This is a continuation of a series of posts about reworking my website into one that is entirely WordPress based. The series starts here:
If you’re reading this on September 23, you may have noticed that the look of this blog has changed. That’s because I’m going through the process of getting it ready to be integrated with the new web site.
Before, The integration had been taking place though modifying the theme with custom CSS code that my web developer had written. I am abandoning that approach. My reasons are:
- I don’t want changes to the site that I don’t understand, or that I’ll forget and have to relearn later.
- I want to be able to maintain the site myself.
- If there are CSS changes, I want them in one place in the theme, not made by modifying the theme itself, where they will get overwritten every time the theme is updated.
- I want to do all I can within the theme, not through CSS code. Ideally, I’d like to add no CSS code whatsoever.
I’m starting out by seeing how far I can go with the WordPress Twenty Fourteen theme. If you read this soon enough, you’re looking at it.
What I did:
- Updated the theme to the latest version, wiping out all the CSS customization.
- Created two custom menus. One has the same links that are on the top of the main site, and are at the top of this blog. One has teh links to static pages that were formerly at the top of this site, and are now at the top of the left panel.
- Moved all the widgets to the left panel, and dropped the right one. Most of the themes that I’m considering going to only support one panel, and, it turns out that Twenty Fourteen drops one of the panels with users access the site with iPads and smartphones, so widgets were being dropped anyway.
- Installed a plugin to allow me to change the Twenty Fourteen color scheme.
What got broken in the process?
- The background for the content column got set to the Twenty Fourteen default, which is white, instead of the middle gray that I prefer. The color plugin doesn’t allow me to change that.
- The banner image got dropped. I plan to go back and upload a new one. The way the old banner image worked was a problem for mobile phone users, since it was not responsive.
- The RSS subscription buttons disappeared. I thought that they were widgets, but I can’t find them now.
I can probably fix all but the first one of the broken things with no new CSS code.
What would I like to do that I can’t?
- Widen the text column. It’s currently 400-plus pixels wide. It would be nice if it were responsive to the user’s device choice.
- Darken the background
- Have more control over the fonts than I do now.
I am thinking about using Photocrati as my blog theme. Since I want different layouts for the gallery section of the web site and the blogs, I’ll use three different WordPress instances, each with its own database, but with menus that integrate them, and all using the same theme, but with different customization,, so the look will be the same.
I looked at the Photocrati web site to see how many licenses I need to buy to do that, and I can’t find the answer. I’ll check with them.