Third-Party Mac Icons Reimagined in OS X Yosemite Style

With the introduction of OS X Yosemite, Apple introduced a significant visual change with an iOS 7-like "flat" look and completely redesigned icons. While Apple's icons will see a refresh once Yosemite is released, users will have to wait until third-party companies have updated their icons to match Apple's new design language for OS X icons.

In the meantime, users in this long running MacRumors' forums thread have been designing their own "flat" versions of both Apple and third-party applications, allowing some users to switch out their icons until the real thing is available. Additionally, some users are redesigning Apple's own icons for users who are using Mavericks rather than the Yosemite beta.

icons
iWork, Twitter, Skype and 1Password icons by Arn0

While the icons may not be fully representative of the official icons, they do provide a look into Apple's new icon philosophy enacted upon an icon not designed for it, allowing for a glimpse into various companies' processes.

Forum member Arn0 had been taking requests from other forum members, recreating various icons to fit more along more nicely with Yosemite's design aesthetics.

Alongside stand-alone apps like 1Password, Twitter and Skype, Arn0 also redesigned icons for entire suites of software, like Adobe's Creative Suite. Thread starter Humex has been sharing a number of different examples of flat OS X icons from around the web, including concepts that hew closer to Apple's style than Arn0.

Alternatively, designers like drflash have taken a different approach to flat design. Rather than mimic Apple's philosophy and match OS X Yosemite, they created their own design language with Flat OS, which provides a completely different experience for OS X users. The design seems to marry "flat" design alongside some skeumorphic principles, giving icons a more tangible feel.

flatos
Flat OS X by drflash

In a blog post on Gizmodo, MartianCraft's Nick Keppol explains that Yosemite's new look centers around four basic ideas: visual rhythm in the dock, three basic icon shapes and their design grid, shape hierarchy and lighting effects and materials.

Visual rhythm allows the new dock to look more consistent, although that is helped by the fact that OS X icons are now broken up into three types: circles, squares and titled rectangles. While Apple itself isn't totally consistent with these three types, Keppol found that - for the most part - circles are used for more consumer-oriented apps, squares are used for System-related utilizes and titled rectangles are used for applications that are most often used for work.

Finally, Apple uses Hollywood-style yellow and orange highlights and blue and teal shadows to give the metal-like materials that the icons are made out of feel warm and tangible. This helps create the illusion that the icons are more physical than previous icons while also looking flatter than before.

If you'd like to switch out your icons until they're fully upgraded with OS X Yosemite, the icon sets shown are linked above, while all of Arn0's redesigned icons are available to download via Dropbox. Icon sets from arn0 and other designers are also available to download via the forum thread. Here are easy instructions on how to change app icons on OS X.

Top Rated Comments

iRock1 Avatar
95 months ago
Oh please, don't start giving ideas to Apple. Following this frigging absurd path, it wouldn't surprise me at all if they come out with something like this in a few years:

Score: 21 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Lapidus Avatar
95 months ago
I don't think they ALL should be round..
Score: 21 Votes (Like | Disagree)
MacFather Avatar
95 months ago
Deleted.
Score: 20 Votes (Like | Disagree)
designaholic Avatar
95 months ago
No.
Score: 17 Votes (Like | Disagree)
RightMACatU Avatar
95 months ago
I hate 'em, I hate 'em, I hate 'em!
Took 20+ years to get some nice 3D effects in OSs and Apps; Took only one year to take it all out. I guess that they simply ran out of ideas esthetically-wise ;)
Score: 13 Votes (Like | Disagree)
QCassidy352 Avatar
95 months ago
I don't like them at all. I hope people realize that "flat" is not inherently better or a logical step forward, regardless of what Apple says in its keynotes. Its a design choice, just like skeuomorphism, which some people will like and others will not, and which can be taken to an extreme (or not).

