This project was for Nicole Jaffe of Piknik Press (a dynamite designer and developer by the way). She was looking for some help to build a block based WordPress website for one her clients, Venice Community Housing.
Venice Community Housing’s current website was built with WordPress but it had an outdated design and Nicole was brought in to freshen it up. Wanting to provide her client with a more modern WordPress experience, she reached out to me to help her build the website.
The advantage of an extra developer
One of the advantages of having an extra developer is that you can do multiple things at once. The designs were not finalised yet when I was brought into the project but we did have approved wireframes. I was able to focus my time building out the base of the website from the wireframes while Nicole focused on getting the final designs across the line.
I started by scaffolding the theme and plugins to have all custom styles and functionality. I created two plugins, one for core custom functionality such as custom post types, custom logic and new advanced custom fields. The other plugin was for any custom blocks that needs to be built.
Once the design was approved, we worked together to build the website using Git and GitHub for version control.
Paul is truly a joy to work with! He is an incredibly thoughtful developer and comes up with clever solutions to design and coding problems. He is extremely knowledgeable about WordPress and stays up to date with the platform’s improvements. He is also very fast and thorough in his approach, and takes time to explain his thought processes. The code he writes is well-organized and easy to understand. I can’t wait to work with him on another project!– Nicole Jaffe (Piknik Press)
A lean and fast WordPress site with a modern editing experience
While we had a plugin for custom blocks (we used @wordpress/create-block to scaffold the plugin), we only built them when necessary. As a general rule we leveraged core blocks and styled them via theme.json for simple styles or with custom CSS for more complex styles.
Dynamic blocks were built using ACF blocks, this can be seen on the Board of Directors and Leadership pages, where we built a dynamic ‘list’ block that shows all the people. The data comes from a custom post type and is configurable to show the list in different styles and based on different taxonomy.
The end result
The final website was received extremely well by Venice Community Housing. In additional to getting plenty of compliments on the new website. They have commented that the editing experience is ‘intuitive to use’ and are ‘super happy with the site’.
“…I finally got to do site training with the client and they’ve been making updates. They said it’s pretty intuitive to use. I also made a bunch of training videos for them for the finer details. They are super happy with the site, and said they’ve been getting lots of compliments. One of their new hires even brought the site up in his interview! Pretty cool!”Nicole Jaffe (Piknik Press)