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Customizing template to imitate another site

  1. Hi, this is my first post and I am creating my first page/blog.

    I was asked to create a blog for my colleges MBA faculty. They had originally had someone create one on wordpress.com but received grief from the university marketing because it didn't work with the branding of the university. They asked me to make it look like http://blogs.bethel.edu/just-jay/
    (the President's blog).

    This is great, and with wordpress.com I am able to get "close" ... but really not the same at all.

    I want to be able to use the top part of the page I linked. (Ideally I would use the whole page and change the content) Is that possible? I have never written code and have been studying up on it.

    If someone knows this stuff like the back of their hand I would appreciate some help. If you could look at the source of that link and tell me if it would be possible to (easily) copy, paste, and change the content then maybe it is worth paying to customize a wordpress.

    My understanding is that they took a wordpress blog and included it into their website and format (which you can do)... and I am trying to take their website format and insert it into a wordpress blog/page (And this isn't possible ?? I'm thinking.. since it is not all php.)

    Any opinion? Sorry for the book. I am thinking I can get it close enough but if they want it exact they need someone who can write code and still may not be able to do it on wordpress. (Im not sure why they don't go through the colleges marketing people that work on the actual site. I'm assuming wordpress is easier for individual faculty to upload their blogs to than if they had a page on the colleges site... maybe I am completely wrong about that though).
    If it is possible to copy and paste the css style and the code/html (and change it to php) from the top two navigation headers and the bottom footer from http://blogs.bethel.edu/just-jay/ then I could probably figure it out.

    Thank for any expert help and/or opinions.

    The blog I need help with is chrisschmidtontheweb.wordpress.com.

  2. You cannot build or use your own custom theme built from scratch at WordPress.com.
    http://en.support.wordpress.com/ftp-access/
    http://en.support.wordpress.com/themes/adding-new-themes/

    The only themes we can use are those found here > Appearance > Themes
    This is a multiuser blogging platform. All blogs wearing the same theme are using the same underlying template and we cannot access the underlying files and edit templates or themes. http://en.support.wordpress.com/themes/editing-themes/

    There are two free themes, Sandbox and Toolbox designed to allow maximum flexibility for CSS editing and creating new “skins”. Toolbox is more modern and includes a lot of support for CSS3 and HTML5, so it is really only limited by your skills and knowledge.

    If you have CSS editing experience the upgrade will allow you to stylize the appearance of themes you find here > Appearance > Themes, but will not allow you to change the functionality, by editing the underlying template.

    It does not allow you to remove footer links to the theme designer or to WordPress.com.

    Also note that CSS is theme specific, so you cannot use the CSS stylesheets from other themes with the themes at WordPress.COM. http://en.support.wordpress.com/custom-design/custom-css/

    See also > WordPress.com vs. WordPress.org: The Differences > http://support.wordpress.com/com-vs-org/

  3. Thank you. So, I thought that wordpress.org allows me to customize anything I want. I guess, before I pay to have a customizable .org blog/page I was looking to see if it is possible.

    Thank you for your suggestions and opinion.

    Would it be possible to do in a self-hosted wordpress.org blog/page?

    The css blog section from http://blogs.bethel.edu/just-jay/ looks like it could be easily copied and pasted.. but the two nav headers and the footer seems to be "javascript" which cannot.. correct?

    I am not looking to get ride of the copyright material from wordpress.. it is ok if it is there. I am more interested in the addition of the type of header and footer seen here. http://blogs.bethel.edu/just-jay/

    I am thinking I will just tell them I can get close to the colors, columns, and widgets, but it will not be exact.

    Thanks for any further help!

  4. If you can put it on the same server as the bethel.edu site, you could actually even use the theme that they created on the new site. It would be just a matter of copying over the theme folder and included files to wp-content/themes/ on the new installation of the .ORG software. Then you could just change the title and such and be done with it.

  5. Thank you. This is what I was wondering

  6. You are welcome.

  7. You can do anything with wordpress. I want to disagree with "timethief." Yes you can build your own theme from scratch. I do it all the time.

    If you want to copy someone's theme you should look into using an add on that many people use to make their themes favor other sites.

    I use the browser Mozilla Firefox and can easily view any type of coding. All you have to do is right click and select the option "Inspect Element."

    You can do anything you want here. Just use many different sources for searching how to use custom css. And also learn some basic PHP coding and you will be set!

  8. @chattpc
    Your disagreement does not score with me. You may indeed design wordpress.ORG themes for wordpress.ORG software but this is the wordpress.COM support forum.
    http://support.wordpress.com/com-vs-org/

    You cannot build or use your own custom theme built from scratch at WordPress.com.
    http://en.support.wordpress.com/ftp-access/
    http://en.support.wordpress.com/themes/adding-new-themes/

    CSS is theme specific, so you cannot use the CSS stylesheets from other themes with the themes at WordPress.COM.
    http://en.support.wordpress.com/custom-design/custom-css/

    Read also > http://en.support.wordpress.com/custom-design/custom-css/#frequently-asked-questions

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