Illustration of Derek Powazek by Adam Ellis

DePo Clean WordPress Theme

So my dalliance with Hemingway has come to an end. No offense to Kyle Neath – it’s a really lovely theme – but as a designer I’m much too picky to live with a template I didn’t make for too long. Turns out, my tolerance lasts about 6 weeks.

ScreenshotSo I made my own WordPress theme. Presenting DePo Clean. It’s a super-clean, strong-grid design that evolved out of my likes and dislikes with Hemingway. I also want to give a shout out to Khoi Vinh for bringing grid-love to the blog world, and Wilson Miner for his thought-provoking piece in ALA: Setting Type on the Web.

This theme attempts to adhere to a strict 5-column grid, treat the type with respect, elegantly include right-side advertising, and handle text, photos, and links with ease.

It also continues my obsession with footers. When I wrote my Embrace your bottom! post almost two years ago, a lot of people misinterpreted it to mean “load your page footers up with a link to every page on your site.”

What I meant was, give your readers some candy if they make it to the bottom of the page. Something surprising and fun. So, to that end, in addition to the usual meta info, the footers here include two random areas: one that cycles through books I’ve written or contributed to, and one that pulls up a random quote from an older post.

Both of these have to be updated by hand, but I think they’re worth it. They’ll hopefully bring a sense of surprise to the ends of the pages.

So, look. This theme is not even remotely tested on any browser but my own, overuses break tags, was coded “partial continuous attention” style while I was watching television, considers the word “semantic” insulting, contains many places where my information is hardcoded in, and may cause ennui in small furry animals.

Still, if you’d like to give it a spin on your own WordPress site, here ya go! All I ask is that you keep the “DePo Clean” link at the bottom.

Download: depo-clean.zip

Note: In order to get the Flickr photos to show up on the homepage, you’ll also need to install the FlickrRSS plugin.

UPDATE: It’s simple, but could it be simpler? Check out the DePo Skinny theme.


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Hi, I’m Derek. I live in San Francisco and make awesome community-centric web stuff. I sometimes post things to Flickr and Twitter. I’m mostly harmless. More.





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