Why I Feel Vigilance is the Best ‘Free’ Theme on WordPress

I’m a freebooter, in the sense that I use the free service offered by WordPress. And by golly, is it awesome. However, I’ve always found it very confusing to select the right theme for my earlier blogs, the failure of which is a different story altogether, and which I will address at some point of time in the future. So there I was, browsing through the themes I’d seen before so many times, trying out a handful of them, and returning to the themes page unsatisfied. And then, suddenly, here was something I’d not seen before. Vigilance. I wanted a fresh theme for my first blab, and when I saw the widgets and theme options pages, I went “w00t!”.

The sidebar(s)

Of all the themes, Vigilance has the most flexible sidebar. There’s this wide sidebar, which is basically a sidebar which allows widgets to use the full space available. However, there are the left and right sidebars too, which split the sidebar into two. What’s best, you have the option of using any one, any two, or all three sidebars, which means you can have a two-column (using only the wide sidebar) or three-column (using only the left and right sidebars) blog, or a combination (using all three, like in Blabberwocky).

Custom colours

Okay, this could have been better, but it still is a hell lot. Vigilance gives you the option of customizing the background colour (the part of the page which always stays blank; here you see it’s dark brown), the border colour (the one separating the background from the rest of the page; black, in this case), and the link colour (to match your header and/or background; I’ve left it untouched). As I said, it could have had even more options, but it still has more colour options than any other theme.

(Note: you’ll need to enter hexadecimal colour codes for this. You can find an exhaustive hexadecimal colour chart here.)

And also

You can add an alert box which appears below the header and above your latest post. Then, there’s the option of excluding pages from the header navigation, say for example if you have ten pages and you want only three of them to accompany your header. All this comes with an otherwise fluid look which makes the sidebar subtle and puts the focus on your posts. Add to it the custom header option, of course, and you have my pick for the best theme on WordPress. If you don’t have a custom CSS upgrade, that is.

About Blabberwock

Blabberer General of Blabberwocky.
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16 Responses to Why I Feel Vigilance is the Best ‘Free’ Theme on WordPress

  1. juturna says:

    🙂 well don’t you go all the way to make things perfect 😀

  2. Hi Arijit, I’m new to blogging and I’ve just set up my blog: http://thecuriousbaker.wordpress.com. I’m also a freebooter with the vigilance theme, and I’m trying to change my background colour, I typed the hex numbers you gave in the vigilance options colour scheme but it’s still boring old white! What am I doing wrong? Thanks for your help

    • Arijit says:

      There can be two reasons for this. First, maybe you’ve not ‘enabled’ custom colours from the dropdown on the same page. Or second, you could be entering the hex code with the ‘#’ sign. You need to exclude the ‘#’ sign from the code and then enter it.

      Tell me if that solves it. Shall be glad to know. 🙂

  3. Thanks Arijit, forgot to exclude the ‘#’ sign from the code. Sorted now 🙂

  4. erica says:

    your site looks great! however, i can’t do what you did. i’m trying to put my header “the christianista at the top” how did you do that?

  5. Lizzy says:

    Hi Arijit, Your site looks great! I am unable to find how to customize the background color. My Color Scheme options don’t include background color. Also, how did you add your own customized header across the top? Again, it looks fantastic. Your guidance would be greatly appreciated.

    • Arijit says:

      Hi Lizzy, I’m sorry for the late, late reply. I guess you’ve figured out the background colour. Adding a customized header is rather easy. On your dashboard, follow the ‘Appearance’ tab, and go to ‘Header’. There, you can add your very own custom header image. Glad to know you liked my blog. 🙂

  6. EarthAndSky says:

    Hi from California!

    My compliments on what you’ve achieved with the appearance of your WordPress.com blog. It has an eye-pleasing composition, not the same-old same-old, with a thoughtful artistic flair. What’s especially noteworthy is you designed it with WordPress.com which doesn’t allow any plug-ins and has much more limited customization options than a self-hosted WordPress blog. I’m very impressed! Are you a software engineer? What kind of engineer are you?

    I’ve also picked the Vigilance theme for my new WordPress.com blog but when I attempted to upload a custom header, all I got was the original default text header against a solid black background. I had previously uploaded successfully, but am no longer able to do it, regardless of which jpeg image I use.

    Any suggestions from you or your readers how I can rectify this?

    I look forward to reading more of your posts…

    • Arijit says:

      Hi! I’m glad you liked the look of my blog. Interestingly, it was a rather random combination of colours that stuck. Yes, I’m an engineer, but not a software engineer. 🙂

      As for the thing with the header, yes, Vigilance tends to pose this problem when you’re uploading a custom header image. I’d suggest you first try and reset the header image to the original text-on-white, and then try uploading the header image. In fact, even I have to upload my header images repeatedly when I feel like changing it.

      Happy to have a new reader. And, please link your blog URL to your name. That’ll make it easier for me to read your blog as well. See you around. 🙂

  7. ritama says:


    I am wondering how you got the COMMENTS to appear on the blog page?
    I have the free Vigilance template and am looking through the Widgets but don’t see anything like that. Or do I need to buy the theme and have it customized?

    Thank you for any help!


  8. ritama says:

    oh wait! I just realized that the Comments are your site are appearing on the post itself 😦
    I was trying to get all comments to show up on the main Blog page…

  9. Do you know if it’s possible to number comments on Vigilance? Giveaways are becoming quite an issue for me… I am having to physically count entries! And then when I do Google spreadsheet to help me instead, people are afraid to enter. Grr. I’d love help! Email me please.

  10. Hi Arijit,

    I don’t see an option to change my background color, only border color. I want to have the background color white instead of gray. Also, under appearance there is no Header tab and I can’t figure out how to upload an image there. Can you help? http://www.chrissybryant.com

    Thank you!

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