6 Great WordPress Frameworks for Free Theme Development


WordPress frameworks are a great way to start developing themes for WordPress blogs. Frameworks are designed by other developers to speed up your WordPress theme creation and save you a lot of time instead of coding everything from scratch. They often come pre-made with layouts columns and widget elements already defined for you. Here is a look at some great free frameworks to get started developing themes for WordPress.


Constellation has an attractive design that creates a foundation framework for building your WordPress theme. Columns can easily be configured up to 12 columns wide. It is optimized to adapt to varying screen widths for use on tablets or smart phones. It uses the latest HTML 5 code, which is ideal for SEO bloggers.


This open source licensed GPLv2 framework means you can use it for personal or commercial purposes. It is available from the Google code project. The code is developed to allow anyone to customize CSS options and build an impressive design and implement widgets into the framework. Using an easy drag and drop interface you can add or remove grids or entire elements quickly and effortlessly.


A nice simple layout with clear column headers and menus with an optional image header. Within the framework is a built in theme options panel. Busby is configured for SEO options and mostly targeted at 2 column personal bloggers. Custom Style sheets are included and it has full typography control.


This open source framework is optimized and ideal for SEO. Great for beginners and still attractive and functional enough for the more serious professional. Thematic is easily extended beyond its starting frame of 2 and 3 column based layouts and supports plugging with 13 widget areas and sample grid layouts. Most of the design is CSS based.


With Themify every feature included in the framework has an options panel built in. This colourful and playful theme offers various skins and allows CSS to be configured. Many settings are controlled with XML configuration. Frameworks also contain Photoshop tutorial guides to help with configuring the framework.

Hybrid Core

Although it offers 15 templates for optional builds, Hybrid is essentially a bare bones framework with additional optional add-ons for widgets available. It does include 8 widget areas including twitter. Multi language support is available for over 10 languages. There are downloadable add-ons for SEO configuration and navigation menu bars; these plugins are easily configured for Hybrid. As with most frameworks, child theme support is provided.

Had any success with developing frameworks using these tools? What’s your favourite feature, or what is missing in these WordPress frameworks? Leave a comment to to let us know.

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