17 High Quality and Free Responsive WordPress Themes

There is a lot of talk within the web design community about responsive design at the moment, at its most basic it means serving up different versions of your web site depending what size screen resolution a person is using. So you would have one version for widescreen desktops, a smaller version for smaller resolutions and then a mobile version for smart phones etc. It’s a concept I like – its nice when browsing on your phone and you receive a nicely formatted version which makes it easier to read. There are a number of WordPress themes with responsive layouts thats have been released for free, which I will cover in this blog post.

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Ari WordPress Theme

Ari is a minimalistic, flexible three-column blog theme. The theme uses CSS3 media queries for its responsive layout and is therefore optimized for tablet pcs and smart phones (the theme switches to a two-column layout when viewed on a horizontal iPad screen, and to a one-column layout on iPhones). You can also choose a dark color scheme and the backgound-, text- and link-colors can be customized in the theme options page.


Yoko is a modern three-column blog theme. A responsive layout optimizes the theme for mobile devices like tablet pcs and modern smartphones (the layout switches to a two- or one-column layout depending on the screen size the theme is viewed on). To make your blog post more flexible you can use different kinds of post formats such as gallery, image, video, aside, link or quotes. To customize the theme you can choose your own background, link color, logo and header image. Yoko also comes with a custom social links widget and shortcodes for text columns, info boxes and highlighted text.

Constellation Theme

Highly optimised WordPress framework rewritten from the ground up using HTML5, Media queries for several devices / screen resolutions with default styles included, Custom 2, 6, 9 & 12 column grids for each device, A solid 32px vertical rhythm which scales in tandem with the screen resolution.

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Responsive web design is a popular topic these days, and is proving to be a great avenue for promoting usability, simplicity, and overall compatibility. We’ve decided to build our latest simple WordPress theme around a very popular responsive boilerplate, coupled with the popular Options Framework for full customization.

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Responsive Twenty Ten

Responsive child theme for default Twenty Ten. Provides fluid layout for many browsers including mobile support for iPhone, iPad and Android. Being a child theme, it is dependent on the Twenty Ten theme as a parent.


Flexible is a WordPress Theme that helps present your content and display it to fit different screens sizes, with a design of your own. It also provides a really easy integration with Facebook and Fan Gate option, a must have if you are running a website.

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Whiteboard framework for WordPress was developed to speed up the process of developing a WordPress theme. Whiteboard does so by eliminating the time spent on code common to all WordPress themes and includes non-intrusive code that improves the overall WordPress theme in many ways – including SEO, speed, usability, and mobile support.


Renova, a new single column theme for wordpress.The main design of renova is concentrated on a minimal style dedicated to those writers who need a simple layout without any kind of useless stuff.


Scherzo is a clean, readable theme that boasts a mobile first design, which means it displays perfectly on all mobile phones as well as desktop monitors.


Foghorn is a minimalist theme built off the foundation of Twenty Eleven. It has a custom options panel for switching layouts, removing sidebars, uploading a logo, backgrounds, and changing footer text. It’s design is responsive, meaning it looks good at any browser width including iPhones and other mobile devices.


SimpleMarket is a html5 responsive theme with a simple design to complement content


The Meerkats Theme is built to respond to different platforms and devices. It is a simple and basic WordPress theme built by Gregor McKelvie. There’s no need to click on demo or preview as what you are looking at is the Meerkats Theme. Try it in different browser widths, on an iphone and on a tablet – it adapts well.

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Thematic 320 and Up

320 and up was developed by Andy Clarke, and is a great starting point for building websites that utilize the latest technologies in modern web browsers. It can be used as is, or as an extension of the HTML5 Boilerplate.

1140 Fluid Starkers

I’m a huge fan of Elliot Jay Stocks’ Starkers WordPress Theme, and an even bigger fan of the 1140 CSS Grid, the absolutely fantastical fluid down to mobile grid framework. Today I needed them to marry and have a child, and this is what came of it.


A responsive and accessible WordPress theme.



Oliver Dale is the founder of Kooc Media, An Internet Company based in Manchester, UK. I founded WPLift and ThemeFurnace, find out more on my Personal Blog. Thanks!

8 thoughts on “17 High Quality and Free Responsive WordPress Themes

  1. We’re slightly late to the ‘party’ but we’ve just released a free responsive theme too: OctoPink http://www.simplywp.net/octopink-theme.html :)

    • Sorry, I’ve read too quickly and confused bbPress with buddypress. Seems like ThemeLoom is developing a lot of responsive themes for buddypress (e.g. Xi, Pure, etc.), but I’ve found a comment of Sarah Gooding that says bbPress compatibility isn’t really theme-dependent so maybe the free ones will also do!?

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