Introducing Björk

Hey, I have a new WordPress theme out today! It’s called Björk, and it’s a block theme for blogs and personal websites.

If that’s something you’re interested in, you can:

Björk has a very classic blog theme structure, with a sidebar navigation to the left and the content to the right. You’ve seen hundreds of these WordPress themes before – I’ve released like six of them myself – but with the advent of block themes, everything old is new again. There aren’t a lot of block themes with this structure on the theme directory yet.

This is probably due to the lack of tools in the WordPress Site Editor for hiding and showing elements on different screen sizes. You currently can’t have a separate sidebar on desktop and header on mobile. Some themes, like the lovely Stewart by Automattic, solve this by simply stacking the sidebar and content columns on mobile. The drawback to this approach is that it can lead to tall headers on mobile if you add a lot of blocks to your sidebar.

Björk solves this by cheating.

In Björk, I call the header ”Header (Mobile)” and the sidebar ”Sidebar (Desktop)”, and use CSS to hide the header on desktop and the sidebar on mobile. Both are visible at all times in the Site Editor. When the Site Editor adds conditional display of elements for different screen sizes, I’ll update the theme to use those settings instead.

Just like Poe, Björk is built with Davis Blocks as a foundation and has a really small footprint. It contains about 500 lines of CSS and no JavaScript at all. It does come with seven different Global Styles variations, which allow you to change between different theme styles (colors, fonts, spacing) with the click of a button in the Global Styles panel. It also includes 15+ different block patterns.

I am a fan of Icelandic singer Björk Guðmundsdóttir, and she’s probably who comes to mind for most people when they hear Björk. But this theme is not named after her. Björk is the Swedish name for birch, which is my favorite tree. Yes, I have one. Birch trees are incredibly resilient, which is why you can find them closer to the tree line on the Swedish fjäll than any other type of tree. They’re also very pretty to look at.

The Site Editor has really come a long way in a short amount of time. The most noticeable difference is that I’m having a lot more fun building block themes now compared to when I released Tove, my first block theme, a year ago. With the features coming in WordPress 6.1 in October, it’s only up from here.