84 Block Themes, Reusable Blocks, Create-Block-Theme-Plugin – Weekend Edition #219


Summer is almost here! I love the warmer days, but the heat wave making its way through Europe is brutal. Stay safe and keep cool, please.

This week, the usual business set in again and we have ton of great articles and products to link to.

Have a great weekend!

Yours, đź’•

PS: Don’t miss it:

July 22 at 11 am EDT / 15:00 UTC Gutenberg Times Live Q & A: Block First Approach at the Pew Research Center, we will discuss with Seth Rubenstein, Lead Developer, and Michael Piccorossi, Director of Digital Strategy, how they use a mixture of Core and Custom Blocks to streamline their publishing process, and to create powerful charts and quizzes for the Pew Research Center. Join us!

Graphic to announce the next Gutenberg Time Live Q & A

WordPress team updates around the Block editor

In his latest video, Core Developer reviews WordPress 6.0 – see his top 3 feature picks, Dave Smith talked to Adam Zielinski, Editor release lead for, to get the low down on the latest release of the software. They covered features of WordPress 6.0, and discussed the the responsibilities and challenges of being release lead. Smith and Zielinski also touched on the project wide discussion around experimental APIs in Gutenberg.

Gutenberg Landing Page received a major overhaul. Steven Dufrensne just announced taking the site live. Designer Beatriz Fialho started working on the Redesign back in October 2021. “Now that Gutenberg has been a part of WordPress for a few years, it makes sense to update it, shifting the message from what used to be the new post editor to the editor that can power all parts of your site.” Fialho wrote in her earlier post.

Such an undertaking takes a whole team. It also needs maintenance and if you want to contribute, the theme repo is available on GitHub. What do you think about the new Gutenberg Landing page? Please share in the comments on the post.

Matias Ventura published his thinking through the WordPress Admin experience following some lessons learned from the Site editor menu designs and behavior.
“Given the third phase of the current WordPress roadmap has a focus around workflows and multiplayer, considerations around the various admin flows become all the more important.” he explained. The post takes a look at the various aspects:

Shell and Canvas – a full-screen view as the default experience with sub-menus sliding in and out of the screen. That way the admin can also give access to out of context information or configurations. The shell as awayfinder with drill-down panels and the canvas as the place to browse, manage, edit, customize.

The Home Button as it is now in the Dashboard or the Site editor has different targets, and it’s a place for confusion with many users. It’s meant to be a place to espace the inner most focus, and go one level higher. Hopefully with some breadcrumps to show the location clearly. “The aim of this interface element is to both give control and build familiarity to navigate away from any context.” Ventura wrote.

Make it Extensible is the headline of the next section. Given the nature of WordPress as extensible plattform for website, and its promise of backwards compatibility, this seems like a given. I

I am particularily intrigued by the contemplations around “Make it Personal”. Customization of the Admin menu has long been plugin territory, and it would be great if that can become built-in functionality as it would also come with standards and guard rails for plugins and themes. Each user should be able to hide/show specific menu items they need. I would love the “recently visited areas as some sort of stack” feature. Most of the time, i only do a few things on certain web sites, and if those activities could be available as Quick links that would be fabulous.

There are more sections in these early sharing of creative thinking about the future WPAdmin. There is certainly nothing set in stone or even remotely concrete available, but it’s worth reading and also sharing your opinion on the post.

🎙️ Latest episode: Gutenberg Changelog #90 – New Testing Call for the FSE Program, Gutenberg 16.7 and WordPress 6.4 with Tammie Lister as special guest, hosted by Birgit Pauli-Haack

 “Keeping up with Gutenberg – Index 2022” 
A chronological list of the WordPress Make Blog posts from various teams involved in Gutenberg development: Design, Theme Review Team, Core Editor, Core JS, Core CSS, Test and Meta team from Jan. 2021 on. Updated by yours truly. The index 2020 is here

NoCode Site builders and Content Creators using Gutenberg

Dumitru BrĂ®nzan published a post on how Reusable Blocks will change the way you create WordPress websites. It not a quick mention of this powerful feature, but a step-by-step tutorial that will help you streamline your creation processes and speed up your idea to publish time. BrĂ®nzan’s biggest give away is a list of use cases and how to accomplish those with Reusable block. The 11 minute-video add great demos to the written guide.

Speaking of Guide, Eric Karkovack published A Guide to Choosing the Right WordPress Block Plugins. Many Block collections plugins were published in the early years of the Block editor, as core blocks were lacking basic customizations features. Now that the block editor matured, Karkovack walk you through the decision making process on how to select the right extensions for your site.

