Picture your finished custom wordpress theme live on your server, completely unique and fresh. By the time you have finished reading the resources in this post that scenario will be a reality. People love custom themes, they make a blog come to life with a personality of its own. It’s no secret that they’ll reward it you for it through links, subscriptions and bookmarks.

Theme Design Lessons

How To Create A WordPress Theme From Scratch

Good walk through in detail on creation of themes.

The 5 Minute Theme

Fast way of making simple a simple wp theme.

Turn Any Web Template Into a Theme

This flash tutorial shows how to turn any web page into a wordpress theme. The flash movie is pretty distorted but gives a good idea of what can be achieved.

Mocking Up a Theme In Photoshop

A bit of self promotion! This tutorial shows how to mock up a modern theme in photoshop.

16 Lessons On Theme Creation

Covers all bases in detail, really comprehensive lessons on all aspects of WordPress theme creation from header to footer!

4 Step Theme Design Guide

Part 1 – Pulling it apart; Part 2 – Complete design, header, and footer; Part 3 – The sidebar; Part 4 – The content.

Basic Intoduction To Themes

Good post breaking down how the themes work for those new to WordPress.

Offical WordPress Documentation

The WordPress.org Codex with theme design documentation.

WordPress Templates For Redesign

Premium Theme Design with Thesis

Want a head start in your new theme design? Thesis will cost you $87 but it been typeset extremely well and is simple to customise the design for stunning results quickly. You’ll save the purchase price in design time with Thesis. (disclosure: URL contains our affiliate tracker)

Create Flexible Themes

Free to use selection of WordPress themes, good for customization.

100 Free Templates

Helpful Software and Cheats

Theme Editor For Dreamweaver

Now when you open a wordpress theme in Dreamweaver the whole thing is visable – legend.


We Love WP!

Showcase of WordPress powered websites.

Ready Made Swatches

Great selection of swatch and color scheme ready to choose from.

CSS Galleries

Go to the bottom of this post for links to lots of CSS galleries for design inspiration.


Free Stock Images

381k free images, an awesome free collection.

Creative Commons Images at Flickr

50 million plus creative commons images for use, make sure to check the iicences for usage permissions.

Basic Theme Creator

Basic online theme design tool, change the element color in real time then save your theme.

More Theme Resouces

40 more resource links for WordPress theme design.

Free Social Icons

Free social icons to use on your blog.

Validation and Testing

w3c Validation Service

Well know and classic, but worth a mention.

Cross Browser Checking

View screenshots of your finished theme in all the browsers.

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  • http://www.designshard.com Max

    Some extremly useful stuff here, wonder what theme dreamer is like! , thesis is defiantly a cool theme.

  • http://www.1stwebdesigner.com Dainis Graveris

    oh, I am so glad to see this list – I wanted to do this work for myself, but You saved me time :))

    bookmarked! :)

  • http://www.renkai.com Renkai

    Thanks this is really a great list.

  • http://www.skinnyvscurvy.com Celebx

    This is the best “how to make a wordpress theme?” list ever!


    And we are still waiting for your “Premium WordPress Theme Design Part 2″ post.

  • tim

    @ Celebx – don’t worry part 2 will be coming soon!

  • r0bin

    Nice post, you showed me definitely some useful resources I didn’t know about.

  • http://oceanside411.net Susan

    This is an awesome list. I’m surprised that on the “free list” that new-wordpress-themes.net isn’t listed!

  • http://www.davidhellmann.com David Hellmann

    great post :)

  • http://www.ishouldbenapping.com Tanya

    inspiring – i can hardly wait until I can design something unique for my blog, thank you!

  • http://osledybazo.com uokesita

    Hi all…
    i wanna recomend the screencast of css-tricks

  • http://www.faridhadi.com Farid Hadi

    Thanks for a great list of resources.
    I personally learned how to build WP themes through WPDesigner (http://www.wpdesigner.com/). Some pretty decent tutorials over there for those new to WP.

  • http://soundtrackgeek.com/2008/11/10/local-color-soundtrack-an-introduction/ Jorn

    That is simply awesome. I found your blog through Digg and I love it. Added to RSS feed and can hardly wait on part 2. When I get home this part is going to be dealt with. Thanks again!

  • http://www.ourhomeremedies.com Ari Lestariono

    I’ll bookmarked this site and learn more deeply of wordpress.good site

  • http://acomment.net Mohsen
  • http://wpjunkie.com WP Junkie

    WOW! This is a great list of resources! Thanks a lot as I know a lot of people will benefit from this including myself.

  • http://uk-tv-guide.com/ TV Guide

    Thanks, I was just starting to take a look at creating my own WP theme so your article is very timely.

  • http://www.hiphopmakers.com Mark

    Thanks, Great post.

  • http://apps.jooopa.net alex

    Thanks this is really a great list.

  • http://www.arjentienkamp.com/weblog/ Arjen

    Nice list of some very good resources. I’m currently building my own wordpress theme, so it will really help me!

  • http://www.anewbandaday.com Joe | A New Band A Day.com

    Great resource- thanks very much. I’m currently re-vamping my site (using Blogger) and am getting a bit frustrated with it! I’ll be changing to WordPress in the furture, no dout, and this is going to make it much easier – thans!

  • http://www.kasraaa.de Alex s

    my friend just now suggested me your website to learn WP customization ,Seems that i’m in the right place! you rock, congrats.

