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[Resolved] What is the current best practice for creating a custom child theme?

This support ticket is created 5 years, 9 months ago. There's a good chance that you are reading advice that it now obsolete.

This is the technical support forum for Toolset - a suite of plugins for developing WordPress sites without writing PHP.

Everyone can read this forum, but only Toolset clients can post in it. Toolset support works 6 days per week, 19 hours per day.

This topic contains 3 replies, has 2 voices.

Last updated by Beda 5 years, 9 months ago.

Screen Shot 2018-07-30 at 3.09.59 PM.jpg

Tell us what you are trying to do?
Create a new web site that is a mix of static pages, blog, custom blog post types, and custom fields. The new site has a completely custom look so I am looking to create a child theme. In the past I used Toolset Starter but have learned that it has been deprecated.
Is there any documentation that you are following?
Started to follow the custom theme documentation and then learned of the deprecation.
Is there a similar example that we can see?
hidden link is the first version without a blog or WP functionality. I will also attach some screenshots of the Sketch design files.
What is the link to your site?
I am working on it locally within a Docker container.


Toolset Plugins will work with any theme that is coded with WordPress Standards:
There are very few issues that can pop up:

We recommend either of these themes usually:

They are all "custom post type ready" which means, their settings and templates as well apply to Custom Post Types and can hence be used when you create Content Templates and Layouts.

They usually work nicely with Toolset out of the box and as well - when these Themes include Builders of any sort, we usually integrate in them.

There is no need to create a Custom (child) Theme of any sort, to use Toolset - and it is as well not the main purpose of Toolset.

But however, if you require more control, for example, if you want to use Toolset Layouts the_ddlayout() render function to display your content (create your templates) fully with the Toolset Layouts plugin - then you would need to follow the common WordPress guidelines to create a (child) Theme, but instead of the_content() you would use the_ddlayout() to render what you build in the Toolset Layouts.

This is not something we largely recommend or assist in customizations, but you can for example use this boilerplate I made a while ago (you are free to use, please acknowledge that is not a Toolset product):
hidden link

It's a minimal theme that shows how to integrate Toolset Layouts with Custom code
It's very well documented in the code.

But - as mentioned, this is not a Toolset product and the major goal of Toolset would not require such integration.

Please let me know if you need more details.

This are a few handy DOC's to use when working with Themes:
This together with the boilerplate I linked, will allow you to kickstart your own themes.


It looks like the decision was made to have other themes support Toolset and abandon a nice well maintained base theme.

The base theme approach was great for those like me who use Toolset to create and manage more than custom post types. Many of us leverage Toolset content templates as a way to enforce custom UI design with something akin to an MVC design pattern. That way I can separate the presentation and data layers.

What I am doing is using the deprecated Toolset Starter Theme and modifying a child of it. That way if a modification to the core PHP breaks it, and rolling back via Git does not work, in a worse case scenario I can use the original parent theme.

I will take a look at a later date your Git repo but it sounds like it may not be production ready. Also, I do not find Layouts useful so I really do not need the full-support your repo appears to offer. It looks like it would be more useful in creating a custom theme that I package and sell. That is cool but not what I need.



I do not understand - because if you do not find Layouts useful and do not really do need the full-support my repo appears to offer... then I wonder what you use Toolset Starter for, as the only it actually does (and bad, as you will see) is integrate Toolset Layouts instead of the_content()?

It adds as well some messages to the front end for when you miss a U(mandatory) layout.
And, it does not work with Content Layouts either.

I assume, with new themes you will be better served than with the half-working Starter Theme.

However, if you customize it, then it not only full-fills its initial purpose (starter theme) but surely can be made into a great fit for any site.

That, however, does not require support or bug fixing from Toolset teams for it

That, along with the reasons mentioned before, made us deprecate it.

We and other users agree that it makes sense.

We deeply apologize if this is making your situation undesirable - I think with the other solutions after a short change-time, the situation can be even more agradable than with Starter Theme.

This ticket is now closed. If you're a Toolset client and need related help, please open a new support ticket.