WordPress Plugin #3: Themes

Note: In this series I’ll delve into some of the better plugins available for WordPress that I am already using, or about to start using. I’m aiming to highlight 30 of the better plugins.

This isn’t technically a plugin, rather a feature of WordPress that is what makes the system so incredibly versatile and flexible … the ability to upload and use a theme that you have designed, or bought, or found online through the search or websites that are available.

WordPress comes pre-installed with a couple of simple themes, but the power is in your ability to control these, update them, install new versions with new features, etc.

Below are some images taken from the Admin area of the WordPress Appearance section (theme management);

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You can browse the list of themes that are on the WordPress site through the ‘Install theme’ option in the ‘Appearance’ section, or you can upload your own or one you’ve downloaded from a third-party website.

Using a theme you can take your ordinary looking blog and make it into anything you want, like a photo-blog, photo-archive, magazine or news website, or use it to power a full website (pages) with a blog element? There really is no limit on what WordPress can do!

Here are some independent websites that offer themes for download and use (some free, some you will need to purchase);

And if you’re feeling confident and capable, you can generate your own;

So, what theme are you using?

  • Angela

    Does this work for .com addresses, too? I am about to set up a blog in WordPress (.com, not .org) but have been incredibly frustrated so far, mainly because I can’t seem to upload or customise a theme. Any advice greatly appreciated …

    • Angela – I believe you are able to browse the WordPress.com repository of themes and install one from there, but not upload your own version (but I could be wrong). I have seen many WordPress.com hosted blogs and tehy are all fairly distinctive in design and themes used, so you must be able to … ?

      Please erply back when you have found this out?

      All the best, David

      • Angeja

        Thanks for your reply, David. Apparently in the past themes could be uploaded into WordPress.com but now there is just a ‘manage’ option for using pre-existing themes. I’d like to give WordPress a go so I can experience blogging on another platform after many years using Blogger. Thank you for your helpful and informative posts about WordPress. I’ll try again! :-)

  • Hey David,

    Good stuff! Of the big three (TypePad, Blogger, WordPress) hands down WP has more flexibility than the others. Plus, a HUGE community to help when needed.

    I’ve downloaded free themes and have purchased a couple premium themes that I’m tinkering with learning the underlying platform code. But for the last year or so I’m really satisfied with the “Titan” free theme in the WP library. Updates are seamless and nothing has broken….yet. Now that I’m more comfortable, I plan on upgrading to the premium version of Titan which offers more features.

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