This document will lead you from initial theme installation, through some design basics, to a site that utilizes a range of options displayed in the theme preview.
Now that you have installed WordPress (WP) to your main domain or a subdomain, you are ready to design your site. Remember that WP automatically installs Twenty-Fourteen. Regardless of the theme you choose, when you first install it the “About” page on your new site probably looks nothing at all like the theme preview image.
“About” Screen After Installation (No configuration)
Choose the WP theme that works best for your audience and rhetorical context. For example, if you plan to use your site to sell a line of commemorative coffee mugs to raise money for a local charity organization, consider a theme such as Alexandria. Alexandria is responsive and offers a “client testimonial” option for all “front page” layouts. Try WP’s simple shopping cart plug-in to sell your mugs online.
Once you determine the audience, purpose, and theme of your site, the “Detail & Preview” screens for each theme available in the “Add Themes” portion of your WP dashboard will describe the theme that best suits your needs.
In this page, I am going to lead you through the steps I took to build my site for an English course on Shakespeare for which my purpose and audience are multiple:
My theme guides my design and content choices. Since 2016 is the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death, my theme(& tagline) for the course is “Shakespeare: Life After Life.” Though the theme will no doubt undergo revision over the course of my site development, picking a theme is similar to picking a thesis as you begin to write an argumentative style analysis essay.
Though I use Dynamic News as my example, the processes covered below can be applied to most other WP themes.
On installation, the “About” page, which is set to “Default Template,” displays in the sidebar all the widgets that come standard with this theme. Since hosting a blog is not the primary purpose of my site, I want to remove the widgets (comments, archives, etc.) from my side bar.
To remove the widgets from the sidebar, go to “Appearance” and then to “Widgets:”
Once on the Widget page, drag the widgets you do not want to appear in the sidebar out from underneath.
Alternatively, you can delete each one by extending the view and then hitting the delete link. Widgets and the sidebars in which you place them, operate much like pages and the menus in which you place them.
After you install plug-ins, you have to tell WP where you want those plugins to show-up. To accomplish this goal, I take you through the installation of Google Calendar into a sidebar. (Note: many themes, including Dynamic News come with calendars. That said, if you embed a google calendar you can add, delete, change items in the main calendar at google.com. Becuase the google.com calendar is synched with the calendar embedded in your website (and on your iphone app), you only have to work off of one calendar.
Cut and paste the code to a static page directly into the text editor (click on the “Text” tab), or you can embed the code in the sidebar using the text Widget. If you have to download a text widget, follow the instructions here. Drag the widget called “text” over to the sidebar, enter a title, and embed the calendar code.
The front page now looks like this: