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A Preview of the New Theme Options

Posted on September 8 by in Theme Sneak Peeks | 89 comments

A Preview of the New Theme Options

As I mentioned in my last few blog posts, I am planning some major updates to my existing themes collection. The first thing on the list, and probably the most ambitious, is to completely re-create the Theme Options Page, and in the process add new settings and a new userfriendly design. I have always been a designer at heart, however I also realize the importance of having a theme that is easy to use. I have been working hard for the past few weeks with Yuriy to create the foundation, and now that it is complete I can begin integration. The new options page and the functionality that it brings will be implemented into every theme, which should help level the playing field (in terms of functionality) between the newest and oldest of themes. Even though it isn’t ready yet, I figured I would give everyone a sneak peek of what you can expect from this new options panel, aka ElegantPanel (ePanel).

The first thing you will notice is the new design. I tried to organize the options as best as possible. You will find two levels of tabbed navigation powered by jQuery for quick access to all of the settings. My goal was to make things as userfriendly as possible, and you will notice some major changes to how some of the options work. For example, you will never have to look for a page/category ID number again! I have also done away with many of the unneeded dropdown menus for the simpler of settings. Information buttons have been added to every option that, when clicked, reveal a lightbox explanation of the setting and how to use it. I have also added a support documents section with easy access to theme installation instructions and troubleshooting guides.

The next thing you will notice is the increase in available options. I have added a few new sections and beefed up the areas that were already there. I’m not going to go over them now, you’ll just have to wait until it’s released, but if you are curious here is an example of one of the tabs of the new SEO section.

For the full picture you will need to wait until it has been released and you can test it for yourself. Overall I am excited to begin integrating the new options as I feel it is a big step in improving the quality of my themes, and something that will make it easier for me to improve theme functionality in the future.

89 Comments

  1. Very cute admin area … need as cool as your admin for a school project :D

  2. Looks very nice, looking forward to the updated themes!

  3. Nice work! looking forward to see it done!

  4. Very nice. I have yet to become a member, because I haven’t (yet) purchased my hosting service (just the domain name), but I am still leaning towards your themes.

  5. This looks really impressive. Can’t wait to try it out.

  6. Looking forward to checking these options out. Great Work!

  7. Looking forward to the upgrade. We will have to reload our themes when you release the theme options, yes?

    • You will have to reload them, but it shouldn’t be a problem unless you have made modifications to the theme’s design.

  8. Elegant and professional. Very exciting. Looking just like your great themes. Great to see a standardization across all themes, from the legacy ones to the latest and greatest themes.

    One thing I’d like to comment on is that I’m not a designer, and choosing overall theme color combinations for myself is a disaster. I hope you will give us some help by way of complementary color combinations.

    The color choice screenshot looks like it is for links, which is limited enough scope for me, but if the choices are for the overall theme colors, please give us some help and guidance for keeping our elegant themes elegant! Adobe has some kind of color theme wheel where there are scientific complimentary color combinations.

    Thanks again for the great work and for steadily advancing the themes forward.

  9. It’s very nice looking, well designed.

    But I prefer for my WordPress plugins and theme options to blend in with the rest of the WordPress administration tool for consistency.

    This is especially true if I am doing a site for a client. It’s easier to teach them one consistent interface. Otherwise you make areas stand out and then they ask why the rest of the admin doesn’t look like this, etc.

    So I never understood why themes such as One Theme insisted on making some crazy theme option panel that doesn’t go with the rest of the WordPress administration tool.

    But nice work, it is nice looking. Just not ideal for me.

    • There is something to that, and although the new theme options panel looks really great and has a bunch of nice options, it is still nice to just use the plugins that I’m used to using to accomplish the same thing without having to figure out a the theme options panel for different themes.

  10. Looks good, keep up the great work.

  11. Looks fantastic, can’t wait to try it out!

  12. Looks fantastic. I wish I had your eye for design.

  13. Wow! I’m constantly blown away by your work. I can’t wait to dive into the new interface. Great job!

  14. Wow!
    So glad i signed to your themes!
    And it is even better see that you worry about design improvement, even in theme options panel.
    Keep doing your nice work!
    Greetings from Brazil!

  15. Holy wow!!
    It looks awesome!
    Keep up the good work!!

  16. Very beautiful design! It’s so awesome this new tool! Congratulations!

  17. Looking forward to it!

  18. it’s cool nick..awesome upgrade
    can wait to try it out..

  19. good work.
    We’re waiting……

  20. Two thumbs up!
    Awesome admin area. Never seen like this before. Great innovation. Cool!

  21. Looks really good, cant wait for the changes to go live. Will we need to redownload all theme files and reinstall for this to take effect?

    • Yeah, you will need to re-upload everything to take advantage of the new theme options.

  22. wow, it’s astonishing

  23. What can i say Nick… awesome.. as always…

    thanks for ElegantThemes man.

