This is a basic starter kit for Eleventy, with Forestry for editing and GitHub Pages for hosting baked in.
This kit is largely based off the Eleventy starter site and has been adapted and styled to be a simple blogging website. The aim is to make it as easy as possible for non-technical users to set up a blog using a static site generator, in much the same way the might get started using Wordpress. Of course it can in no way compete with Wordpress on functionality, not even a little. That was not the aim. Instead the focus is on speed and simplicity.
The idea for this kit comes from my experience of moving from a Wordpress hosted site to a site built by Eleventy: "a simpler static site generator". Eleventy is indeed a great tool, but you do need quite a bit of technical knowhow to get a site configured, hosted and editable through a user friendly interface.
Why static pages?
Few websites are updated so frequently that they need to be generated on the fly every time someone them. Equally, few websites are so large that rebuilding the entire site as static pages on each update would be considered wasteful. But the real benefit is the speed. Nothing can beat the speed with which a browser can load and display simple static pages.
Static means static
Of course since this is only a template site, it is not hard to add the required code for services like Google Analytics. You won't find the how-to for that here though! Just be cool instead 😎.
After trying out various online services to manage my blog I settled on Forestry and GitHub Pages. There are many other services available, but the combination of these two was the simplest for me. I had two aims when choosing services: simple editing and simple hosting.
For editing I chose Forestry because for a simple site, being managed by one person, it offered the best experience. There are many other editing tools available, but for me Forestry did exactly what I needed and no more.
For hosting, since the site's code is anyway hosted on GitHub and GitHub offers a basic hosting service, it made sense to use GitHub pages to host the site.
The kit includes some basic themes so you can easily change the look and feel of the site. ince it is all open source and hosted in GitHub you can make more complex styling changes directly in the CSS code and Eleventy templates.
So here you have the overview. Now it's time to go and play. Have fun!