Create Your Own WordPress Theme from an HTML Template

Notice: This is a discussion thread for comments about the SitePoint article, Create Your Own WordPress Theme from an HTML Template.

Have you made the leap from HTML/CSS design to making custom WordPress themes? If so, what approach did you take to learning WordPress? If not, what’s holding you back?

Hi, great article. For those who have moved over to creating custom wordpress themes, I’m wondering what process you use?

ie. To follow Matthew’s article/tutorial I took an existing site I’d created in Dreamweaver and moved its html/css over to wordpress files as he describes. Worked like a charm.

If I now want to create a brand new wordpress site, do I need to create its html/css in a wysiwyg editor like Dreamweaver first everytime? What are the alternative processes/software? Thanks guys for helping a newbie.

Good article Matthew. I recently took Kevin’s Yank course on php/mysql as they are the engine for wordpress as I see it. Your article gave me a clearer understanding of how it all comes together. I hope to try this out in the near future.

comments.php: defines the structure of the comments section for each post. If you leave this out of your theme, the comments.php file from the default theme will be used.

This will likely changing within the next month as the default theme is being removed from WordPress. If you design a theme in that way, it will break in the current trunk versions of WordPress. Discussions are under way on how to correct for this, but it is currently looking like that themes which work in this way will simply stop working.

Yes,I have made the leap from HTML/CSS design to making custom WordPress themes. I think it is not so hard.

first, you can use your css replace of the orginal css.

Great basic Tutorial…

I have read the article, but i still do not know how to use it?

@Mary: Is there something specific I can help with?

Very good description as how to be different being in the same group. Fantastic.

to bad about the comments.php issue.

i just customized the wp-photo theme on my local machine and was wondering how the heck i’ll get all the posts to my server online, i’ll need to upload a bunch of images and hopefully using the import/export feature be able to upload my posts.

this tutorial came at a great time.

@mary i highly recommend killer sites create wordpress themes from scratch, it’s about 3 hours of video - from scratch as in using notepad.

the course is about $20, but if you join the university for $9 per month you get that course along with about 300 more videos

google ‘killersites Creating Wordpress Themes from scratch’, not sure if i’m allowed to post a link.

i think blog_info(‘name’) should actually be bloginfo(‘name’)

Nice basic start but this is just scratching a bit of the surface not all of it. Wordpress is a very rich CMS.

Thanks for the article. One of the things I do when creating a new theme is start with a file I call master.php. First I put all my html in in then start at the top and start adding the various template tags and WordPress functions. Then I take that file and devide up into header.php, index.php single.php, footer.php, sidebar.php and usually I will also need some custom page templates.

could use a little more advanced features but overall a nice basic tutorial

could use a little more advanced features but overall a nice basic tutorial

It’s meant to be an introduction, the idea is that armed with this, you can head over to things like the Wordpress Codex, and understand how to use them for yourself!

If you’ve got any specific questions, go right ahead and post them!

@bsmbahamas: you’re correct, fixed now

I’ve made a few Wordpress themes. Wordpress is a really great CMS/framework to make quick money with. They should have named it Moneypress.


     This is really fantastic article. Thanks for your sharing, this article is very useful for web designing and easily learn that every person. Thank for your sharing

I have tweaked and created a Wordpress theme I like a lot. I want to take that theme and using Dreamweaver CS3 make it into a template for a web site.
My goal is to use a CSS page to control the look and have all the pages of my website look the same as my blog.I am a newbie with this stuff so any help would be appreciated…