Make your own custom Android icons!?

A short guide on making your phone a little bit more “you.”


One of the things I enjoy about most things I own is customizing them and making them my own. So when I suddenly had the thought recently that there must be a way to customize every single icon on my desktop, I got pretty excited. Turns out the whole process isn’t that difficult and the results is pretty great.

First, check out the final product here and read on for a crash course on how to do this yourself:


Forget the fact that it looks terrible, I actually quite enjoy the amateur look to my old phone. This phone is undeniably MINE. So here’s how to go about this on your own. There are likely a number of other ways to go about doing this, but here’s the route I chose:

  1. Add the Nova Launcher App to your phone. I love this launcher. What’s a launcher? Your launcher is basically everything you see when you are not using apps. The desktop and the app drawers are all part of your launcher and you can customise the hell out of them using Nova Launcher. It’s free to try in the Play Store, and it’s one of the few apps I’ve actually paid for because it gives you the option to hide all the bloatware that comes on your phone that you never use or care about.
  2. Make or download some icons. There are a bunch of icon packs in the Play Store and I’ve used a few, but none of them were really “me.” People seem to love “sleek” and “simple” and “minimal” and no one seems to go for “sloppy” and “my 5-year-old could draw better” and “bad.” You can do this any way that you want, I used a combination of the Adobe Draw app and a free desktop program called Inkscape.
  3. Add the Icon to the Desktop. Long press on it from your app drawer and drag it on to your desktop. I tend to only keep my most-used apps there.
  4. Magic. Long press on your desktop icon a menu will pop up, choose ‘edit’ and an editing window will pop up. Tap on the icon and you will be given options on where you want the new icon to come from. Choose “Gallery App” and then find your icon. It needs to be a square!

Now you have more nerd cred!

You now have almost infinite possibilities. It is utterly trivial but since I took a discrete math course last year I feel that this need to be mentioned: there are a finite number of possibilities. There are (height) x (width) pixels, which could be (colours) number of colours. So go nuts.

Also how cute is Wolfie?

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