Lavande

Or, I Read About Brutalism and I Thought, Hey, What’s the Worst Thing That Could Happen?

Or, Is It Brutalism or Just Brutal?

So the nice thing about Brutalism is that the design process is really easy. It doesn’t matter how half-baked the idea is, you just throw it out there and go. Is it ugly? Who cares, it’s brutal! Is it hard to tell where to click or what you need to do? Who cares, it’s brutal!

Here's the brutalism design process
Here’s the brutalism design process in a nutshell
A rough idea
You only need one half-baked idea, and here it is!

In fact, that’s essentially your go-to response for any kind of criticism or question: “Who cares, it’s brutal.” I got lucky (or unlucky, depending on your point of view) with this brutalism design: it’s still somewhat readable and you can tell that there are three different blog posts. A truly brutal design would have shoved the three purple bars together into an incoherent mess or maybe put one or two pixels of separation between them.

Anyway, according to the principles of brutalism, I had my one half-baked idea and that’s all you need. Fortunately, the “large gaudy colored bar” design motif is flexible enough to be used all over the place, and I combined it with the “large white bar with colored borders” design motif for navigation and form elements.

(Actually, I got lucky for real with that last one; I didn’t see that the navigation and form elements were just large colored bars with a different border style until just now. Oh brutalism, you never let me down.)

Another interesting note about Lavande is that it was created from start to finish on my iPad Pro, running iOS 11. (Incidentally, Apple, if you’d like to make a commercial about this, I’d like Joseph Gordon-Levitt to play me.) I used Paper by FiftyThree for some rough sketching, Coda for the actual coding, Affinity Photo just to create the screenshot, and Inspect for checking on CSS matters. The only times I had to pull out my laptop were to check why some elements weren’t getting the proper styling from the editor stylesheet and to quickly check for browser compatibility. I made sure to note any oddities in the TinyMCE editor, so I hopefully won’t have to pull out the laptop for that any more, and if I wasn’t a bit of a cheapskate I could use a browser testing service and I wouldn’t need the laptop for that, either.

Sorry for that little digression. I was just really proud of that. Anyway, I’ve submitted Lavande to the official WP.org theme repository, but until then, check out the demo site and download the theme from Github if you’d like to get in on the ground floor!

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