IMO, there's a happy medium to be struck between "felt" in Game Center or "ripped edges" in Calendar and this cartoony mess.
Score: 13 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Related Stories

studio buds family

Beats Studio Buds Debuting Today With Active Noise Cancellation, Stemless Design, and More for $150

Monday June 14, 2021 8:00 am PDT by
We've seen a lot of teasers about the Beats Studio Buds over the past month since they first showed up in Apple's beta software updates, and today they're finally official. The Beats Studio Buds are available to order today in red, white, and black ahead of a June 24 ship date, and they're priced at $149.99. The Studio Buds are the first Beats-branded earbuds to truly compete with AirPods...
airtag in hand

Apple Enhancing AirTags Anti-Stalking Measures With Android App and Shorter Sound Intervals

Thursday June 3, 2021 11:10 am PDT by
Apple is enhancing AirTags security to prevent stalking using the Bluetooth devices, Apple told CNET today. Apple is already sending out over-the-air updates to AirTags that will shorten the amount of time before an unknown AirTag alerts you if it is in your possession. At the current time, AirTags play a sound after three days of being away from their owner. After the update, AirTags will...
maxresdefault

Here's How Apple's New iPhone to iPhone Data Migration Feature Works in iOS 12.4

Tuesday July 23, 2019 1:20 pm PDT by
Apple this week released iOS 12.4, the newest version of iOS 12 available for iPhones and iPads. One of the new features in iOS 12.4 is an updated data migration option that uses device to device transfers rather than relying on iCloud. Apple didn't provide much information on the new data migration feature, so we thought we'd check it out in our latest YouTube video. Subscribe to the ...
youtube apple tv

YouTube Discontinuing 3rd-Generation Apple TV App, AirPlay Still Available

Wednesday February 3, 2021 3:09 pm PST by
YouTube is planning to stop supporting its YouTube app on the third-generation Apple TV models, where YouTube has long been available as a channel option. A 9to5Mac reader received a message about the upcoming app discontinuation, which is set to take place in March.Starting early March, the YouTube app will no longer be available on Apple TV (3rd generation). You can still watch YouTube on...
tmobilelogo

T-Mobile Data Breach Included Personal Information of Almost 50 Million Customers

Wednesday August 18, 2021 5:41 am PDT by
T-Mobile has issued a statement with further details about a cyberattack that the company confirmed earlier this week, confirming that the data breach included the personal information of almost 50 million current, former, and prospective customers. Late last week, T-Mobile confirmed that a forum post that purported to offer data from more than 100 million people was the result of a company...
airtag precision finding

AirTag Includes U1 Chip for 'Precision Finding' Feature

Tuesday April 20, 2021 12:11 pm PDT by
Apple's long-awaited AirTag was finally unveiled today, and as expected, the small circle-shaped accessories can be attached to items like wallets, keys, and more to allow them to be tracked in the Find My app. As was rumored ahead of release, each AirTag is equipped with a U1 chip, and on devices that also have U1 chips, there's a Precision Finding feature. U1 Ultra Wideband chips are...
m1 macbook air

Kuo: Mini-LED MacBook Air Coming in Mid-2022

Thursday July 22, 2021 7:48 pm PDT by
Apple will release a new version of the MacBook Air around the middle of 2022, Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo said today in note to investors seen by MacRumors. The upcoming MacBook Air will feature a 13.3-inch mini-LED display, which would make it the second Mac to gain mini-LED technology after the 2021 MacBook Pro, which is rumored to include a mini-LED display and is expected to launch later ...
Apple Films Tom Hanks Finch First Look

Apple Original Film 'Finch' Starring Tom Hanks to Premiere November 5

Thursday August 12, 2021 8:52 am PDT by
Apple today announced that the original film "Finch," starring Tom Hanks in its titular role, will premiere on Apple TV+ on Friday, November 5 and shared a first-look image from the film. The first look at "Finch," shared by Apple. The film, which is anticipated to be an awards season contender, revolves around a man, a robot (played by "Get Out" actor Caleb Landry Jones), and a dog that form ...
2016 macbook pro flexgate b

Apple Faces Another Class-Action MacBook Pro ‘Flexgate’ Lawsuit

Thursday August 20, 2020 6:43 am PDT by
Another class-action complaint has been lodged against Apple, which claims that the company was aware of a MacBook Pro design flaw that caused some devices to have backlight display issues (via Apple Insider). The so-called "flexgate" problem was present in some MacBook Pro models manufactured between 2016 and 2017. The problem appears as dark patches along the bottom of the MacBook Pro's...
macbook air m1 first benchmark

Apple Silicon M1 Chip in MacBook Air Outperforms High-End 16-Inch MacBook Pro

Wednesday November 11, 2020 4:43 pm PST by
Apple introduced the first MacBook Air, MacBook Pro, and Mac mini with M1 Apple Silicon chips yesterday, and as of today, the first benchmark of the new chip appears to be showing up on the Geekbench site. The M1 chip, which belongs to a MacBook Air with 8GB RAM, features a single-core score of 1687 and a multi-core score of 7433. According to the benchmark, the M1 has a 3.2GHz base...