Themes customisability?


(Arnaud) #1

Hi all,

I’m new here on the forums and to RW.

After purchasing RW I noticed that customising the Theme’s or Templates is somewhat limited and I did a little research to try to improve this and bought a couple of Plugins like ‘Stacks’.

My question is if any more plugins are needed to have more customisability inside the Themes, or how to do this inside RW.
Or maybe a good customisable theme tip/link with still the benefit of i.e. auto add to navigation bar/menu.

I found out that stacks has a lot of options but it doesn’t change the Theme template much.
The “Off-Road” Theme i.e. has a Browser title where the whole text only shows up in Capital font but I can not find any options to change this. (1st Letter capital, rest non-capital).

It is very likeable the themes does a lot for you, like adding a new page immediate into the navigation bar, the contact-form plugin etc, but changing fonts/size or other graphic adjustments is limited as I experienced.

Another example is that I use a photo as background on the main (home) page. When adding a “Photo Album” -page and some photos (Gallery) I don’t want to have a photo used, like on the Home page as background, in the “Photo Album” -page. This is possible to adjust within RW. But when i click on a photo to view it individually the photo of the photo itself is put into the background displaying 2 of the same photos, one as the background (large) and the other photo itself on the foreground (smaller). This is distracting and looks messy.

Any tips, advise, links etc is much appreciated.

Cheers!
Arnie


(Jannis from inStacks Software) #2

Hi Arnie,

If you want to have more freedom in the theme design, I propose to have a look at the different so called blank page frameworks. They all require Stacks 3, all pages have to be Stacks pages, so inbuilt plugins like photo album or blog won’t work.

Have a look at Foundry from @Elixir, for me the best framework out there.
Other options: UIkit or Foundation.

Search here in the forum for more info, e.g. this post is helpful.

Cheers, Jannis
inStacks Software


(Arnaud) #3

Greetings Jannis,

Thank you for your quick and clear reply.
I will study the links you provided.

Cheers, regards,
Arnie


(Joe Workman) #4

Let me know if you have any questions about Foundation @Arnie. Foundation has been around the longest and has a big user base and has a great community of users. There are over 100 different websites submitted to our designs gallery that have been built with Foundation.


(Arnaud) #5

Thanks again Jannis and Joe,

I found out the basic RapidWeaver application is quite limited (not able to chance fonts i.e.) as mentioned and purchasing several extra Plugins adds up in the total costs, unexpectedly.
At this stage I’ll consider just write-off the purchases and have our website build by a 3rd party later on.

Thank you for taking the time to try to help out.

Regards,
Arnie


(Arnaud) #6

Been a while but eventually I choose Foundry. Straightforward with excellent instruction video’s, better customer service and without being ‘pushy’.


(Gregory Fein) #7

Themes can be customized a lot if you stray off the farm and start learning css and other page structures to override classes and elements in the RW inspector or dare I say… Add permanent css to the main style sheet in the theme itself so its global and available to every page. This can trigger unpredictable behaviors depending on the template designer and how they implemented their theme and theme settings but it can also make some templates absolutely sing for your website design and ideas that the theme can not accommodate. It can also help to revive older templates that have not updated their viewport/media breakpoints for newer devices.

WARNING: This can destroy theme templates and ruin your day and entire site project if you do not know what you are doing. Changes to the theme itself (not inspector overrides) will apply to every website you make with that theme. The forum may not be the best place for more info on how to do this, inspiring users to do some serious damage. (Cue RW Tech support rolling their eyes) but the RW community is amazing and has tons of tutorials on Youtube and other places. I knew nothing 2 years ago… Now I am bordering on very dangerous skills in a good way just by reading up here and googling it.


(Ken) #8

@Arnie Arnaud - back in the old days of Versions 3, 4, 5 lots of us learnt ways of changing themes with numerous advice in the forums. There were even programmes like Thememiner that could be used. Videos showing how to change your options with a plist editor were (and probably still are). With tools such as BBEDIT it was reasonably easy to get into the code - and lots of things could changed experimentally. It was fun to do and it gave one a kick when the changes worked.
HOWEVER - it could be very time consuming and often what you thought you wanted was inferior to the original theme.
I don’t think I’ve ever found the perfect theme, but I’ve got pretty close.
The first game-changer was Stacks and over time the add-on itself, and some fantastic stacks have made a huge difference & now frameworks like Foundation & Foundry seem the way to go.
I use Foundation because Joe Workman was the leader. His stacks that go with it give all the tools you need to make great looking sites without mucking about changing themes. Add to that the Big White Duck stacks that only cost a cup of coffee, in conjunction with a framebook and you can do anything you want.
Some designers are creating projects based on Foundation/BWD etc where you can copy and paste predesigned ideas - look at “Duck Soup” for example - its mindblowing.


(Ken) #9

@instacks Jannis - why do you think Foundry is best?. I’m currently using Foundation & have contemplated buying Foundry as well, but at first sight it looks pretty much the same as Foundation.


(Jannis from inStacks Software) #10

IMHO it is well designed and very esthetic, like we are used from themes by @Elixir. It doesn’t need hundreds of options, and looks good in its nature.

That’s just my opinion, I am using it currently on my own website with a custom header https://instacks.com

At the end, yes, they look similar and cover the same features. Maybe I like it more, because it is based on the Bootstrap framework, which I favor in regards to the Foundation framework.


(DeFliGra) #11

Welcome on board.

You’re right. RapidWeaver itself is limited. That doesn’t mean you can’t create nice websites with the built-in themes, but if you want to create something out-of-the box you need af few extras.

The Stacks Plugin (has changed the way we ‘all’ use RW)
The SiteMap Plus Plugin (for seo)

There’s tons of cool themes out there, but finding the right one for your content, your business, your cause can be pretty time consuming. As it is for Wordpress themes as well.

If you want to build your site from the ground, both Foundry and Foundation are great themes. The Foundation theme is free, the Foundation Stacks cost.

I use both (Foundation and Foundry) and both are fully capable of creating a nice structured website. I won’t say that one is better than the other. They are different, and offer different layout solutions / Stacks solutions.

The Foundation theme offers more Stacks and has support of Big White Duck who offers a lot of free Stacks created for the Foundation theme. But it is – of course – not all about volume.

Quality of the two themes are great. They both deliver and will both create beautiful websites.

Best | DeFligra | www.defligra.com
Mac’O’Holic | Stack’O’Holic | Web’O’Holic


(Ken) #12

@instacks @defligra Thanks both - I think I’ll buy Foundry just for something different. Incidentally @instacks Will Woodgate created a lot of snippets that were designed for Bootstrap - do you thinks these will work in Foundry.