Create Your Own Custom Gmail Theme

One thing that sets google products above the rest is their simplicity and ease-of-use. Google’s search engine is the most widely-used in the world, not because of awesome marketing strategies or shiny web 2.0 fripperies, but merely because you can type whatever you are thinking in that search bar and it will take you there. Likewise, millions of people use gmail, for its convenience, reliability (notwithstanding this recent hiccup) and functionality. The fact that it’s free doesn’t hurt either, I suppose.

If you’re a regular gmail user, you’ll probably know that there are a range of themes available to personalise your email experience: all of them infinitely preferable to the usual kindergarten colour-scheme.

Changing your theme is incredibly simple.  Just go to the ‘settings’ menu in the upper right-hand corner and click on the ‘themes’ tab. You can then choose from a range of standard themes …

… or if you’re feeling bold, you can create your own custom one, by tweaking the colours and even uploading your own background photo. Just click on ‘create your own theme’ and go wild.

Here’s a little something I knocked up, featuring this delightful stock photo of a sunset:

You can insert different photos for the header and footer or, if you’re lazy, just use the same one for both and it will automatically piece it together for you

For some reason, when I tried to take screenshots after my dry run, all the instructions for uploading photos were suddenly in Italian, which ruins it a bit (unless you happen to be Italian, that is):

You can then upload a photo (or ‘carica foto’, as they say) or choose on from an online data storage app such as dropbox or google’s own Picasa Web album feature.

After all that, you can change the text, link and background colour to your heart’s content:

Total time spent on this endeavor: 3 and a half minutes. I heartily recommend it as an excellent form of procrastination if need to avoid checking a pile of unread emails. They won’t go away, but at least they’ll look a little prettier.

If you’re a fan of Android, google’s mobile OS, check out these essential android apps. Also, did you know what you can now use google docs on your phone?