01: Setting up a Local Environment

This is the first lesson in the WordPress Theme Development Course. In this video we cover how to set up a local development environment for WordPress using Local by Flywheel.

If you already have a local development environment set up that you like (using Vagrant, MAMP, Valet, or something else), feel free to skip to the next video. There’s nothing in this series that requires you to use a specific development environment set up. (more…)

How to Modify the Look of a WordPress Site with CSS

If you want to make a few design tweaks to a WordPress theme (and don’t see an option for it in the Customizer), you’ll likely need to use some custom CSS. Thankfully, WordPress has a great built-in Custom CSS module that allows you to safely add CSS code or override existing styles. This gives you almost unlimited design control over a site!

This video explains how to find the selectors in your theme using the Chrome developer tools and then add your own custom styles in WordPress.

Prevent WordPress Emails in Stage or Local Environments

When you’re developing a WordPress site locally or testing in staging, you’ll generally want to prevent the site from sending out emails to customers or users.

I’ve noticed that a number of other WordPress developers are fans of MailHog (great write up by Jonathan Christopher), but in many cases it’s easier if you don’t have to install anything additional on the server.

I use two plugins to block and then log emails:

“Disable Emails” prevents the emails from sending from WordPress, and “Email Log” is able to capture their contents in case you need to view them.

Since I sync my production environment to staging and local quite frequently, I have a script in my theme that activates these plugins when it detects the new environment.

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