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Free WordPress 3.1 Theme: Splendio (With PSD Sources)

Today, we are glad to present a new freebie: a beautiful theme, designed by Vlad and Elena Scanteie1 which was developed exclusively for Smashing Magazine and its readers. As usual, the theme is free to use in both private and commercial projects. The theme is based upon the Twenty Ten WordPress theme and requires WordPress 3.0 to run.

Visit the demo3 or a large view4.

The upper area contains a slider where you can place extra emphasis on your most important pages. The main area can include the content of your latest blog posts. On the right side you’ll find an overview of latest blog entries as well as the latest tweets.

The upper area of the sidebar features five latest comments. You can place any widget under it as it is defined as a dynamic sidebar. Also, right above the footer you’ll find a Flickr gallery in case you wish to showcase your latest shots. The footer itself is designed in a pronounced blue, giving it a nice contrast to the rest of the design. There you you can place your≈ widgets such as Pages, Categories, Archives, and others. A soft upper area, a useful middle area, and a strong footer are the essence of this theme.

Download the Theme for Free! Link

The theme is released under GPL. You can use it for all your projects for free and without any restrictions. Please link to this article if you want to spread the word. You may modify the theme as you wish.


Screenshots Link

The footer area.

Main content area.

The comments area.

Behind the Design Link

As always, here are some insights from the designer:

“Releasing a theme on Smashing Magazine is always a challenge for us at DesignDisease. A challenge we look forward to. ‘Splendio’ is a theme where we try to solve the empty space that exists around most themes with a joyful rhythm of lines and squares, complimented with a light color palette. The specialized header images complete the package, as it can be used both in a static or randomized manner.”

Thank you, Vlad and Elena! We sincerely appreciate your work and your good intentions.

Footnotes Link

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  1. 1

    Definitely great looking Theme. What I like the most is that Splendio isn’t just another clone. Different is good!

  2. 2

    That’s a great theme! It’s differrent… It’s weird. But I like it. Maybe I’ll play a wee bit with it (!) for a client that needs a fresh theme.

  3. 3

    Benjamin Zalasky

    May 30, 2011 10:23 am

    I love the fade out behavior on the inactive links. It’s a nice touch.

    • 4

      Carlo Rizzante

      May 31, 2011 3:21 am

      Indeed is a cosy effect. Anyone knows how is made? I’m trying to figure it out, and I’m a bit lost. Thanks in advance.

      • 5

        You can recreate that with just css,

        ul {
        list-style-type: none;
        color: #666666;
        padding: 0px; margin: 0px;

        ul:hover a {
        color: #ccc;
        -webkit-transition: all 0.5s ease;
        -moz-transition: all 0.5s ease;
        -o-transition: all 0.5s ease;
        transition: all 0.5s ease;

        li a:hover, li a, li:hover a {
        color: #666666;

    • 6

      Just use jQuerys .not Selector on hover

  4. 7

    does this theme work on 3.1 and higher?

  5. 8

    Honestly? Found rather rude. With the exception of the application with jQuery.

  6. 9

    Really ugly theme

  7. 10

    Great theme. Thanks SM

  8. 11

    Syed Balkhi

    May 30, 2011 11:50 am

    Great theme guys :) P.S. Remember the Capital P in the footer for WordPress <<

  9. 12

    I love this theme! Out of the box!

  10. 13

    Yet another great resource from one of our top romanian designers. GG Vlad & Elena…u make us proud :)

  11. 14

    nice soft color theme, tanksfor sharing

  12. 15

    the design is great..
    remembering me on some design agency website

  13. 16

    guys, i am sorry,
    but your theme sucks!

    bad usability!

  14. 17

    Great Work! Thank you.

  15. 18

    I appeciate the lovely detail: mouse hover in the twitter zone. It’s not essential, vital, but definetly wonderful.
    In other hand, the menu looks weak, I mean, compared with the kind of details I mentioned above (hope you don’t mind the comment).
    But all in all the theme is fresh and good looking, very architectural in a way.
    Many thanks to give us a chance to put our hands on so beautiful piece of work!
    So long.

