Ian Stewart shared some of his predictions as they relate to WordPress themes for 2012. His thoughts on Lighter themes as well as themes getting rid of the useless options are spot on. It’s a trend that’s made headway since the beginning of 2012 and it will only continue during the rest of the year. I’m not quite sure about his thoughts on using the default theme that ships with WordPress because it gives you a 1,000 hour head start. I’m sure many will beg to differ but it’s a good trend to see that with each default theme, the team will be trying new ideas and hopefully, begin inspiring everyone else.
Amongst the comments, Josh Leuze proposed that themes should have less features built into them.
Along with less theme options it would be nice to see less features built into themes. There are so many themes out there with poorly implemented breadcrumbs, slideshows, and other functionality that doesn’t really need to be built in when there are so many awesome plugins they could integrate instead.
And with all the time they save by choosing established plugins instead of rolling their own, they can concentrate on sweet designs instead
With that being said, do you know of any themes that concentrate exclusively on providing a rich, beautiful presentation of content without all the doo dads attached onto it such as sliders, breadcrumbs, flashy headers, etc.? A theme that takes each post type and turns that piece of content whether it be a video, image, or blockquote into a thing of beauty. I’m willing to bet that most WordPress themes be it free or commercial do not accomplish that task out of the box. Instead, it seems like it takes a skilled designer or team of designers to turn a specific WordPress theme into a great presentation of content. However, the monkey wrench thrown into the equation is that themes are subjective and what looks great to one person may look like crap to someone else. If you can find a theme that accomplishes everything I’ve mentioned out of the box, I think that gets you closer to a 1,000 hour head start.