Featured Starter Theme
Post Series: Developing a baseline WordPress theme
  • 1.Developing a starter WordPress theme on steroids: Part 1 – How it all started

This is the first part of the series that is meant to document my adventures while working on the starter WordPress theme on steroids that I am building for WordPress.

I want to modernize my WordPress development workflow as well as modularise the approach to theme and app development in WordPress. I want to do less repetition and maintain as much stability and re-use as possible without missing out on offering clients new interesting solutions.

If you asked me “What is your career path, Anton?” the short answer would be something like: Delphi -> Graphic Designer -> ASP -> PHP -> WordPress -> Drupal -> Marketing -> WordPress WordPress WordPress.

I have definitely found my Universe. I am exploring now all the stars available there. However, I do still phone my friends in other Universes ūüėČ

I did an extensive research of tools available. Initially, I was looking for a good, solid and popular starter theme for WordPress. A theme I wanted to extend and build upon. It was not hard to make a choice. In the end I narrowed down to two products:

  1. Underscores (http://underscores.me/)
  2. Sage (https://roots.io/sage/)

From what I read and heard, they are both great. Eventually I made a choice to go with Sage. Having said that, I may try Underscores in the future. The extras I am planning to put in, will most probably be theme independent anyway.

If I were to list the main objectives for what I am building they would be:

  1. A an active and well-supported with great user following starter-theme to build upon
  2. Somethis that would provide me as a developer with a framework offering ready to use components that I can programmatically plug into the products I build with WordPress
  3. Ability to extend programmatically on components that the framework offers me
  4. Out of the box use of modern web development techniques such as grunt, gulp, npm, composer, sass, testing frameworks etc.
  5. Access to ready to use third-party components and solutions built exclusively for or compatible with the starter theme of my choice

I like building websites and I also like building apps. I experiment with WordPress a lot. However, I also want a stable framework that the themes I build with will be¬†using. I want to experiment and at the same time I want to stick with the “WordPress” way.

I don’t want a custom solution, I want to use as many open source products, libraries and components as possible.

In next part of this series, I will be talking about Sage. I will also touch on on the infrastructure of my local development stack.


Anton Zaroutski

WordPress Specialist, Front End and PHP Developer, @xeiter

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