I agree that this is a pretty miserable forum layout. Either put a front page site independent of your forums, and write content that way, but the whole making articles on the front page link to glorified forum posts etc. looks pretty amateur, and what I suppose the opposite of what people initially expected or wanted from a Styleforum which more original content.
Actually, the front page will be mostly articles. It will be about 50% original content, and 50% moderated threads by industry and other knowledgeable posters. The articles right now are in the thread form because we did not have the capabilties to make articles per se when those were written. I know what other sites do, but that is not our intent.
I hope that you guys will grow to like the site more. There will be tweaks here and there, but I personally like the sidebar. I always disliked the affiliates in the header. Jeremy thought the other way.
I think that B&S is a huge improvement. It will really allow more efficient browsing. That is effectively a custom build for us. If you have specific issues with that, I'd like to hear them. However, that format was overwhelmingly endorsed.