BuddyPress comes with two themes. A default BuddyPress member theme and a default WordPress blog “Home” theme. Their purposes and uses are different
Default BuddyPress Member Theme
The default BuddyPress member theme is not a WordPress theme (although the code is structured in a similar fashion). The purpose of the theme is to provide access to the BuddyPress components that are installed on the site. The member theme is not a WordPress blog theme. It is run site wide, and is not installed for specific blogs.
Examples of components:
- Extended Profiles
The theme is not and should never be installed in the WordPress theme directory. The installation directory structure for BuddyPress themes looks like this:
A BuddyPress theme in many ways is a personal theme. It provides access to My Blogs, My Groups, My Inbox, My Profile. It’s my personal gateway to the social and group features of BuddyPress.
Default WordPress “Home” Theme
The WordPress “Home” theme bundled with BuddyPress is just a standard WordPress blog theme. The theme does look slightly different from your standard WordPress theme however. It actually moves the “Blog” part from the front page, and instead places it under a “/blog” sub-directory. On the front page, there are spaces where you can drop widgets, allowing you to display lots of dynamic, social content for your visitors to interact with.
The WordPress “home” theme is installed in the usual WordPress theme folder, along with all other BuddyPress themes.
It’s important to note that you do not have to use this theme to use BuddyPress. It is entirely optional. For your site you may find you want to keep the blog front and center. You can use any WordPress theme you wish. If the theme is widget enabled, you can still drop BuddyPress widgets into your blog theme sidebar.