Jekyll Minimalist

by Roman Zolotarev

This website is a minimalist boilerplate powered by GitHub Pages.

It is not a Jekyll theme.

The goal of this project is to demonstrate meaningful defaults of Jekyll, GitHub Pages, and modern browsers. Websites we build today look virtually identical, but don’t we want to stand out?

Create your standalone website in few minutes without installing anything or touching the command line. All you need is your GitHub account (or email) and few minutes.

Build it from scratch. Make it unique. Design it for your needs. Express yourself in HTML and CSS, but do not overdo it, please. Make the web diverse and clean place.

Read the source code of this website. It is just three small files.

If you are looking for a theme, I would recommend

Quick Start

  1. View source of this site on GitHub.
  2. Click on Fork button.
  3. You may need to Sign in (or Create an account).
  4. Go to Settings of your new repository and rename it to, where USERNAME is your username on GitHub.
  5. Check (on Settings page) that GitHub Pages is enabled.
  6. Your site should be available at:

Add your pages

  1. Click on Create new file in your new repository.
  2. Type-in file name, e.g.
  3. Put some file content like this:
title: About

This site is clean and beautiful.

It is important to use front matter with title in every file. The new page should be available at:

(based on its file name).

Custom domain (optional)

Add CNAME file to your repository with your domain name. For example:

Then add CNAME record to DNS zone for your domain that points to For example:

;; CNAME Records 300 IN CNAME

Now your site should be available via your domain name. In case of those examples at:

Install on your computer (optional)

GitHub Pages uses Jekyll to do all this magic. If you are familiar with git, then you may want to install GitHub Pages (with Jekyll) on your computer. So you will be able to edit your pages locally (e.g. when you are offline) and view your site locally before publishing.

For example to install on Mac run this command:

# Install bundler
gem install bundler

# and then jekyll plus jekyll-livereload
bundle install

# Start local server
bundle exec jekyll serve --livereload --increment

Then clone your repository and run Jekyll locally.

git clone
jekyll serve -w

While Jekyll is running, open http://localhost:4000/ in your browser. Your site should be there. You can add and edit pages and Jekyll will automatically regenerate HTML files, just reload the page in the browser to see changes.

Learn more about Jekyll.

CC0 by Roman Zolotarev