The WordPress.com Blog

The WordPress.com Blog

New Themes: Hew and Sobe

Say hello to Hew and Sobe, the newest free additions to our Theme Showcase.

Hew is a personal-blogging theme with a distinct identity and a bright splash of colour. Share your thoughts and experiences with readers while connecting through prominently placed social media links.

Hew

The Hew Theme

Designed by yours truly, Hew puts your content in the spotlight. With its single column and bold typography, Hew offers a pleasant reading experience across all devices — no matter whether your visitors arrive by smartphone, tablet, or desktop computer. Make it your own with your Gravatar or a custom header image.

Read more about Hew on the Theme Showcase, or activate it on your site from Appearance → Themes.

Sobe

Sobe WordPress Theme

Sobe is an eye-catching personal blogging theme for sharing life’s most memorable moments, designed by Caroline Moore.

Choose between a one- or two-column layout by adding widgets, help your content stand out with colorful post formats, add links to your favorite social networks, and brand your site with a site logo or header image.

Read more about Sobe on the Theme Showcase, or activate it on your site from Appearance → Themes!


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31 Comments

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  1. susielindau

    Love the top theme. It drew me right in!

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Anna

    And once again your social media links DO NOT include Bloglovin’! I know you have an rss reader of your own but some of us (especially lifestyle and fashion bloggers) have readers that use Bloglovin’… I like uniformity in my social media icons…I don’t like having the ones that come nicely with the theme and then add a custom one for Bloglovin.

    Liked by 6 people

  3. Adel Landman Steyn

    These remind me very strongly of some other free themes…
    Nice to see some new choices though.
    If I may: Hew reminds me a little too much of a particular corporate entity’s branding. I think the yellow is going to be difficult to match for most bloggers.
    With Sobe, on the other hand, it is just a little too girly and pastel for my taste. And I’m a girl and a new mom. I can see quite a few personal bloggers getting use from it though.

    What I would really like to see (and would gladly pay for) in a theme is something clean and crisp and cool. Or warm and understated, but still crisp. I have been looking through the both the premium and the free themes for something perfect for business (and spent hours customizing premium themes), but I haven’t found exactly the right look yet. Does anyone want to create it for WordPress?😀

    Liked by 2 people

    • Aleksandra Laczek

      Hi there,
      Hew comes with 5 custom color palettes, so you might want to give those a try, if yellow doesn’t do it for you.

      As for business themes, Sela or Sequential might be what you’re looking for.

      Liked by 2 people

    • Mel Choyce

      What I would really like to see (and would gladly pay for) in a theme is something clean and crisp and cool. Or warm and understated, but still crisp.

      Do you have any examples of other sites or themes that match what you’re looking for? We’re always looking for inspiration.🙂

      Liked by 4 people

  4. thesciencegeek

    Well done Aleksandra,

    Another couple of great themes. Just out of interest why did you choose those names ? According to wikipedia Sobe is a brand of drinks!

    The Science Geek

    Liked by 1 person

  5. David Bennett

    Is it possible to set the top top widget area of Hew to be set to the open position by default?

    Liked by 1 person

  6. greateast

    I like HEW. Simple.😀

    Like

  7. Salisu

    I love these new themes…. I can’tmake up my mind on which to dance with.

    Like

  8. PurpleCode

    i love the colors and design

    Like

  9. Anna

    @melchoyce how about a theme like this https://creativemarket.com/themefashion/27602-Wordpress-theme-Clean-and-Simple ? I barely found anyone as simple and clear as that in the themes (and trust me I look them up and down every single day)…Sketch is close enough but not quite there.

    Liked by 2 people

  10. aqilaqamar

    Hew looks awesome😀

    Like

  11. Nicky

    I think Hew is great, but needs a bit more work I have tested it but the Top Widgets Panel, needs to be on the bottom

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Sachin Pratap Dev

    i will use this new theme in my blog thanks for this…

    Liked by 1 person

  13. DTPIIXART

    I like the top one but as usual these things utilize the awful infinite scroll. I hate that with a passion. I wish we could get page number navigation.

    Like

  14. clm138

    How do I use Hew on my privately hosted WP Blog. There is no ZIP download.

    Like

  15. Emil Angelov

    Sobe is very nice, but in mobile view doesn’t reduce/scale automatically the size of images, instead appear a slidebar below

    Like

  16. Kevin Bradberry

    Themes come out often, but less often do we see a new theme that varies greatly from a previous theme. Color options, social link placement, and menu placement are often the noticeable changes. Less noticed, but appreciated are changes in spacing and text styles.

