What is a child theme?
A child theme is a theme that poses the functionality of another theme, called the parent theme. With Child themes you can modify, delete or add to the functionality of that parent theme.
Why creating a child theme?
• Whether you are using a free or paid wordpress template, you may need to customize your theme to get a better user friendly blog design. When you apply such changes to the Parent theme; on update of the theme, those changes you made on the Parent theme will be lost. These may drastically affect your blog search engine ranking and ultimately cause a dropdown in your blog traffic. To avoid such drastic effects, you need to create and activate a child theme of your wordpress theme
• If you are newbie to wordpress, it is a great way to start learning wordpress theme development.
• It is a fast way of development and building a successful wordpress blog.
How do you create a wordpress child theme?
I will walk you through simple steps I used in creating a child theme of my twenty fourteen wordpress theme.
To create a child theme is very simple and easy. The basic codes of any child theme are these;
Theme Name: Twenty Fourteen child
Theme URI: http://naijaonlinebiz.com/Twenty-Fourteen-child/
Description: Twenty Fourteen Child Theme
Author: Onwuka Emmanuel
Author URI: http://naijaonlinebiz.com/
Follow these Steps to create your own child theme;
Step 1. Open a notepad or any other text editor like Dreamweaver; copy the above codes and paste on your text editor.
Step 2. Edit the elements accordingly, replacing my domain url and name with yours.
Theme Name: Twenty fourteen Child
Theme URI: http://Your Domain URL/twenty-fourteen-child/
Description: Twenty fourteen Child Theme
Author: Your Name
Author URI: http://Your Domain URL/
/* =Theme customization starts here
If you are using notepad as your text editor,
Step 3. Save the text file as all file and the file name as twenty fourteen child theme or whatever theme you are using.
Step 4. Log on to Control Panel (Cpanel) of your web host, go to File manage →Web root (public_htm/www) → Web Content→ Themes. Create a directory in your themes directory to hold the child theme that you will upload. The theme directory is wp-content/themes according to arrow above. You should name the directory without any space as part of the name, and it is common practice to use the name of the parent theme folder with “-child” appended to it.
Step 3. Click on upload button on upper left hand side of your cpanel to upload the child theme on your web root directory.
Without logging into your control panel, you can use FTZ to upload the child theme into the web root directory of host server.
Step 3. Log onto your wordpress dashboard, go to Appearance→ Theme. Locate the child theme and then activate the child to start using the child theme as your current theme.
You can also import your footer.php file, header.php file, function.php file etc into your child theme in the same way. In this way, you will successful create and install your wordpress child theme.
All necessary customization can be done on your child theme and not on your parent theme
For further information; wordpress.org have all necessary information on how to create a child theme.