Launching A New Theme

Creating a Checklist for the New Theme Process.

  • Scrabble WordPress theme checklistYou are starting your first WordPress Blog.
  • You are bored with your old theme and you want a new look and feel.
  • You just upgraded your WordPress from version .07 to 2.5.1 and your theme doesn’t work anymore.
  • You have to get a new compatible theme and fast.
  • You are starting a new Blog but you don’t want it to look like your existing one. You think: “I need a new theme”.

There are any number of reasons you want or need a new theme for your blog. Some themes limit functionality and some are not easy to upgrade or customize. The reason for change isn’t as important as the process you go through to successfully change the theme of your blog.

We will be delving into the theme changing process in a series of post which will look at individual aspects of implementing a new theme and creating a checklist for the process so you don’t leave anything out or in that will come back to haunt you.

I recently did an theme change so this process is fresh in my mind at the moment. I have a rough checklist that is kept in the most unsecured place possible, in my head. As usual I’ll be using this series as a personal notebook for theme changes in the future. When complete we should have a checklist process for launching a new theme or creating an entirely new one.

I’ll be looking for input along the way. There are a lot of great RE bloggers out there tweaking themes to make them their own with plenty of helpful hints we can add to the checklist and process.

Theme Changing A Blog – Taking Baby Steps

The entire process might appear to be a bit daunting. But, if we break the process down into manageable baby steps (to borrow a term from “What About Bob”) we will tame this process know what to look for when picking a theme in the future. I’m always scouting for new themes to tweak.

If you are ready, lets have some fun. The first step to building a new theme for our blog is to have a great workshop with the tools we need to do the job. This is where we will start with “Getting our Theme Tweaking Workshop Ready.”


  1. Oh goody. Perfect timing. I already have my theme picked out for my existing 1 year blog (a premium one that I will pay for). I am also moving to a new host at the same time (to consolidate everything and save money).

    I am not so concerned about the technical piece, but I have busted my tail getting to page 1 in Google by every white hat way imaginable including tricking out my current theme. I am so afraid that 2 days after I launch my new theme Google will vote me off the island. Also, should I wait until just after or just before a Google dance to launch?

    Can you include your thoughts about SEO in your series?

  2. Scott,

    No need to worry about being voted of the island that quickly. It takes a few months usually.

    The PR updates we see are ancient history (3 months old) by the time we see them in the toolbar.

    Yes, I ‘ll be covering SEO from the stand point of tags like Title tags and Header Tags and how they are used as well as where the content of your blog appears in the browser and if the CSS is called from a file or included in the individual pages.

  3. Wow perfect timing for our new blogs. We are starting to build blogs in our office this month. Thank you for being such a great resource, I just need to tag your site as a favorite and I now have my blue prints

  4. Curtis,

    There is a lot of information for you already here in the lab. Much of what is under the topic of Single Property sites will apply to setting up a blog.

    Troll the archives here for lots of good information about self hosting WordPress. The series on setting up a new theme should also be helpful to you.