  16. 19

    hey hey hey, that’s really rude.. It’s a free theme and obviously it’s alot more than you deserve… you want something amazing.. PAY FOR IT…

  17. 20

    It’s a different type of theme, I’ll give you that.
    It’s rather nice, good work Vlad and Elena.

  18. 21

    Wow guys why so much negative comments for a FREE THEME?
    If you’re looking for perfect stuff then go and buy a premium theme!

    I think it looks fantastic and very creative. The jQuery stuff only adds to the show. Clearly people who are saying its ugly don’t understand the modern design language on the internet. Trust me it is really hard now to create unique themes!

    Great work guys and thanks for the contribution to the community :)

    • 22

      Not because it is free you do badly, ops, say ugly. I liked the usability, and differential jquery he adopted. But overall it was a theme unusable.

      Honestly, you would use this theme in some site of yours?

  19. 23

    It’s remind me about the passion for something free. It simply inspires me strong! Thanks for great crew!

  20. 24

    I love SM but this theme really sucks…

  21. 25

    Looks great theme. It would be very nice if you can consider below points with next release of this theme.

    – Use of Short codes
    – Full width page
    – contact form


    • 26

      If you are worried about a contact form, download a contact form plug-in and create a contact form page. Most themes don’t come with a contact form.

  22. 27

    Franklin Manuel

    May 30, 2011 9:59 pm

    Splendio is not just a usual design we see on the web. Its a modern design.

  23. 28

    Gives me a holiday vibe for some reason…this would be excellent as a travel theme. Really happy, sunshiney feel to it. Great work guys!

  24. 29

    Hmmm…? Why ppl judge it’s ugly? It seems great in my eyes :) Nice share SM. I like it.

    Note for the haters : Why don’t you just create your own theme instead of blaming the creator? Beside,, Hey.. This is free?!

  25. 30

    Anterpreet Singh

    May 30, 2011 10:29 pm

    No doubt this is a great theme, but I wonder why I am seeing this type of wordpress themes all over the web from reputed developers. I purchased membership of elegant themes but all their themes have a very dull and irritating typography. I also tried a theme from themeforest that was promising to do a lot but didn’t.

    My only point is that sites like Mashable,TechCrunch and even a design blog SmashingMagazine use clean layout, clean typography and a lot of whitespace then why can’t we get such simple design at affordable prices.

    We can download this type of advanced themes for free but we have to pay hundreds of dollars to a developer for creating a simple theme. I am confused!

    • 31

      Hi Amanpreet, pls. try to find minimalistic themes, that can solve your problems some of them are
      1. Sight
      2. Paragram
      3. 2011

      You can find hundreds of more but as it is a trend to use heavy themes, good developers have to create. You can find such themes on smashingmagazines too by searching minimalistic themes.

  26. 32

    I like this theme but where are the instructions?

    What size images do I have to set up?
    How do the featured content images work?
    What sizes do I have to set my featured content gallery to?

    Free or not an author must inform his users on how to use the theme or it won’t get used.

    • 33

      Carlo Rizzante

      May 31, 2011 12:41 am

      Sure having instructions or sort of manual wouldn’t hurt, but… c’mon… aren’t you asking a bit too much for something that come for free for any use you wanna do?

    • 34

      I wonder how many of the people commenting have actually tried using this theme?

      Out of the box none of the images are sized correctly, the featured content does not work as the plugin is too big for the theme, the thumbnail sizes in WordPress do not match what is required…

      I’ve yet to see a theme released on SM that does not at least include some basic ReadMe.txt.

      Other than that I really like the style.


      I’ve set my thumbnails to 180×180, configured the border for the featured content to #FFFFFF and set the size to be 598px wide and 253px high. That seems to work.

      There, that wouldn’t have taken long for the author to document now would it?

    • 35

      I really like the theme and I am trying to use for my personal blog. Unfortunately, I am not a developer and I do not understand where I have to set the links for Twitter, feed and Facebook (the one at the top right corner).
      Any idea/help?


