One problem with using a WordPress theme is your website will look similar to other websites using the same theme. The answer…? Customize! That’s what Tom from Sundance Cabin Rentals did. He wanted a banner with his logo, phone number, and some background scenery. He said he was going to stay with the Rustic theme (it does have a log cabin look!), so we chose to customize the whole header instead. I made four banner styles (winter, spring, summer, fall) , and four radio buttons to change them whenever he likes. Now Sundance Cabin Rentals has it’s own unique design that sets it apart from other websites that use the Rustic theme. Plus it makes the whole website look more professional and custom made!
Coming soon to wordpress.org, and available here now (for free), this latest version of Rustic is a major upgrade. It has three new styles including “Pink Light”, “Blue Light”, and “Brown Wood”. You can choose your own Google web font, and font color. It comes with built-in portfolio capability. Add music, video, and pictures to your portfolio pages and view them in “Pretty Photo” lightbox (see RUSTIC PORTFOLIO DEMO in the main menu). There’s an option to use your own Logo Image in the header as well. WordPress 3.1 or later required. Here’s the Download Link. (Videoplayer powered by NonverBlaster:hover.)
I’ve just submitted Rustic version 1.1 to wordpress.org, but because it can take a few days to get reviewed, I am making it available for download here today. Rustic 1.1 has a ‘Trees/No Trees’ option for those who prefer plain wood and paper without the trees. You can find it on the ‘Rustic Theme Options’ page, under the ‘Appearance’ tab in the wordPress admin. I’ve also made the image sizes 50% smaller for faster loading, and narrowed the gap between the menu and first post. Here’s the Download Link.
UPDATE: Theme now available at wordpress.org.
Linda, who asked me to make a version of my Rustic WordPress theme without the trees, thought Rustic would be good for her BBQ sauce business website: Mississippi HEAT Habanero BBQ Sauce. Later, Linda contacted me after struggling with her website saying, “I’m not yet ready to cry Uncle but…” and asked if I would help make a custom version of Rustic for her business. I agreed. She said she liked the Jack Daniels site style, so I took my inspiration from them. I followed their lead with the layout and overall look, then worked with Linda step by step to build the site. By now I realized that I wasn’t customizing Rustic anymore, but was building a site from scratch! This was good because I had worked on Rustic enough and needed to build my portfolio, plus I had a chance to help a “Mom and Pop” business. It took two weeks to finish and we are happy with the result: A custom WordPress website, and a great experience cooperating with a client to reach a goal. Now Linda and her husband Ted can take control of their new website, changing it however they wish, because it’s WordPress. WordPress is a great platform for small businesses and for web designers like me. At the end of the day, the custom WordPress site is a custom WordPress theme: A neat little package you plug into WordPress and it works like a charm!
I got a request from a very nice person named Linda for a treeless version of the Rustic wordpress theme, so I re-made the images without trees. I will include this option in a later version of Rustic, but for now you can Download The Images Without Trees and put them in the theme yourself! First delete the “images” folder in the “Rustic” theme folder. Then put in the “images-no-trees” folder, and change it’s name to “images”. You’re basically replacing all the images. Good luck!
Looking for a nice textured look for your WordPress website? My new “Rustic” theme will be available soon as a free download. It’s made from old brown paper and wood. I think it has a nice calm feeling like a black and white nature photo. It makes color images pop! I’ll put a download link here when it’s done. Won’t be too long from now…I hope.
UPDATE: Here’s the Download Link.
I have just completed my second free WordPress theme. I call it cosmic wind because of all the leaves blowing in space! I think it makes a strong first impression because the header is so vivid. Some of the elements were inspired by a tutorial by N Design Studio I found in Web Designer magazine. It’s a kind of New Age theme. You can almost smell the incense if you try really hard! If it was a poster I would have wanted it when I was a kid back in 1970. It’s yours for free if you like it. Nothing complicated. Just download the zip, unzip and place in wordpress theme folder. Then activate from WordPress admin. Look forward to any feedback, complaints or suggestions. Enjoy!