I am notorious for changing my themes with alarming regularity. Long-term readers of this blog and my personal blog will be able to vouch that I used to change the themes to the respective blogs on a weekly basis. It wasn’t unheard of for people to go away on holiday and come home to discover I had changed the theme not once but twice while they were away.
When I first decided to try and do this blogging lark full time (January 2010, up until then it was purely a sideline) I decided that I could no longer keep changing my theme as often as it would probably upset readers, so I picked a design from Thesis and stuck with that design for nearly three years.
I decided it was time for a change because more and more people had started to use the same premium theme as me and a lot of them were in the same niche as me.
Let me set the record straight here, I enjoyed experimenting with Thesis but I decided to try something else because a lot of the little hacks that work with pretty much every other theme do not work with Thesis themes because they are built differently. It became incredibly frustrating that I would have to pay someone a lot of money if I wanted to add these hacks for me.
I also found it difficult to find a designer who would create me a new theme to use with Thesis without forcing me to take out a huge loan or rob a bank. Seriously, I know Thesis might be different but is it really worth paying FOUR TIMES AS MUCH AS A NORMAL THEME?
Onwards & Upwards
Making the change to the new theme was helped even further when I discovered that I could not only cut down on the amount of plugins that I use (cut at least a dozen of them) but it also displayed a nice condensed version of itself for mobile users.
The site also now loads noticeably faster, but I think this might be down to me uninstalling over a dozen plugins, some of which took a lot of room. I was running 38 plugins and have shaved it down to 20 and I’ll be looking to reduce that even further to speed up even more.
After spending many years acting like an old grump refusing to move with the times I have started using images on my blog. I’m only using thumbnails and an image slider but it is a start.
Even Better Social Media Interaction
When I released my last update I wanted to make better use of social media on the blog and I started to do that but it took a while to find the right plugin. Thankfully this theme comes with a decent social media section built into it and it offers a staggering 45 buttons to choose from.
What Do You Think?
I’m keen to receive feedback on the new design, please feel free to leave a comment below and let me know what you like and hate about the new theme or what additions you would like to see. 🙂