      • 36

        To add your Facebook, Twitter, etc. addresses to the buttons at the top open the theme editor and open the Header.php file. For Twitter find the line that has a class=”s2″ href=”#” title=”Twitter. The # is where you put the URL for your twitter.

    • 37

      I agree, at least a few instructions should be present somewhere maybe some way to contact the authors in order to offer some kind of payment for support. one little glitch and the time you invest in solving it on your own will remind you about the “free lunch…” Please if anyone knows the whereabouts of how to set up this theme would be great.


  27. 38

    Carlo Rizzante

    May 31, 2011 12:38 am

    Fresh and joyful, brilliant theme!
    I will use it straight away for a blog with friends, and test it out. Surely I’ll have something to learn ;)

    Thanks for sharing.

  28. 39

    The interesting thing about this theme are the very geometric and “think out the box” shapes.

  29. 40

    The theme look nice but it looks like the top their is little over populated for me. I mean the things at the top is too much for me. If it can be clean a little bit as the bottom is, then it will look perfect for me.

  30. 41

    Navjot Singh

    May 31, 2011 2:30 am

    The theme is based on Twenty Ten and has so much code from it. Why not release it as a proper Child theme? Should be easier for both developer and the end user.

  31. 42

    This theme for drupal would be great!

    Very nice!

  32. 43

    Nice theme! Thank you.

  33. 44

    This is one cool theme, its very different and unique and that’s what I like about it, Great job

  34. 45

    Glen Pridgen

    May 31, 2011 5:04 am

    I love this theme! The code is well written and well documented. The colors are interesting without looking silly. Great Job. I call this a Premium Free Them for sure! GREAT WORK!!!! (and yes, i am yelling)

  35. 46

    I mean… I guess I *like* it – but there are a few changes I would make if my client wanted to use this theme.

    1) I wouldn’t spell WordPress wrong in the footer.

    2) I feel like this person just learned JQuery because its everywhere- and they wanted to use every function possible. I feel as though JQuery should be subtle and enhance the experience. It just feels a bit amateurish.

    3) The footer colors are HORRIBLE. On my screen- that dark orange over blue makes my eyes BLEED. Not only does it completely clash- but the screen rendering is painful and actually makes the edges of the orange box blurry.

    4) The comments field is a mess. It just looks…. disorienting.. I don’t think I would even want to use the form to make a comment.

    5) The recent comments hover doesn’t match the rest of the website. I feel like that was a “Oh, lets just stick this here” element of design. Someone just wanted to do folded corner somewhere…

    I have a few other comments… but that’s starting to get into the code side, but I’ll refrain because I feel like I’m starting to sound mean.


  36. 47

    Moldován Eduárd

    May 31, 2011 5:55 am

    I think the theme is great. It has a different style, with interesting colors. But still, it is eye-catching. I love the fade on menu and other elements. That is great idea for making the focus more obvious,

  37. 48

    Why is everyone that dares to criticize it being voted down? It’s a touch pathetic.

    I am sure most of us appreciate that it’s free but that doesn’t mean it’s not open to criticism and that it’s a perfect design – because it is, and it is not.

    It’s a bold design and I can totally get that they wanted to do something differently. But for me the colours are just a bit too much and the layout is quite cluttered.

    I’m sure though with some tweaking it could be made better.

    I DO appreciate it is for free. No doubt I’ll still get voted down though…

  38. 49

    Frank Kiigan

    May 31, 2011 7:21 am

    Great article!

    Now I understand what CodeMyConcept did in order to develop my website.

    Thanks a lot!

  39. 50

    Nice theme..

    Needs to be added ~ clear:both; ~ to .SL .post
    so that Archive listing will come properly on the browsers.


  40. 51

    for EVERYONE who has a bad comment, please do urself a favor and share something better and unmistakable!!

  41. 52

    Wierd theme, in a nice kind of way

  42. 53

    Sorry, terrible colours, no flow.. not even sure what application this could be used in. It actually hurts my eyes.

