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WordPress 6.0 “Arturo” Adds More Templates and Patterns, Style Switching, and Block Locking UI

WordPress 6.0 “Arturo” was released today, named for Latin jazz musician and director Arturo O’Farrill, who has 15 albums to his credit.

Check out the official release video for a quick overview of some of the most important changes.

This release introduces sweeping improvements to the block editor and its utilities and design tools. Most notably, users can now select text across multiple blocks, manipulating the highlighted portion as a group while keeping the rest of the content blocks in tact.

image credit: Gutenberg 13.0 Release Post

The List View has been updated to offer a more intuitive display that helps with navigating blocks on a page. Select multiple blocks using keyboard shortcuts, make changes, and drag-and-drop inside the list. List View is closed by default but will expand to the current selection when a block is selected.

image credit: wordPress 6.0 About Page

WordPress 6.0 also introduces a new interface for locking blocks, which allows useres to prevent blocks from being moved or removed. It is useful for preventing accidental edits but also for theme developers who want to prevent users from removing blocks inside templates, preserving more complex layouts.

image credit: WordPress 6.0 About Page

Other block editor improvements include the following:

  • New Blocks: Avatar, Post Author Biography, Read More, Comments Query Loop, and Stack block
  • Type two open brackets [[ to quickly access the link menu
  • Improved support for preserving unrecognized content in the editor
  • Preserve existing styles transforming blocks from one kind to another—from a Paragraph block to a Code block, for instance
  • New block style transformation options: Tag Cloud > Categories, Calendar > Archives, Paragraph > Code, and Group > Row
  • Create customized buttons and any new buttons will retain the style customizations automatically
  • New drop-down based color picker UI
  • Make tag clouds and social icons more appealing with updated settings and controls, and a new outline style for the tag cloud
  • Instant block style previews
  • Featured images now available in Cover block
  • New border controls for more precise control when setting borders
  • Transparency levels for colors offers more creative control

WordPress 6.0 also introduces a gaggle of new layout controls for page building. Users can now control gaps, margins, typography, and more on multiple blocks inside a Group block. Creating layouts is easier with the ability to position groups of blocks by quickly switching between stack, row, and group variations. The Gallery block is now more flexible with gap support for custom spacing.

Full-Site Editing Updates: More Templates, More Patterns, and Style Switching

Patterns are now available in more places and better integrated with the Site Editor. Gutenberg 12.7 brought major improvements to the patterns experience by making them easier to discover. The block inserter has been updated to display patterns, as opposed to blocks, when users are editing a template in the post or site editor. It also favors showing patterns when the inserter is at the root level or the content being inserted is between other blocks. WordPress will now show existing template parts, as well as block patterns in the template creation process.

image credit: WordPress 6.0 About Page

Theme authors can now register patterns from the official Pattern Directory using theme.json, so that users have quick access to patterns the author has highlighted.

WordPress 6.0 introduces five new template options for full-site editing: author, date, categories, tag, and taxonomy. 

One of the most anticipated features of this release is the Style Switcher. It allows userse to apply quick style changes within the same theme, and includes the ability to further edit the font weight, style options, and color palette.

Theme authors can create multiple different theme.json style variations and place them into their themes’ /styles folder. Users will then see the styles under the Styles menu in the top toolbar of the site editor.

WordPress 6.0 is the product of collaboration from more than 500 contributors in 58+ countries. It introduces more than 1,000 updates and bug fixes, including many that make the platform more performant and accessible.

Check out the 6.0 Field Guide and the release notes for a more detailed look at all the changes in the latest release.