent updates with the layout and user interface conducive to browsing visual works.
6. Google Chrome
Here’s an interesting lightweight theme great for a geek-oriented blog, or a site that just wants a nice and clean two column look and feel. Inspired by the browser of the same name, Google Chrome () is widget and gravatar ready plus XHTML and CSS validated.
The showcase-style WordPress theme Gallery is built on the Thematic framework and was designed specifically for Smashing Magazine readers. Another great theme for a portfolio or other visual showcase, Gallery is a highly flexible and customizable theme that supports widescreen video embedding with the installation of a free plug-in.
Another very visually-oriented theme, Selecta is great for videoblogs or other sites where video needs to be prominent. With a featured post slider carousel up top to promote your best content, threaded comments, and interest jQuery effects on board, Selecta also comes with six different color schemes to choose from.
A great theme for shutterbugs and photoblogs, Snapshot from Woo Themes can also be put to use as a portfolio or design gallery. It also comes with three unique color schemes to choose from as well as options for switching between photoblog and portfolio use.
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