Gnome Theming

So, it seems the Gnome use of libadwaita negates theming of native Gnome apps?

The theming of native Gnome apps looks to be an ongoing issue, I see. I haven’t used Gnome as a DE in several years. There seem to be several related topics here dating from 2019 onward. This one the most recent I could find. As well as quite a few on reddit and elsewhere. I see several workarounds and hacks, but that hardly resolves the issue. Is there anything I’m missing? Or is Adwaita the only full system theme for now?

Gnome 4 apps are almost all linked with libadwaita.

If you want to change colors there are some work arounds last i checked.

In general, with gnome you get light and dark.


After more reading, a ran across this, a long but interesting read on the Gnome Forums from a few months ago.

I would have a look on here and look for any relavant comments or contact the creator if they aren’t working as expected, it looks like a few are slowly being updated to GNOME 46

@dalto Seems that’s the case. Like I said, it’s been years since I last used Gnome. Theming wasn’t an issue. I’ve just gotten so used to theming (Cinnamon, KDE, XFCE) that it never crossed my mind that theming wouldn’t be a thing anymore with Gnome.

@smokey I’ve tried several themes that say Updated For Gnome 46. None theme native Gnome apps (files, software, text editor, etc).

I would check out the creators github page and see if any issues have been raised and if not mention it too them.

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I may do that, but after researching further it may not matter. Seems that Gnome is discouraging the idea of theming native apps.

See here: Please don’t theme our apps

At the bottom of the page
Note: Even though some of us are Foundation members or work on GNOME, these are our personal views as individuals, and not those of the GNOME Project, the GNOME Foundation, or our employers.

I saw that. But the opinions of the open letter obviously carry weight. As this issue (when searching forums, reddit, and the web) is everywhere. Point being, theming of other DEs are quick and embedded. Gnome is full of temporary workarounds at best.

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Hopefully sometime in the future they’ll rethink it

I hope so. I honestly don’t dislike the Adwaita theming that Gnome implements. It would just be nice to have an option to change it. Nevertheless, I’ll be sticking with Arch Gnome on the laptop for the foreseeable future. It’s rock soling stable for me. So, I guess I should stop complaining.

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I wouldn’t say your complaining just expressing a feature you would like to see available

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I added new icons with no problems and they look fine

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@Archnoob I have no issue with changing icons either. I’m talking actual GTK 3/4 themes.

Well that’s their philosophy. They want to keep it simple, so that everybody can use their DE without much tinkering. In my opinion gnome is acting in the opensource world similar to the concept that Apple is aiming for in the closed source world.

If it’s good or bad, who knows.



Relax, just kidding, even if, still, it’s a bit true :rofl:


Yea, the GTK 4 stuff won’t accept any theme other than Adwaita unless you force it with an export statement in your .bash_profile. I’m away from my PC or I’d copy in some examples. Bit of a cludge anyways, best to just let Gnome be Gnome. It’s a good desktop in a lot of ways, but they focus on ease of use and workflow to the detriment of “creativity”.



I tend to agree here. I think, between my use of Cinnamon in the past and Endeavour KDE 6 currently in use on my desktop, the idea of theming was just baked in.

After using Arch Gnome 46 for a week or so on my laptop, I’m getting used to the idea that perhaps theming isn’t something to focus on. At least as far as Gnome is concerned.

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