At its best, Tumblr’s platform can be a simple and effective way for you to post or share content. But with more than one hundred million Tumblr blogs in service today, making your blog stand out from the crowd is getting harder than ever. To make matters more complicated, while choosing your theme might be the first step you take in standing out, it’s certainly not the last. There is a science to developing a popular blog, and theme selection and modification play a fundamental role in it.
It is no exaggeration to say that most Tumblr blogs are quite generalized. By combining personal thoughts, unrelated videos, and funny images of animals, you may create a very interesting scrapbook but your blogging will suffer. The more generalized your content is, the more that prospective followers will have to have in common with you in order to become a follower. On the other hand, the more specific your content is, the more unique it will be within the sea of similar content found on Tumblr.
Standing out demands that your blog serve a very specific niche or concentrate on one particular angle as best as it can. This means that your content is likely to become close to a monoculture in terms of its media. For example, your blog might consist mostly of .gif files or almost exclusively text. While most users are generalists and most themes tend to match the user trend of generality, using a theme that caters to your specific content niche can give you a clear professional edge over your competition.
As the old adage says, sometimes less is more. This is certainly true when it comes to picking a theme, because minimalistic and utilitarian themes are an excellent way to provide the laser like focus your content needs to shine. Of course your theme has to combine form and functions, so it’s important to keep in mind how customizable your theme is.
The following Tumblr themes have been selected for their popularity, simplicity, and niche adaptability that helps ensure there’s at least one perfect solution for your blog to be found below.
19 Simple Tumblr Themes
Quirky and memorable, Vertigo is a single column theme that’s ideal for text, images, and custom colors.
Simple and clean, Redib is loaded with social features like post sharing and comment integration that make it easy to personalize.
Designed specifically for writers and text posts, Simon is a dynamic theme that responds to the type of device visiting your blog.
Minimal is the ideal template for minimalists. Closely mirroring the default WordPress blog template, Minimal keeps to the bare essentials.
Made to be as readable and clear as possible, Ashley is platform responsive and customizable to any Google Web Font.
A premium theme developed by Peter Vidani includes support for high resolution, Disqus comments, tags, and of course likes. It’s easy to see why Well Liked is liked by bloggers
Named after the popular Transformers series, Optimus is an essentialists dream with support for locailization, tags, and custom colors.
Easy Reader 2
As the sequel to the original Easy Reader, this theme offers readable day pages and tags with redesigned elements to support for high resolution custom images.
Simple Things brings together the search and following functionality necessary for a popular and well tagged blog.
Designed to read like a newspaper, Stationary’s accessible layout and Twitter integration explains why this theme has over half a million installations to date.
With more cool features than you can count, 1000 Suns has a professional edge garnered by reblog credits, a Twitter button, and full integration with Google Analytics.
Simple and clean, Beta Prime hearkens back to the days of blogging long past with a highly functional and retro impression.
Designed for photos and music, Observer’s fluid layout is gorgeous on mobile devices and desktops alike.
Another theme by Peter Vidani, Linear is an inspirationally simple theme that is great for any type of media.
O, a single column theme brings a new focus to your content with a semitransparent audio module, clarity in post notes, and complete control over source attribution text.
Peter Vidani’s Papercut is another WordPress look-alike that is brings a professional and clean look without extra clutter.
Living up to its name, The Minimalist consists of no more than a search box, an RSS button, an archive link, and your content feed.
Where Stationery is designed to look like a newspaper, Booky has been designed to read like a book.
A transparent yet well-focused theme, Clarus integrates CSS3 gradients with a minimalist philosophy to create one simply beautiful theme.