  43. 54

    rakhmat suwandi

    May 31, 2011 4:34 pm

    awesome..that’s nice theme :D

  44. 55

    splendid! i love it!

  45. 56

    Good theme and will try it. I use some of the other themes by design disease.

  46. 57

    Simple but nice WP themes. Thanks a lot.

  47. 58

    Wow Sweet! Thanks very much!!

  48. 59

    Jason Stearns

    June 1, 2011 4:39 am

    Great theme!

  49. 60

    Eytan Ginosar

    June 1, 2011 4:40 am

    Wow, awesome..that’s a very nice theme!
    will try it and translate to RTL
    Thanks very much!!

  50. 61

    I didn’t like the header part of website but anyways really nice template to user.

    Thanks !

  51. 62

    Nice theme! I publish on my site. Thank you.

  52. 63

    Arif Riyanto

    June 2, 2011 6:54 am

    It’s great! I like it, thanks

  53. 64

    Visually chaotic and could be very punk, but lack of contrast makes it just a schlager-punk. Pitty :)

  54. 65

    Virendra Lodhi

    June 2, 2011 10:54 pm

    I am glad

  55. 66

    Very nice design great theme. Thanks!

  56. 67

    Links seem to be dead.

  57. 68

    The demo requires a password…??

  58. 69

    Yes, the live demo can only be viewed with a password :-((((((

  59. 70

    Jaspal Singh

    June 5, 2011 8:08 pm

    demo is not working .. pls check

  60. 71

    Richard Thiel

    June 5, 2011 11:34 pm

    The whole designdisease Page is Password protected. It´s not the fault of #SM.

  61. 72

    Ok, I set up the different accounts, but now… how do I set a posta as a featured one?

    • 73

      If you are having trouble with the featured posts showing up make sure you installed ALL of the files including the featured slider files per the Read Me instructions.

      If you have done it correctly, your posting page will have a check box on it to allow you to select Feature in Featured Content Slider. Then it will show up. If it doesn’t work, you didn’t install the files correctly.

  62. 74

    Tested it, great theme with lots of potential.

  63. 75


    June 11, 2011 10:36 am

    I can’t figure out how to add the Facebook and Twitter information to the menu links. I even tried to just edit the page template directly and it didn’t work. Anybody figure that one out yet?

  64. 76

    This theme is great and just what I was looking for. I am using it on my blog site about antiques and collectibles. I changed the colors (orange didn’t fit my style), got rid of the recent comments box, added my logo and got rid of the header picture.

    This themes works really well for my needs. I have never gotten a theme, free or purchased, that didn’t need some sort of modification to make it better.

  65. 77


    June 25, 2011 7:13 am

    I’m in the midst of trying to use the theme, but I’m struggling to get the slider to behave as shown in the demo (image won’t sit to right, wants to sit below the text, crowding out the adjacent post. Any help gratefully accepted?

    Agree with the fellow who suggested some instructions would have been great (and good manners, even for a freebie).

  66. 78

    thanks, it’s great themes.

  67. 79

    Friends help find a plugin or widget is a slide show for this theme, and it is better this is a slide show that provided by the author here! Help is needed!! Author or people hear me!

  68. 80

    Not able to get the slider or flickr gallery to work. I re-installed couple of times, but same problem. Other than that theme is great!

  69. 81

    10/10 for this theme, amazing work…. I shouldn’t tell you but you should make it premium. I’ll ready to pay for it though i downloaded it free…

  70. 82

    I found this in this theme…..(while scanning with Exploit Scanner)

    Often used to execute malicious code async:false,dataType:”script”}):c.globalEval(b.text||b.textContent||b.innerHTML||””
    Often used to execute malicious code p;f.indexOf(“javascript”)>=0)c.globalEval(a);return a},param:function(a,b){function d(j,n
    Often used to execute malicious code eval(function(p,a,c,k,e,r){e=function(c){return(c<

    Is this the reason for making it free???
    to hack others websites???
    Checkout this article about these type of malicious codes:

  71. 83

    This theme contains Malicious code for hacking, scan this theme with Exploit Scanner, a WP plugin….
    That’s why it is free….

