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I'm using MacVim and I am attempting to change the default theme. I have the following in my .vimrc file (and in .gvimrc as well):

 colorscheme macvim

But the theme remains unchanged. What am I doing wrong?

The file is read in without errors but the scheme doesn't change. Also, if I download alternate themes, where do they go?

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up vote 3 down vote accepted

This is what I have in my ~/.vimrc

if has("gui_running")
  syntax on
  set hlsearch
  colorscheme macvim
  set bs=2
  set ai
  set ruler
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By default, you should put custom colorschemes/themes into: ~/.vim/colors

Note that you may need to create the .vim directory in your home directory if it does not already exist.

After doing so, your :colorscheme command should automatically pick up the theme.

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Where does macvim keep it's themes?

The themes that MacVim ships with can be found in


but MacVim will also load any custom themes you have on disk. I use the rather awesome Janus plugin distribution with MacVim and Janus keeps all of its themes in ~/.vim/janus/vim/colors. MacVim will load this in as well as the defaults.

But the theme remains unchanged. What am I doing wrong?

MacVim loads both ~/.vimrc and ~/.gvimrc, in that order. Make sure that settings in ~/.gvimrc aren't clobbering settings you're making in your ~/.vimrc file.

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The easiest way is to create a ~/.gvimrc file and add

colorscheme solarized

or whatever colorscheme you want.

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