Writing a Theme


Before reading this guide, you'd better learn the guide of Writing a Plugin first.

Create a Theme

A VuePress theme is a special plugin, which should satisfy the Theme API. Like plugins, a theme should also be a Theme Object or a Theme Function, and could be wrapped with a function to receive options:

import { getDirname, path } from 'vuepress/utils'

const __dirname = getDirname(import.meta.url)

const fooTheme = (options) => {
  // returns a theme object
  return {
    name: 'vuepress-theme-foo',

    // path to the client config of your theme
    clientConfigFile: path.resolve(__dirname, 'client.js'),

    // set custom dev / build template
    // if the template is not specified, the default template
    templateBuild: path.resolve(__dirname, 'templates/build.html'),
    templateDev: path.resolve(__dirname, 'templates/dev.html'),

    // use plugins
    plugins: [
      // ...

    // other plugin APIs are also available

const barTheme = (options) => {
  // returns a theme function
  return (app) => {
    return {
      name: 'vuepress-theme-bar',
      // ...

Then, create theme's client config file client.js :

import { defineClientConfig } from 'vuepress/client'
import Layout from './layouts/Layout.vue'
import NotFound from './layouts/NotFound.vue'

export default defineClientConfig({
  layouts: {

The layouts field declares the layouts provided by your theme. A theme must provide at least two layouts: Layout and NotFound. The former is to provide default layout for common pages, while the latter is to provide layout for 404-not-found page.

The Layout layout should contain the Content component to display the markdown content:

    <Content />

The NotFound layout will be used for the 404.html page:

  <div>404 Not Found</div>

You can provide more layouts, and users can change layout via layout frontmatter.

Publish to NPM

Also, there are some conventions for theme in package.jsonopen in new window:

  "name": "vuepress-theme-foo",
  "keywords": ["vuepress-theme"]
  • Set name to follow the naming convention: vuepress-theme-xxx or @org/vuepress-theme-xxx, which should be consistent with the name field of the Theme Object.
  • Set keywords to include vuepress-theme, so that users can search your theme on NPM.