After years with the basic WordPress default theme, I decided it was time for a spring wardrobe update at GravitationalPull.net. I wanted a new theme compatible with the latest version of WordPress as well as the plug-ins I rely on like SpamKarma and Automattic’s wicked cool sidebar widgets manager. Some of the theme preview sites I’d used in the past, like Alex King’s handy Theme Browser site, failed to let me filter for my requirements so I turned to WordPress’s own lengthy list of widget-ready themes. There’s no previewer so I clicked through to a couple of dozen sites to see for myself, as well as to check compatibility with WordPress 2.1.
The winner of this beauty and usability contest was Mandigo. I was especially impressed not just with the look and the high tweakability quotient but also with the author Tom Picard’s frequent updates and useful explanations (in the comments thread). I downloaded the theme package, uploaded to my WordPress theme directory, followed the simple directions to create my own header image and voila. I’m not in love with the little star bullet points in the right margin but either they’ll grow on me or I’ll tweak them, too. I’ve, of course, made a donation to support further development.