Twenty Twenty-One

Twenty Twenty-One is the new default theme for WordPress Version 5.6.

Screenshot of the new default theme for WordPress, Twenty Twenty-One.

Twenty Twenty-One is a blank canvas for your ideas and it makes the block editor your best brush. With new block patterns, which allow you to create a beautiful layout in a matter of seconds, this theme’s soft colors and eye-catching — yet timeless — design will let your work shine. Take it for a spin! See how Twenty Twenty-One elevates your portfolio, business website, or personal blog.

Quick Specs

  • Requires at least WordPress 5.3.
  • Requires at least PHP version 5.6.
  • On a 1440px laptop screen, the main column width is up to 1240px wide. The “Wide” block width is also up to 1240px wide, and the “Full” block width extends the entire width of the screen.
  • The recommended Featured Image size is 610px wide or larger.
  • The recommended size of the logo is at least 300px wide, or at least 100px tall.
  • Twenty Twenty-One has one widget area that displays below the site content and above the footer. Each widget takes up one third of the available space, to a maximum of 380px wide.
  • Note that Twenty Twenty-One has limited support for Internet Explorer 11.

Accessibility features

  • Skip to content link
  • Semantic HTML with landmarks
  • Support for High Contrast mode and Dark Mode
  • Support for keyboard navigation

Starter Content

Twenty Twenty-One comes with Starter Content that explains how to use the theme’s block patterns and styles. You can only activate starter content on freshly installed sites that do not have any pages or posts. To activate, please head over to the Customizer and click on Publish.

Full Block Editor Support

Twenty Twenty-One is designed and developed to take full advantage of the creative freedom enabled by the block editor. Extra care has been given to the Columns block so you can create impressive landing pages with intricate blocks layouts. Twenty Twenty-One includes styles for the block editor, so what you see in the editor will almost exactly match the end result.

Block patterns

Large text

A screenshot of the large text block pattern, with the text: A new portfolio default theme for WordPress.
A heading with a 144px text size
The links area block pattern has a large text followed by social links and an email address. The section has a thin border on all four sides.
For your social links and call-to-action

Contact Information

The contact information pattern has 3 columns that contains email and phone number, address and social media links with icons.
How to get in touch with you

Media & Text article title

The media & text article title has a left aligned image combined with text section. The section has a thin border on all four sides.
Highlight your best image and include a summary at the beginning of your article

Overlapping images

The overlapping images block pattern displays 3 images in two columns.
The left column has two vertically placed images. The right hand column contains one mage and overlaps the left column.
Place images in a beautiful column pattern

Two Images

The two images block pattern has two horizontally placed images. The images have different sizes and one image has a frame.
Showcase images next to each other with different sizes and borders

Overlapping images and text

The overlapping images and text pattern uses 3 columns. The two outer columns contains images.
The middle column contains a paragraph with a border around it, and overlaps the left most column.
Mix images and text content in columns

Portfolio list

The portfolio list pattern has a vertical list of links and miniature images. The image is displayed to the right of the link text.
Each portfolio item is separated by a bottom border.
Display links to your portfolio items together with miniature images

Learn more about block patterns and how to add them

Block styles

Block styles are selected in the block Settings sidebar in the editor.

Social links: In addition to the default styles, you can choose a dark grey icon color.

Separator: In addition to the default styles, you can choose an extra thick separator.


In Twenty Twenty-One, borders can be added to the following blocks:

  • Media & Text
  • Latest posts -Styles for borders and dividers
  • Image -Styles for borders and frames
  • Cover
  • Group

Overlapping columns

The columns block has an optional style called overlap, where the content of every second column overlaps the previous:

A screenshot of a columns block with the overlapping style applied. The first column has a white background. The second column has a black background and overlaps the bottom right corner of the first column.

Color palette

The theme provides several recommended colors that works well with the design of the theme. Select the colors in the background color setting and in the editor. There are also matching gradients.



Dark Grey








Custom Background Color

Twenty Twenty includes the option to change your site’s background color.

To change the background color, navigate to Customizer Colors & Dark Mode.

A screenshot of the Customizer with the preview of the site and with the Colors & Dark Mode settings panel opened.

Add your own custom color, or select a color from the palette.

The Dark Mode option in the Customizer.

The colors of the elements on your site are automatically calculated based on the background colors you pick. This ensures that the color contrast is always high enough to be accessible to all visitors.

Twenty Twenty-One includes a site logo setting which can be used to display the logo of your business or an image of yourself. You can set your site logo by going to Customizer Site Identity.

The recommended size of the logo is at least 300px wide, or at least 100px tall. The logo is visible in the header and footer.

The Site Identity settings panel in the Customizer.

The logo in the site header is centered. If you want to hide the Site Title and Tagline, the logo is placed to the left of the menu:

The Site Identity settings panel in the Customizer, with the Site Title and Tagline options toggled off.

Excerpt settings

In the Customizer you will find a panel called Excerpt Settings:

The Customizer Excerpt settings have two radio buttons where you can can choose between summary and full text.

Here you can choose if the blog and archive pages should show the full content or only the summary.
The default is summary. The search result page always shows the summary.
When the summary is selected, only text will be displayed.

Twenty Twenty-One includes two menu locations:

  • A traditional responsive horizontal menu at the very top of the site, which supports dropdown menus.
  • A horizontal menu between the widget area and the footer at the bottom of the screen, which only supports one level of navigation.

