Since Lion, every item in the Finder's sidebar are gray. I miss the colors, as they were helpful to quickly find a specific item.
The problem is the same in Open File dialog box.

Do you know of a way to get back some colors in the Finder's sidebar?

I'm ok to modify files owned by the System (such as system images), but I'm not ok to use SIMBL. This project seems nice, but I don't want to use it.

  • What is the problem you have with SIMBL? At the moment using it with the ColorfulSidebar bundle is the easiest way to get the color back into the sidebar.
    – l'L'l
    Oct 7, 2011 at 17:20
  • My main problem is stability. I have had some bad experience with it, and try to stay away from it.
    – Guillaume
    Oct 7, 2011 at 17:26
  • ah, didn't know it had issues; I'll keep an eye out for you, since I'm in the same boat.
    – l'L'l
    Oct 7, 2011 at 17:38
  • When you know the mechanism of injection it uses to modify apps, you prefer to stay away from it. Nice hack, but an hack anyway.
    – Guillaume
    Oct 8, 2011 at 12:32
  • Care to elaborate on the mechanism you're referring to?
    – l'L'l
    Oct 9, 2011 at 18:34

1 Answer 1


You aren't alone in wanting the color back. Unfortunately, it looks as if the Finder code actually shifts the hue from the fully-colored icon resources that are included (see the Go menu in Finder, which has the colored versions).

According to a commenter on this MacThemes Forum thread, the developer documentation actually details how to shift the hue in the same way that Finder does; with the associated speculation that we'll see grey icons in every app that has a sidebar in the future.

Looks to me as if you can bite the bullet and use ColorfulSidebar (with SIMBL) or live with the grey.

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