Ever see those cool custom app icons on iPhone or iPad home screens and wonder how they did it? Well, I’m going to show you how, and really it’s pretty easy!
These instructions are for iOS 15. Before you begin make sure that the icons you want to use are on your phone, either in the Photos app or Files app. If you don’t have custom app icons, check out my collection on Etsy >>> J. Hennessy Studio. I add new icons monthly and there are lots of color themes to choose from!
Launch the Shortcuts app on your iPhone or iPad
If you don’t have the Shortcuts app on your iPhone or iPad, you will need to download it from the App Store.
Tap the + button in the top right
To add a new Shortcut tap the “+” button in the top right. Alternatively, if you are wanting to change the icon of a shortcut you have already created, select the “…” menu of the shortcut from the list.
Tap Add Action
The first step to creating your shortcut is to tell it what action it needs to trigger. You can create shortcuts that do all sorts of stuff, but for this tutorial, we are going to stick to custom app icons. If there are any actions you would like a tutorial on, leave me a comment!
Search for the “Open App” action and tap it to select
Because we want our custom app icons to work as the default app icons, we want the shortcut to open the app when it is triggered.
Tap App and then tap the app you want to launch
To select the app we want to open when trigger tap “App” to open a list of apps that are on your iPhone or iPad. Search or scroll to find the app you want to create a shortcut for.
Tap the settings button to bring up the Details menu
We’ve created the shortcut, now let’s go into the shortcut’s settings to finish the look.
Tap Add to Home Screen
It’s time to add the shortcut to our home screen!
Tap the text field to give your Home Screen shortcut a name
This is where you get to set the name of the custom app icon (the name that shows on the home screen). I would recommend sticking with the name of the app so things don’t get confusing, but you do you!
Tap the icon to bring up a menu
It’s finally time to add our custom app icon!
From the menu, select where your custom app icon is located
If your icons are saved in your Photos app tap Choose Photo, if your icons are saved in your Files app tap Choose File
Locate and select the app icon that you want to use
Find your custom app icon! If your icons are saved to the Files app, you can search by name to locate them easier. If you purchased one of my icon sets, I name my app icon files as the name of the app they belong to (i.e. Facebook = facebook.png).
Tap Add to add your icon to the Home Screen
The Shortcuts app will close to show you your new app shortcut on the home screen – Go back to the Shortcuts app to save your shortcut.
We are now done with adding the custom app icon to the home screen so you can close this page (unless you’re interested in turning on any of these other settings).
Give your shortcut a name in the Details menu
Here you can give your shortcut a name so when you come back to change your home screen theme you know what shortcut belongs to which app. I recommend naming the shortcut after the app, but again you do you!
Tap X to save shortcut
Your shortcut is finished! Close that b*tch!!
And that’s it! You have created your first custom app icon! Repeat all the steps for the rest of the apps you want to customize. I hope you enjoy your new custom iPhone or iPad home screen! Leave a comment below to let me know what you want a tutorial on next!