It’s been a while since we reported on new Themes in the WordPress.org repository featuring Full-Site Editing. Today’s count is 84.

Among the newest addition are two themes from the team at Extendify.

The first one is called Extendable, “a distinct, dynamic block theme designed as a canvas for your next online venture. Sporting multiple style variations, Extendable is the most expressive block theme yet. Go fresh, bold, bohemaian or minimal.” Or so they say. It does have 12 Style variations some of them quite intriguing with great harmony of fonts and color, some are less engaging.

The second theme is called Wei and it comes from the experience block and theme builder Rich Tabor, head of product at Extendify. He writes about his theme ” a minimal block theme inspired by entirely by simplicity. Embracing clean type, beautifully bold color schemes, and color-matched featured images”. Tabor goes into more detail in his post: Introducing Wei, a minimalistic block theme with gobs of creativity. Or you can check out this Twitter thread

On WordPress.tv, you can find the newests recording of the WordPress Social Learning event with Nick Diego Builder Basics – Let’s Build a Custom Theme (No Coding Required). Diego took the Twenty Twenty-Two theme and fully customized it using the Site Editor and Global Styles. He make template chnages, updated the color pallete and the layout. The he exported these changes into a complete new theme.

Developing with Gutenberg and building blocks

Kathy Zant explains in her post Full Site Editing vs. Dynamic Templating, when she prefers to use the block editor and when ACF and template for the custom fields are better for her needs.

Tuan Nguyen, a full-stack LAMP developer from California, dives into the details of his decision making process on When to Use Editor Versus CSS Styles. Nguyen walks you through the various aspects on styling blocks, how to override the Global Styles for core blocks, how to adjust styling for Custom HTML Blocks or how apply mobile styles via Media queries. It’s a great introduction.

Need a plugin .zip from Gutenberg’s master branch?
Gutenberg Times provides daily build for testing and review.
Have you been using it? Hit reply and let me know.

GitHub all releases

Theme Building for Blocks and Full-site Editing.

If you want to learn more about Style Variations, that came to WordPress 6.0 check out Rich Tabor’s article: How to add style variations to WordPress Block Themes. “Just because a method of defining a theme style is standardized, doesn’t mean the styles themselves are.”.

About four weeks ago, in Weekend Edition 215, I shared three block theme generator provided by members of the larger WordPress Community. Today, a new plugin from WordPress contributors went live the plugin repository: the Create-Block Theme plugin. This plugin provides tools to enable theme builders to create block themes. There are four different ways of using it:

  1. Export: The current theme gets exported as a zip file, along with the user’s changes. This is essentially the same as the export option in the Site Editor
  2. Create a child theme
    Creates a new child theme with the currently activated theme as a parent.
  3. Clone the current theme
    Creates a new theme by cloning the activated theme. The resulting theme will have all of the assets of the activated theme combined with the user’s changes.
  4. Overwrite theme files
    Saves user’s changes to the theme files and deletes the user’s changes.

It’s in its first version. The team would appreciate some more testing and start discussions on GitHub issues or send in your PRs.

WordPress Events

Social Learning Spaces

June 27, 2022 – 1 pm EDT / 17:00 UTC
Hello Blocks! Coding a custom block with Ryan Welcher

July 4, 2022 5 pm EDT / 21:00 UTC
Using Block Patterns with Wes Theron

July 12, 2022, 5 pm EDT / 21:00 UTC
Explore the Block Directory with Wes Theron

Page Builder Summit starts Monday!

Here is a selection from the schedule of Gutenberg talks.

  • Jun 20 – 8 am EDT / 12:00 UTC – Gutenberg, Full Site Editing and WooCommerce with Jamie Marsland
  • Jun 20 – 2 pm EDT / 18:00 UTC Creating Effective WooCommerce Sites with Kadence Blocks Template w/ Ben Ritner
  • Jun 22- 10 am EDT / 14:00 UTC It’s Time to Get Serious About Full Site Editing w/ Nick Diego
  • Jun 23 – 11 EDT 15:00 UTC Creating Dynamic Content with Kadence Blocks w/ Kathy Zant
  • Jun 24 8am EDT / 12:00 UTC Pagebuilders in a world of Full Site Editing and Blocks w/ Jakob Trost
  • Jun 24 – 10 am EDT / 14:00 UTC The Full Site Editor and the Cwicly Toolkit with David McCan

Featured Image: “Pablo’s cubism period began at three” by woodleywonderworks is licensed under CC BY 2.0.

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