ThemeConf: A New Conference for Designers, Themers, and Front-End Developers


Designers and front-end developers who work with open source software have an exciting new event to look forward to in the UK this summer. ThemeConf was announced today – a brand new conference created to help themers, designers, and front-end developers recharge their batteries with a variety of unique sessions on the world of themes.

The event will be hosted in Keswick, England, June 18-19th at the Alhambra Cinema, one of Britain’s oldest cinemas. Automattic is ThemeConf’s first sponsor and three of the company’s employees are organizers for the event, including Tammie Lister, Jack Lenox, and David Murphy.

“Jack always had the idea for a conference like this; he also wanted something in his local area,” Lister said. “I also wanted a conference that is theme focused. We all started talking over a Christmas meetup and this is what happened from that.”

Exploring the Future of Theming Beyond Specific Platforms

The conference will focus on theming for open source applications such as WordPress, Drupal, Ghost, and Joomla. Themers of all experience levels are welcome, as are front-end developers who are interested in theming. The topics for the first year will be focused around the future of theming.

“We hope to bring a wide range of talks under that banner,” Lister said. “We are currently curating our schedule, but it’s shaping up to be really interesting and diverse. We are planning on making it a place themers can go to get inspired.”

In selecting the sessions, organizers hope to further delve into the technologies and styles, beyond specific platforms, to explore the future of theming. They also plan to incorporate talks on performance and user experience.

Jack Lenox wants to focus the event around some of the most recent and significant shifts in theming and front-end development. “These go beyond the platform,” he said. “From REST APIs, to new design directions and into the burgeoning ecosystem of the new JavaScript tools such as React – tools that allow us to build engaging, human user experiences alongside a REST API.”

As one platform cannot possibly hold a monopoly on technical innovation, it’s important for designers and developers to venture outside the bubble of their primary platform in order to stay on the cutting edge. ThemeConf organizers are aiming to facilitate cross-platform collaboration and knowledge sharing to help attendees explore a wide range of topics.

The event will be non-profit, with any proceeds going into the next year and/or donated to the local area. The 101-year-old Alhambra Cinema is an intimate venue that will be limited to 150 attendees. If you’re interested in exploring the future of theming with other fans of open source in Keswick, make sure to sign up for the ThemeConf newsletter.


4 responses to “ThemeConf: A New Conference for Designers, Themers, and Front-End Developers”

  1. This looks very interesting. I am liking this trend of niche-specific conferences in the WordPress space. Looking forward to seeing more and more like this as, like Ashley, it might be a bit far for me too.


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