You can choose a menu location by going to Appearance Menus, where you can assign a menu to the “Primary Navigation” or the “Footer Navigation”. You can also use both menu locations in combination, if you prefer.

The primary navigation menu supports menu descriptions.

The menu description is shown below the menu item text.

To enable menu descriptions, go to Appearance Menus, and open the Screen Options tab at the top of the page.

Under Show advanced menu properties, check the box for Description:

The screen options tab includes a form with settings for menu properties including the menu descriptions.

Add a description by selecting the menu item and filling out the Description textarea. Remember to save your changes.

Each menu item uses a textarea where the description can be added.

Add Social Icons

There are two ways to add social icons in your site:

  • Use the Social Icons block within the editor.
  • Add a link to a social media site to your footer menu.

When you create a social menu, the text label you provide will be hidden, and an icon will be shown in its place. If you’re not familiar with this functionality, please check out the documentation from Twenty Fifteen.

Twenty Twenty-One provides icons for the following social media services:

  • 500px
  • Amazon
  • Bandcamp
  • Behance
  • Codepen
  • DeviantArt
  • Dribbble
  • Dropbox
  • Etsy
  • Facebook
  • Feed
  • Flickr
  • Foursquare
  • GitHub
  • GitLab
  • Goodreads
  • Google
  • Instagram
  • Kickstarter
  • JSFiddle
  • LinkedIn
  • Mail
  • Mastodon
  • Medium
  • Meetup
  • Pinterest
  • Pocket
  • Reddit
  • Skype
  • Snapchat
  • SoundCloud
  • Spotify
  • Tumblr
  • Twitch
  • Twitter
  • Vimeo
  • VK
  • WhatsApp
  • WordPress
  • Yelp
  • YouTube

Additional icons can be added following the steps under “Adding icons in Twenty Twenty” at Themes field guide: WordPress 5.5.


Twenty Twenty-One comes with support for one widget area, at the very bottom of each page. Each widget column is 33% of the site width, up to 380px.

The footer widget area has 3 columns.
Below the widget area is a site information section with the site title or logo, and a ink to with the link text "Proudly powered by WordPress"

Post formats

Twenty Twenty-One has support for post formats.
Post formats are selected in the editors Settings sidebar Post Status & visibility.

  • Standard
  • Aside
  • Gallery
  • Link
  • Image
  • Quote
  • Status
  • Video
  • Audio
  • Chat

Language Support

Twenty Twenty-One includes styles for RTL languages.

The theme uses a native system font stack. This font stack provides support for a large number of languages.

-apple-system, BlinkMacSystemFont, "Segoe UI", Roboto, Oxygen-Sans, Ubuntu, Cantarell, "Helvetica Neue", sans-serif
Expand this list to see the fonts used for non-Latin languages.
  • ar, ary, azb, ckb, fa-IR, haz, ps: Tahoma, Arial, sans-serif.
  • zh-CN: PingFang SC, Helvetica Neue, Microsoft YaHei New, STHeiti Light.
  • zh-TW: PingFang TC, Helvetica Neue, Microsoft YaHei New, STHeiti Light.
  • zh-HK: PingFang HK, Helvetica Neue, Microsoft YaHei New, STHeiti Light.
  • bel, bg-BG, kk, mk-MK, mn, ru-RU, sah, sr-RS, tt-RU, uk: Helvetica Neue, Helvetica, Segoe UI, Arial, sans-serif.
  • bn-BD, hi-IN, mr, ne-NP: Arial, sans-serif.
  • el: Helvetica Neue, Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif.
  • gu: Arial, sans-serif.
  • he-IL: Arial Hebrew, Arial, sans-serif.
  • ja: sans-serif.
  • ko-KR: Apple SD Gothic Neo, Malgun Gothit, Nanum Gothic, Dotum, sans-serif.
  • th: Sukhumvit Set, Helvetica Neue, Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif.
  • vi: Libre Franklin, sans-serif.

Dark Mode Support

One of the accessibility features of the Twenty Twenty-One theme is support for the visitor’s color scheme preferences in their operating system or browser’s settings. The feature is opt-in and supported in most operating systems, including Android, iOS, OSX, Windows 10, as well as most Linux distributions.

If you have Dark Mode enabled, your site will be shown to visitors using a light or dark color scheme, respecting their operating system’s preferences. Depending on their lighting conditions or personal preferences they may choose to switch color schemes using a dedicated button on the bottom-right of their site (or bottom-left for RTL languages).

Enabling Dark Mode from the Customizer

To activate Dark Mode Support, you can go to the Colors & Dark Mode section in your Customizer. If you have a light color selected for the site’s background, you will be able to see and activate the Dark Mode Support setting. The background color you select will be applied to light mode, while Dark Mode colors are optimized automatically. You can use the Dark Mode On/Off button at the bottom of the preview screen to toggle between dark & light schemes in your preview.

Dark Mode in the Editor

The editor will by default respect your operating system’s color scheme settings. If on the front of your site you have chosen a different scheme (using the Dark Mode On/Off button), then the editor will use the preferred scheme.

The post editor with Dark Mode enabled. The background color is dark grey and the text is white,

Support and Resources

Get community help with Twenty Twenty-One in its support forum.

You can also read the theme’s changelog.

Was this article helpful? How could it be improved?

First published

Last updated