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How to change folder color on Mac

Color-coded folders are a great way to get your Mac organized and to add a personal touch.

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Here’s how to use the Preview app that comes standard on every Mac to assign any color in the spectrum to your folders, or to use your images as folder icons. If that seems too much trouble, a paid app from the App Store will do the same thing in a fraction of the time.

How to change a folder icon on Mac

How to change a folder icon on Mac
  1. Right-click on the folder whose icon you want to change. Then select “Get Info”.
  1. This opens an overview window for the folder. Click the folder’s icon in the upper left corner so that it is outlined in blue.
  1. Select Copy from the Edit menu located in the top left of your screen.
  1. Now launch the “Preview” application. Either use Spotlight to search for “Preview” or use the Finder to open the “Applications” folder and double-click on it.
  1. Note: When you launch the preview application, initially no window will appear. Click “File” > “New from Clipboard” in the menu bar at the top.
  1. Select the Markup tool (looks like the tip of a pencil).
  1. When you are done with your editing, press [Cmd] + [C] again.
  1. Now switch back to the Finder, right-click again on the folder and select “Get Info”. Click on the icon in the upper left corner again to make it appear blue. Finally, press the key combination [Cmd] + [V].

Changing folder colors on Mac with apps

If the steps above seem too cumbersome or time-consuming, you can use apps like Folder Color in the App Store to help automate the process. In particular, Folder Color lets you do things like alter a folder’s color, add icons and decorations, swap out a folder for an image, and even quickly edit an existing image to make it look like a folder.

Summary

  1. Right-click on the desired folder and select “Get Info”.
  2. Click on the folder’s icon in the upper left corner and press [Cmd] + [C].
  3. Open the “Preview” application.
  4. In the menu bar, click “File” > “New from Clipboard”.
  5. Edit the icon to your liking: Click “Tools” > “Adjust Color” to change the icon’s color, or “View” > “Show Markup Toolbar” to add text and shapes.
  6. Press the key combination [Cmd] + [C].
  7. In the Finder, right-click the desired folder again and select “Get Info” again.
  8. Click on the icon in the upper left corner and press [Cmd] + [V].