A group of six screenshots of the Twenty Twenty-Two WordPress theme with different colors and font combinations.

“Skins” Are Back in Style, Proposal for Themes To Bundle User-Selectable Design Variations

Posted by WP Tavern on November 15, 2021 at 6:00 pm
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Twenty Twenty-Two color and font variations. A current proposal could spell the death of at least one form of child theming. The feature would allow themes to ship multiple theme.json files, housing variations on a site’s default styles. Essentially, it is the old-school concept of “skins.” How the feature would work is not yet defined. However, theme authors would presumably be allowed to bundle separate JSON files that create user-selectable “global style variations” or “active styles” via the site editor. It is almost as if we have come full circle. The original implementation of child themes allowed developers to create custom style.css files. The goal was to design skins that changed a site’s look and feel without changing its markup. Child themes have become much more flexible since then and can overwrite anything from their parents. Many themers still build on top of that original concept. Their child themes are nothing more than a custom stylesheet with design modifications. The ability to bundle multiple style variations from a single theme could change how they approach design, perhaps even offering a better user experience. Kjell Reigstad first teased this feature last month when announcing the upcoming new default theme. “Twenty Twenty-Two…

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