How to change the default iCal Leather skin in OS X Lion

Not a fan of the new look that iCal and Address Book are sporting? The following guide will show you how to revert to the ‘aluminum’ look for iCal, which is more consistant with the rest of OS X.

Before

After

  1. Make sure to quit iCal if it’s open.
  2. Note: this step is important. Start out by making a back-up of your current iCal. Locate iCal in your Applications folder, ‘right-click’ (ctrl + click) it, and select Compress “iCall.app”

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  4. Now you’ll see an iCal .zip file in your Applications list. Select it, hold down the command (Apple) key, and drag it to your Documents folder (or any other folder you want to store the back-up of iCal).

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  6. Download this .zip file and open it (doesn’t matter where).
  7. Back in your Applications folder, ‘right-click’ (ctrl + click) iCal again, and this time select Show Package Contents.
  8. Select the Contents folder and then the Resources folder.

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  10. In another Finder window, locate the zip file you downloaded and extracted back in step #3. Select all the files from that folder.

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  12. Drag them from that folder, to the Resources folder. You’ll receive a message stating that the files cannot be copied – click the Authenticate button.
  13. When the Copy window appears, place a check in the box labeled Apply to All, and click the Replace button.

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  15. Enter your password when prompted.

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  17. Now open iCall. You’ll see that it has a much better ‘aluminum’ look that fits in with the other OS X apps.

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  19. When iCal updates, it’s very likely that it will revert back to the previous ‘leather’ style. You’ll need to repeat the steps in this tutorial to get the aluminum style back.
  20. If you ever have issues, remember that you have the backup copy of iCal as a .zip file. Use it if needed!
  21. Thanks to macnix for creating all the necessary files!
{ 11 comments… add one }
  • Remy July 25, 2011, 6:09 am

    Hi! Thanks I just installed your skin! What was apple thinking. I don’t understand the new iCloud logo either.

    There’s one more ‘problem’ though. In iCal, the font of ‘Day Week Month Year’ ‘Timezone’ and ‘iCal’ are still kinda brown/ yellowish.

    Do you know a way to change this?

  • bloodnok July 27, 2011, 5:30 pm

    awesome! the new default chrome on ical (& address book) show a remarkable lack of taste on the part of certain apple product managers. i’m surprised jobs allows them to create this ugliness. thanks for the fix.

  • Amanda July 31, 2011, 4:57 am

    tried to follow instructions but zip file no longer available.
    Thank you for the instructions.

  • Lieke July 31, 2011, 6:42 am

    same here, file no longer available? would be great to have it because this ‘leather look’ doesn’t make my eyes happy…thanks!

  • Ross McKillop July 31, 2011, 11:36 am

    Amanda and Lieke –

    I’ve updated the tutorial so that the .zip files are now hosted here on Simple Help – so the link will work now. Thanks!!!

  • Amanda August 2, 2011, 11:16 am

    Thank you Ross. It now works perfectly.
    Thank you very much.

  • Lieke August 4, 2011, 6:32 am

    Thanks a lot! Looks much better… :)

  • MJW August 4, 2011, 11:21 am

    Many Thanks much more Adult than the Childish Leather

  • Martin March 23, 2012, 7:59 am

    Anyone knows how to set the font to silver/graphite style?

  • AndrĂ© April 1, 2012, 4:59 am

    Faux leather – what were they thinking? And thank you so much, it works perfect.

  • John May 14, 2013, 5:33 am

    Thanks!

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