Ravel By ThemeHybrid Is A Modern WordPress Theme Designed By Tung Do

Ravel is a free new WordPress theme released by ThemeHybrid with a focus on blog, portfolio, and professional sites. It’s the result of teamwork between Justin Tadlock and Tung Do. Ravel is slick, modern, and has an eye pleasing color scheme.

Screenshot Of RavelOne of my favorite features of Ravel is the social icons that blend in seamlessly with the design. Ravel also makes use of Tadlock’s technique of using menus to add social media links making it easy to add and remove buttons. If you’re planning on using this theme to blog, the content width is only 540 pixels which is a bit cramped for my liking. Because of the cramped content space and the sidebar, it’s easy to have a post title look like a paragraph. I’d like to see at least 600 pixels dedicated to the blog portion of the theme.

Post Titles Can Easily Look Like Paragraphs
Post Titles Can Easily Look Like Paragraphs

The theme is responsive but instead of shoving all of the sidebar widgets below the site, Ravel keeps the sidebar as is and hides it. It’s accessible via a red icon that expands or contracts the sidebar. I’m curious as to whether users prefer this method over the typical behavior.

Expanding or Hiding The Sidebar In Ravel
Expanding or Hiding The Sidebar In Ravel

Ravel has built-in support for the Custom Content Portfolio plugin. This plugin allows you to manage your portfolio of design, photography, and other artwork. One of the other nice features is the custom made tabs widget. You’ll find it in the widgets administration area labeled as Ravel Tabs. Ravel Tabs is like four widgets in one. It displays recent posts, popular posts, recent comments, and a tag cloud. (Do people still use tag clouds anymore?) Tabbed widget plugins can be finicky to configure and sometimes, they don’t work well with themes. Ravel Tabs works great and is easy to configure.

Ravel contains an introductory template. This is great to use as your site’s frontpage instead of the most recent blog posts. One feature that sets ThemeHybrid themes apart from others is the use of custom styles for the visual editor. This stylesheet enables the visual editor to take on the look and feel of the frontend of the site, delivering a what you see is what you get experience. Although I prefer a darker style for the visual editor, I wonder if users will see it as a downside because of the contrast difference between the surrounding meta boxes and the editor.

Visual Editor Style Matches The Frontend Of Ravel
Visual Editor Style Matches The Frontend Of Ravel

Ravel is a great looking theme that has a look and style I’d pay for. It’s available for free from ThemeHybrid and soon, the WordPress.org Theme Directory. Tadlock said the theme has already been submitted to the directory and that’s where future updates will come from.

8 Comments


  1. Gorgeous colours and fabulous fonts.
    See so many themes with hard to read text – good to see well thought out typography.

    Many thanks to Justin and Tung.

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  2. We knew going in that this theme wouldn’t be for everyone (like the smaller post area) and would have a fairly specific audience. Personally, I’m not a fan of the sidebar handling, but I’m not really a big fan of sidebars in general anyway. You have to try new things though to get the feedback you need from users.

    Tung really stepped outside of the theme designer’s box with the design to me. It’s fun to do something really specific with a design once in a while rather than just putting out another minimally-styled black-and-white theme. I like to do themes that should be sold on their design merits rather than the feature set.

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  3. Thanks for the featuring the theme.

    About the small content space, I designed this for people looking for a portfolio theme. The blog pages are more of an add-on meant to be used like Tumblr.

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    1. Hi Tung – I need your help ASAP – for some reason every post has the word “On” at the beginning of it…????!

      Eg: http://myunseenfriends.com/

      I’ve removed the posts, redone them and still the first word is On…

      How do I turn On OFF? Thanks!

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      1. That looks more like a plugin than a theme bug to me. I bet you have a plugin installed which is messing with the “the_content” filter.

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      2. Interesting! Thanks, Ryan – I’ll do a trial and error turning them off one at a time and see what I can find. Thanks so much!

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      3. You’re brilliant – thanks! I just did a global deactivation and it’s fixed. Now to isolate the culprit. Thanks again!

        PROBLEM FIXED:

        OK – for future reference, it was the Print Press plug-in that was causing the problem.

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