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SimpleSites4U says

Hey folks

Just wanted to ask something about posting themes currently underway here for comments from you guys – is that something that is acceptable? I askin as im currently looking to expand to TF from CC and although i like how things are shaping up, id really appreciate a fresh set of eyes to take a look and point out any faults or anything missing/looks crap

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KingDog Staff says

No problem at all. That’s what the Item Discussion forum is for :)

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SimpleSites4U says

OK, iv been making serious progress and am pretty much ready to see what you guys thinks before i submit

it will be my first TF item so want to make sure i give myself the best shot

now for previewing, is it safe to just go ahead and post a link? or is it worth looking at some of the code obfuscation methods iv seen mentioned here?

im actually nervous about putting a link up knowing how much time has gone into the theme, i just hope some folks like it!

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jonathan01 says

post screen shots reduced to 80% or something

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SimpleSites4U says

here is a few images

main home page

just a pic of what happens when you roll over an image on home and category pages etc

Portfolio 3 column

single post

still a little rough but its gathering pace so i expect it will be done soon

the background, dark colours and orange highlites are just an options from the settings page so can all be altered by the user

what are your thoughts folks?

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rktic says

Since i seem to belong to your target audience being a designer/blogger, here’s my honest & hopefully constructive feedback.

Homepage

I wouldn’t know what to do with a slider and the portfolio items directly underneath it, since it’s probably filled with the same content, hence an either/or decision. I don’t like sliders anyway (personal opinion!) so stick with the portfolio items (second teaser block).

There’s no break in the grid as you scroll down – the layout becomes a bit repetitive and static. A different column size would be helpful in this regard.

Portfolio teaser & Portfolio grid

Those don’t need such a prominent date display, neither comments. In worst case those reveal the lack of comments (hence public interest) or that i’ve been kinda lazy lately since the last project has been posted 2 months ago. I think the black area underneath a portfolio item in that second teaser block is a “read more” link? Since you most likely already set a link from the image or title (or both) you could think about getting rid of those.

Single post

Creative folks most likely blog about beautiful images, photography, videos and stuff like that imho bigger is better. If you browse around designer and agency portfolios you barely find sidebars cause they simply add clutter and distract from the main content. I know it’s a common practise at TF to add sidebars (the more, the merrier) and that’s something i don’t get at all.

Social buttons are an additional layer of clutter. If i’ve got an amazing project people will tweet it anyway. More on this topic here: http://informationarchitects.net/blog/sweep-the-sleaze/

Typography

The overall typography looks like browser standard. Rough guess it’s amongst the last things on your to-do list? Since it’s such a crucial part in design i’d always start with that, use real world content instead of lorem ipsum (cause you just won’t start thinking about linebreaks, readability, legibility etc if it’s just visual noise).

Last words

I’m almost sorry for my criticism and already thought about not replying at all. Then again good critique is what gets one further and really hope my input belongs to that category…

All the best! Ronny

PS: tried to keep it short, hope it doesn’t sound pissed – it’s not meant to be!!!

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SimpleSites4U says

Hi there

Thank you so much for taking time to respond

I should have been clear and stated that I’ve given the user a lot if control should they need it

The slider can show either it’s own custom post type, or recent posts (from either all categories or from a specific one)

The same for the carousel, it can show either all posts or any cat you choose

All meta info has a switch too, for each post type – so user can turn off the number of comments (for instance) for portfolio items if they wish, or they cam turn off all meta info on blog posts – its all set up and can be controlled by the admin panel

The same is true for social buttons and breadcrmbs and comments, they can all be turned on or off

Thank again for your response, I hope what iv explained shows you the level of control for the theme, without being OTT

You spot on regards fonts, I’m still playing with ideas and also trying to weave some decent customisation options too

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rktic says

Such a level of control is a good thing – make sure you’ll make it clear once your theme is done! And don’t be worried about giving too much info – that’s exactly what most theme introduction pages lack. “+xxx admin options” isn’t much helpful here.

And while i’m at it, most themes seem to lack options for category & tag templates – at least according to the demos and feature presentations. Those are important for navigating through content heavy blogs and i don’t understand why they’re often left behind.

Good luck with the finalizing steps and your marketplace entry!

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SimpleSites4U says

I should say also each post type has option to enable or disable sidebars, so blog posts for instance can show sidebar, while portfolio items can be full width

Oh and slider and home page sections can each be disabled or control how many posts to show in each ‘block’

I’m happy you’ve not just said it looks rubbish, so at least ever all the design is not offensively bad, which was my worry

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SimpleSites4U says

Had a very busy past 24 hours

Iv added google fonts to the theme, where users can select a particular font from my selection of best fonts to be used in headers, as well as separate font option from different body fonts for the bunch iv selected. and improved overall typography acress the theme

Also simplified the mods for each post type so user can show or hide meta data for each type as well as select a layout (left side bar/right sidebar/ no side bar) for each post type as well as single pages

I just need to finish up a few things and I’ll upload a demo

Given the grumbln about recent quality on tf I’d love to know your thoughts folks

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