How To: Create a Magazine Style Website with the OldPaper WordPress Theme
OldPaper is a new theme from ThunderThemes and is designed to be used as a Newspaper or Magazine style theme for content-heavy blogs or websites. It is built around the Twitter Bootstrap framework so its is responsive and light-weight and it makes use of a lot of CSS animation techniques when loading the sections, you will notice this if you check the demo and scroll down the page. It is available from ThemeForest for $45.
In this review of the OldPaper theme we will take a look at the features you get access to and see how easy it is to setup and manage.
OldPaper comes bundled with the Taqyeem review plugin which supports Schema SEO Rich Snippet Review Microdata which is really handy for making your search results stand out in Google. It has 7 predefined color schemes to choose from and the ability to create your own. Post formats, theme options panel, responsive, header options and so on are all features you would expect from a commercial theme.
Design-wise the theme is quite classical which makes a change from all the ultra-modern and flat design magazine themes which are currently popular. I can see this style of design suiting a new outlet, travel site or a personal blog.
Here is a run-down of all the theme’s features:
- Bootstrap solid Framework + LESS
- Valid HTML5 / CSS3
- 7 Predefinited Skins and unlimited schemas
- Premium Review System ( Taqyeem – WordPress Review Plugin $14 Value)
- Logo upload
- Favicon upload
- Boxed or Fullwidth Layout
- 600+ Google Webfonts
- Retina Ready & Responsive Design
- WPML Ready
- Translation Ready (includes .mo/.po files)
- Ple-loader animation: You can select your favourite icon
- Compatible with WordPress 3.8+
- Animate.css animations
- Contact form 7 support
- Live Customization
- Fontawesome icons (300+ icons)
- Child-Theme Ready (and included)
- Post formats: Images + Videos + Music + Quotes
- Breaking news options: below footer (on/off options)
- Article/pages sortable options
- Redux Framework Options Panel
- Seo Friendly
- Demo XML (ready to go!)
- Header ADS via Options Panel
- Social Networks Profile Settings
- New concept design on Themeforest
- Authors dedicated Page ( see demo )
- Contacts Page (with Contact Form 7 support)
- A lot of shortcodes: Last articles with image, Last articles in a certain category, delimiters shortcodes, and much more…
- All customizations via options panel
- Elements: Posts Carousel, Standard Post, Dropcaps, Alerts, Progress etc..
- All standard wordpress widgets stylized
- Well organized source codes
Installation & Setup
Once you upload and activate the theme, the first thing you will see is some required plugins and recommended plugins which need installing to make the most from the theme. The required plugins are Advanced Custom Fields, a great plugin for controlling custom post types, taxonomies and so on so go ahead and install that along with the Old Paper plugin which contains functionality just for this theme.
Now the theme is activated you will see a new menu item called “Old Paper Theme” which contains the control panel. To start off with, General settings contains things like Favicon, Site Tagline, Breaking News ( on or off ), Featured image sizes, layout type ( boxed or wide ) and footer text.
Homepage options gives you lots of options to control how the homepage displays: Featured Posts, Number of Columns, Excerpts and Editorial Category :
I like the header options section, it gives you the ability to upload a logo, choose one of three header styles or create a text logo in many different font styles, sizes etc.
Page options and article options let you turn of or on many different elements such as author name, comment count, date, tags list and so on. “Code Add” is where you can paste in your own custom CSS if required. Social links allows you to enter URLs for social media sites :
The last option section of interest is the Theme Styles where you can pick from 7 predefined color schemes or you can create your own with a color picker and you can also set all the relevent font options for your theme.
Finally you also have an import / export section where you can save your changes made in the options panel for use on another site or simply to backup your changes.
Off the bat, the theme looks good – this is how it looked when I activated it and haven’t even touched any theme settings yet, placed any widgets or setup the menu :
I find it annoying when you first activate a theme and it looks nothing like the demo because there are a million options to setup, widgets to place and so on. With Old paper you can activate it and your site will look like the demo, then you can dive into the options and start tweaking it to get it looking how you want.
A nice feature is the “Breaking News” post type that gets added :
Adding an item in here adds this to your footer so you can use it draw people’s attention to new posts, offers and any other important items:
This is a thought-out theme with a good classic design and seems to be well coded. It is extremely easy to get up and running – simply uploading it and activating it is all you need to do to have your new look live. Of course with some tweaks made in the options panel you can tailor it more to your liking, with color options, font choices, header choices, layout options and so on you have quite a lot of power over the layout but it is not overwhelming like so many recent themes.
If you run a blog or magazine style type of site and like the look of this design and dont want to be bogged down setting a theme for hours then I would recommend you give it a go.