After stripping and reskinning a number of Joomla themes I'm thinking it's time to develop a base theme to start from more suited to my needs. There's a theme set for Drupal with this in mind and it is inspired by the CSS Zen Garden project. I haven't been able to find anything similar to this in the Joomla world but admittedly I did not spend a lot of time looking at pre-built themes. As I mentioned in a previous post I tend to like using the Beez template. I've found its custom html output very useful for making changes to how Joomla builds pages. The custom html is great because you don't have to hack the Joomla core to make some changes like forcing article headings to output an h1 instead of h2.
At my work we have a kind of consensus onnaming conventions and a fair amount of time is spent on refitting the Beez index.php file's div structure to match ours. Our GUI team also doesn't tend to use so many stylesheets. Personally I like to use one main sheet, maybe a reset stylesheet to remove latent browser bugs and a couple of ie specific sheets. The template I have been basing my custom skinning on features several and it gets pretty confusing. Setting up a clean, intuitive layout with plenty of commentation will be helpful for standardizing my Joomla theming workflow on the job and on my own. Edit: 1/2/10... Download the latest zen template here.