How to Install a WordPress Theme

By Wendy Piersall, Heather B. Armstrong

Installing a WordPress theme is much the same as installing a plugin. Mom bloggers can find free WordPress themes and premium paid WordPress themes from You won’t find any themes with malware or spam on the site, so it’s safe to browse themes from the Install Themes page in your WordPress blog.

1From your WordPress Dashboard, choose Appearance→Themes.

Click the Install Themes tab.

2Choose the criteria you want for your theme by selecting the appropriate check boxes on the page.


You can narrow your search by selecting the check boxes next to your preferred colors, number of columns, width, features, or subject. Click the Find Themes button to view the themes in your search. You can alternatively browse themes by featured, newest, and most recently updated by clicking those links at the top of the page.

(Optional) Preview a theme by clicking the Preview link.

3When you identify the theme you want to use, click the Install link.

Then click the Install Now button in the pop-up window. This copies the theme to your WordPress blog but doesn’t make it live yet.

(Optional) Upload a theme you’ve already found elsewhere by clicking the Upload link on the Install Themes page; navigate to the saved .zip file and select it, and click the Install Now button. This copies the theme to your WordPress blog but doesn’t make it live yet.

4Preview the theme by clicking the Preview link.

After you’ve installed the theme, you can preview it with your existing content if you have any. The theme may need some customizing to fit your needs, so the preview is only a guide to determine whether it’s close enough to what you want.

5Activate the theme by clicking the Activate link.

At this point, the theme is live on your blog for all your readers to see.