Newbies Guide to Customizing WordPress Themes

These are the slides from my presentation at The Atlanta WordPress Users Meetup Group on August 19th. The format and content of the presentation goes like this:
  1. The importance of learning to install and set up all of your Dashboard settings, prior to beginning to customize the themes.
  2. Three indispensable tools for customizing and editing themes; Filezilla, Firebug and Programmer’s Notepad.
  3. The structure of Static Websites Files and WordPress Sites and how they differ.
  4. What is a WordPress Theme?
  5. How do you  choose Themes to customize?
  6. How do you install themes.
  7. How to install plugins and which ones.

I created a scenario of a fictitious skateboard/cyclist client who wanted  an informal business blog and demonstrated what could be done to the Twenty Ten theme to get his look and feel in 15 minutes. The slide presentation includes the following topics:

  1. How to change the background in Twenty Ten Theme
  2. How to change the Header in Twenty Ten
  3. How to change the height of the header in the custom functions.php to accept a taller header.
  4. How to make an “About Me” text box widget for the sidebar.
  5. How to easily add the “Follow Me” plugin to WordPress to put the social media follow buttons in the sidebar directly under under the “About Me” teaser widget.
  6. How to remove the text for the Title and the Blog Description above the header. ( Hint, do not just not put it in the settings. That is very bad for Search Engine Optimization.)
  7. How to style a box that is behind any post you assign “sticky” Status to.

Hope this helps you start to customize WordPress Themes.

View more presentations from JudiKnight.
About Judi Knight

Judi Knight is the founder and chief at New Tricks. When she’s not working with businesses to create their online goodness, she'll be checking people into the Urban Oasis B &B,  planning WordPresss events or hanging with her husband and three Basset Hounds.

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  1. Hi Judi :)

    I just tried some of the ideas in the presentation above. Very useful and handy instructions, thank you so much.

    My recent post How do you become an entrepreneur?

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