  • http://www.sandfighter.net Matt

    Incredible, who would know how many things you can show people, and encourage them to do unbelivable thing using Photoshop and Notepad :)

    Yeah, WP is cool :)

  • Leandro

    Great tips! tks a lot!

  • http://www.watchdoit.com WatchDoit

    Great Post, we have a WordPress of our own, there some major things you talked about that we can use in our post. Great Jobs and Thanks!

  • http://www.psdfan.com Tom Ross

    Amazing list! Quite a lot of reading to get through, but thanks so much for sharing :)

  • http://www.luckweaver.net Pothi Kalimuthu

    Thanks a lot for this wonderful list. I was about to start building a wp theme on my own. You saved a good amount of my time in searching the resources.

  • http://www.webloglines.com/blog/stuff/wordpress_themes.php wordpress themes

    Nice list of some very good resources. I’m currently building my own wordpress theme, so it will really help me!

  • http://www.misterinfo.de/users/erichansa erichansa

    After making the theme, countering endless bug submissions from the users is a major challenge.

  • http://www.mikemeisner.com Mike

    All around awesome and very comprehensive post. I’ve been checking for some new stuff here now and then and this is the best as of late.

    I also love WP and design all my sites in it; as a CMS or Blog it has such a wide scope of use.

    I’m not sure if I glossed over but by far the most helpful tutorial that got my WP skills moving was by Chris Coyier at CSS-Tricks. He has a three part screencast that is fantastic – first one I actually committed and stuck with and I learned a ton.

  • http://www.cssbay.com Thomas

    Thanks for this article

  • http://www.neohide.com Keith

    Brilliant piece of helpful article for a good headstart to create a WordPress theme. Of course other things such as CSS tricks and AJAX can come into play when users are more familiar with coding. Great!

  • http://www.bloghonour.com Dicky

    Great resources! I believe you had put a lot of effort to compile the list.


  • http://www.dreamweaverspot.com DreamweaverSpot

    Wow, great tutorial. I will be using these methods asap. Thank you.

  • Cel

    This is amazingly helpful (especially as I’m trying to do this right now, and I feel a bit over my head). But I second (third?_ the screencasts at CSS-Tricks.

    And Thematic would be nice here too. ;D

  • http://blog.iampaddy.com Paddy

    What a great list! I’ve been creating wordpress themes for a little while now and i’m always up for learning new tricks. Cheers!

  • http://www.wan2design.co.uk Amy
  • http://www.wpthemes4free.com/add-theme/ Submit Wordpress Themes

    very useful post, great to see some nice theme editing tutorials. thanx

  • http://www.melsbrushes.co.uk Mel

    Ah an amazing list of resources. If only I had the time. Do you ever wish there were about 10 more hours in a day? I get quite obsessive when I start learning and tweaking with this stuff. Anyone else have that trouble?
    “yes yes i’ll make dinner when i’ve got this sidebar code sorted darling..”

  • http://bunnygotblog.com Bunny got Blog

    This is a very helpful post.
    Thanks for writing it.

  • http://web-design-tips-and-tricks.com/144-place-to-get-great-web-design-inspiration/ Freddy

    Great Post! I can just imagine all the work that was put forth to write it.

    I have just a simple approach. Design in Illustrator, code HTML in Dreamweaver, and then replace HTML with WordPress snippets using a Dreamweaver plugin.

    I will definitely be bookmarking this post.

  • http://www.filefreaks.com Ben

    Wow very informative thank you very much. They look very professional.

  • http://www.chixink.com Nicole

    Can’t wait til the 2nd part of the tutorial! Thank you for the great post!!

  • http://www.usdigital.co.uk Paul

    Ah, I wish I’d have seen this before embarking on designing our own WordPress based blog!
    Good work

  • http://www.buildinternet.com Zach Dunn

    I actually ended up using about 50% of these tutorial links when learning WordPress. Unfortunately as comprehensive the WordPress codex is, it didn’t really pull things together like the blogs.

    Great post!

  • http://www.deannolan.co.uk dean nolan

    I’m glad I came across this list. I am just about to start learning how to customise Wrdpress and so this is great.


    Dean Nolan

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    Great list of resources.


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    Not a bad article. Thanks.

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    Fantastic article. Thanks so much! :)

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    Thank you very much for your tutorials. I was searching tutorials like these AIO.

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    Very useful!
    thanks for the tutorial!

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  • http://www.adylevy.com Ady Levy

    Thanks so much for the post.

  • http://www.adylevy.com Ady Levy

    Just what i was looking for :)

  • http://www.photovaco.com SawHtoo

    Thanks for your great effort. This is really a great list.

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  • http://www.basisrente.net/ Basisrente

    Really nice site. I get so many good stuff from it. Thank you.

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    Thanks. There are some very useful sites here. Great post for beginners!

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    I loved it so much I bookmarked it, subscribed to it and emailed it! This is just a variety of information packed into one post.

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    love the theme and finally a blog where the font is not burning into my eyes.

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  • http://aleberrycreative.com/ Shonta Harrisow

    Ritzenthaler suggests taking the mystery out of layout by sitting down with a client before the designing starts. Together, assign weight or points to each piece of information or item on a page, and sketch it out on a plain piece of paper accordingly. For example, a really important registration button might take up 50 percent of the page. The least important item would only take up 10 percent of the space.

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  • http://notyet. ilhan

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