For those of you that know me and Cavespider you'll be aware that I have a bit of a thing about off the shelf themes and templates. All the websites I create are bespoke, I create the templates for all my new websites.
I do, occasionally, take on the management of a website that was created using a ready made theme. Often from the likes of Yootheme or theme forest, there are many of them. To give them credit these templates take serious man hours to design and create. They have to be robust, flexible and hopefully reasonably easy to use. The results can look quite good and they do provide a solution though they may not save you as much as you might expect, unless you're creating the website yourself.
I have been creating websites since long before there were such things as themes, though I wasn't at the stage of tying dinosaur bones together. So creating a website from scratch is not new to me, it's the norm. I have tried using a ready made template and I found it really frustrating. I know how I want something to look and work so trying to make something pre designed do that is harder than just building it from scratch in the first place.
There is another big positive, as far as I'm concerned, are my templates will last and have lasted the years of technologic progress. Whereas I constantly have problems with the off the shelf variety because they won't work with the latest versions of the various support software the many of the hosting companies are implementing. On occasion, too many, I have gone back to the Theme producer to find the particular theme involved is no longer supported. It's not a good look to be telling a client their website is 'end of life'.
So, if you don't mind, I'll stick to creating bespoke websites. Then I don't need to ever tell a client their website has come to an end.
- Written by Crispin Jones