Every WordPress user should know the differences between WordPress Theme vs Framework vs Child Theme and which one to use on their blog or website. Here is a detailed info on each of them and the examples considered are really useful to know the differences easily. If you are in a confusion on which one to use, you will get to a conclusion once after finished reading this article.
What is a WordPress Theme?
A WordPress theme is basically a design that outputs the desired look and feel by taking advantage of core WordPress elements. In other Words, a theme is a set of files that helps to get a desired layout to your WordPress website. There are many free themes available for download at official WordPress Repository.
Any free or premium WordPress theme can be considered as an example. Default WordPress themes Twenty Ten and Twenty Eleven are popular ones. Recently, WordPress announced new default theme for 2012 and is named as Twenty Twelve.
What is a WordPress Theme Framework?
A theme framework is a theme with additional functions that gives developer the flexibility to design. Generally, a theme framework includes an options panel, custom action hooks, custom filter hooks and integration of some scripts library, plugins etc. Theme development will be really easy when we properly make use of a framework.
Definitive guide on How to Choose WordPress Theme
Here are some popular Rock-solid core theme frameworks, one can easily built a WordPress theme without having much knowledge on coding. These frameworks are supported by developers and contributors from WordPress Community.
Thesis and Genesis are premium theme frameworks with many unique functions. We have been writing some tutorials on customizing them. You can check these links – Thesis Customization Tutorials and Genesis Customization Tutorials.
What is a WordPress Child Theme?
A child theme inherits all functionality from Parent Theme and is used to create custom design. The main purpose of using Child Themes is to update parent themes without losing the customization done on your website . A child theme should contain a functions file and a style sheet only. Apart from this remaining things should be included with parent theme, otherwise child themes will also need an update in future.
There are many child theme available, that are build around many popular themes like Thesis and Genesis. You can check mobile responsive child themes from StudioPress.
WordPress Theme vs Framework vs Child Theme
Now its time to conclude things and you have already got some information of what is a WordPress Theme, a framework and a child theme. Coming to their comparison, themes and frameworks are under same page while child themes are a bit away from them. Our recommendation is to use a child theme on well designed theme or framework and that way you can make the best out of your design and performance.
Here are some other views by experts in WordPress Community and you can know the differences between WordPress Theme, Framework, Child Theme and Grand Child theme.
- WordPress Theme Frameworks
- WordPress Theme vs Child-Theme and Framework
- Frameworks? Parent, child, and grandchild themes?
We would like to hear from you, share your views and thoughts on WordPress Theme vs Framework through comments.