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Here's my use case: a client will be making numerous blog posts, some of which are portfolio pieces of his recent work. This sounds like a perfect use case for a Post Format, but no "portfolio" post format exists.

Post Formats are meant to be standardized, common formats, such as gallery, quote, status etc. Unfortunately "portfolio" isn't in that list and doesn't seem to fit with any of the sanctioned post formats.

Creating a custom post type for this seems like bringing a bomb to a bonfire and frankly doesn't sit right with me since the portfolio blog post fits right in with the chronological main blog.

So should I consider extending post-formats (if that's even possible)? Or is that strictly taboo? What's another alternative?

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up vote 3 down vote accepted

You can't create custom post-formats. What you could either do is have a post category called portfolio and then use the body/post class specific to that to control the display on the front end, as this is what post-formats are designed for, or go for a custom post type. Personally I go by the idea that, if it makes the posting screen less complicated for the client to work with for a specific post type, then a custom post type is the best option.

You can still include custom post types in your standard loop - http://justintadlock.com/archives/2010/02/02/showing-custom-post-types-on-your-home-blog-page so you wouldn't lose that chronological order, it would just make it easier for the client to add portfolio posts, if they are to be so different to normal posts.

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Thanks Sarah. I'm still not sold on the custom post type route (I use CPTs every day with clients, but this doesn't seem to map quite right for that). I've considered the tax (or even custom tax route - after all, that's really all a post format is) but I'm still wondering whether I can't bully my way into a custom format type. When you say "you can't create custom post-formats", what are you basing that on? – Tom Auger Sep 8 '11 at 17:34
A custom tax route is another option, which, as you saw, are all post formats really are. My comment on creating custom post-formats (as in, adding to the pre existing ones that you listed) is based on this post from Andrew Nacin - andrewnacin.com/2011/01/27/on-standardized-post-formats where he explains what they are and ultimately that they decided from the start you wouldn't be able to hook in and create custom post formats. – Sarah Sep 8 '11 at 17:41
I'm accepting this answer, though it's really your comment about the custom Taxonomy that hits the mark I think. To avoid confusing the end-user, it's probably a good idea to remove theme support for custom post formats before implementing your suggestion of an alternate taxonomy. It's pretty easy to implement in your template.php files using get_template_part('loop', 'custom-post-format-type'); – Tom Auger Apr 24 '12 at 18:05

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