Not so long ago, I published an in-depth review of the Genesis theme framework software, if you want to check that review post out, just click here.
So today I want to review another great little software that complements Genesis very nicely, it’s called Genesis Design Palette Pro, or GDP for short.
What is it?
GDP is a premium quality WordPress plugin designed to help make the process of customizing Genesis child themes a lot easier, so let’s take a closer look.
Customizing a Genesis Child theme before the arrival of this plugin
…Was a complete nightmare.
I started using this plugin many years ago now, way back before I was competent enough to understand or even write code.
If you’re a Genesis user yourself and found modifying or customizing your WordPress website a complete nightmare, then you can probably relate to this.
Jus doing simple things like trying to change font style, the font size or even the theme color for that matter would mean that you would have to sit for hours messing about with bits of code in the theme Editor.
No one has that kind of time to waste when they could be building their business.
Thankfully though this little plugin came along and changed a lot of things for Genesis users.
You can now edit quite a few things with your child theme without having to touch a single line of code.
So if you’re wondering what kind of problem will this plugin solve for you, it’s simple. It will save you time and prevent you from going insane trying to add some simple customizations to your site.
Here’s what you need to know about the Genesis Design Palette Pro plugin –
- Yes, it will work with pretty much all of the current StudioPress child themes available.
- No, you don’t need to possess any skills or knowledge in HTML or CSS to use this plugin.
- No, this plugin will not break any other customization you’ve already made to your Genesis child theme. What this plugin does is create a separate CSS file and make the changes in that file only. Your original theme settings stay untouched.
OK so let’s now look at the plugin in more detail.
1. Plugin Installation
Installing the Genesis Design Palette Pro plugin is so easy, using the same steps as you would, to install any other plugin into your WordPress website.
Once installed, to access the plugin settings you simply go to Genesis > Design Palette Pro. See image below.
Top screenshot: As you can see from the available tabs in the main plugin dashboard, you have options to style and customize all of the major areas of your Genesis child theme.
The general site styles tab: This feature lets you make global changes to colors, fonts and even upload a Favicon to use on your site.
Have you ever tried adding a Favicon to your Genesis theme manually? If you don’t know how it can be a complete headache.
You can refine any of those changes by clicking on each tab to access more options and settings for different areas of your site, as shown in the image above.
If you have the plugin installed already, play around with it for a while and get used to it, before making any key style changes to your site.
Top screenshot: Here you can refine some of the changes to the content area of your Genesis powered website.
You’ll see that there is a live preview window showing your website in the right column. Any changes you make in the design column will take effect in real-time in the right column.
When you’re happy with the design changes you’ve made, you can go ahead and hit the save button, it’s that easy.
Can you imagine how much time you could save with your blog customization using this plugin? Especially when before you’d have to tediously look for bits of codes to modify in your theme’s template editor.
Top screenshot: In the settings tab you have options for default child theme, preview URL, data export and import – which is useful if you wanted to import settings used on another theme. Or, you can export the current settings to use on another site.
And let’s say if all your tweaks and mods go haywire, you can simply hit the reset button and remove all of the customizations you’ve made and start over.
So what exactly can you customize or change using the Genesis Design Palette Pro plugin?
With this plugin installed you can make changes to the following areas within your child theme:
- Header area.
- Content extras (Such as ‘read more’ links, ‘bread crumbs’, ‘pagination’ and ‘author box’).
- Footer widgets and footer area.
The elements you can customize are:
- Background colours
- Typography (Font style, weight, color), text alignment, paddings, and margins.
Other notable features in this plugin include the ability to preview on mobile layouts and child theme add-ons.
In the latest version of the GDP plugin, a Freeform CSS box has been added so that you can add your own CSS to your Genesis Child Theme.
How much does the Genesis Design Palette Pro plugin cost?
As I said this is a premium quality plugin, so it’s not free. There are currently 3 plans available for this plugin.
There is a Basic Plan which gets you 1-year standard support, 1-year worth of upgrades, documentation, import and export capabilities, live preview, and child theme extensions. The single basic license will set you back $49.
There is also a Plus Plan which will set you back $89 and give you 5 site license, all of what’s included in the basic package plus priority email support.
Finally, there is a Deluxe Plan which will cost you $199 and give you 50 site licenses, 3 exclusive palettes, and priority email support.
Pros and Cons
Pros – Simple to install and use. Great for personalizing child themes without coding.It won’t break your theme’s existing setup or
It won’t break your theme’s existing setup or customization. It’s a premium quality plugin with a nice money-back guarantee.
Cons – Quite pricey for a plugin of this kind. Would have loved to see an ‘undo’ and ‘redo’ feature added, perhaps a few more font style options built-in too. In my opinion, and this is purely my opinion, the Basic Plan would perhaps be more appealing at $39, especially when you consider you can pick up the Genesis Extender Plugin for only $39 and do so much more with it.
My final verdict?
This is a great all-around plugin and a wonderful addition to have and use with any Genesis child theme.
I do recommend it if you’re not confident enough to learn and apply some basic CSS or HTML to customize your WordPress website. Or, you don’t have thousands of Dollars at your disposal to pay for a professional web designer. And, the GDP plugin is a real time saver too.
Price-wise, however, I do think it’s a pretty steep for what you can actually do with this plugin in all honesty. As an alternative, I would also check out the Genesis Extender. Although some knowledge of CSS is required to use that plugin.
All-in-all, the Design Palette Pro plugin is a great little tool. If you want to be able to add some simple customization your Genesis child theme quickly, then this is for you.
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