blog 1.0
May 4, 2009 10:03 AM   Subscribe

Hi all, trying to get a super simple text blog going, but it seems really complicated -- even for someone like me, who is between clueless and tech-savvy on the web know-how spectrum...

I have my heart set on this design:, inspired by another personal blog here.

I have a free Wordpress account but can't figure out how to get the new theme to work.

As you can see, I'm really looking for a text- and content-centric design that says more "stripped down minimal geek" versus "bubbly shiny web 2.0 widgetwitter" :)

Perhaps I'm not geeky enough to deserve such a thing! I wish I could outsource this project for a quick, easy fix! Any takers? We could barter!
posted by milkdropcoronet to Computers & Internet (6 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
Are you using As far as I understand it, you can't install your own themes there; you have to stick with the themes they have available, so if plaintxt isn't included, you won't be able to use it:

I run Wordpress on my own website and can install my own themes, so I'm a little shaky about what you can and can't do at
posted by wintersweet at 10:11 AM on May 4, 2009

Like wintersweet pointed out, installing your own theme is not available on the free blogs. However, the blogs do come with lots of available theme options, including two that are plain text. Once you're logged in, click on Appearance on the left hand side, then Themes. On page 4 of the themes, there are two plain text themes - Sandbox and Sandbox-10.

Hope that helps!
posted by geeky at 10:49 AM on May 4, 2009

It's true that you can't install your own themes on hosted blogs, but you can add custom CSS with a $15/year upgrade. Unless you feel comfortable editing CSS, that will only get you so far (though stripping an existing theme down to something minimal is relatively simple).

If controlling the look of the blog is your ultimate priority, though, you might want to consider using another platform. For example, will let you customize the theme/CSS all you want for free and there are some very minimal premade templates available.
posted by camcgee at 12:11 PM on May 4, 2009

Tumblr also has some nice minimal themes (Examples: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8).
posted by clearlydemon at 12:19 PM on May 4, 2009

I cant help you with the exact tech details, but I can offer up Ran Prieur's blog. It is along the lines of what you are going for but executed flawlessly. He coded the HTML himself so maybe you could contact him for furthur assistance: ranprieur at gmail.
posted by saxamo at 12:31 PM on May 4, 2009

If you check back here - go to and sign-up (free) and select Sandbox-10 - it's the very sample you showed. You might also look at "The Journalist" at the same site. For drop-dead simplicity, you can't go wrong with and the themes above.
posted by Gerard Sorme at 12:14 AM on May 6, 2009

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