A minimalist, bare-bones theme for Jekyll only using the Water.css framework while still following the best practices for accessibility and search-engine optimization.

Author brennanbrown
Github Stars 9
Last Commit Jul 24, 2022
Watery screenshot

Watery Theme for Jekyll

Watery is a minimalist, bare-bones theme for the popular JAMstack file-based CMS Jekyll that only uses the <80kb Water.css framework (hence the name!), while still following the best practices possible for accessibility and search-engine optimization.

I created this because I wasn’t able to find an up-to-date starter/skeleton theme for Jekyll. Even the default theme, Minima, uses the large Bootstrap framework.

This project is aimed towards those curious about using Jekyll for the first time, and want to build from as close to scratch as possible. Alternatively, it still has all the features required for creating a hassle-free, informational website or blog in just a few clicks.

As of November 1st, 2020, with >70 posts on Watery, the website scores a perfect 100 in Performance, Accessibility, Best Practices, and SEO on an audit with Google Lighthouse.


Despite Watery’s minimalist nature, there are a few interesting features that have been added:

  • A fully customizable and empty _BLANK_config.yml to make getting up-and-running easy.
  • Having a _pages collection for easier organization.
  • Auto-generated links in navigation to all pages in _pages.
  • Auto-generated tags page that lists all tags used by all posts in chronological order.
  • An author bio at the end of each post. (Located in _inclues/author.html)
  • Full Rouge support for syntax code highlighting. (Currently using base16.solarized.light)
  • Auto-generated RSS feed, sitemap, accessibility features, and search-engine optimization.