Creating themes & templates can be tricky with all the extensions & standards you may need to follow in order to make it better. First and foremost, you will need to decide which web application you’re going to make a theme/template for.
Theme or Template, What is it?
The web has always been a great place to explore new things and websites are commonly stored information that can be accessed on the internet. These websites use a design and a workflow to help viewers get a visual friendliness. Earlier there were no reusable designs & workflows, which made the data online a jumbled mess, which resulted in developers using reusable designs & workflows for their websites, these were named as Themes or Templates.
Themes/Templates are a program of code to help anyone kickstart their website without having to create a design from scratch, thus making web design & development easier than ever and helping beginners to start without any problems. This resulted in a common people being able to create their own websites without requiring extensive knowledge of programming languages.
How do Themes or Templates work?
Themes or Templates, it all consists of a User Interface & User Experience. In simple words, User Interface is the part where we create all the designs we need to have in the theme such as headers, menus, sidebars, buttons, media holders, footers, etc.; on the other hand User Experience is where we decide how these designs will work for viewers for example when a viewer clicks on a menu link, how it will drive them to their destination page or when a viewer clicks on a button, which type of experience they shall have.
On a deeper note, mostly themes or templates work within the capabilities available in the web application upon which they’re working.
Top Web Applications for which Themes & Templates are Created
There are tons of applications which support pre-made themes & templates, but in this long runway there are some applications which you may find fascinating & easy to start, here’s a quick rundown of the top applications for which themes & templates are created nowadays.
HTML5 Templates are simple & easy to design and hence are easy to customize according to your design. For a novice in web design, HTML templates are a great way to start designing a site since HTML is one of the building blocks of the web, every page or site available is rendered in HTML first in the browser thus in order to understand how the web works newbies should give it a try.
HTML code is easily reusable such as a template can easily be customized by editing the page specific files and then be made live by just moving it to your web server since everything on the web runs in HTML, so you don’t need to add any extra services to run your site online, simply accessing those files will be enough to get started. HTML itself is incomplete in terms of design, so CSS styling is necessary in order to make a complete design model.
In the beginning, when the world wide web was launched most of the sites were made directly on HTML but without server-side enhancements. After a while, things came to standstill in web development, thus people started using other server-side web languages to create more powerful & advanced sites and since then HTML templates are mostly used for simple & less advanced tasks.
Bootstrap templates are nothing but HTML, PHP or any other application template styled with Bootstrap. With Bootstrap added to your template, you get access to predefined style & design libraries with which one can easily create a template design in a short amount of time. With Bootstrap, making a styled form is as easy as eating a cake, it has styles for every part of the template such as different types of navigation styles, media holders, sidebars, content holders & much more. With its grid & columns, you can track every area of your page to be styled in best way possible.
Bootstrap is easy to begin with since its classes and ids are the only thing you need to add to your code and it’ll automatically grasp the style that has been defined. One can also modify styles according to their preferences. Simply said designing your template with Bootstrap is easy as well as super clean.
PHP templates are more powerful and advanced in terms of the features and you can add additional advantages to it with the different features PHP provides. Although, you can easily create simple designs in it too since PHP is a server-side language, sites created in it are also highly object-oriented and are more powerful than HTML sites. PHP templates are not so easily customizable depending on how deep the code is written. PHP templates can be made on many web frameworks such as WordPress, Joomla, Magento, Laravel, and CodeIgniter etc.
Every framework has its own advantages and one has to learn first in order to create a template using that framework. Nowadays, many online sites offer courses on Web design & development in which you may find PHP and other framework tutorials from which it’ll be easy to start on.
Photoshop or PSD Templates
Photoshop or PSD templates are templates that are created to have a mockup of the design that you want on a website. PSD templates can be created in a short time compared to the actual running web template of it. PSD templates are easily viewable and can be easily exported in different file types to many systems such as a jpeg, pdf, etc. PSD templates only require photoshop to view them although exporting them in different file types may help avoid requring photoshop.
Starting off with a design in Photoshop is easy and you don’t need to know coding or any web languages beforehand to do it. Most web designers use PSD templates to create mockup designs for their projects and it also helps teams working on a project have an idea of the site being created.
Things You Need to Know Before Creating a Web Themes/Templates
Generally, a theme or a template is all about its web application, a web application is a parent which decides how that theme/template will work. It doesn’t change the fact that you cannot make your own choices in the design & workflow and instead you’ll work under the supervision of that application. In other words, the web application on which you’re making a theme/template will take precedence in giving you the tools & accessibility to work your way out. Anything you wish to have beyond the application features will not be possible.
Creating a new Theme/Template may lead to some great learning experiences over the application on & for which you’re building it and you’ll learn that sometimes you may need to tweak a little to avail the greater features disabled or weren’t made available by default. Well, it’s all a crazy big world of awesome stuff out there, just make your choice and start building your own theme or template for your website.