11 Comments


  1. This is an interesting project, one that might fit in well for what we do. By any chance, does anyone know of similar sorts of extensible themes like this for creating portfolios and/or displaying creative works (e.g. art, photo, etc.)? Having a common platform to build off of would save us time, and these sorts of clients $$$, especially if we can integrate simple ecommerce into it.

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  2. Herb

    Semplice is just another example of encouraging a slew of recent popular bad design trends in which we take up as much screen real estate as possible with ginormous but ultimately meaningless and purposeless images and bouncy jiggly wobbly html 5 hotness. I don’t want things to bounce and jiggle on my screen, and I don’t want to have to hunt around for a barely visible “scroll to next screen” arrow popping up somewhere so I can scroll to the next meaningless full-screen image with utterly meaningless copy text. I don’t need clever 60px headlines or six 48px words taking up a full screen. Stop the madness, folks, and get back to real content design. And I damn sure won’t pay $69-299 for a website template which looks and behaves exactly like everyone else’s.

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    1. Encouraging visually ~ I agree. But its what’s under the hood that worries me.

      Despite what you might read in this article, if you go to the Semplice website with your mobile phone you’ll be very disappointed.

      Semplice is NOT responsive.

      Which, frankly, I find truly amazing.

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      1. That is amazing, and I took your advice and tried it out, as well as a couple of their showcase sites. They ranged from inconvenient/clumsy to passable (but, clearly not optimized for mobile).

        I actually just purchased a single-license today so that I could play with it and see what it is really like to live/work with. We are in need of an extensible, sensible, portfolio framework, and I’ll be curious to see how much fiddling Semplice takes to actually be usable…

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      2. Agreed – what a big miss that the sites aren’t actually responsive. (The individual sites are more responsive than the semplice site itself, but are still far from perfect – for instance, the menu disappears with a scroll, and sometimes when you just expand it).

        I do love the simplicity of the system and the way it allows you to showcase work in a large format. A beautiful way to present work… On a desktop computer.

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  3. In hindsight If I was going to set up a website again for my artwork I would not want to get into the technicalities of setting it up and maintaining it myself (I didn’t have a choice 10 years ago- I learned html and got a bit addicted to it, then WordPress came along later)- I think these days concentrating on the artwork / portfolio and marketing is more important for artists than the technical aspects of web design / development which other experts can do better. On the other hand it looks like a user friendly system and I have been frustrated over the years with various themes and plugins when I just wanted to draw / paint stuff and then add it to my website.

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  4. I’m totally excited to lear about Simplice and its radical approach to content editing with WordPress. If the software is able to deliver what the website is promising, I can only say imo the product currently is underpriced by at least $200.

    From what it looks like, Simplice could be a high-end niche product for a clearly defined user group of professionals (oh, that tag line!). Pricing it at the level of an average “regular” premium theme, I’m afraid, might invite a wider group of non- or semi-professional users who by lack of professional design knowledge might not be able to use their new tool very effectively, and thus might produce an additional layer of support requests unrelated to the product itself, but related to design in general. It would be interesting to learn if and how Michael and Tobias are planning to handle that type of requests.

    However, congratulations to the producers of Simplice! It looks stunning indeed.

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  5. Richard

    HI and thanks for the post Sarah. How do you know the themes are GPL licensed? There’s no indication of that on their website. Thanks.

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    1. I spoke with the Semplice founders to confirm the GPL licensing, but I think they have plans to further clarify that on their website.

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