Monochrome Color Themes for Xcode and Sublime Text

A lot of programmers like brightly colored syntax-highlighting themes for their source code editors. I do not. I find colorful high-contrast themes to be fatiguing, distracting, and annoying, so I've gravitated toward low-contrast themes like Zenburn and Havenjark. But even those feel too "busy" for me.

I've been on a retrocomputing kick lately, and I've missed the clean look of source code on the monochrome monitors I used in the good old days. So I've created some monochrome Xcode themes. If you like them, you can download them from here:

and copy them to your ~/Library/Developer/Xcode/UserData/FontAndColorThemes directory, and then select them from the Xcode → Preferences → Fonts & Colors window.

These themes are also available as Sublime Text color schemes:

These were my simple rules for creating the themes:

  • All colors have the same hue. They differ only in saturation and brightness.
  • Comments are dim.
  • Keywords are dim, but not as dim as comments.
  • Numeric and string constants are bright, almost white.
  • Other textual elements all have the same color.

I use Source Code Pro Light as my font, as I like the way the thin lines give a vector-graphics look.


Amber theme screenshot


Green theme screenshot


Blue theme screenshot


Blueprint theme screenshot


daVinci theme screenshot

© 2003-2023 Kristopher Johnson