    I think Automattic has arrived at a point where they need to create a few master themes that are more customizable than the current offering.

    For example, give users an option for menu placement such as slide out from left, right, or top. Or an option for logo or header placement and size. Give us 2 to 3 options for fonts as you do with color palettes.

    I always get excited when a new theme is released only to be disappointed because it reminds me of a previous theme.

    Even though you offer a Custom Design upgrade that allows users to access CSS coding you may be losing users because they don’t know CSS and are turned off at how many themes are available. For some more is better and for others more is a sign of time wasted trying to make a decision while endlessly previewing themes only to be teased on a monthly basis with new themes that don’t quite hit the spot.

    I’ve used Squarespace and WordPress (.COM and self-hosted) and have spent hundreds of hours tweaking the site designs, so I understand that what I’m suggesting has no easy solution.

    Like

  17. whitescreenofdeath

    Agree with previous comment. There are really good themes available on wordpress theme section, but we don’t have access to CSS. Can’t even change font type or font size.

    Like

  18. Mell Odee

    Using Sobe right now and so far I like it.🙂

    I would love to have more options for free customization, tho… like maybe changing the font size for posts? I dunno, just an idea. ^_^

    Like

  19. vinnychoff

    I look at the new ones coming out to see how they can help me to grow my blog and helping others. Most focus in on capturing emal address but very few of the styles show this?

    Like

  20. Sara Swietlicki

    It seems to be impossible to have Sobe AND a sidebar? My widgets are hidden behind the posts …

    Liked by 1 person

  21. Dr. Jimmy Wall

    Hew really caught my eye. I’ve spent most of today tweaking its CSS.

    What I miss is a byline for posts. As users can only tweak the CSS, would it be possible to to add the HTML to the theme?

    Like

  22. Jim Lavrenz

    I made the switch to Hew. Love it. Kept the default yellow as it really stands out. Now readers will marvel at the theme more than my content but that’s OK.

    Like

  23. okamemi

    Hew seems pretty good and even somewhat refreshing.

    Like

  24. folks&kin

    I love sobe and am using it! Could you please let me know which font you used for the title? Also, is there an html tweak to leave the navigation menu in one spot? I love how it’s in the middle on the landing page, and would prefer to keep it there to save confusion for my readers. Thanks for a great design!!

    Like

    • Aleksandra Laczek

      Hi!

      It’s nice to hear that you like Sobe🙂
      The font used for title is Playfair Display. As for the navigation, the change in position is a design choice, and I’m afraid it cannot be adjusted. We have other themes with fixed menu position in our Theme Showcase though, like Penscratch or Fictive. Also, more themes are on the way, so hopefully we’ll release something that fits with your ideal use case soon. Cheers!

      Like

  25. Adel Landman Steyn

    Hallo Mel,

    That is an offer simply too good to pass up (unfortunately I only saw it now!), so I will be keeping an eye out for some business sites and send links to you.
    There are some great WP templates for self-hosted sites, but self-hosting is just too much of a hassle right now. I really need a WP hosted WP theme.

    I am very partial to magazine-style themes, as they can be very easily adapted for business blogs and your clients don’t have to scroll down ten pages to get to what they need to see.
    I have Expound on one of my personal sites and I absolutely love it (for there, I tried it on my business site and it simply doesn’t work).
    The thing is that magazine themes can get really busy, really quick, so for the ideal business site, it would be sort of more “magazine lite” (with slightly larger fonts for better readability, slightly larger featured images and a bit more space for excerpts).

    As for premium themes, Antenna and Axon were my favourites (in that order), but I had major difficulty finding the right colour and font combinations / background image when customizing and ended up giving up on them as a result.
    I am currently using Goran, which I prefer over Edin because its column is a little wider. This is just a stop-gap though as I don’t like the standard colours or the appearance of the custom menu.

    Topography, a “just right” image size and the fact that most themes seem to have difficulty handling a large number of custom menu items, are my biggest challenges to finding the perfect theme. As soon as you have two or more “lines” on your custom menu, it starts looking sloppy.

    While typing this, I happened on “Fortune” and I am currently previewing it on my blog, while also checking it out on the Themes Showcase at the same time. This is a really promising option. I have no idea why I did not notice it before. The proportions of the featured images on the “blog” page could use just a tiny bit more height. They make the images appear a little squished. Could I change that with CSS?

    Like

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