Because sometimes you don’t need a whole lot of design.
I’m not a fan of list posts generally but I was chatting to a client about him wanting a really simple WordPress theme for a quick corporate site he’s putting together.
All he wants is just to host a bunch of forms without any branding etc on a WordPress site so I thought I’d share my recommendations with you too.
Like me he’s a fan of StudioPress who are also fairly well known for producing a lot of fairly minimally designed themes so my first suggestion was to point him in their direction.
But as they have dozens of themes for sale at any one time, to make it easier here’s my five favourite minimal WordPress themes from them (plus a bonus one from Brian Gardner):
The classic StudioPress minimal theme.
Although primary designed for blogging, I think WinterSong Pro could be a great solution for our forms scenario above.
Firstly, it’s design is definitely minimal but secondly the left sidebar in the demo could be used to display a list of links to each form on the website for easy navigation.
Am I really including Enterprise Pro in a list of minimal themes?
Yes! If you remember the original brief we were looking for a theme that could host a few forms as a micro site for a corporate client.
Although it’s not in quite the same ballpark in terms of minimalism as Minimum Pro, it has a very uncluttered design while still feeling smart enough for a client that wants something more classically corporate.
Yes, the demo site has flowers on it (probably not what my client has in mind for his corporate site) but that’s just a suggestion.
You can of course use any image you want (or opt for none at all).
The Genesis Sample Theme
StudioPress maintains a free WordPress theme, known as it’s Genesis Sample theme, designed to be customised by developers to create new WordPress themes that work with it’s Genesis Framework.
Actually though the Genesis Sample though is already perfect for our minimal forms website without customisation.
It’s clean, easy to read and, like all Genesis themes, the sidebars can be disable by us switching to a full page layout if we need to.
Bonus Theme – Minimalist by Brian Gardner
You might know Brian Gardner as the designer and coder behind a lot of the StudioPress themes (as well as the Genesis Framework itself) but he’s recently been sharing some great (free) WordPress stuff on his relaunched blog BrianGardner.com
One of those freebies includes the excellent Minimalist blogging theme.
All you have to do is register for his newsletter (he sends great articles too) and you’ll have access to his member area where you can download the theme.
How to make it really minimal
Still not minimal enough for you?
Make sure you try the Landing page template which comes along with most StudioPress themes
What’s a landing page template?
Usually it will convert any page in your WordPress website to a very minimal content-focused design by intentionally stripping away the header, footer and sidebars from any page you use it on
(Although the exact effects may vary depending on the WordPress theme you use it on).
Use a Landing page template
- Create a new page in WordPress via Pages > Add New from the WordPress menu
- Give it a title and add the content you want
- Select Landing from the Templates dropdown in Page Attributes box of the Edit screen sidebar
- Update or Publish your page.
Got a favourite minimal WordPress theme or just love one of the ones above? Let me know in the comments.
Note – to use all the of the above themes for your website you’ll need to buy a copy of the Genesis Framework if you don’t already own it, which I recommended as the base for any WordPress website where speed, security and SEO friendly(ness) is a priority.