Widget Wizardy – Woodie Knows WordPress

Woodie knows WordPress - Carrie Spencer Smart Ass RomanceGreetings my fellow Chuckers! Pull up a log, grab a handful of pansies and let’s talk widgets.

When you go to your dashboard and look under Appearance, you see a button called Widgets. Clicking on that will bring you to a HUGE bunch of buttons. Note: These buttons are different under WP.com and WP.org. If I mention one that you don’t have, don’t panic. It’s just on the other type of system.

First, if you click on these buttons, nothing happens. Zero. Zip. Nada. They have to be “activated” by dragging them to a sidebar. Depending on your theme, you can have multiple sidebars, one sidebar, or even 5 or 6.

Put your mouse over one of the buttons and it turns into a 4 headed arrow. Then, holding the mouse button down, drag it to your sidebar. Mine is called “main sidebar” yours could be something different.

Generally, your newly placed widget will be open. If not, click the arrow to the right of the title.

Holy schmoley! See all that stuff in there? That’s information YOU need to fill out. The easiest way is to open one browser window and view your blog, open another browser window and work on the code. When you make a change to your widget, refresh the other browser page and take a look-see.

Now, unfortunately I can’t go through every single widget, but if you need help with one, holler ok?

Back to your widget. Are you still with me? Are your eyes rolling up in your head yet? Patience. Print this article out or bookmark it. Practice. You’ll get the hang of it, promise.

Make sure every time you make a change to your widget, you click SAVE at the bottom! Promise me!

There’s two other buttons on the widget that you need to know about. Stop that, I can hear you groaning clear over here in my cornfield. One is CLOSE, which closes the widget window and tidies up the joint a bit. The other is DELETE. Self-explanatory I’m hoping. =)

And finally – please note there are TWO areas of widgets. One is AVAILABLE and the other is INACTIVE. oooooo what’s all this Woodie? If you have a widget you’re going to want to use again, just not at this particular time (like a Christmas video or progress report) then when you drag it back to the AVAILABLE side, it keeps the information in it. In 10 months when you’re ready for Christmas music again – and who isn’t? – simply drag it back to your sidebar again, and voila….you have everything in your widget. No fiddling.

If you don’t ever want to see the information in your widget again – childhood pics of when you were a young kit – awkward! – then drag it down to the bottom INACTIVE area. poof! no more pics of you with a Mohawk.

Them’s the basics of widgets boys ‘n girls. Got questions? Ask ’em here!




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