I thought it would be helpful to create a resource page that features the WordPress tools I use day-to-day as a web designer. I’ll continue to update it as time goes on.


WordPress web hosts I have personally used and recommend.

  • WPEngine WPEngine is my top recommendation for hosting WP sites (it powers this site)
  • Bluehost Recommended by WordPress, it’s a great low budget WP web host
  • MediaTemple MediaTemple is a very reliable LAMP host provider
  • Dreamhost Solid, cheap option for hosting WordPress
  • Amazon AWS/EC2 Built your own WordPress stack from scratch with Amazon

Things I’ve Built

Tools and plugins I’ve released for public use.

  • Responsive Video Embeds Enables automatic responsive resizing for WordPress embeds, including video and other iframes.
  • Browser Shots Automates the process of taking website screenshots in WordPress.
  • Visual Editor Biography Replaces WordPress author’s “Biographical Info” profile fields with a TinyMCE visual editor.


WordPress plugins I personally used and recommend.

  • WP Migrate DB Pro An awesome tool for syncing a local development database with a staging, or live, site
  • Gravity Forms Hands down the best way to manage form inside of WordPress
  • WordPress SEO Easily manage your site’s SEO initiatives including sitemaps, metadata, and on page analysis.
  • Tribe Object Cache Speed up your site and reduce your hosting bills by leveraging object cache
  • W3 Total Cache Advanced speed & performance tool that leverages many form of cache: browser, page, object, database, minify and CDN support
  • Advanced Custom Fields Turn your WordPress install into a robust CMS that can manage all kinds of content types and regions
  • Markdown on Save Markdown is a text-to-HTML conversion tool for web writers, I use it to write all my blog posts


WordPress themes I personally used and recommend.

  • Roots Roots is a WordPress starter theme based on HTML5 Boilerplate & Bootstrap that will help you make better themes
  • Underscores A theme developed by the team at Automattic meant for hacking, without any child/parent theme bloat
  • Genesis Genesis is one of the top theme frameworks, making it easy to quickly
    build websites with WordPress
  • Thesis An awesomely powerful theme for DIY types
  • PageLines PageLines is a great drag and drop theme that allows you to build a robust landing page style website without coding skills
  • Theme Foundry Handcrafted themes that are beautifully designed and more modern than most
  • WooThemes One of the largest, most successful WordPress theme foundries, and for good reason


Useful services I use to make my life as a web designer easier.

  • BrowserStack BrowserStack is a web-based browser testing tool, it’s what I use personally on for every dev project
  • Sucuri
  • Typekit Typekit let’s you use beautiful fonts from well known type foundries on your website
  • Google Fonts Google Fonts let’s you use beautiful fonts on your website for free, a great alternative to Typekit
  • Pingdom The best system I’ve used to monitor uptime and user experience
  • Github A social repository hosting site with TONS of awesome code you can leverage in your projects
  • Basecamp An awesome project management tool for managing client communications
  • SEOMoz Everything you need to understand and improve your search rankings and visibility
  • VaultPress WordPress backup and security system provided by Automattic
  • If This, Then That Incredibly useful, “IFTTT” allows you to automate routines across various platforms. Think visual API coding.
  • Kippt The service I use to store bookmarks, articles and nice sites I like
  • oDesk A great place to hire freelancer programmers. In my agency days this was a tremendous resource.
  • Elance A good alternative to oDesk, a service for hiring remote freelancers
  • 99 Designs Crowd source your next design project, I use this for sourcing logo designs all the time

Mac Apps

Mac apps that I use for web design, and life in general.

  • 1Password Never forget a password again, seriously. This is a HUGE time saver, I absolutely love it.
  • Coda This has been my code editor of choice for 6 years now
  • IA Writer A wonderful Markdown text editor, I use this to write all of my blog articles
  • Codekit An awesome tool that parses LESS, minifies and combines JS, and automates code optimization for every project I work on.
  • SublimeText When I fiddle with the command line or Rails, this is my go to text editor.
  • Navicat for MySQL If you’re programming with, managing, or optimizing databases it’s a huge time saver to have an intuitive GUI to access databases visually from the desktop
  • Transmit My favorite FTP transfer utility, supports FTP, SFTP, SSH and even Amazon S3
  • OmniFocus A perfect to-do list manager for the GTD system
  • Wunderlist A basic to-do list that makes it easy to manage lists across all devices
  • MAMP/MAMP Pro The easiest way to create a local LAMP stack development environment on a Mac
  • Screenflow A screencast recording app that I use to provide training
  • Billings A great app for managing freelance billing and cash flow, I’ve used it for 5 years now
  • Sketch The future predecessor of Photoshop for web design
  • Clean My Mac A great app for cleaning out old and unused system files and cache, it’ll keep your Mac speedy

Disclosure: Please note that some of the links below are affiliate links, and at no additional cost to you, I may earn a small commission if you decide to make a purchase. Please understand that I have experience with all of these products, and I’m recommending them because they’ve been helpful to me, not because of the small commissions I make if you decide to buy something. Only spend money on these products if they will help you achieve your goals.