Dilectio: A Smashing WordPress Theme


Update (22.12.2007): the theme had some comment errors; Elena has just fixed them. Please download the new version, you’ll find the links below.

Over the last year Elena Gafita, the creative mind behind Design Disease team, has designed a number of free WordPress themes1, as the Smashing WordPress Theme2 we released as a present for our readers during our One-Year-Anniversary in September’07. Afterwards we’ve contacted Elena and asked if it’s possible to design another WordPress theme for our readers. Elena agreed.

After we’ve discussed the details of the design and the main aims we wanted to achieve, Elena started to do her magic. The result is a fresh, clean, user-friendly and playful WordPress theme “Dilectio” — a smashing Christmas present for Smashing Magazine readers. In the following, Elena describes how the design was created and what the theme has to offer.

Please notice that all images are clickable and lead to the demo-version of the theme. You’ll find the preview- and download-links in the end of the article. There you’ll also find a bonus present for our Smashing readers.

Dilectio: A Smashing WordPress Theme Link

Dilectio WordPress Theme3
Dilectio WordPress Theme: an overview

This new theme was a quite different challenge for me, because the guys from Smashing Magazine asked something and I quote “simple, beautiful and user-friendly”. I don’t know whether I succeeded in meeting these requirements or not, but what you have in front of you is what came out of it.

Dilectio comes from the Latin Language and it means “love, solicitude, esteem”. It’s a rather atmospheric theme and to achieve this effect I started my scratch from with something that might be identified with this kind of feeling. The element I am talking about is the rounded shape that is repeating randomly, creating a beautiful and original rhythm. I’ve created “About this Blog” area just to give this identifiable element that a site needs, an area that many will remember.

Dilectio WordPress Theme4
Main content area and horizontal navigation.

Dilectio WordPress Theme5
Unordered bullets, headers and comments in the content area.

Dilectio WordPress Theme6
The comment area.

Being a designer, it’s not very common to me to write too much; it’s better to present what this theme offers and how one can use it.

Main Features Link

  • 3 Column Theme
  • Widget-ready – two sidebars (both sidebars are supporting widgets, but I recommend to use the second one from the right margin.
  • The data of the section “About this blog” is stored in the file about-blog.php, which is located into the main theme directory (see the screenshot below).
  • The theme is using 5 plugins; 4 of them are integrated into functions.php, so there is no need to install them. These plugins are WP-PageNavi7, Recent Posts8, Recent Comments9, Gravatar10 and FlickrRSS11. You can use the last one to present your Flickr images in a Flickr Photostream (see the screenshot below).

Dilectio WordPress Theme12
“About this blog”-section includes an Intro, search, links to RSS-feeds.

Dilectio WordPress Theme13
This is how Flickr Photostream may look like.

Support queries are only answered on my blog and not in this release post. Please don’t e-mail me or contact with support requests.

Preview and Download Link

The Dilectio Theme is released under Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 License17. This means that you may use it for your personal and commercial projects and you may also make any changes — just don’t remove the credits in your footer. ;-)

A Happy New Year to everyone!

Elena — Design Disease18

Bonus: Dilectio Wallpaper Link

[Editors:] Elena has also designed a wallpaper dedicated to the Dilectio theme. We’re genuinely happy to offer a Smashing Dilectio Wallpaper19 for our readers as bonus of the WordPress theme. You can also download the wallpaper (see the rescaled version below) in a .zip-package20 (0.1 Mb).

Click to get the wallpaper21
Dilectio WordPress Theme: Wallpaper, .png, 1024×768, 96 KB

Thank you for your work, Elena.

Smashing holidays, folks!

Footnotes Link

  1. 1 http://wp-themes.designdisease.com/free-wordpress-themes/
  2. 2 http://www.smashingmagazine.com/2007/09/07/smashing-freefont-and-wordpress-theme
  3. 3 http://www.wp-themes.designdisease.com/testrun/?theme=dilectio
  4. 4 http://www.wp-themes.designdisease.com/testrun/?theme=dilectio
  5. 5 http://www.wp-themes.designdisease.com/testrun/?theme=dilectio
  6. 6 http://www.wp-themes.designdisease.com/testrun/?theme=dilectio
  7. 7 http://lesterchan.net/wordpress/readme/wp-pagenavi.html
  8. 8 http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/recent-posts/
  9. 9 http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/recent-comments/
  10. 10 http://site.gravatar.com/site/implement#section_2_2
  11. 11 http://eightface.com/wordpress/flickrrss/
  12. 12 http://www.wp-themes.designdisease.com/testrun/?theme=dilectio
  13. 13 http://www.wp-themes.designdisease.com/testrun/?theme=dilectio
  14. 14 http://wp-themes.designdisease.com/2007/12/21/dilectio-wordpress-theme/
  15. 15 http://www.wp-themes.designdisease.com/testrun/?theme=dilectio
  16. 16 http://wp-themes.designdisease.com/download-manager.php?id=6
  17. 17 http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/
  18. 18 http://designdisease.com/
  19. 19 http://www.smashingmagazine.com/images/dilectio/dilectio-wallpaper.jpg
  20. 20 http://www.smashingmagazine.com/pdfs/dilectio-wallpaper.zip
  21. 21 http://www.smashingmagazine.com/images/dilectio/dilectio-wallpaper.jpg

↑ Back to top Tweet itShare on Facebook

The Smashing team loves high-quality content and cares about the little details. Through our online articles, Smashing Books, eBooks as well as Smashing Conferences, we are committed to stimulating creativity and strengthening the web design community’s creative forces.

  1. 1

    That’s really great! The minimalist details make the theme perfect… Thanks!

  2. 2

    Sweetness!!! Free stuff it raining from heaven!!!!

