First, I would like to thank Mohamad for inviting me to be a guest author on his blog. It’s an honor and very exciting! 🙂
The Baskerville 2 Theme is an older theme that has been updated with new features. It works perfectly on all devices. I experimented with about seven other themes before settling on this one. I’ll explain my reasons throughout this post.
Here is what it looks like before any customization:
Don’t be put off by it’s somewhat darker look! The header image can be changed, as can many other features. Let me tell you what I like about this theme.
Header Background: You can upload any background image that you want. Therefore, you can get rid of that dark background if you like. Below are two examples of header backgrounds from my own blog:
Navigation Menu: The navigation menu sits right below the header and has a dark background. The links are separated by a forward slash ( / ) which divides them up nicely. The theme’s search feature is also located in the navigation, on the right side. (I’ve removed mine)
Social Menu: The social menu for this theme is located in the header, right below the title and tagline. A lot of icons are supported. I don’t use social icons, and they won’t appear unless you add them.
Blog Logo: Your personal blog logo can be added and appears above the blog title. This will make the header taller in height than what’s shown in the demo. This is a nice feature if you like big headers. Personally, I specifically chose this theme because it comes with a short header; therefore, I didn’t add a logo.
Home Page and Post Formats:
Homepage: The Baskerville 2 theme uses the “boxed” look. All posts are contained within boxes, both on the homepage and on single post pages. What I really like is that the post title is contained in its own little box with a tiny arrow pointing down into the featured photo or post body. If you like an airy, open theme, then this one isn’t for you. However, if you are like me, and love organized boxes, then you’ll love this theme.
Post Formats: Baskerville 2 supports a whopping ten post formats! This is all of the formats that WordPress offers. This is a lot considering that many themes only support a few, or none at all. Each format is styled differently and looks great. I consider this to be a highlight of this theme. Below is a screenshot of some of the formats and how they look. You can also see how the post title looks, as mentioned above.
*Note: The “status” format doesn’t display in cursive writing (as shown) unless you use the original fonts that come with the theme. Once you change any of the font types, it will appear in the same font style as the “quote” format. I was disappointed with this, but not enough to not use the Baskerville 2 theme.
Page Templates and Widgets:
Page Templates (or Page Widths): The Baskerville 2 theme comes with three page templates: Full-Width, No-Sidebar, and a Contributors template.
The full-width template is quite wide and is best used for displaying photos, videos, and maps. The no-sidebar template is only slightly smaller, and is what I use for my pages and video posts. Both are centered on the page and contained in a box.
The contributors template displays your guest authors in a grid. Their name, gravatar, and profile descriptions are included, as well as links to their own post archives and websites. I don’t use this template, so I’m unable to comment further, other than to say that it’s available.
Widgets: This theme supports four widget areas; one in the right sidebar, and three in the footer area. What’s really cool about the sidebar widget (which is optional) is that it only appears on single-posts and pages, not on the homepage. The benefit of this is that visitors rarely land on your homepage. Visitors that arrive from search results are usually coming from a link pointing to a particular post; likewise for readers that visit from the Community Pool.
By having the sidebar widgets placed on post-pages, visitors will be sure to see them. If you share important information or ads in your sidebar, then you can understand what a clever feature this is!
- Sticky posts are pinned to the top of the homepage with a ribbon and a thumbtack image.
- The date and comments count are displayed at the bottom of each post on the homepage, as well as single-post pages.
- Post pages contain related posts, author bios, categories, tags, and post-navigation. These are visually separated from the rest of the post with a dark background.
- Featured photos on the homepage have a transition effect when hovered over. The featured image is also clickable and links to the post page.
- There are several color schemes to choose from for links and page background.
In my opinion, the Baskerville 2 Theme is an oldie but goody! I enjoy using it immensely. The home page looks neat and tidy, with three vertical columns of boxes. This is popular at the moment, so the theme is right on trend.
It’s easy-to-use and transition to. I can’t remember if my widgets were saved when I began using this theme, but here’s a tip you can (and should) use for any theme:
For Text, Image, and HTML widgets, before switching themes, open these widgets up and copy the contents into a Notepad document. Save on your computer. This way if you need to re-install these widgets on a new theme, you can just copy & paste the information into them; instead of having to write it all over again. 😉
No matter what theme you use, all of your pages and posts will automatically transfer over. It’s only the widgets that I’ve sometimes had to re-install. And only the three widgets mentioned above – which contain content that you add yourself – will need to be saved. The other widgets, such as recent posts, archives, etc. will automatically update themselves once you’ve installed them.
Please feel free to visit my own blog, Midnight Sage, to see what I’ve done with this theme. It’s still a work in progress, but I’m pleased with the results so far. Also, I’ve added a new page to my navigation called Theme Help. Just click on the link to check it out.
I hope this review entices you to try out the Baskerville 2 theme. Let me know if you have any questions in the comments. Thanks for reading and have a great day! 🙂