So, far I am loving the flexibility of changing just about every element on my blog with Kadence and the polished look of the Farmhouse theme.
While I can't go over every feature, I will cover some of the things that I like best in both of these themes.
Why Your Blog Theme Matters
Most people will tell you that the theme you choose for your blog is not that important.
Yes, it should look clean and professional – and it should be coded well and supported by the developer.
But beyond that – it's your content that is most important.
Here's the thing though – if your theme does not motivate you to create content then it's not working for you.
At least that is what happened to me.
My old theme was great in terms of performance and support but I wasn't proud of the way it looked and that stopped me from writing.
I know – it's a weird issue – and maybe it's just me.
But I knew that I needed a new theme, a new look, a MAKEOVER – to get those creative juices flowing.
Restored316 WordPress Themes
I have been a big fan of Restored316 themes for years.
Back when my blog was on the Genesis platform, I used the Refined Theme for a long time.
But now I was ready for something different.
Lauren at Refined316 has recently been designing child themes that work with the Kadence theme (think of this like a parent theme).
One child theme that caught my eye was the Farmhouse theme.
I especially liked the option for the homepage with the different categories across the top (home page option #3).
But I had never heard of Kadence so I did a little digging.
Kadence and Kadence Pro Themes
The Kadence theme is more like a framework – similar to Genesis – that you upload to your site and then install a child theme to work with it.
What makes Kadence stand out from the crowd is the ability to customize just about everything without having to code.
You can change your fonts (styles, sizes, weights, etc.) and theme colors all from within the WordPress Customize function area.
You can also, customize your header, footer, and page layouts – you can see the full feature list here.
Kadence also comes with some unique Gutenberg blocks that you can use within your content and some starter child themes.
The best part? The basic version of the Kadence theme is free – and it's pretty powerful.
However, if you want additional features you can upgrade to the Kadence Pro Theme.
The Pro version gives you:
- Header Add-Ons
- Hooked Elements
- Ultimate Menu
- Fixed Elements
- Header/Footer Scripts, and
- WooCommerce Addon
Personally, I purchased the Pro Theme because I really wanted the Hooked Elements and the Header/Footer Scripts.
Hooked Elements are More Powerful Than You Realize
The Hooked Elements in the Kadence Pro Theme gives you the ability to add a Gutenberg Block uniformly on multiple posts, pages, categories, etc across your whole site.
You can also exclude certain posts, pages, categories, etc from displaying the block.
Using the Hooked Elements feature – I was able to add an affiliate disclosure underneath the Title on all my posts and pages.
I also used Hooked Elements to create a stylized opt in box in the footer of all my posts.
And I am currently creating a stylized Gutenberg block to display an opt in form inline on all of my blog posts.
If I need to make a change to a Hooked Element, I simply edit it and the change gets pushed through everywhere.
It really is magic!
You can create a site wide opt in box using Gutenberg blocks for WordPress using this method as well – but it is more time consuming and tedious than just using the Hooked Elements in the Kadence Pro theme.
Kadence Pro Pricing
Before I move on to the Farmhouse theme – I want to talk briefly about the Kadence Pro Theme Pricing – because I think it's a little confusing.
You can purchase the Pro theme which comes in two options: Kadence Pro and Kadence Suite – and you can see the features and current pricing for both here.
I purchased the plain Kadence Pro Theme/Plugin – which was all I needed.
The Suite option (from what I can tell it looks to be the same as the Kadence Membership – but you should reach out to Kadence support to clarify that before you purchase) includes all of the other Kadence features including premium plugins, additional themes, child theme builder, and access to future themes and plugins.
To add to the confusion there is something called the Kadence Blocks Pro plugin – this is different from the Kadence Pro Theme/Plugin and it is included with the Membership level but NOT with the Kadence Pro Theme/Plugin.
The Kadence Blocks Pro plugin includes even more specialized Gutenberg blocks that you can use throughout your content.
I did NOT purchase the Kadence Blocks Pro plugin at this time because I did not need these additional blocks for my small site.
So – to be clear – I purchased the Kadence Pro Theme/Plugin and NOT the Kadence Blocks Pro plugin.
If you are confused – please reach out to Kadence support so that you are certain that you are getting the right product for your needs.
Now onto the Farmhouse theme from Restored316.
The Farmhouse Theme
So, you might be wondering, if Kadence is so amazingly customizable, why do you need a child theme at all?
Well, Restored316 is known for creating soft, feminine, and fun WordPress themes that showcase lifestyle content beautifully.
You can practically use them “right out of the box” with very little additional customization on your part.
Simply add your brand colors adjust your font size and replace the sample content with your own.
That being said – it still took me about half a day to get the Farmhouse theme and my homepage to look exactly how I wanted it.
I can only imagine how long it would have taken if I had started from scratch with no child theme at all!
What I love especially love about the Farmhouse theme is the predesigned homepage options – there are 4 to choose from.
I also really like the font combinations and global color combinations that are included.
Since I installed this on an existing site – I really needed the transition to the new theme to go smoothly – and it did.
The help articles on the Restored316 site answered many of my questions and guided me through how to customize the elements that meant the most to me.
Going with a this particular child theme saved me tons of time and gave me a site that excites me.
I wake up each day with more ideas for content than I can possibly write about and I look forward to working on my blog.
Overall, I feel like the Farmhouse theme plus Kadence Pro was a great business investment.
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