One of the biggest advantages of choosing the Genesis Theme Framework is the enormous variety of child themes available for it. Each child theme gives you a unique foundation from which to change the look and feel of your site.
Having a wide variety of child themes to pick from makes the Genesis framework a great choice for building a wide variety of different types of websites from your basic blog to your next business website. Especially if you are building sites for clients or own several sites of your own.
If you were just browsing around the StudioPress website, you might get the impression that there are only premium Genesis child themes available. That’s what I thought at first too.
But if you do a little digging, you will find that there is a whole ecosystem of free Genesis child themes available for download. And some of them are quite good.
I initially wrote this post a year ago where I highlighted my favorite 10 free child themes. However, in the past year, a bunch of new quality Genesis child themes have been developed so I felt the need to revise and expand my list.
Take a look at my current favorite free Genesis Child Themes below. If you don’t want to shell out money for a premium child theme, then this resource of free themes will be your best friend.
All of these themes work with Genesis 2.0 and all are mobile responsive so they all look great on any device you view them on.
by Claro Themes
Diligent is a polished looking theme designed for consultants and other small business websites.
You have 4 different page layouts and 6 color schemes to choose from. And the Feature Image slider allows you to highlight the most important pages on your site.
FontAwesome support is also built in so you can take advantage of its huge collection of scalable vector icons.
by Monica Guerra Leiria
Nameless Pro is an update to the already excellent Nameless free child theme by Monica Guerra Leiria. It’s much cleaner than the previous version of the theme and adds a landing page template.
It’s a very flexible theme and with the home page being fully widgetized. It also offers 7 different color options.
by Jan Hoek
Jano is a one page Genesis child theme which makes it perfect for sites selling a product or service. Or you could use it to show off your portfolio.
by Sridhar Katakam
One-Pager is his first developed Genesis child theme and it’s a great choice for single page websites. It features several horizontal sections with a neat parallax effect.
Notice as you scroll down the demo page, the navigation bar will change depending on the section you are in which is really neat.
Personify is Tumblr style theme designed for those who want a simple blogging theme. It’s well suited for a personal blog.
It comes with 3 different color schemes to choose from and the top menu is responsive so it works well on small devices.
by Ian Nuttall
Bigg is a Digg clone re-imagined as a Genesis child theme.
The design highlights your most popular posts on the front page, and would work well with any site that includes lots of visually appealing images.
Tote is a really nice looking Tumblr style child theme. This makes it an excellent choice for any personal blog.
The theme includes a slick infinite scroll effect so it keeps loading more posts as you scroll down the plate.
You also get access to the Themedy short-codes which enables you to add some polished looking buttons, info boxes and styled list items.
Note: To download this theme, you will have to signup for the Themedy mailing list.
by Kulwant Nagi
The BloggingCage child theme would be a good choice for a new blog. Everything with this theme is very clean with a nice color scheme and good choice of fonts.
It features your typical blog layout with content area and sidebar and full width header. You also get your standard blogging ad areas for those who want to monetize their site.
Note: To download this theme, you will have to signup for the BloggingCage mailing list.
Simplux is a highly configurable magazine style Genesis child theme.
It gives you additional flexibility with 6 different layout options and 6 different color combinations.
Also included is a custom CSS editor so you can make style changes directly from the WordPress dashboard.
by Calvin Koepke
Scholar is a really bold looking theme with it’s prominent image background. It includes 6 different layout choices to choose from.
Muse is an excellent theme built specifically for photographers to show off their photos. It features a grid layout for it’s front page and you have 4 different color schemes to choose from.
The menu is fully responsive and it has built in support for the WordPress Theme Customizer.
by Brian Gardner
Mobile First is a theme designed by Studiopress founder Brian Gardner. It’s well suited for any blog.
As the name implies, the theme was designed with mobile users in mind so they will have an optimal user experience.
Note: To download this theme, you will have to signup for Brian’s mailing list.
by Genesis Awesome
Portlight is an extremely versatile child theme. It’s perfect to use as a showcase for your portfolio. Or you can use it as a blogging theme.
Plus, it comes with it’s own theme options page for easy customization.
by Andrei Chira
If you are looking for a theme for your business website, give Eiji a look. It utilizes a dark background and feature slider for the homepage.
Have you ever wanted to create your own Genesis child theme? If you are, then it can be quite a challenge. Luckily, the Genesis developer community has really stepped up to the plate and there are a few projects in active development that will give you a solid base for your child theme. I encourage any prospective child theme developers to check them out.
Features: Admin settings page, mobile first CSS, auto-install favorite plugins, custom shortcodes.
Features: Mobile first CSS, Sass enabled.
Features: Smooth scrolling, Multiple navigation areas, Twitter Bootstrap support.
Best of the Rest
The 14 free Genesis child themes I highlighted above are my current favorites, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t some other decent free child themes to choose from. Below is a list of some of the other child themes that are out there for you to download.
- Adaption (Demo)
- Autobahn (Demo)
- Ayoshop (Demo)
- Breakpoint (Demo)
- Center (Demo)
- Charisma (Demo)
- Code Chirps (Demo)
- Concise Theme (Demo)
- Copyblogger 2 (Demo)
- Dedicated (Demo)
- Divine (Demo)
- El Blog (Demo)
- Equilibre (Demo)
- Fluid (Demo)
- Fremedy (Demo)
- Greetings (Demo)
- HallowPress (Demo)
- Jemma (Demo)
- Just Read (Demo)
- Latitude (Demo)
- Minny (Demo)
- Pin It (Demo)
- Pristine (Demo)
- Photomode (Demo)
- Stargazer (Demo)
- TeeBox (Demo)
- Terragon (Demo)
- Unfiltered (Demo)
- USA Pro (Demo)
Am I missing any other free Genesis child themes? Feel free to let me know in the comments and I’ll keep this page up to date.