Wibbly Stuff

The tale of Numix

I've been in the Linux world for years, from the Gnome 2 era. Customizing it, making it to look the way I want. Making themes and stuff. But Numix was an entirely new chapter, which changed everything.

If you've not heard about Numix yet, you are most certainly living under a rock. Today, Numix is one of the most famous themes available for Linux, supporting a wide range of desktop environments including Gnome, Xfce, Unity, Openbox, and even KDE. Seems that most successful artwork projects start from icon themes, like the ever famous elementary project, and same is the case in Numix.


The Numix icons, originally made by +Joern Konopka, was started a long time ago, probably in 2012, though the initial commit on its GIT repo was on 1st January of 2013. Numix icons were based off Nitrux by +Uri Herrera, which was and is a quite popular icon theme. The project began in its full pace when +Georgi Karavasilev joined the club. They had plans to take over the world, may be not. But they continued to do more Numix awesomeness. They soon made a Gnome Shell theme to accompany the icon themes.

On 19th May, +Georgi Karavasilev asked me to change the highlight color to Numix red in a GTK theme named named Siva Flat. I looked at the theme source code. It was messy and not easy to customize. So I decided to make the theme anew, to which +Georgi Karavasilev agreed, and I became a part of the
world domination plan+Numix Project.

As I worked on the GTK theme, I shared it with +Alin Andrei, primarily for testing. He liked the theme and also used it in some screenshots in his blog posts on the immensely popular WebUpd8. Many people liked the theme and this encouraged me to finish it more quickly. Part of the popularity of Numix is credited to +Alin Andrei, so big thanks to him. I don't think if I would have been in this position without him.


The GTK theme was different from other themes. While it used flat elements, I also used shadows and roundness to give it some depth. After I released the theme, it was liked by a lot of people, which encouraged me to make two variants of the GTK theme, Numix Light and Numix Dark. We decided to make them paid only. Well, because I was giving the project a lot of time, and still do, so I needed something for myself too. The revenue from the sales were impressive. We decided to publish the themes in the Ubuntu Software Center, that was when +Paolo Rotolo joined us. He did the packaging and stuff, and we were delighted to have the little Italian fellow in our team.

We also needed a Gnome Shell theme. The existing theme was not complete, and I didn't want to remake the theme every Gnome release. So we decided to use Elegance Colors, which was a project by me, that enabled to make the theme instantly compatible with Gnome Shell 3.6 to 3.10.

Then we bought the domain numixproject.org on 30th september from the revenue we gathered. From my limited knowledge in HTML and CSS, I put together a web page for Numix. It was a big step for Numix as a brand. The awesome designer +Reda Lazri made awesome logo and logotypes for us.

Unfortunately +Joern Konopka has been MIA since a long time. And we are unable contact him. But that's probably the only unfortunate thing happened to us. The original Numix icon theme, which +Joern Konopka did, was renamed to Numix Shine, and left unmaintained, while we focused on Numix Circle.

Today, we are constantly working on the themes and improving them. All elements of the icon theme was pretty much redesigned. And we will continue to make it better. We have got a lot of support from the community, both moral and monetary. For the 9 months we've been selling the artworks, and we have made about $1,352 USD, which isn't bad. Having said that, compared to the work we do, it is very little money for vast amount of work, so if you can do consider buying some of our paid artwork or simply donating to the project. It will be very much appreciated. :)