WordPress Theme Review: AlwaysFresh

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I have a new favorite; a designer named Carl Ocab published AlwaysFresh today, and I have to say I like the approach.

Always Fresh WordPress Theme

  • Validation: 3/5
  • Look and Feel: 5/5
  • Theme Completeness: 4/5
  • Editability: 3/5
  • Total: 15/20

Validation 3/5

As far as CSS goes, there are a few things which should be looked into. (What I’m sure is a) mistype on a body element called text-align to be justified instead of justify. Little mistake, but the W3C validator caught it. Oops.

There’s also a problem with the author’s defining of font-family. When families with “white space” (validator-speak for any family with two words in the name) are used they must be enclosed in quotes. That mistake is made throughout the CSS, so that may just be something new to the author.

The XHTML is running with a Strict Doctype, so be sure that your code is in order. I would suggest changing it to a Transitional Doctype for the sake of using WordPress’s formatting tool bar.

Look & Feel 5/5

Like I said above, I love the feel of this theme. I love simple. This is simple.

I suppose, if anything, the padding on the inside of the main content box (like that makes sense, right) is a bit much. I like white space, but it feels a little too much. Preference.

And maybe a little more padding on the left side of the orange sidebar headers…

See, now I’m just nitpicking. Five out of five!

Theme Completeness 4/5

For the most part this theme is right on the ball. The only item I would call it on is the lack of a search bar. There’s no way to search content, and if you’re a blogger you want readers to have every opportunity to find your work. −1.

Editability 3/5

Each section of CSS code is separated by a commented header, which is helpful. But each style itself is in one long line without any line breaks. This can make for a very difficult style sheet to edit. And I’ll be the first to admit that the code does look very clean. However editing code like that would be (for me at least) a nightmare. It’s too bad that this can drag a score down by 2 points, but the look of code has a lot of impact on editability.

On that note: I was sort of under the impression that line breaks between properties of an element in a style sheet was fairly standard. Am I wrong?

Closing Comments (15/20)

AlwaysFresh is a very cool theme that would be a blast to customize and get rolling as one’s own theme. It’s just too bad that it seems that it would be such a pain to do it.