Once it looks right… [how do I clone the design?]

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Notice: this information was written when Microthemer version 2 was current. On Dec 26th, 2014 version 3 was released with a completely new interface. Some of the information may be redundant, but as much of the functionality remains the same in version 3 we haven't deleted this post.

Hi Sebastian, so the story so far: this great tool called Microthemer allowed me to tweak all of the problems out of my site with the forum Q&A help – a task that would have been impossible by any other route. That is fantastic, thanks.

I’m now in a different phase, where I need to “clone” my design and essentially begin again on a second “companion” site, retaining all of the design tweaks (originally evolved from the Twenty Eleven theme). I am concerned about “breaking”anything and also the fact that I learned too late that I should have had a child theme in place to prevent WP upgrades losing all of the key design change decisions.

So my problem is… how can I “preserve” a heavily tweaked theme (as now operating at http://www.miconsent.org) in a CLEAN way – i.e. so I can use the design as a basis for re-population of the design with different content. As mentioned I forgot to do the child theme trick (didn’t know about it) so ideally I would like to fix that problem in the process, i.e. when I begin again try and get the advantages of updated WP versions as time goes on (without losing hard-won tweaks).

Many thanks for your sage advice. Do let me know how I can legitimately help promote Microthemer it really is the best thing since sliced bread.



Hi Ed,

It’s great to hear that you’re still enjoying using Microthemer.

1. To create a child theme for Twenty Eleven, you just need to create a directory in /wp-content/themes/ called “mychild” (for instance). Then, you copy style.css from the /wp-content/themes/twentyeleven/ directory to your mychild directory, open style.css and then change the meta info at the top to:

Theme Name: Twenty Eleven Child
Theme URI: http://microconsent.com/
Description: Child theme for the Twenty Eleven theme
Author: Ed
Author URI: http://microconsent.com/
Template: twentyeleven
Version: 1.0

You can then activate your child theme via WordPress. Now WordPress will use the stylesheet in your child Theme instead of the stylesheet in Twenty Eleven – but it will use all of the other (mainly PHP) files in /wp-content/themes/twentyeleven/.

Out of curiosity, what changes did you lose when you updated Twenty Eleven? If you applied all of your design tweaks via Microthemer, they should have been preserved through the update.

2. To clone the design you created in Microthemer over to another WordPress install, do the following:

– In the Microthemer UI, export your settings as a Micro Theme by checking the “Export to Theme” checkbox.
– Choose “New” from the select menu and then call it “My Cloned Design”
– Click the “Save” button
– Now go to the Manage Themes Microthemer page
– Click the “Export As Zipped Theme” button at the bottom of the Theme Files table
– Download the zip file using the link provided
– Go to your new WordPress website and install Microthemer
– Active the Twenty Elevn Theme
– Go to the Manage Themes page and install the zip file you created on your original WordPress site via the “Install Zipped Theme” button
– Active the Micro Theme you just uploaded and then visit the frontend of your website
– You should see that the design mimics your design on your original website
– Go to the Microthemer UI and you should also see that it has been populated with all of your settings

I hope that helps. If you want to help promote Microthemer please tell your friends!




thinking the new site thru I decided a cloning was not the best option in the end – it did not fit certain aspects.

This has led to a different problem, so I’ll start another thread.

Thanks for tips above – in my tips archive!

Re differences on upgrade that didn’t happen with current site (I’m too scared to update it ;-). I just remember when first learning WP that my tweaks reset to default (because I hadn’t made the child theme presumably). Microthemer wasn’t in my toolbox then 😉



OK, thanks for posting back.

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