8 February 2023 James Koussertari
To use Full Site Editing (FSE) in WordPress, you need a block theme. The default “Twenty Twenty Three” block theme works well, but there are many other free options avaialble. In this article, we have compiled a list of the 15 best free WordPress block themes in 2023.
Before we jump into that, let’s quickly explain what full site editing block themes are and why they’re revolutionising the way we build websites.
Full Site Editing (FSE) in WordPress enables users to customise the design and layout of their entire website using the WordPress block editor. With FSE, users can modify elements such as the header, footer, post templates, archive pages, and other areas that were previously restricted to code based editing. The aim of FSE is to make website customisation more accessible to a wider audience, including those with limited technical expertise.
The WordPress Site Editor is a visual, user-friendly interface for customising the design and layout of a WordPress website. Launched in version 5.9, it lets users edit the header, footer, post templates, archive pages, and other parts of their site without using code. The Site Editor features a drag-and-drop interface for adding and arranging content blocks and offers various customisation options for styling and layout.
The Gutenberg Block Editor, introduced in WordPress version 5.0, is a visual page and post editor that allows users to create and edit content using blocks. Each block represents a specific type of content, such as text, images, videos, buttons, etc. The blocks can be easily arranged, reordered, and customised to achieve the desired layout. The Block Editor provides a more intuitive and user-friendly way of creating content compared to the previous classic editor, which relied on HTML and shortcodes. With the Block Editor, users can create custom post and page layouts with ease and flexibility, without the need for coding knowledge.
WordPress Block Themes are specifically created to work with the Block Editor and enable the Site Editing features. These themes provide pre-designed patterns and custom block styles, making it easier for users to create content with minimal effort. Block Themes are constructed with blocks as the primary focus, allowing users to add and arrange various types of content visually and intuitively. They are designed specifically for Full Site Editing (FSE), which is a newer approach to using WordPress compared to traditional methods. Learn more about Full Site Editing.
Before discussing the top Gutenberg block themes, let’s first understand the importance of WordPress blocks. Blocks are modular elements that make it easy to build pages and posts. They provide versatility and allow for the creation of complex designs. Additionally, blocks are optimised for various devices and ensure a seamless viewing experience on any screen size. There is a wide range of blocks available, including text, image, video, quote, and many more. What sets blocks apart is their ability to be combined to create unique layouts and patterns. For example, combining an image block followed by a text block creates an eye-catching header for a blog post, and a video block followed by a quote block creates an engaging testimonial section on a website. The possibilities are endless!
When searching for a block theme for Gutenberg, consider the following factors:
Now that you understand the concept of Gutenberg Block Themes and the significance of blocks, it’s time to discover the top Block Themes available for WordPress.
Bricksy is a free, contemporary block-based WordPress theme that marries classic design elements with a modern layout and user-friendly features.
It comes with pre-designed block patterns that make creating pages with ease using simple drag-and-drop functionality.
The theme is optimised for Full Site Editing and includes various block patterns that allow you to craft professional-looking layouts with minimal effort.
Aino is a block-based theme that is designed to work seamlessly with the WordPress Full Site Editing feature.
With the Aino Blocks plugin, you can effortlessly create advanced page designs using Aino’s pre-made block patterns.
Use Aino to create a distinctive online store, business website, portfolio, or personal blog and make a lasting impression.
Frost is a Gutenberg block theme built for website builders of modern WordPress. It was created by Brian Gardner and acquired by WP Engine, so you can expect high-quality coding standards.
Frost is a versatile block theme for the WordPress block editor that caters to the needs of designers, developers, and content creators.
With an extensive range of block patterns like Call-to-Action, Header, Featured Boxes, Pricing Table, Testimonials, and more, Frost offers endless design possibilities.
Each pattern can be fully customised to suit your needs, allowing you to create unlimited website designs.
Frost is available to download for free from its homepage and you can explore the code via GitHub.
Wabi is a block-based WordPress theme designed to showcase your unique story.
With its simple design, elegant typography, and adjustable accent colour system, Wabi makes it easy to express your individuality.
Whether you prefer a light, dark, or dynamic colour scheme, Wabi provides multiple style options to help you create the perfect writing platform.
Blockify is a streamlined block theme framework for full site editing in WordPress.
It offers useful features that make building modern sites with blocks a breeze.
