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Have you ever felt the need to customize the look of your computer or the software you use? As for many, my computer is the tool I use almost everyday and is essential for most of my work. Just like a real office or desk, I want to make this tool to be a little more personal. So, from time to time, I get the urge to change something about its’ (virtual) appearance. Sometimes, I just change my wallpaper. Other times, I like to browse font repositories, color palettes and digital art. While getting lost on the internet one day, I came across the Gruvbox color scheme, which was created by Pavel Pertsev. It was originally developed for the Vim text editor and later adapted for many other applications. I like it a lot and use it for my everyday text and code editing — in fact, I also implemented an adapted version of the theme for the light and dark color scheme of this website.1 Pertsev says the theme was…

“…designed as a bright theme with pastel ‘retro groove’ colors and light/dark mode switching in the way of solarized. The main focus when developing gruvbox is to keep colors easily distinguishable, contrast enough and still pleasant for the eyes.”

  • Pavel Pertsev, creator of the Gruvbox color scheme

I was a little disappointed that there was no RStudio theme with the Gruvbox colors available yet, so I decided to create a theme myself and make it available for anyone who wants to use it. But, before I show you the theme, let me briefly introduce the Gruvbox color scheme.

1 Gruvbox color scheme

Two color palettes are provided on the GitHub Repository of the Gruvbox color scheme:2 one light mode and a complementary dark mode. While I used these colors as inspiration, I did not exactly replicate the original colors for the RStudio themes (and neither for this website). Although most of my modifications are minor (e.g., I exchanged the sepia background of the original light mode with a pure white, hex code: #fff), I provide the original Gruvbox colors below for reference.

1.1 Colors

Light Mode

Gruvbox Light Colors

Dark Mode

Gruvbox Dark Colors

1.2 Vim

For the Vim text editor, installation instructions are provided in the Gruvbox Wiki:

1.3 Other editors

Implementations of the color scheme for other applications like Xcode or the macOS terminal are available from the Gruvbox contributions repository:

2 RStudio theme

Now let’s talk about the Gruvbox theme for RStudio. RStudio themes can easily be installed by adding a custom .rstheme file (which is basically CSS) through the IDE’s appearance settings. You can find two separate .rstheme files for the light and dark mode on the following GitHub page:

For convenience, both the light theme and the dark theme are also installable as a package and can be loaded by installing the package fd via my GitHub account.


When the package is installed, the themes can be switched by executing the following commands:

2.1 Light


Felix' Custom RStudio Gruvbox Light Theme

2.2 Dark


Felix' Custom RStudio Gruvbox Dark Theme