Integration into your theme

If you want to integrate a SmoothGallery into your theme you can use the WordPress SmoothGallery plugin. There’re two ways to do this:

  1. You want a gallery in your sidebar? Use the widget.
  2. You want a gallery somewhere in your theme? Follow the developer howto.

Sidebar widget

Hint: The widget is pretty new. I’ll improve it soon…

The plugin comes with a widget that displays a gallery in your sidebar. This way it’s very easy to insert a gallery because you don’t need to know how to write PHP code. Since the widget renders the gallery inside an iFrame you can add as many galleries as you want.

There’re various options that you can change on the edit screen for every widget. The first thing you should do though is supplying the ID of a post or a page where you uploaded the images. Once you’ve done that the widget should work as expected displaying the images from the given post/page. If it doesn’t work check the value for imgsize: this has to match the values for the thumbnails under Settings – Media.

Developer Howto

All you have to do is to implement the function insertSmoothGallery in the file config.php; you can find it under wp-content/plugins/smoothgallery. Depending on your implementation the plugin makes sure that the CSS and JavaScript will be included inside your page; keep in mind that this won’t work if the SmoothGallery sits inside an iFrame.

Let’s say you want a timed gallery on the page with the id 4711 somewhere in your theme that’s 400×80 pixels. Open the file config.php and implement the insertSmoothGallery function like this:

function insertSmoothGallery() {
  # add all the conditional tags you're using to the array
  if (assert_functions_exist(array('is_page')) === false)
    return false;
  if (is_page('4711')) {
    return array('width'  => 400,
                 'height' => 80,
                 'timed'  => 'true');
  return false;

Once you’ve done that put the HTML markup for the gallery somewhere inside your theme and you’re all set. No matter how you implement the function don’t remove the call to assert_functions_exist.

As you can see, I used the conditional tag is_page. These come in handy if you’d like to display the gallery on some specific pages only – if you don’t want that but a gallery on each and every page just remove the if statement and the corresponding curly brackets.

Just add another sidebar…

Instead of implementing the clumsy insertSmoothGallery function you can simply add another sidebar to your theme if you like that better. Think of it as a placeholder for widgets. It doesn’t necessarily have to be a vertical bar on the side – some horizontal thing in your header or footer is okay too.

So, maybe you want to have a look at the Widgets API and learn how to add another sidebar to your theme. Check out register_sidebar and dynamic_sidebar in particular; the page about the second function tells you how to manage Multiple Sidebars in your theme.

I wrote a post about adding a sidebar to your theme, just three easy steps that should be easy to follow if you’ve got a basic understanding of PHP and themes in WordPress.

Still not convinced? Maybe you’d like to read Ian Stewart’s We Need To Kill The Sidebar.


  • Thanks Christian,

    it does work and I’m very grateful for your help.
    Will tweet thanks along with a link to your website.


  • Liyaqat says:

    I am trying to use the widget plugin. I added one image to the post (for testing purposes) and then tried to see if it displays.

    i am unsure what do I use as the id? the number like 1, 2, 3 etc
    What is the dir?


  • Hi Liyaqat,
    simply supply the ID of the post you uploaded the photo to in the widget’s configuration under ID. The parameter dir can be used to pull images from a certain directory on your webserver.