Use Bootswatch themes with Museum Core to “skin” your site

I did a writeup on Museum Themes on how to use Bootstrap 3 themes with Museum Core (which this site uses) to get new “skins” for the Core theme. Note: I wouldn’t have even thought of this if it wasn’t for Shawn Wildermuth‘s Bootstrap 3 course on Pluralsight. If you want to check it out, I still have some trial codes to give away over here.

Use Bootswatch themes with Museum Core to “skin” your site – Museum Themes

Theme update and a mad dash to fix broken stuff

So Museum Core was pushed live to the repo today. Of course I immediately switched my blog from the Twenty Fourteen theme I was testing to Core because, you know, it’s my freaking theme. And immediately I ran into some issues. If you are using Core and experience any of these, here are the fixes. Also, if you’re using Core and you find new issues, be sure and let me know in the comments or in the theme’s support forum.

Notifications appear twice

I’m also using my Notifications plugin. I thought I was clever by adding support for multiple possible action hooks in the plugin. Maybe I was. However, I was also a bit too clever in adding support for multiple possible action hooks in the theme. This resulted in both the body_open action and the before action being found by the theme in the Notifications plugin and resulted in the notifications displaying twice. That’s not good. I guess I was being a bit too clever.

I pushed out an update to the Notifications plugin that removes support for the body_open and before actions (effectively removing the native support for Twentytwelve that I added) in favor of the Theme Hook Alliance tha_body_top action. In theory at least, the Theme Hook Alliance actions will become more canonical and used by multiple themes so, while I’m removing native support for Twentytwelve, I’m actually adding support for any of the themes that currently do support THA hooks and Twentytwelve, if the theme authors decide to add THA hooks into it. If you are using Core and Notifications together, please update your action hook under the <body> to this:

<?php do_action( 'tha_body_top' ); ?>

Icons don’t display

Museum Core 2.0 removes all the image icons that were previously in the theme and replaces them with the icon font, FontAwesome. FontAwesome is — as it sounds — awesome, and using it with the Bootstrap 3.0 support that is the foundation of Museum Core was a pretty easy decision. However, after updating my theme, none of the icons (which appear at the bottom of the posts) were displaying. I thought there was some caching issue or maybe the font files never downloaded in the update. But, checking all that, came up empty. Finally, I found the issue.

I’m also using the Better WordPress Minify plugin, which minifies all your javascript and css. Well the FontAwesome CSS is already minified, so I suspect that trying to concatenate and re-minify an already minified CSS file made something go wonky and it just wasn’t working at all. The solution was to turn off CSS minification and everything works fine now.

(By the way, that cool little flag thingie up there, that was created using FontAwesome using a recipe from their site…here’s the code:)

<span class="icon-stack pull-left icon-4x"><i class="icon-circle icon-stack-base"></i><i class="icon-flag icon-dark"></i></span>

(Note, if you do this in WordPress, you’ll need to put all the code on a single line, no breaks — otherwise the WordPress editor will interpret those as line breaks (<br />) and it will break the cool stacking effect. Also note that I’m using icon-dark on the flag instead of icon-light as is suggested here since the font color is already light.)

Download Musuem Core!

Now that I’m done with my rant, please, please PLEASE go download Museum Core RTFN and tell me what you think. I tried to make it as flexible as humanly possible and I’m pretty satisfied that the result is something that’s both usable as a theme framework or a theme that allows you to tweak almost every aspect of it right from the Theme Customizer. Again, if you run into any issues, please let me know.


So, Matt Jones — founder of Storefront Themes — presented at the last WPSLC meetup. Mostly he was talking about ecommerce stuff — which is the topic he was scheduled to present on — but he also talked about a few other projects he’s been working on, including Skematik.

At WordCamp SLC in September, he had been working on Skematik and we talked a bit about it then. I was anxious to take a peek but I hadn’t had a chance to ask him about it again until the meetup. So I did. And what you see before you is it.

Okay, you’re right, it doesn’t look like much at the outset. In fact, it probably looks almost identical to what this site looked like before I started using Skematik. (To be fair, I modified some of the templates and am running a child theme of Skematik — one that supports post formats for one thing, and allows my notifications plugin to work.) But the proof, as they say, is in the pudding. Or something. All the goods are under the hood. It’s based off Twitter Bootstrap — something I’ve been developing with lately anyway, and it’s incredibly flexible in terms of how you can customize it out of the box. Obviously, considering it only took a few minutes for me to get it to look almost exactly the same as the site did before I installed it.

What I like about the theme, besides the bootstrappy-ness, is how quickly you can get it up to speed with whatever you’re working on and get a nice looking site that’s immediately responsive (thanks to Bootstrap). Also, he makes full use of the WordPress theme customizer — which I haven’t played with enough, myself, and the only thing that shows up on the Theme Options page as far as settings is a custom CSS editor. It’s pretty cool to be able to tweak your theme before you even deploy it. And then there’s a bunch of shortcodes, but we won’t get into that

Go check out and give Matt some business if you’re interested in an easy-to-use theme/theme framework that already supports some popular plugins (bbpress, buddypress, wp e-commerce, etc) out of the box.

One theme to rule them all

If you follow us on Twitter or Facebook, you may already know that we recently released our first theme to the official WordPress repository.  It’s called Museum Core.

Museum Core is the product of over a year of development.  A solid foundation built on responsive design, HTML5 and CSS3, with a theme options page that is secure and flexible.  It also supports localization into any language you want.  In less than a month, it’s already been downloaded more than 3,000 times.

Core marks the beginning of our shift in scope for Museum Themes.  Rather than maintaining dozens of different themes independently, all themes, past and future, will become child themes of Core.  Additionally, we’ll be using Core to build WordPress versions of our most popular and favorite Blogger templates — we’ve already released WordPress versions of Grandma’s Hat Box and dear Audrey, and more are on the way.  Soon all our themes will be driven by the powerful Core framework, while maintaining the same level of customization options they currently offer.

Exciting things are coming in the next few months for Museum Themes.  For now, here’s our promo video for Core and some more information about what it supports.

Here’s a list of some of the features in Museum Core:

  • customizable sidebar (left or right)
  • full posts or excerpts on main blog page and archive pages (excerpts support post thumbnails)
  • customizable footer text (no hard-coded author credit)
  • five typeface options for 3 different locations (headings, body and alternate) with an eye for international language support
  • customizable link colors via an easy-to-use color-picker
  • custom favicon
  • optional support for Twitter hovercards
  • responsive design that supports smaller screens and mobile
  • supports all WordPress post formats with different layouts optimized for each
  • internationalization support.  Complete Polish translation in 1.0.9 courtesy of anemoone.