In today’s post, Tavern readers are in for something a little different than our regular stream of news and opinion. Welcome to the Building with Blocks series. It is a new type of post we are trying out to show people some of the fun, unique, or creative things they can do with WordPress blocks.
Our team decided to split the series into both developer and user-centric tracks. Posts may cover creating an “about me” page, coding custom block styles, piecing together a pattern, or something else entirely.
Since I am kicking off this series, I wanted to answer a question we already received from one of our readers. I had previously shared a custom block style with a “Scotch tape” look in my coverage of the FSE Outreach Program’s call for media testing:
Devendra Meena asked in the comments:
Hey man, how to get the “tape” custom block image?
This felt like a natural starting point with my first post in the series.
The design shows a piece of tape holding a Polaroid-style, framed image. Technically, I also had an alternate style with two pieces of tape at the corners. However, this tutorial will focus on the former. The two-corner design requires overwriting some editor-specific CSS, technically breaking functionality, and is not something I should encourage.
I also wanted to begin with block styles because they are underutilized. Most variations I have seen have been simple changes like adding borders and removing margins. These are often best left to block design tools. Of course, themers are adding these styles because WordPress currently lacks or has previously lacked the UI controls for handling them. It is also one of the reasons so many have asked to mix and match multiple block styles — themes are doing the work that core should be doing. More tools are continually being added, but we still have a long way to go.
When I think of block styles, I want to create designs that are unlikely to be available via the standard design tools. I want to serve something unique to theme users. That is where we are starting today.
As a bonus, custom block styles work in classic and block themes.
Despite having written hundreds of tutorials in my life, this exercise turned out to be a little tougher than I had anticipated. It is easy to forget that everything I code starts with a base of “fixing” the things that I find odd about the default block library styles. This makes my life easier. However, many theme authors will lean on core’s defaults, so I needed to make this general enough to work for them.
Therefore, I opted to start from the default Twenty Twenty-Two theme. In testing, I suggest working with it. The CSS code in the following section may need slight alterations for others.
Creating the “Scotch Tape” Block Style
This article was written by Justin Tadlock and originally published on WP Tavern.