I'm relatively new at WordPress, though not with HTML/CSS/PHP.
I'm creating a site using a recommended template (Cutline 1.4 2-col right) but have fairly seriously edited the site for a custom UI. I have a div I'm treating as a sidebar which now contains an ordered, unbulleted list generated by wp_list_pages, and a button entered into its own nested div. I'm trying to add a simple newsletter signup form (one field, one prompt, one button) below the existing button.
I found Contact-Form 7 and installed and activated it. It instructs me to copy some code ([contact-form 1 "Contact form 1"]) and to put that code into the page, post or text widget where I want the form to appear.
But I cannot seem to get a text widget to appear in the sidebar. I figured out I had to call register_sidebar() in the PHP code, and I've done that. The function is being called. But no widgets ever appear in the sidebar when I add them via the Dashboard. The Dashboard shows only one sidebar, called Sidebar 1; I don't know where that name came from because that's not what I've used as an ID for my sidebar code.
So I think the problem is that I'm not properly widgetizing the sidebar.php file/code. But maybe I'm overlooking something else.
I'd appreciate help with this. I'll keep hammering at it in the meantime.