Whatever WP theme I decide to use, I will almost certainly want to make a few tweaks to it. I could make changes directly to the theme, but those would be lost in the next version update. Instead, a good practice is to create a child theme. I can create a WP child theme manually, but doing so requires an understanding of words like ‘enqueue’. I can make the job easier using a plugin like Child Theme Configurator. After I install and activate the plugin, I click the new ‘Child Themes’ item on the Tools menu, choose a parent theme – Responsive Mobile in my case, and click Analyze.
After a short delay several configuration options appear. I leave them at the default setting except #8, where I click the Note checkbox, then click Create New Child Theme.
Now I have a child theme that I can tweak to my heart’s content. If something goes horribly wrong I can switch back to the parent theme and start over. I don’t actually use my child theme for much – just a custom 404 error page and a few cosmetic changes to the footer. The Responsive Mobile theme provides a nice set of Theme Options where I can add custom CSS and scripts, and I use a custom plugin for code that would otherwise go into the child theme functions.php file.
The next step is optional but fun. I can edit the comments in the child theme styles.css file, and swap out the screenshot image file, to customize the look of the Child Theme Details in my WP admin dashboard.
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