  3. 3

    Looks great! Really good looking. Happy holidays everybody!

  4. 4

    Really nice ! I love the colors. I think a “lite” version without the swirly things would look great too. Although I love those swirly things, I even used them on my own site !

    By the way, I noticed something weird. When you google for “smashing magazine”, this site doesn’t appear in the results ! Anybody else experienced this ?

  5. 5

    fantastic :) really inspirating

  6. 6

    Holy moly… now that’s a beautiful WordPress theme!

  7. 7
  8. 8

    Very ugly theme, standard creation of DesignDisease. I’m getting sick of this.

  9. 9

    This theme is truly gorgeous! I absolutely love it.

    I noticed in Firefox, however, that when the screen is maximised, the bottom scrollbar appears. Nothing major, but one of this annoying niggles that drives an OCD addict like me insane!

    Truly great theme though! :)

  10. 10

    This theme looks awesome. Great christmas gift for the community.

    Are you plan to offer other color schemes as well?

  11. 11

    Felicitari Elenei!

  12. 12

    Nice work.

  13. 13

    I really like the layout on the theme and the colors that you used. I also like how you made it clean but also have a some artsy elements to it.

  14. 14

    I’m with you. I think this theme looks like all the other “wow holy s*** uber-smashing” WP themes. I’ve seen much better ones during my web experience. But thanks for this post anyways, it showed me what “smashing” means for some people ;)

    Happy Holidays!
    — tux.

  15. 15

    Definitely one of the nicest themes I’ve seen. Thanks.

  16. 16

    It’s nice, i will use it on my blog

  17. 17

    beautiful work, thanks!

  18. 18

    Wow, Smashing has really taken a trip down the drain.

  19. 19

    This is so BEAUTIFUL! Thank you!

  20. 20

    It is a nice theme! Not as nice as babawaba.com will be though! Muhahaha.

  21. 21

    gratitud, Elena y a Smashing Magazine, un gran obsequio de Navidad.

  22. 22

    I keep getting the following error:

    Fatal error: Call to undefined function the_title_attribute() in /home/omthrus/public_html/seoul/wp-content/themes/dilectio/index.php on line 13

  23. 23

    Really like the look of this theme…

    I’m trying to use it on my site but can’t view comments posted by my users. The error i’m getting is – Fatal error: Call to undefined function is_wpuser_comment()

    For an example of what I talking about see – http://www.niallwalsh.net/2007/11/08/stardust/

    Any ideas anybody?

  24. 24

    The theme looks great, thanks.

  25. 25

    It’s nice, but such a wide theme that has such a narrow area for content is a bit of a waste in my eyes. Great graphics though.

  26. 26

    Seems great! But I met the same situation like “Chatmandu” ,the 23rd upper.

    Fatal error: Call to undefined function is_wpuser_comment() in /home/……./wp-content/themes/dilectio/comments.php on line 32

  27. 27

    I don’t like the font. but that can be arranged. thanks.

  28. 28

    really cool… i love it

  29. 29

    that is so cool.

  30. 30

    I’m having the same problems with comments that others have reported.

    Also, the descriptions says, “The data of the section “About this blog” is stored in the file about-blog.php, which is located into the main theme directory (see the screenshot below).” There is no about-blog.php file. That info is editable in sidebar.php

    This theme looks terrific but feels like it’s about 99% baked.


  31. 31

    Could someone show me the code and where to place so that I can add an image to the top of the theme…in the header.



  32. 32

    I too was impressed with the look of this theme until I found that my comments were getting all screwed up when I tried to make use of it. It looks like another plugin, “Official Comments” by Brett Taylor is also in use here. Bretts “Inner Geek” site seems to be down at the moment, but I believe you can still get hold of the plugin via the wp-plugins database.

  33. 33

    Superb theme! I love it.

    I’m having the same problems though – the post page is broken because of the is_wpuser_comments bug, and about-blog.php is missing.


  34. 34

    I will fix the errors and announce it here. Sorry for all the bugs. :(

  35. 35

    wow cool theme….

  36. 36

    I have updated the version so download it again. No comment error.

  37. 37

    Just superb. Awesome theme. I know I’ll be shifting some of my sites to this theme.

  38. 38
  39. 39

    OMG, I just love it!!

  40. 40

    Thanks for the quick fix… Working like a dream now!

  41. 41

    just absolutely kitschy

    a theme for people who have nothing to say but need decoration

    and one hint: don’t link the screenshot of the commentform with that design-disease, people who want to comment mix that up and are directed there all the time

  42. 42

    Just downloaded the update. No problems now.

    Thanks a lot for a great theme.

  43. 43

    I love this theme. My only issue is with the FlickrRSS. The one in in the demo & screenshot is not what is showing up on my page. Any ideas to make the images smaller so I can show the background behind them?

  44. 44

    I love this theme. My only issue is with the FlickrRSS. The one in in the demo & screenshot is not what is showing up on my page. Any ideas to make the images smaller so I can show the background behind them?

    Site: http://read.rambls.com


  45. 45

    O.o WOW!!! I love it!!! thank youuuu!!!!

  46. 46

    Pretty theme but it kills WP when I try to activate it. I get {url}/wp-admin/themes.php?activated=true in my address bar and then nothing. No admin panel, no site. Just blank. I have to remove the folder from the /themes/ directory to get my site to function. Bummer.

  47. 47

    Now i know Christmas is here !!!

    Thank you santa :P for the amazing free bies

    i will be a good boy next year too :D

  48. 48

    Thank for the early present!

    I specially like how functional the layout is — gets everything right up top without wasting space (column width).

    Great stuff!

  49. 49

    I never used WP but this theme is very nice, I like the details..very well done! Thanks!

  50. 50

    great work! thanks…


↑ Back to top