How to Update ElegantThemes WordPress Theme

Sadly, although Elegant Themes makes wonderful WordPress themes, they don’t provide a one-click upgrade. Instead you need to do it the old-fashioned way.

While there are shortcuts that you’ll be tempted to take, the steps I’m outlining here will update your theme while giving you the peace of mind to know that, should something go wrong, you can fix it with minimal fuss and bother.

#1 Plan and Prepare
What You’ll Need

A program you can use to take screen shots. This can be something like Evernote or OneNote, or a tool to convert screen captures to images.

Preparation Steps

Before you even think about updating that theme, you must:

Back up WordPress, both data and files
Deactivate all your plugins
Update WordPress if needed

Copy your Theme Settings from EPanel

Log into your WordPress dashboard and go to Appearance / Chameleon Theme Options. You want to copy them down so if you need to reconstruct them later, you’ll have the necessary information at your fingertips.

I use OneNote (part of the Microsoft Office suite) to grab screen shots very quickly and easily. If you’re an Evernote user, that will work also. A screen capture tool like Snagit also works beautifully. If you don’t have any of these, on a Windows computer you can use the PRINT SCREEN button, then paste the screen capture into a program like Paint.

You might even write them out by hand. Find the method that works best for you, but make sure you get a screen grab of all the settings on each tab — you may have to do some scrolling.

Download the Latest Theme Version

Log into your account at FWPThemes.com and download the Latest Theme Version. Once you’ve found yours (I’m using Chameleon for this example), click the Download button.

It will download to your computer — if you’re prompted to give any permissions, go ahead and do so.

Now you’re ready to start the actual upgrade.

#2 Deactivate the Current Theme Version
In your Dashboard, go to Appearance / Themes. Activate a different theme — Twenty Twelve, for example, which comes bundled with WordPress. This will automatically deactivate your Elegant Themes theme.

#3 Remove the Current Theme
Once you’ve activated a different theme, remove this one by clicking the Delete button. You’ll see a popup box asking you to confirm the deletion — go ahead and click OK.

Even though you’re deleting the theme files, the information that goes with the theme will remain in your database.

#4 Install the Updated Theme
Click on the Install Themes tab, then select Upload.

Select the zip file you downloaded from FWPThemes.com, and click Install Now.

Click the Activate button.

Notice that we’re now seeing version 3.4 instead of 3.1.

#5 Reactivate your Plugins
Now go take a look at your site. Does it look and behave as it did before? If so, you’re done!

If it doesn’t, what’s different? Maybe you need to reactive your plugins before everything works as you expect. (If any of them need updating, go ahead and do it now.)

Reactivate them one by one, checking your site to be sure everything still works smoothly. If something looks or behaves oddly, deactivate that plugin again.

#6 Check your ePanel Settings
Once your site looks the way it did before, pull out those screenshots you took of your previous ePanel settings.

Go to Appearance / Chameleon Theme Options and verify that all your settings transferred properly. If they didn’t, reenter them.

You’ve Done It!
Congratulations! You’ve just performed a manual theme update. You’re really rocking WordPress now!