It has customization options including SVG icons, box shadows, gradient text, responsive settings, absolute positioning, negative margins, and more.
Blockify works well with child themes and is compatible with most popular plugins, making it an ideal starting point and toolkit for creating your custom block theme.
Getwid Base is a minimalistic and nimble Gutenberg theme that integrates seamlessly with the latest block editor and the Getwid plugin which provides a suite of custom blocks.
This theme is ideal for creating a range of websites, including small to medium-sized business sites, digital and creative agencies, product landing pages, and portfolio sites.
With the help of core Gutenberg blocks and the advanced block library offered by the Getwid plugin, you can effortlessly build and customise content-rich pages without any coding expertise.
BlockPress is a high-performance and flexible block theme for creative websites.
With over 12 query loop templates, numerous predefined layouts for posts and pages, header and footer patterns, a style switcher, a library of block styles and section patterns, and a dark colour scheme, BlockPress is perfect for building visually appealing websites with 100 web vitals score.
It is also optimised for WooCommerce sites with improved styles, clean designs, and better layouts for WooCommerce blocks, without the need for cache plugins or any style library dependencies.
Tove is a lively, vibrant multi-use WordPress block theme specifically built for Full Site Editing.
Initially created for cafes and restaurants, its Full Site Editing layout capabilities allow it to be easily customised for any website.
With over 40 ready-to-use Block Patterns, including six header options and seven footer options, Tove makes building your website a fun and effortless experience.
Twenty Twenty-Three is crafted to leverage the latest design capabilities introduced in WordPress 6.1.
This default theme boasts a minimalistic and blank base, accompanied by ten unique style variations created by the WordPress community.
Regardless of whether you desire to construct a straightforward or intricate website, you can effortlessly achieve it through the included styles or delve into creative customization.
Raft is a fast and versatile theme optimised for full-site editing, making it ideal for a wide range of projects, including blogs, small businesses, startups, agencies, firms, e-commerce stores, personal portfolios, and more.
With compatibility for popular page builders like Elementor, Brizy, Beaver Builder, and the block editor, as well as WooCommerce, Raft is easily customizable, responsive, and ready for translation and RTL languages.
Catch FSE is a free block theme for Full Site Editing in WordPress. It boasts a sleek and minimalist design, offering dark or light colour scheme options via Global Styles.
Ideal for a range of websites including blogs and corporate sites, this theme is built with the help of Twenty Twenty-Two.
Catch FSE features 15 different block patterns, 15 FSE Templates, and 9 Template Parts to create a unique, custom corporate site.
Its responsive design and customization options, ensure your site is perfectly adapted to all screen sizes.
Naledi is a beautifully crafted WordPress theme perfect for bloggers and personal websites, inspired by the beauty of nature and wanderlust.
This full-site editing theme features a minimalistic and clean design, with a customizable set of templates and styles that can be easily adjusted through the Global Styles feature.
With Naledi, you can effortlessly create a beautiful and personalised website.
Skatepark is a modern WordPress theme ideal for events and organisations that want to make a bold statement.
With its vibrant default colour scheme, dual-tone support, and dynamic grid, this theme is designed to bring energy and excitement to your website.
You can easily personalise the colours and fonts to match your brand, giving your website its own unique look and feel.
Björk is a minimal theme for blogs and personal websites. It features a sticky sidebar menu on desktop for quick and easy navigation, and the clean design puts your content front and center.
Björk comes with seven different theme styles to choose from, and over 15 different block patterns that you can use to quickly build unique page layouts.
Quadrat is a versatile and minimalistic WordPress theme ideal for blogs and podcasts.
It draws inspiration from squared shapes and colourful flat illustrations, offering a set of images to use with its default colour scheme.
The default design is striking, featuring a bold sans-serif font and a vibrant colour palette that can be easily personalised to suit your needs.
At the time of writing this article, there are 226 free block themes in WordPress block theme repository. With such a large and diverse variety to choose from, you will definitely find a block theme that suits your needs perfectly.
In this article, we have chosen the 15 block themes that stood out to us based on design, functionality, ease of use and the variety of blocks and patterns available. This is not to say the themes that we haven’t listed are not just as good. You may find a block theme that is better suited to your requirements in the repository so head over and check them all out.
That said, we hope you find one of these 15 block themes a perfect match for your project and that you have a great experience using it. Good luck and most importantly, have fun!
8 February 2023 James Koussertari