Make a Folder With a Custom Icon.


Introduction: Make a Folder With a Custom Icon.

About: I'm a jewelry maker, a website programmer, a crafter, and an educator. I'm open to discussing any and all facets of life and the human experience we all share. Feel free to drop me a line. :)

So I was bored today and wanted to add a small level of customization to my computer.  So I decided to make my folders have cool icons.

Step 1: Find Your Picture.

First off, you need a picture to make as your folder image.  Find any picture you want off the internet or where ever.  You HAVE to have the picture in a .ico format.  Notice how I bolded that have word?  Well it's kinda important.

You can go to, click on the Convert your image to ICO section, and convert the picture to a .ico file.  Or click on the link.  Try to make the image under 1 GB or else you have to pay, and being poor, I'm not going to pay for something.  But you shouldn't have any problems.

Alternatively, you can go to and find the image you want.  If you went here, you'll want to click the ICO tag on the picture.

Make sure you know where you saved the picture.  It's best to move it to the pictures folder.

Step 2: Apply Picture.

Alright, now you've got your picture in a .ico format.  Great.  Now you need to put it on the folder.  So, go to your desktop, right click somewhere, hover over new, then click on folder.

Your folder should now be on the screen somewhere.  Now you need to right click on the folder and click properties.

You should get a menu close to the one in the third picture.  Then click the customize tab. 

Now click on the Change Icon button.  Should get a screen like the fourth picture.  Now click the browse button.  Navigate your way to the folder that holds that .ico picture that you made earlier.

Once you've found it, hit open, then okay, then okay again.  All of the menus should be gone.  And you'll notice that your folder now has whatever picture you wanted.  Woohoo.

Step 3: The Text.

So now you may notice that you have some annoying text, probably new folder, below the picture.  We'll change that. 

So, right click on the folder and click on Rename.  The text should be highlighted now.  Right click inside the area with the text in it.  You should get a screen like the one in picture two. 

Hover over the Insert Unicode Control Character and another menu should appear.  Click on the one that says AAFS.  Click somewhere not the folder and the text should be gone. w00t.

UPDATE:  I noticed that if you want to make multiple folders without the text at the bottom, you'll have to select a different Unicode Character Control.

Step 4: Finished.

Now you've hopefully made a folder with a custom image.  If you have any questions, comments, concerns, constructive criticisms, or other, leave a comment below, or do that IM thing.

3 People Made This Project!


  • Casting Contest

    Casting Contest
  • Planter Challenge

    Planter Challenge
  • Woodworking Contest

    Woodworking Contest

We have a be nice policy.
Please be positive and constructive.



mine came up as safari pic with ico under what happened??


A problem that I'm having is that when I drag it in to replace the folder, it shows the default file image with ICO on it instead of my picture. It worked with my PNG but there was a background in the folder image even though I saved it with a transparent background.

1 reply

What are you dragging into where? Some clarification would help here. As for the PNG having a background, PNGs, as far as I am aware, always have a white background, even if you don't have a background on it.

A problem that I'm having is that when I drag it in to replace the folder, it shows the default file image with ICO on it instead of my picture. It worked with my PNG but there was a background in the folder image even though I saved it with a transparent background.

Please, how to make it permanent icon and doesn't change, because when I move the folder or change anything like name or place I see it gone?

1 reply

Alright, so I made a folder on my computer and I renamed it and moved it around with a unique icon on it and I didn't experience any changing of the picture when I did so. What operating system are you running on? Are you using a valid .ico file? I don't know why you are experiencing this error, but it isn't a problem on my computer. I will gladly help if I can!

This doesn't work, I'm using Windows Vista 32 bit OS, I made a jpg then converted it into a ico, but when I try to use it, it says that the file contains no icons, like it thought it was a folder or something. Any ideas?

1 reply

Hmm, not immediately, no. I would suggest trying with a new picture to see if the one you are using is corrupted for some reason. Additionally, when selecting the picture, make sure that the browsing window will show all .ico files. Other than this, I'm not sure what else to try.


I have been making custom folders for many, many years; my problem is if you disconnect the drive that contains all of the folders and reconnect it, all of the icons are gone and I have to go into each individual folder and reassign it. This can take a very long time since I now have over 100 customized folders, any fix for this problem?

2 replies

Okay, so I assigned some images to folders on my external hard drive and then unplugged and plugged in my drive, and the image was still assigned. The image I used was on my laptop's hard drive, while the folder was on my external, so I believe I matched your circumstances. But I didn't have your problem. I'm running Windows 7 and didn't do anything more than change the folder image, so I don't know what's happening with your folders. If there's anymore information you can give to help me emulate your experience, I will try to do so, otherwise, I'm sorry that I can't provide a fix.

Hmm, this isn't something I've tried before as I've only recently begun using external drives, but I can look into it. My first guess would be that if you put the folder image in the folder that it's for, it should stay but that's only a guess. I will try a few things and let you know. :)

Hey amriorda! Great tutorial!

I have a very important question that needs your permission. May I share your site information giving you credit on my website - Afaa Games. Or if you think that is too copyrighting, can I post a link here to your website on mine? Think about it.. And visit

I will snapshot your answer and leave you credit by the link if you reply yes!

Thank you very much.

1 reply

Hey, thank you so much, glad you like it. :) I have no qualms with you using this on your site, so as you leave me credit. Any publicity is great. Thanks.