Adding Features Or Design From One Theme To Another

I have a few themes that I have finalized for a corporate/magazine type site that I want to build. I like the front end (design) of one theme but the back end (features) of another theme.

Backend - Features would include - sidebar manager, widgets, shortcodes, page templates, typography options etc

Is there a way to combine the two?

Either I want to bring the design to the theme with the good functions/features or bring the features to the theme with the good design.

Which is easier and how do I do it?
smuralisankarAsked:
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Jason C. LevineConnect With a Mentor No oneCommented:
You can, with a lot of effort and knowledge of Wordpress architecture, move features you like from one them and into another.  But this will definitely get you deep into the code and you sort of have to know how themes hook into the backend to provide the changes to the dashboard, add widget, etc.

If you are not all that familiar with the building blocks of Wordpress, you definitely are out of your depth with this and should hire a developer or switch tactics.

You might be better off looking at a theme framework like Genesis.  They go through a lot of effort to build modular theme structures and all you need to do develop child themes to suit your taste.  This is, IMHO, the best of both worlds...you get a lot of awesome backend functionality, advanced widgets, etc, but still retain control over look and feel.
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COBOLdinosaurCommented:
That is too broad a question to give any definitive answer.  There are a bunch of factors involved to determine compatibility.  Structure, the nature if the content, scripting conflicts, style conflicts, standards compliance; and probably a bunch more.

In general I would say you have to start with the underlying structure of the HTML and then bring components from both the design and functionality components a little at a time so you catch compatibility issues early.

If you want to get specific answers, you are going to have to ask specific questions.


Cd&
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smuralisankarAuthor Commented:
You might be better off looking at a theme framework like Genesis.  They go through a lot of effort to build modular theme structures and all you need to do develop child themes to suit your taste.  This is, IMHO, the best of both worlds...you get a lot of awesome backend functionality, advanced widgets, etc, but still retain control over look and feel.

I did consider frameworks like genesis.

However, the themes, child themes and skins don't look that good. The layouts are not suited for me.

Does creating or customizing child themes require a lot of coding knowledge? PHP, CSS ?
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Jason C. LevineConnect With a Mentor No oneCommented:
It doesn't require a ton of PHP...just enough to know how to embed the standard WordPress functionality (like the Loop and the various includes that makes the site run) and there are templates to help with that.  It does require intermediate to advanced CSS know-how though.
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smuralisankarAuthor Commented:
What about woothemes and elegant themes?

Looks like I am going to find this project difficult since I don't know coding. I have about 2 weeks to get this done.

Maybe I can get 3 weeks. Not sure if I want to try it out myself. I don't mind. But I don't know what to expect. So, kind of uncertain right now.

The most important step would be to pick the right theme.

Which route do you think I should go? Picking the theme with the most features/widgets (and not have the design/look and feel/layout the I need) or picking the theme with the good design but not the features that i need.

Which is easier to fix/achieve after choosing the theme?
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Jason C. LevineConnect With a Mentor No oneCommented:
>> What about woothemes and elegant themes?

If you see a theme on either site that does what you want it to do, then buy it.  If not, keep looking through the premium themes until you do.  

>> Looks like I am going to find this project difficult since I don't know coding.

Yep.  

>> Picking the theme with the most features/widgets (and not have the design/look and feel/layout the I need) or picking the theme with
>> the good design but not the features that i need. Which is easier to fix/achieve after choosing the theme?

You pick that one that YOU can fix if it is going to be you responsible for fixing it.  So if you have design skills but no coding skills, find a theme with the features and alter the design as that will be easier on you.  If the reverse is true (which is my situation -- I can't design worth crap) then you look at the design elements more and build other stuff as needed.

If you can't do either, a) you agreed to take on the wrong contract and b) sub out quickly and take the reduction in income as an object lesson.

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