Headway 1.7 Theme Sneak Preview

For those of you who like this stuff, I’ve recorded a sneak preview of the upcoming Headway 1.7 theme.

Headway tries to take the programming and technical challenges out of customizing a theme and each version it gets better. The latest, 1.7 adds a number of features, a few of which I’ll take you through in my unpolished rambling video below (no hard sell from me!). For those who want to read the benefits, see below the video.

Quick Start Wizard
The wizard will guide you step-by-step through choosing your layout, uploading your header image, building your site’s color scheme (it will even detect colors from your header image – I can’t wait to give that a go!), and selecting fonts. At the end, you’ll click a button to build your site and it’ll all be done in a few seconds.
This is one of the best features I’ve seen in any premium WordPress theme, ever.

Automatic Upgrades
“No longer do you have to go to the Headway site, download the latest version, upload it, and activate it. Oh, and if you ever did any custom.css or used the custom folder in Headway, you won’t have to worry about transferring that to the new installation either. The automatic upgrader does it all with only a few clicks”
I’m honestly looking forward to testing this!

HUGE Speed Improvements and Optimizations
“We’ve made major improvements to the visual editor to drastically reduce the amount of conflicts from third-party plugins and also make loading the visual editor MUCH faster. Also, we completely rewrote the content leaf to be more efficient and more stable than before.”
It certain loads faster and is easier to navigate than before.

Column System For Leafs
“Those who have a more column-based layout will find the new columns system to be incredibly beneficial. Instead of jogging all of your leafs around, you can put them into columns and move and resize the entire columns with ease. Don’t fret, the previous layout system is still present. You can specify whether or not you want columns for the particular page in the visual editor.”
I’m sure this will become more useful as I develop more sites with Headway, columns were sometime problematic.

Styles Manager
Before Headway 1.7, Headway came with 1 layout and you had to work from there. Headway 1.7 comes with 4 pre-loaded styles in the new Styles Manager, which allows you to save and load styles. You can also import and export styles just like before, but in a much more organized way!
It’s quick and easy to use and makes default styling nice and easy.

Leaf Templates
Instead of linking pages and being locked into the layout of the page you are linking to, you can now save your leafs (and columns) into Leaf Templates. Leaf Templates can be loaded onto any page. Once a template is loaded, you can modify it just like any regular page.
Beautiful!

Looks great!

8 thoughts on “Headway 1.7 Theme Sneak Preview”

  1. Hi Joel,

    I am on your membership site course which includes access to Headway or one of the other themes you offer. After watching your video I am pretty much sold on Headway. I was still in two minds until now. I think I would prefer to install from the 1.7 version so just wondering when it is due for release? Great post, thank you.

    ~Marcus

  2. Thanks for your comment! The usual answer to this is “it depends”. I really like the new Headway as with the new features it elevates it above other themes.

    Thesis has some powerful features but not everything is controllable through the admin. Until v1.8 comes out you have to know CSS and HTML to even add a header image. Plus using a free plugin Thesis Openhook simplifies things, removing the much of the need to know basic PHP. That said I use it every day and know how it works and like it. But it just makes a few things too difficult for the average user, like adding a page template is a chore.

    Headway has many more inbuilt controls for design and look and feel, and with the Visual editor (and now with inbuilt styles) and is much easier to change how it looks. Like any software though there is a learning curve on how to use it and what the options do, so it can be overwhelming at first (just like WordPress itself can be). It has custom CSS and hooks that can be used to have finer control and therefore completely customizable, but it may take some getting used to.

    Hope that helps a little!

  3. The features does really look quite awesome specially the Quickstart one since many people may not know how to customize it as soon as one buys it. Actually I have been in deep research because I am going to buy a theme framework soon and I gotta choose from Headway or Thesis. I am really confused. Could you recommend me the better out of the two Joel

  4. Wow–the new features look great! Your previous reviews helped convince me to switch to Headway, and I've loved it from day one….it's saved me hours of time and it's SO customizable. Drooling over 1.7 now. Thanks Joel!

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