How To Modify WordPress Themes The Smart Way

Want to know the secret of having a custom WordPress Theme just like the coding and design experts—without having to create your own custom WordPress Theme?

Are you a WordPress site developer wanting to significantly cut your development time by using your own WordPress Theme Framework?

Or do you just plain wish editing WordPress Themes was smarter and easier? Then read on.

These easy to follow tutorials will teach you how to modify WordPress Themes the smart way—by unlocking the power of WordPress Child Themes.

WordPress Child Theme Basics

In this post you’ll learn all the basics of WordPress Child Themes: WordPress Child Theme file structure, how to make any WordPress Theme a blank framework, how to import Parent Theme CSS styles, how to override Parent Theme styles, and how to override Parent Theme Template files. You’ll also learn that all of this is incredibly easy and within your grasp and that it might just change how you think about WordPress and Theme development.

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Modular CSS in WordPress Child Themes

In this post you’ll learn how to leverage modular CSS in your WordPress Child Themes by looking into another directory with @import or the <link> tag. We’ll be making a Child Theme called Chiron that will use the modular CSS of the Thematic Theme. A theme you can use as the basis for further customization—and for following along with future posts in this series.

You’ll also get a brief introduction to the concept of using Filter Hooks in your theme—something that we’ll be looking at more closely in a later post.

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Using Filter Hooks in WordPress Child Themes

In this post you’ll learn to take advantage of Filter Hooks in your WordPress Child Themes. Filter Hooks are an essential weapon in your WordPress Theming arsenal. With them you’ll have almost complete control over the HTML created by your WordPress Theme—without touching any template files.

Warning: things will get a little technical on this one but hang in there—you’re about to become an expert in this stuff.

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Using Action Hooks in WordPress Child Themes

In this post we’ll review how to write a PHP function and go over the basic idea of how you can use Action Hooks in your WordPress Theme. We’ll take a look at a practical example of injecting a Welcome Blurb into your Theme without touching the existing code and we’ll also look at how to remove existing content being injected into Theme Hooks.

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And Still To Come …

  • Creating WordPress Child Themes
  • Publicly Releasing WordPress Child Themes

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36 thoughts on “How To Modify WordPress Themes The Smart Way”

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  2. I had not use child themes in WordPress, but once I need upgrade in my customized theme, I had lost all of my modifications. Until that, I am using Child Themes all the time.

    1. If you look at the browser source for a site, look for a reference to the file at /wp-content/themes/theme-name/style.css – “theme-name” will be the theme’s name. If you look at that file, the theme URL, author, and other information will be visible as well.

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