It’s the New Year and some of the hottest topics across web design blogs have been focused on the future of web design and the sorts of design trends you will expect to see in the next year (2013).
Throughout my time working with WordPress I’ve seen how themes have changed from one year to the next. Not only design trends but also in terms of overall styles and functionality. Looking over the latest trends in WordPress theme development as well as overall web design I’ve put together a list of what I think are some of the things we’ll be seeing a lot of when it comes to theming in 2013. As a theme developer it’s important to stay on top of these trends not only because you want to provide users/customers with modern themes using all the latest WP functions and designed with the hottest trends… but also because that’s usually where the money is at!
Without further adieu, below are my WPExplorer approved predictions for WordPress theme design and development in 2013.
Microsoft sparked interest and imaginations with their Windows 8 design, and it’s sure to be popular in 2013. Bold blocky elements and minimal styling will be all over WordPress marketplaces this year, and I’m sure will see the metro influence in all areas (plugins, templates, and psds included).
Here are a few themes that are already ahead of the game:
Metro Style for sale on ThemeForest is a great minimal metro theme. The bright color and bold layout capture your attention and the theme is full of fun extras.
Nemo is a perfect example of a dark metro style theme, and is for sale on Themeforest. An elegant vertical navigation and grid layout are great features of this theme.
One Touch is a light an airy version of a metro style theme on Themeforest. Interesting sliders, hover effects, and lots of bright colors make this theme stand out.
Pantone officially introduced its color of the year, so lots of themes are sure to use a bejeweled palette with varying shades of emerald, jade, and peridot.
A great theme example of this trend (and a few others, as you’ll see as you keep on reading) is one of our old themes – Bulletin. Touches of cool jade have been added throughout the WordPress theme elements, such as buttons, accordions, pricing tables, text selection color and tag cloud (seen below) and much more.
Bulletin is a beautiful tumblog inspired theme, and is perfect for blogs and portfolios. The theme is responsive and includes useful features such as a notification bar and Ajax post loading. Also, the theme supports a variety of post formats so you can text, images, links, videos – whatever you want to share with your readers.
Depth is another great trend I see exploding this year. Parallax effects allow different layers of a theme move at different rates to create a 3D like quality by altering your perception. And luck for you, some designers already have parallax themes available.
Slide One is an elegant one page portfolio theme on Themeforest that uses parallax to feature different background images for each section. The images overlap each other as you scroll down through the site creating obvious delineations between content areas.
Mercurial is a one page corporate business theme available for purchase on Themeforest. The clean layout, bold typography, and fun parallax backgrounds are a great way to make a lasting impact on potential and new clients.
Pen & Paper is a portfolio theme for sale on Themeforest. This theme showcases a lighter parallax background effect as it transitions between various patterns rather than images.
Subtle Tone, Texture & Typography
Think subtle. Soft tones, barely there textures, and clean typography (goodbye Lobster and hello Helvetica). We use lots of resources here at WPExplorer but three of the best that relate to this trend are 0 to 255, Subtle Patterns and Font Squirrel.
0 to 255 provides designers with an easy way to find gradations of a specific color. Simply paste in the hex code for your color, or choose one at random from the massive grid on the homepage. The site then provides you with 29 variants of the color from subtle to dark.
Subtle Patterns provides web designers around the world with great patterns completely for free. Plus, they’re always adding to their collection so be sure check back often.
For typography, there are probably millions of fonts out there but it can be hard to find a font you like at a price you deem reasonable. Enter Font Squirrel – your one stop shop for excellent fonts that are both free and licensed for commercial use. Yes Google Fonts is good too, but since Font Squirrel has a couple hundred more options it wins. View by popular, recently added, or use the search bar to narrow your search.
KISS – Keep It Simple Stupid
When in doubt, keep it simple stupid. 2013 will be full of clean, simple, uncluttered themes. This puts more focus on quality content. Take a look at some of the theme stores that have already jumped on the minimal bandwagon. Not only do they make clean themes, their own sites match their design aesthetics.
Themes Kingdom underwent a redesign and emerged with in a beautifully minimal site. They also offer some great themes with lots of clean lines and simple design touches.
MintThemes provides many clean and simple niche WordPress themes for band, churches, blogs, and more. Their own site is no exception to this rule.
ElegantThemes is a great source of minimal and of course elegant WordPress themes, including their own. Their collection is bursting with lovely and straightforward themes.
What do you think of my predictions above? What do you think the WordPress trends in 2013 will be like? Let me know – I’d love to hear what you think!