Where to Draw the (CSS) Line?

During the last two decades, I’ve been coding all our blog themes. I’ve had them in all shapes and sizes: minimalist, supercharged with scripts, responsive, non-responsive, sidebar, no sidebar, mobile first,… In the end, I got tired of blog themes that confuse simple blogs with “pro” websites.

So, for two years, I’ve been stripping my themes. While it took me months to create the perfect collapsing menu in javascript, it took me less than 5 minutes to remove it. Did the blog became harder to navigate? Then the sidebar disappeared, who cares about “subscribe” buttons anyway or, even worse, a tag cloud. Also gone are the popup search fields, the gravatars and the fixed headers.

But where to draw the line? Why keeping the “load more” and the “back to top” buttons? Well, it’s pretty simple: because we use them ourselves and it doesn’t take our eyes away from what we write. It’s not minimalism, it’s content-oriented design. A blog has to look like a blog to be a blog, happy as a hippo.

And what does a blog look like? Like a man who talks to himself and not like a sales man. We’re not trying to increase our traffic, we’re just keeping a log of the things we do. Believe me or not, there was a time when we had 10 times more comments than posts, but that time almost got us burned out of blogging. So we really don’t need all the bells and whistles required to increase traffic and comment numbers.

No one enjoys post previews, contents hidden behind clicks, self promotions, ads that make you lose the line you were reading because they changed the height of the page,… The only people who benefit from these designs are the web designers and the click baiters. Let’s not encourage them.


  1. Gravgon Apr 20, 2021

    I like the current theme and layout of the blog!


  2. Sardoken Apr 20, 2021

    Thanks Gravgon, I’m glad you like it 😉


  3. Zumss Apr 20, 2021

    I could not agree more: keep it simple!
    It looks great and it’s efficient, love it.


  4. Sardoken Apr 20, 2021

    Thanks Zumss and congratulations to you both for the second baby on the way 😉


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