How to and Where to Upload Your WP-Theme at WordPress Directory Successfully

by on September 18th, 2009

I created DarkMystery Theme for me and but I then posted that for public and just uploaded it at WordPress Themes Directory which has less chances of approval I guess because I went through a process and realized that I should have taken care of few things before creating that theme. DarkMystery was not for public though, but anyways I have posted it. That is more of a custom theme with a little bit of Twitter love. I am referring you all about what you should take care before creating a theme, in case you are going to submit it to WordPress Official Directory (O’ Yes! there are rules for the game). For me, I guess I will prepare more themes now and post those there. You need to know where to upload WordPress Theme? What you should include in WordPress Theme CSS? What tags you should use in WordPrerss Theme CSS? Where can you read all about rules and checklists about developing a successful standard WordPress Theme?

Why Hosting Your theme at WordPress

By hosting your theme at WordPress you’ll get:

  • Stats on how many times your theme has been downloaded
  • User feed back in the forums
  • Ratings, to see how your theme is doing compared to others
  • And best of all more exposure, which we all need, right?
Guidelines for WordPress Theme Submission

Here are some guidelines for theme submissions:

  • A single zip file, with all of the files themes file included.
  • A style.css file containing: Name (unique to the directory), Tags, Version (in the format of x.x or x.x.x and be unique to the theme)
  • Align classes: .alignright, .alignleft, .aligncenter
  • Include a screenshot file, screenshot.png, and be a real screenshot of the theme, not a splash screen.
  • A GPL compatible license.
  • No hidden, paid or sponsored links in the theme. Links back to the author’s site are fine.
  • Expose RSS feeds
  • Support Gravatars
  • Support widgets
  • Show post categories and tags
  • Show the blog title and tag line
  • The theme is your own original work.
  • Adult/mature themes are not allowed.

Okay now something more important:

Use correct DocType.
Use language attribute in html starting tag.


Make Sure you have wp_head() included before ending head tag.

Make Sure you have wp_footer() included before body close tag.

Make sure you have 404 page.

Make sure you have proper introduction and details of theme in the CSS file. e.g.

A sample CSS top section coding for WordPress Theme.

Theme Name: DarkMystery
Theme URI:
Description: Custom premium quality design based theme for WordPress blog.
Version: 1.0
Author: TechMynd
Author URI:
Tags: two-columns, right-sidebar, custom-header, black, blue, dark, fixed-width

Now this is important. If it will not contain theme name, tags, version, it will not be uploaded. And you can not use all the tags you want. There is a limit and standard. To know what kind of tags you can use proceed to Tags Suggestion Page.

Make sure you have included these essential for formatting styles coding in the css.

Starting with WordPress 2.5 there are alignment CSS classes that are used by the visual editor. In order for images to be shown correctly themes are required to have these classes. Please add these classes to your style.css file and then upload the zip file. Additional details about CSS are available at

.aligncenter {
	display: block;
	margin-left: auto;
	margin-right: auto;
.alignleft {
	float: left;
.alignright {
	float: right;
.wp-caption {
	border: 1px solid #ddd;
	text-align: center;
	background-color: #f3f3f3;
	padding-top: 4px;
	margin: 10px;
	-moz-border-radius: 3px;
	-khtml-border-radius: 3px;
	-webkit-border-radius: 3px;
	border-radius: 3px;
.wp-caption img {
	margin: 0;
	padding: 0;
	border: 0 none;
.wp-caption-dd {
	font-size: 11px;
	line-height: 17px;
	padding: 0 4px 5px;
	margin: 0;
Browser Problem

And it is not guarantee that you will be successful in uploading your theme using FireFox or IE. Try Safari and then try Opera brower to upload your zip file. In my case Opera works. It should be just a zip file.

Following is the location to browse beautiful and perfect themes uploaded at WordPress. These themes are a success and are written under WordPress Themes Standard guidelines.

WordPress Official Themes Directory

Know the rules, guidelines and go through the checklists before upload your theme and find elements which your theme should have.

Theme Development Checklist

Theme Unit Tests

WordPress Themes and Templates Discussion

Above links have everything you need to know about WordPress theme development & coding, header, footer, error handling, syntax & file handling, formatting, function, and logic, navigation, widgets, pages, posts and more.

Now when you have created a brilliant WordPress theme, you can go to and create an account and post the theme at the link below.

Upload a Theme at WordPress Themes Directory

The theme which you will post will be included in the WordPress Official Directory after approval, if it gets one and will be displayed over here at the following link (before and after approval).

Your Themes at WordPress Directory

One Review

  1. Tnelson says:

    I usually don’t post on Blogs but ya forced me to, great info.. excellent! … I’ll add a backlink and bookmark your site.