  72. 84

    i falling in love with this theme… :)

  73. 85

    Very good tip.

  74. 86

    How do I remove this code from vrednonosny theme?
    Как удалить этот вредноносный код из темы?

  75. 87

    Free is good, but that’s ugly and apparently the creator doesn’t like frank opinions given the ratings on people saying what they think.

  76. 88

    Hi there,
    I like very much this theme – many-many thanks to Vlad and Elena!!!
    I understand that this theme is free and what we can demand?
    It is very pity that this NICE theme has some problems – it will be GOLD without them.
    I am not “programmer” but I would like to ask all interested to make some necessary improvements in this theme to make it “almost” perfect.

    I checked this theme with Theme-Check plugin and it found many errors in codes…
    It is impossible to attach all file but some brief fragments are:

    One or more errors were found for Splendio
    • WARNING: Found wrong tag, remove widget-ready/ google-fonts/ flickr-rss/ from your style.css header.
    • WARNING: Found wrong tag, remove content-slider from your style.css header.
    • WARNING: thumbs.db Windows thumbnail store found.
    • WARNING: readfile was found in the file images/headers/randomheader.php possible file operations.
    Line 26: readfile($headers[$random]);
    • REQUIRED: The theme doesn’t have post pagination code in it. Use posts_nav_link() or paginate_links() or next_posts_link() and previous_posts_link() to add post pagination.
    • REQUIRED: get_settings found in the file functions.php. Deprecated since version 2.1. Use get_option() instead.
    Line 34: $time_difference = get_settings( ‘gmt_offset’ );
    • REQUIRED: License: is missing from your style.css header.
    • REQUIRED: License URI: is missing from your style.css header.
    • RECOMMENDED: Text domain problems in tag.php/ single.php/ search.php/ loop.php/ index.php/ header.php/ functions.php/ footer.php/. The twentyten text domain is being used!
    • RECOMMENDED: No reference to add_custom_background() was found in the theme. If the theme uses background images or solid colors for the background, then it is recommended that the theme implement this functionality.
    • RECOMMENDED: bloginfo( template_url) was found in the file header.php. Use get_template_directory_uri() instead.
    • RECOMMENDED: Author URI: is missing from your style.css header.
    • INFO: index.php The theme appears to use include or require. If these are being used to include separate sections of a template from independent files, then get_template_part() should be used instead.
    Line 17: <?php include (ABSPATH . '/wp-content/plugins/wp-featured-content-slider/content-

    May be we could improve this theme?!
    Thanks for attention.
    Your replies highly desirable.

  77. 89

    This is absolutely gorgeous! The best WP Theme I’ve ever seen!!!

  78. 90

    I must be missing something. If I try to install the theme via Upload of the .zip file, I get:

    The package could not be installed. The theme is missing the style.css stylesheet.

    Theme install failed.

    If I unpack the .zip file and copy the Splendio folder into my wp-content/themes folder, I can activate the theme, but there is absolutely NO options or settings link in the WordPress Appearance menu.

    I’ve tried searching for help with this issue, but find nothing to indicate anyone else has had this problem.

    Oh well.

    • 91

      Dan, I had the same problem. No style.css so installation failed.

      I really like the fresh look of this theme, but the comments about vulnerability / malicious code disturb me so much that I am not going to use it. I do think it’s a shame that the developers did not respond to that comment.

  79. 92

    Jonathan Foo

    March 8, 2012 4:35 pm

    I love your splendio theme and have used it in my wordpress blog. I want to ask you how can I change the body text size in the posts because the blog is in chinese characters and the default size is too small. I am not familiar with html codes. Thanks again for your great work.

  80. 93

    Lovely! I’m using this theme in

  81. 94

    Estellei Preuettb

    August 10, 2012 2:31 am

    IЎ¦ve recently started a site, the information you offer on this web site has helped me tremendously. Thanks for all of your time & work.


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