Milan Pro (the Genesis version of our Adaline theme that we sell on StudioPress) just got an update!

This update adds Jetpack Featured Content functionality and fixes a Masonry bug that could be seen on archive pages with featured images (which they probably do).

You can download it in your My StudioPress account area.

Why Jetpack Featured Content?

In an attempt to make the Milan Pro theme more “Genesis friendly,” instead of using Jetpack Featured Content (like I did with Adaline) I set up a “Featured Content” widget area in its place, intended to house two “Genesis — Featured Posts” widgets.

The first widget for the first featured post, and the second widget for the row of four featured posts below.

Trying to use the Genesis Featured Posts widget in such an unusual way (as opposed to, just using it as a traditional sidebar widget as intended) would prove to be a mistake on my part.

There were two problems with it.

Tedious Setup

First, it was a pretty tedious process. Each of the two Genesis Featured Posts widgets needed to be configured with very specific settings.

Configuration for the bottom row of featured posts

If even one setting was off, it could make the whole featured content section look off. Since this section is what gives Milan Pro such a distinctive look, this was a pretty big problem.

Featured posts were not excluded from the main loop

This was the most common support request, and I didn’t have a very good response to it.

By default, featured posts in Milan Pro are repeated below in the main loop.

Before Milan Pro 1.1.0, I would recommend one of three options:

None of the above solutions were ideal.

The first two “category exclusion” techniques would require Milan Pro users to re-categorize posts outside of the featured category after five featured posts are published, otherwise older featured posts would be hidden from the main loop forever.

The “date adjustment” technique could also be described as a “sweep under the rug” technique. The featured posts are still in the main loop, they’re just out of sight at first.

With Jetpack Featured Content, the latest five featured posts are automatically excluded from the main loop, and any featured posts older than that will seamlessly transition to the main loop.

Migrating to Jetpack Featured Content

Every site I have ever seen using Milan Pro utilizes the featured content section. Like I said, it’s what gives Milan Pro such a distinctive look.

Considering that, I wasn’t going to just rip out the existing Featured Content widget area setup, leaving anyone who updated an empty featured section.

Migrating is an opt-in process, which goes like this:

  1. Install Jetpack (optionally, with Development Mode on)
  2. Delete any widgets in the “Featured Content” widget area
  3. Go to Customizer → Featured Content, and select the category you were using before with the Genesis Featured Posts widgets
Utilizing the new Jetpack Featured Content functionality in Milan 1.1.0

It’s important to note that any widget in the “Featured Content” widget area will prevent Jetpack Featured Content from showing up. This is how I make sure that Milan Pro users already using the “Featured Content” widget area do not experience an unexpected removal of their featured section.

No need to “backup” your old Genesis Featured Posts widget settings. No need to re-categorize older featured posts to get them to show up in the main loop anymore. No more repeated posts.

It just works.

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