Customization is probably one of the biggest reasons people jailbreak their iDevices, I know personally I love the ability to make my iPhone mine. There are endless possibilities for customizing you device starting from the smallest things such as battery themes to full blown all out UI custom themes. There is a plethora of themes to choose from on Cydia and all of them are beautiful in there own right. Some of them are free and some you have to pay for. In my experience the paid themes are usually worth the money because they are 100% original and are normally a work of art.

I have recently got into building themes which started of as just graphical but I soon realized that it went a lot deeper. I started learning a little HTML and .css (style sheets that simplify HTML) and springboard strings, just to name a few non graphical modifications that can be made. I soon had created my own complete theme, Carbon OS which has a lot of extras (and is available in Cydia).

I thought I would share some easy and effective methods for learning to build these themes in case you guys want to get into doing it too. I have compiled a small list of things you will need to do so and some pointers to help you get started. First things first though lets make sure we have a jailbroken device with Winterboard installed and have the ability to SSH into your device. If you need help with any of this check out our forums or our jailbreak section on this blog. Now on to what you need.

Photo editing software

You will need a good program like Photoshop to do the majority of your graphics. The best way to learn using this program is experiment to your hearts content. I downloaded some themes and opened up the .psd files to dissect what the other themers were doing to make there graphics so beautiful. Once you get familiar with the program try it out and make your own theme. Start small and go from there.

A standard text editor

All Pc’s and Macs come with something like Notepad or TextEdit, which is perfect for this. You will use this if you are going to have weather clock widgets/animated lock screens or wallpapers. This is also how you will edit the springboard strings. This will allow you to edit the text on the spring board (slide to unlock, answer,etc…). There are complete list that tell you what is what everywhere on the net.

An imagination

Pretty sure everyone has one of these, seriously though this is the single biggest element for customizing anything. The good news is if you can dream it up you can probably create it in a good photo/paint program. I have seen so many themes that are unique in their layouts and icons, well the whole UI for that matter , it really is amazing what you can do with these things. Some special themes may require a slight bit of recoding but that is something you will want to take on later down the road if interested.

How many of you out there are modding or customizing your iDevices? I think it is an awesome way to become more familiar with these devices and unlock the artistic potential you have inside of yourself. If you make themes already don’t be afraid to show them off in our theme section in the forums, or just pop in to take a look around.