The start topic butto has always been green hasn't it? Thats whats the default forum module styles. We're planning on overhauling the whole structure and style of the forum quite soon so it will be COMPLETELY changed :D
As for the num of a recent posts - currently hardcoded in ForumMemberProfile.php implementing paging would work well or having the filter functionality in the search would solve that problem.
Thanks for the reply - and I am sure the start topic used to be on the right and fitted in with the style - on this forum right here I should have mentioned. And I look forward to the complete forum change!