In GTK versions of Emacs (or more generally any GUI version of Emacs), can the scrollbar and menubar colors be customized? I can probably change the look of ALL my GTK applications, but when running Emacs with a dark theme I might want to ONLY change Emacs' appearance. Is this possible?

Screenshot of Emacs with dark theme and light menubar

  • Please specify what kinds of changes you are asking about. The question is currently very broad.
    – Drew
    Dec 22, 2021 at 15:19

2 Answers 2


Barring any other answers, which are endemic to Emacs, I actually found one way to change the theme per app:

GTK_THEME=<your_theme> emacs

This will launch Emacs with the specified theme, assuming you are running GTK based Emacs. Other platforms won't allow this exact workaround, obviously.


For hiding the menu bar and scroll bar in emacs, just add these two lines in your init.el file in .emacs.d directory

;; For hiding menu bar
(menu-bar-mode -1)
;; For hiding scroll bar
(toggle-scroll-bar -1)

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