UPDATE: I’ve removed Elementor from this site, so some of the points I had made below are no longer accurate. I’m not going to bother changing them.
There are 3 WordPress magazine style themes I will probably play around with here at the WP Inn for a while before settling down and sticking with one of them. Then again, I might keep switching among them to see how certain features look from one to the next.
The 3 themes are these.
I’m starting with Astra for no real reason other than it comes first alphabetically.
Quirks about Astra
In the short time I’ve been using Astra, I’ve discovered a couple of quirky things about it.
If you’ve arrive at the Inn soon enough, you might have noticed that there is a menu-esque display of my About and Contact pages just below the site name at the top of the page.
I have no idea how they got there. In fact, I’ve opened a ticket with the Astra folks, asking them how I can edit that area.
UPDATE: It turns out that this menu “feature” is something particular to WordPress itself, not to any given theme. It’s just that I’ve never encountered it before.
If you don’t create your own menu, WordPress will create a sort of virtual menu for you based on whatever pages you have already created for your site.
I can see how move the site name and menu relative to each other. You do this in the Customize menu, where so much of WordPress seems to be headed these days.
As of this writing, I have the menu items centered under the site name. I could also have the menu appear either on the left or the right.
I’ve also found that you can decide whether or not to show that whole header area on a page-by-page (or post) basis. You do that when editing a page/post using the “Astra Settings” area in the right column of the edit page.
The image above is supposed to be centered. That’s the option I clicked when adding the picture here. (Other options are Left, Right, and None.) As you can see, it’s not centered. That’s because it has a caption.
Exactly. Just because you add a caption to an image, it shouldn’t be treated as if no alignment option was chosen. There is an alignment property in the code that refers to Centered, but it only applies to the caption, not to the image itself.
I’m not sure if the problem is with Astra or Elementor or the combination of the two. In any case, it’s a bug that needs to be fixed. (Adding custom CSS is not the way to fix this.)
UPDATE: The centering problem is the fault of Elementor which is adding a margin of 0px to the image. Thanks to the Astra support desk for pointing this out. I could deactivate Elementor Pro, but that messes up the formatting of my Posts.
What I Like about Astra…So Far
I like that Astra, by default, uses a black (or perhaps very dark gray) font on a white background. I’m not really sure why some designers choose to use anything else – unless it’s the reverse, like white on black.
Any lighter shade of gray on white is just too hard to read.
The size of the font is okay, though my aging eyes wouldn’t complain if it were just a bit larger.
I normally prefer a sans serif font, which Astra is, over a serif font. To me, it’s cleaner and therefore easier to read. (That said, you can change the font to whatever you want.)
According to Astra’s creators, this theme works and plays well with the Elementor plugin too. I plan to try out that combination sometime soon.
Go Pro, or No?
There is a pro version of Astra, but I doubt I’ll be purchasing it. For my purposes here, there’s nothing more I need from a theme than the basics.
Sorry, but I’m not even going to compare the differences in features between the two here. You’ll have to check that out for yourself, if interested.