WordPress Theme Development Resources

WordPress Theme Development Resources:

You know HTML, CSS, and JavaScript. You can make beautiful websites. Maybe you’ve heard about WordPress, but aren’t entirely sure how to implement it, or why you might need it. Maybe a client asked for WordPress, but you’re not really familiar with it. Maybe you’ve worked with it before, but don’t know how to make your own theme from scratch. Below is a list of general resources related to WordPress theme development, such as tutorials, tools, and more.


All you need to start is a website. Any website will do. You don’t need to know any PHP, or have any prior experience with WordPress. Your website can be custom, or built on Bootstrap/some other framework.


The official WordPress Theme Development Handbook that covers everything.

A 3-part tutorial series that includes pagination, comments, functions, meta boxes, and more.

Covers the fundamental logic of themes such as hierarchy, processing posts, and using functions.php.

A comprehensive course that that teaches everything from common functions to widgets and menu areas.

This tutorial literally starts from scratch with zero lines of code and finishes with a working theme.

Starts from the beginning and teaches how to develop a WordPress theme using Bootstrap markup.

Digs into the inner workings of a common WordPress theme and things to consider when creating a theme.

Covers the basics of theme development and more advanced topics including PHP and building plugins.


A section from the official WordPress Theme Development Handbook that showcases various examples.


An older helper plugin that checks, recommends, and installs WordPress developer plugins.

A plugin that validates if a theme is in accordance with the latest theme review standards.

Provides an impressive amount of information about a WordPress installation.

Regenerates thumbnail sizes for one or more images contained in the Media Library.

Allows the debugging of HTTP API calls, Ajax calls, REST API calls, and more.

An older plugin that adds a debug menu to the admin bar with various functions.

Displays useful info such as post/page ID, taxonomy terms, and various slugs.

An older plugin that tests the direction of text from left-to-right to right-to-left.


Includes various tips and tricks to help you become a better theme developer.

As the title states, some of the most common theme development mistakes and how to avoid them.

Problem: You want to create a simple new WordPress theme but all the tutorials you’ve seen are way too complex or don’t fit in at all with the existing WordPress look.

Solution: We’ve come up with a simple, useful list you can use for your next theme!

This list is constantly growing and we welcome your recommendations! Please consider contacting us if you’d like to suggest a new resource. Thank you!

Conclusion: If you’re starting out building WordPress themes or want to develop a system for building them more efficiently or robustly, how do you decide which approach to take? In this article, we have briefly listed resources about how WordPress themes work and then look at some of the different approaches to developing them from scratch. If you’ve found any trouble, or have any additional information that would make this better or more simple to understand, please let me know!