Block Library: Installing Blocks from Within Gutenberg

With the introduction of Gutenberg and blocks comes the need for a way to install new blocks, just like plugins or themes. Step one in this project, for the design team, is installing blocks contextually within Gutenberg. Check out this thread for more details and prior explorations.


The API will provide an endpoint for searching for blocks by name and description, and return metadata similar to that of plugins. Gutenberg’s Inserter could use that endpoint to also show relevant block plugins that are available to install, with a button and process for seamless installation.


This project is limited to installing one block at a time from within the Gutenberg editor. That might encompass:

  • How people discover blocks from within the Gutenberg editor
  • How to give users enough detail to make an informed decision about which block to install
  • How uninstalled blocks are previewed
  • What the Install process would look like
  • What happens if the installation fails
  • Removing installed blocks
  • How to manage installation requests by non-admin users

This scope is intentionally kept small so we can focus on shipping an iterating. A larger exploration of how to download or install blocks from within a Blocks screen in wp-admin, and, will take place in a future project.


Task Stage Facilitator Due Status
Create repo Scope @karmatosed April 26
Create project board for design tasks in GitHub Scope @karmatosed April 26
Create issues in GitHub for design Scope @karmatosed April 26
Make/design kick off post Scope @melchoyce April 26
Make/meta kick off post Scope @tellyworth May 3
Competitive analysis Research @melchoyce May 17
Competitive analysis summary post Research @melchoyce May 17
Experimental explorations Exploration @melchoyce May 24
Flow diagram Exploration @melchoyce May 24
Iterate on experimentations Refine @melchoyce May 31
Make/design post of designs Refine @melchoyce June 7
Prototyping (click prototype/Figma) Prototyping @melchoyce June 7
Testing/feedback on prototype Prototyping @melchoyce July 5
Update GitHub issue to start development Development @melchoyce July 5
Prototype (technical prototype) Development @tellyworth TBD
Testing/feedback on prototype Development TBD TBD

See the complete timeline on Google Drive.

Where to Follow Along

  • There will be weekly or biweekly updates here on make/design.
  • There will be time during each weekly Design meeting on Slack for updates.
  • Design tasks will exist as issues on GitHub; you can follow along on on our project board.
  • Development will also be happening on GitHub.

Get Involved

Interested in joining @iviolini and I on this project? Let us know in the comments, and follow along on GitHub.

If you don’t have time to devote to working on design tasks, that’s cool — feedback is always welcome, and a great way for you to contribute.

#block-directory, #block-library