In yesterday’s Working with WordPress post I mentioned free and paid for WordPress themes. Themes are templates that give your blog its look and feel. There are many themes to choose from.
If you’re just starting a blog, it’s best to just pick a theme that is pleasing to you so you don’t get caught up in wasting a bunch of time looking for the perfect theme. If content is really king and it usually it is, then just pick a theme and get to it.
The theme I’m using is called the Thesis theme that was developed by Chris Pearson and introduced by Brian Clark of CopyBlogger. It allows you to set various attributes of your blog by way of option pages where you pick settings from drop-down lists or check boxes.
Now that’s important, because for a long time people had to edit the various theme files to customize their theme. I shouldn’t say “had to”, people are still doing that.
Expecting people to get into editing PHP code (WordPress themes are written in the PHP language) is so foreign that it usually results in, “This gives me a headache” response when they see the code.
For me, since I’m into looking at the code and figuring out how things work, it’s a great way to learn how a great WordPress theme developer put a together a great theme.
The Thesis Community
Although the community of Thesis theme users is growing and most of the time you can tell straight away if a blog is using the thesis theme, it is a highly customizable theme in the right hands.
It has a great support forum of users who ask or have already asked questions you might be thinking about when working with the theme. And most likely they’ve already been answered with examples on how to customize or use the different settings.
Besides the forum, other folks have written tutorials on how they’re customizing the theme for their sites. Rae Hoffman of Sugarrae has a great article on displaying ads per category. So when you write articles that are in one WordPress category you can display an ad that is relevant to those articles. This allows you to have multiple ads that are more focused on the topic at hand. Pretty cool.
More to come on WordPress themes so make sure you subscribe.