Seven years ago, I released a public WordPress theme that paved the way to new things for me.

It taught me about accessibility. It set a stage for me in WordPress theme development. Some people used it for amazing things.

I haven’t released an update for it in more than four years. It’s bittersweet, but time to say goodbye. I won’t release any more updates for the theme.

Here’s what that means:

  • I’ll leave the project page up for informational purposes, and so URLs don’t break.
  • I’ll leave the code on GitHub for anyone interested, but include a note about the project’s status.
  • I recently took down the demo site at accessiblezen.davidakennedy.com. That now redirects to the project page here on my site.
  • In the future, the WordPress.org theme page will redirect elsewhere after the theme gets retired.

While it never proved popular, I enjoyed making Accessible Zen for the sake of creating. I got better at Git by working in public. I crafted changelogs like people would read them. The whole process made me think through features more carefully. I’d do it all over again.

I had planned to come back to it after the new WordPress block editor shipped. The theme’s design would have made compatibility doable. But my other side project, Accessibility Weekly, caught on with people so I put more time into it. Since taking a new job recently outside of the WordPress space, I knew I wouldn’t revisit Accessible Zen.

Thank you to everyone who used it, and encouraged me to make it.