It doesn’t hurt to get some help

Sidepodcast has a brand new WordPress theme, introduced for the New Year, and I wrote it. I can’t claim 100% of the credit, but a lot of the fundamental CSS work was mine. There were just a few twiddly, fiddly bits that I needed a hand with.

I couldn’t find a theme that suited me so I decided to write my own. You have to start by picking a layout that you like, regardless of colours or images. I didn’t do this, and started with the default Kubrick theme – which made my life that tiny bit harder.

Anyway, after that, it’s pretty much a matter of getting to know the files in your theme, where they fit in, what they do and what each part of your site is labelled as (IDs and Classes). Then bring on the CSS.

I’m not about to explain what we did in horrendous detail, because I wouldn’t begin to imagine I could teach someone how to style anything. What I can do is point you at a few of the helpful sites I used along the way.

Common fonts to all versions of Windows & Mac
I never know which fonts you can or can’t use when it comes to browsers, so this site was a bit of a find. There’s not much to it, but sometimes the simplest things are the most useful.

ColorSchemer
Absolutely invaluable. Start with a colour that you have or want to use, and it will present you with a pallet of colours that are a perfect accompaniment.

CSS Tutorial
From W3 Schools, this CSS is the only reference you need for those pesky syntax that you can never remember. It helps to know what you’re looking for, but there are live examples for every piece of code in the tutorial, so you can’t really go wrong.

BrowserShots
The enormous title of this site says: “Test your web design in different browsers.” I really can’t add any more to that, except you enter your URL, select the browsers you want to test from an extensive list, and you’re then presented with images of what your site looks like on the selections.

Whilst it isn’t easy, writing your own WordPress theme is not as hard as I thought it would be and does mean that we know have complete control over the site. Worth doing if you have the time.