10 Best WordPress Theme Frameworks [Reviewed]
Updated: Jul 22
Generating new WordPress theme frameworks from scratch can be time is taken and difficult task that needs in-depth coding knowledge and continuous learning to take you high with the updates of the WordPress Core. In reply to this dare, more and more WordPress theme frameworks have appeared on the market in recent years.
Theme frameworks purpose as a scaffolding for a new theme; they gave developers a set of features and functionalities they can apply to generate their own themes.
Opinions about WordPress theme frameworks are split in the developer community. Fans contend that are real timesavers, shorten and facilitate the development workflow, take the burden of thorough coding off our shoulders, and make it feasible to center more on design. Rivals say theme frameworks can have high learning curves, and they are too prohibitive as well, as, by their prebuilt rules, they prescribe what we can do and what not.
A good rebuttal against higher learning curves can be that we have to appreciate the logic of a framework only once, then we can reuse the same knowledge various times and don’t have to worry about following all the new updates of the WordPress Core. Predefined rules, the other censure coming from opponents, are called best exercise by the fans.
Whatever posture you take, WordPress theme frameworks have become ferociously famous these days, so it’s worthiness check out what they have to provide you. In the rest of this article, we will grasp a look at five premium and five free WordPress theme frameworks so that you can determine if they’re worth their salt.
Genesis is an extremely customizable, secure, and mobile-friendly WordPress theme structure providing custom page templates, highlighted content widgets, complicated Theme Options, and many other cool features. The framework itself requires to be installed as a parent theme, then you can customize it according to your requirements by using a child theme.
The parent theme by itself is presently the most famous WP theme on the market. There are also many professional Genesis child themes obtainable on the web (premium and free), but you can generate your own child theme if you want as well. Look into Genesis’s showcase if you need to see how other designers made use of it.
Underscores, the famous and pliable starter theme framework generated by Automattic, is the starting point for a lot of professional theme developers. It’s suggested only to advanced developers, as Underscores comes with neither a visual builder nor a theme options panel. In return, it has high coding standards, well-commented HTML5 templates, a consistent starter style.css file, a knob dropdown menu for small screens, a useful 404 template, 2 sample CSS layouts, and many other developers-friendly attributes that takes theme development to the next level.
Thesis is a pliable theme framework that focuses on search engine optimization and uncomplicated personalized. It has a drag-and-drop visual template editor that builds it possible to append various functionalities, like newsletter signup forms and social buttons, to your designs.
It also comes with modifiable skins that permit developers to fastly implement amazing designs. It’s not only for novice developers though, as experienced coders can also take a grip of flexibility with the assistance of the development tools of the Thesis API.
Headway is a stylish drag-and-drop theme builder that can be a good choice for designers who don’t want to get their hands dirty with code. Generating themes with Headway is a two-step procedure: first, you are assumed to generate the layout with the help of the Visual Editor; furthermore, you can add traditional stylings, like typography, colors, and other visuals using the design Editor.
If you want to tailor the CSS code, there’s a Live CSS Editor for that motive as well. Headway also makes it possible to export your themes to other Headway-powered WordPress sites effortlessly.
WooCommerce team developed the Storefront theme. It comes with minimum styling with deep integration with WooCommerce.
It creates Storefront an ideal base to make a custom WooCommerce theme. You can easily alter the layout, the typography, and other design components through the customizer or through a child theme.
GeneratePress is doubtless one of few WordPress theme frameworks that we think is very well designed. Each attribute is modular, which permits you to enable and disable a specific one as required and enable it to be performant right of the box.
It also combines with the new editor in Gutenberg perfectly through its sister plugin, GenerateBlocks. The theme framework and the plugin give a great experience for the developer to build a site and the end-users to scribbling content.
This is another theme of WordPress. Which is a fast and lightweight theme framework for generating WordPress and Joomla themes. It is developed by RocketTheme, a famous premium theme webshop that decided to give its framework away to the general public for free.
Gantry has a visual menu editor, an Ajax admin that creates the backend emphatically fast, a drag-and-drop layout manager, a content block builder called Particle System, and many worldly visual design features, like an image picker, an icon picker, a font picker, and many others. Gantry pleases advanced developers as well, as it supports . . CSS preprocessors (SCSS and LESS), the YAML syntax, and Twig-based templating.
Saga is an advanced WordPress framework for developers to design a custom WordPress theme from Roots. It comes to some modern development tools such as Webpack, Blade templating, Sass, Yarn, and Composer pre-configured and refines for WordPress development. So you can start building your next great theme without wasting time on set up configurations.
By merging it with the compona tools, Bedrock, and Trellis, you can get an absolute end-to-end tool for both the theme development and distribution to the production site.
The unique nation about this framework is that it also gives its own “tonik” CLI as an extra tool that permits to creation theme to scaffold or refactor the theme.
UnderStrap enlarges the Underscores start a theme with Bootstrap 4, which lets you easily reuse elements such as the Grid Layouts, Buttons, and Forms on the theme.
It also combines with some Jetpack functionalities, WooCommerce, and gives Panel choices to customize the theme from the WordPress dashboard. It’s a theme framework with suitable tools and built-in properties to build your next awesome WordPress theme.
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