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How to Create Child Theme For Any WordPress Theme [Beginners Guide]

Are you looking for the best guide on how to create child theme for any WordPress theme? Once you create a WordPress child theme, you can customize your site separately. Creating a child theme properly is not rocket science but difficult for some people who are very beginners.

However, in this tutorial, we will show you what is a child theme, why should you use a child theme? Why should you follow this guide and how to create a WordPress child theme?

Before going to start a guide we will discuss some best things that newcomers must know. If you are an expert, you can skip these parts.

How To Create A Child Theme In WordPress

What is WordPress Child Theme?

A Child theme is a separate theme which is part of the primary theme.  That means a child theme inherits all functions, styles, and features of its parent theme. You never need to pay or hire a developer to create a Child theme because it is free. You can also create a child theme for both free and premium themes. So Child theme is the simplest way to customize the WordPress theme without wasting any data of the master/parent theme.

The following code format must be in the child theme’s stylesheet. For example the below child theme code for the master theme of Twenty Fifteen. You can learn more about the child theme from WordPress’s official site.

/*
 Theme Name:   Twenty Fifteen Child
 Theme URI:    http://example.com/twenty-fifteen-child/
 Description:  Twenty Fifteen Child Theme
 Author:       John Doe
 Author URI:   http://example.com
 Template:     twentyfifteen
 Version:      1.0.0
 License:      GNU General Public License v2 or later
 License URI:  http://www.gnu.org/licenses/gpl-2.0.html
 Tags:         light, dark, two-columns, right-sidebar, responsive-layout, accessibility-ready
 Text Domain:  twentyfifteenchild
*/

The following information is required:

  • Theme Name
  • Template

Your child theme creation process will be easier if you follow this guide first to last.

Why Should You Use a Child Theme?

Since a child theme inherits all data of a master or parent theme so you can customize any code without breaking any original code of the parent theme. WordPress child theme is the easiest way to change any customization that affects your website and works well without losing any errors.

Besides, if you cannot properly implement the right code to your child theme, the function of the master theme will not be broken. So you can customize without breaking any functionality.

As, a child theme is a separate theme from its parent theme, so if a master theme gets an update, it will not overwrite all of the custom changes that you made.

Why Follow This Step By Step Tutorial?

You already know there are lots of tutorials about how to create a child theme. Most of the tutorial has been prepared for experienced WordPress users because most tutorials have been written about how to create a child theme using FTP, Cpanel, or manual way. If you want to learn the manual process, we will refer to this guide.

In that case, you have to know little programming knowledge about CSS, HTML, and PHP. Also, you should have little idea about how to use the inspect element of a browser to find the coding tags or getting ideas for designing with CSS.

So those types of guides are not suitable for people who are very beginners. 

So think about them, We have created this guide for those newbies WordPress lovers to build a child theme using a plugin. 

Note: in this tutorial, we will not explain how to customize a child theme’s CSS, function.php, or any other files. Here we just advise you on how to create a child theme using a plugin.

How to create a child theme In WordPress site using a plugin.

First of all, go to WordPress dashboard then click on the Plugin>Add  New then search the plugin named Child Theme Configurator.

Install and activate WordPress plugin

Then install and activate this plugin on your WordPress site.

Now go to Tools and click on the Child themes option. Here you will get lots of options to configure child theme. You have to create a WordPress child theme here.

In this section click on the box named CREATE a new Child Theme, then select your parent theme from the drop-down menu. For the demo purpose, I select Themfy Ultra.

Create child theme by plugin

Now click on the Analyze button. After clicking, the plugin will analyze your selected theme. You will see the details information under “Select a parent theme”. The report shows like is it okay for creating a child theme or is it used additional stylesheets, etc. If everything is okay, go to the next step.

Besides, below the theme analyzing section, you will get lots of options to configure the child theme. So check them carefully. If you need any change, you can select those options. Otherwise, the default setting is good.

To customize the Child Theme Name, Description, Author, Version, etc. Just simply click on the “Click to Edit Child Theme Attributes” dorp down menu. You will get the all options.

Customize the Child

Here you can replace all default items. We will recommend replacing according to your need. It has big benefits when someone uses your site to find out which theme or plugins you have used on your site. The above all information will be shown on the WordPress theme detector tool. So it will increase your brand value.

However, back to the main point, after replacing all text now finally click on the “Create New Child Theme” button.

Now your newly created child theme is ready for activating and using.

How To activate your child theme?

After creating a WordPress child theme using the plugin. Now is the time to activate the new child theme on your WordPress site.

Activate child theme

To activate, Go to Appearance>Themes and find your child theme then click on the Activate. Also, here you can check the live preview of the Child theme.

Now your child theme is ready for future customization. Before going to customize you should check its activate status. Again go Appearance>Theme. If you see the child theme is activated then everything is fine.

Next step, If you want to customize child theme then go Appearance>Customize. Your child theme will be open for the customizing.

Customize child theme

You will get all settings/options inherit from the parent theme. So you can configure all settings here so that your own customizing settings will not be overwritten after updating the parent theme any time.

Here if you have little knowledge about CSS and want to design your site using custom CSS code, you have to use the ‘Custom CSS’ section. Alternatively, you can use style.css file.

How to add function.php or other files to the child theme?

If you want to configure any file of child theme or want to add any file like header.php or funcation.php or something like that then you have to back to the Child theme plugin again.

add file to child theme

Now go the file section of Child theme plugin and select files that you want to add in child-theme to configure or add codes.

So, select files and scroll down the right bar and finally click on the Copy Selected to Child Theme button. Your selected files will be added to the child theme section.

Note: In this section, we will recommend uploading a custom Child theme image or Child Theme Screenshot that you prefer to use. To complete this process click on the Choose file and select an image from your computer hard drive and finally click on the Upload button. Now you are done. You can also export the whole child theme.

If you have advanced knowledge, you can configure so many settings by this plugin. You can check all options of the child theme’s plugin to advance configure. But our guide is enough for creating a child theme. So you have no need to configure other settings.

How to find Custom style.css and other files in Child theme?

To find style.css and other files which added to child theme using plugin’s file option. Go the Appearance>Theme Editor.

Child theme custom file

Here you will see the all files. If you have knowledge about PHP or CSS, you can customize these files to add codes for designing your website.

Note: If you want, you can uninstall and delete the Child theme configure plugin after creating a child theme successfully. In this case, Any functions of the child theme will not be deleted after uninstalling the plugin. So it’s a great benefit.

Our guide is enough for creating a child theme of all themes but if you use the Astra WordPress theme, you never need to create a child theme using a plugin or manually. You can do all processes from the Astra official child theme creation tool. Currently, we are using the Astra WordPress theme on your website WPBasic Pro. Below is our child theme details. You can check by a WordPress theme detector tool.

WPBasic Pro child theme status

However, if you like this step by step guide about how to create a child theme in WordPress site, please share it with your friends and colleges and do your valuable comments if you have any questions.

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