  24. With this administrative area, you want to keep the current price for the themes?

  25. 1 word to sum it up really, AWESOME!

  26. Ive been looking around for a new theme for quite a while now.

    Came across your site quite some time ago (april maybe) but didnt appreciate the power of what youre offering in your annual package as we had only just gone into WP back then so it was all a learning curve.

    Anyway, i got distracted, forgot all about you, began researching again and lo and behold, here i am once more and ive got to say that now ive got a better idea of what im looking for, i can seriously appreciate whats on offer and on that basis will be placing my order as soon as ive finished this post!

    Must say that as a non-techie i like the look of the ((elegantly)) simple control panel youre creating and will look forward to receiving the update once its ready.

    Incidentally, any ideas about WHEN the updates are likely to be ready for distribution?

    • There is no set date. This is a very big job so I wouldn’t expect all themes to be ready for another couple weeks.

  27. WOW! This has got to be the best designed Theme Options page in the Premium Themes marketspace. Very nicely done indeed nick and the UI looks fantastic cannot wait to try it out :D

  28. Looking good Nick! Can’t wait to try it out.

  29. Man, now you have me wondering, do I install one of your themes now or wait until you release your latest and greatest options panel.

    I am currently using one of your themes and think they are excellent. Can’t wait to see the new options!

    • Unless you are making modifications to the design you can use the current version and just upgrade later :) You may have to reset some of the options in the theme options page, but everything else will work fine.

  30. Best thing since bread and butter Nick simply amazing!

  31. This promises to be the most attractive theme options page that I’ve ever seen. It’s like a theme within a theme. I can’t wait to try it out for myself.

  32. Hi Nick,

    Love the new epanel capabilities. Can’t wait to see it in action!! Your services are a steal. Honestly I would easily pay more for all the work that you do and the time you spend on these wonderful themes.

  33. elegantthemes rocks!!

  34. I can’t wait to see the new setup for these themes. Excellent Job! I’m so glad I bought from you.

  35. again good job nick, can’t w8 to try them:P

  36. Awesome! Elegant as usual! Looking forward to the updates!

  37. Amazing! – next stop the world. LOVE ETHEMES

  38. This is a very good step toward success, excellent work, I just have one main problem, is that I usually modify my theme code, so it’s going to take some time to upgrade, but anyways I am not going to miss that :)

    I have subscribed to your blog rss feed because I am late all the time to get informed about your new cool stuff!

  39. You are so worthy! It looks sweet! I can’t wait to see it in action.

  40. Brilliant, I love the idea and the look… Can’t wait to see this on the Themes!

    Thanks

  41. It’s probably too late or maybe too much work – but a Tranlatation option in this new tool would have been nice…

    Still – can’t wait :)

  42. Great work ! Thank you for your dedication to always improve what is already very good !

    Looking forward…

  43. The best theme option page, I ever seen.

    Bage.

  44. I can’t wait for this. Any idea when themes with ePanel will be released?

    • I plan on releasing it 6 themes at a time. The first 6 themes should be ready this week.

      • Any idea when Quadro with ePanel will be released?

        I was feeling a need for redesign but then I saw this post and decided to wait.
        And yes, will you be posting about theme releases(with ePanel) here?

  45. That does look slick! My theme options page is also tabbed based and gracefully degrades if javascript happens to be enabled.

  46. You do amazing work! I appreciate all that comes with this $19.95 membership. You deliver way, way, way above and beyond the membership fee.

  47. Wow, mindblowing admin functionality, I have been playing with it and always dread messing in the code but you have thought of everything I need. I can’t thank you enough.

  48. Looking at the SEO section, it looks as though we won’t need the “all in one SEO” plugin.

    If it makes it easier for us, I’m all in favour.

    Brilliant work and amazingly comprehensive… I can hardly wait.

  49. Sweet! Looking great in both the form and function department!

  50. WOW! :)

  51. Really looking forward to these theme options mate, this is easily best value for money premium wordpress themes site out there.

  52. Very cool, hope to see it in action soon ;)

  53. Great stuff…will be waiting for the release..best

  54. awesome, and i guess its a great work

  55. elegantthemes already providing excellent stuff but I appreciate this magnificent addition in the theme.

    Muazzam Mehmood

  56. Wow, this is really neat. I especially like the color picker.

  57. Really like the look of it. Clear and easy on the eye!

  58. this looks great! however, I heavily modified your themes on my sites.(i.e, no longer uses timthumb, etc) hopefully it won’t be a big problem.

    looking for the completion of this project.

  59. like. This is wonderful.

  60. I will be your member when you applied this cool feature. Hope it be come realize soon

  61. Soon, I will change all my little buildings to “Elegant Themes” – Greatings, full of sun, from Hannover, Germany. – Thanks.

  62. Cool! epanel like the cpanel I like it can’t wait to use it but I guess I’ll have to. Looks like a lot of work Thanks

  63. wow…fantastic post

  64. Nice looking theme indeed. Will be looking to download this for sure.

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