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Using my customised WP theme in BBPress?

  • I had a custom-made theme designed for my blog and now want to install BBPress. Is there a way I can use the theme from my blog on BBPress so it all looks the same?

    Thanks in advance for any help!

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  • Graeme


    Yes you can however it is fiddly as it requires coding! It involves crafting a bbPress theme manually to make use of the same stylesheet and page structure as your WordPress theme. Your theme stylesheet will also need certain rules for bPress.

    I found when developing my themes that bbPress will use template files from the default theme if they are non-existent in a theme. This means that you can keep the number of .php template files in the theme to a minimum of 3 php files for a 1 column theme or 5 php files for a 2 column theme (i.e. with sidebar).

    If you had someone create your WordPress theme for you, then direct theme to since these themes are a bare-bones starting point for creating a new bbPress theme. They save some time in stripping down a bbPress theme to its bare essentials.

    That’s not the only way you can do this.

    You can either use the wordpress header replacement technique, by which you use the wordpress header and any number of theme files, meaning that you can have your forums exactly where your wordpress content is, surrounded by your wordpress header and sidebars and footer, using the wordpress theme file, with a supplemental file to style bbPress differently. This is great because not only the stylesheet is shared but so are a bunch of the HTML-generating files, and your bbPress stylesheet is seperate so it doesn’t get in the way of anything.

    You can also just copy your theme by duplicating the look in bbPress. I’d say it was a lot easier to change the CSS than it was to go through all the HTML-generating files and changing those to use the WordPress CSS, and then still adding more CSS.

    Having just done both for two different clients, I’d personally recommend the first option; it’s going to be slower on the server, but faster to do (ie. cheaper to have done) also a lot more maintainable and thorough.

    leeppp, I offer this sort of thing professionally. If you want me (or even someone else) to do it, just post your email and I’ll get in touch.

    I put require_once(‘/home/domain/public_html/gypsylablue/wp-blog-header.php’);

    in bbpress’ config, but it isn’t displaying wordpress’ header in bbpress. Is there anything elso one should do?

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