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Can I add more color label options to organize my cards?

We have a fairly small editorial team for our organization's blog and we've been able to use a simple color-code system that allows us to easily see what each person is currently working on, completed, or published based on their specific color + color of status (yellow, green or red).  However, as our team grows, we've run out of color options. Are there any power-ups or other ways to get more color options added to our board? 

37 answers

This is absolutely the most ridiculous thing I've encountered in years.  Here we are in 2018 and people are asking for more colors?  Are you serious?  And then I read a blog post stating "We haven't forgotten those who are visually inclined - we've added 5 more colors!"

5 more colors!  Wow!  How amazing!  Thank you so much!  5 colors!

How many decades now have color pickers been around, how many millions of colors do we have on each screen?  

Absolutely ridiculous.  Atlassian - maybe you should have your team google the search term "color picker" and join the rest of us in the 2010s.  

What an embarrassment.

Unfortunately, I couldn't agree more

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agreed, too.

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Deleted user Jan 14, 2019

I don't agree with your point here. I think these guys didn't randomly pick some colors for labels (support for color-blind people) and probably it is a useful thing in large groups to refer labels by colors you can name (like light-blue or green). But I do agree that we need more predefined colors.  

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You may not agree, Fent, but your observations make no sense.  First of all, here is a list of color names that far exceeds what is available (if you google searched, you could have found it for yourself):

https://www.w3schools.com/colors/colors_names.asp

Secondly, a larger company is likely more in need of more colors than a small company.

Thirdly. needing colors to be pre-defined like you're in pre-school is nonsense - there's no reason besides laziness, incompetence or manipulation to not have a color picker and make it so a user can define (or at least choose) colors or define their own palettes, like every other software since about 1998.

Sorry, my point still stands and I disagree with the sense of your disagreement.

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I can see Fent's point here: in some respect, colours need to be easily referrable ("hey, there's a blue tag on such-and-such a card, can you look into it?") and as much as there's a lot of named colours, there's not often enough visual difference to be able to refer to them easily ("no, add a Chartreuse tag to that one, not Lime!  Lime's only for jobs that don't fit into YellowGreen or GreenYellow!")

The problem with this argument simply falls down with the fact that once you're past ten labels, you're already reusing existing colours anyway.  So rather than Chartreuse-vs-Lime, it's simply green-vs-green, and that's worse.

Even with that said, there's certainly more than 10 distinct named colours out there, and moreso than that: why not let the customer make the decision as to how to muddy the coloured-label waters?

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"why not let the customer make the decision as to how to muddy the coloured-label waters?"

That's it right there. 

There's an answer to that question.  Here are some possibilities: 1) Not enough devs 2) Laziness 3) Incompetence 4) Carelessness 5) Psychological manipulation of users 6) Extorting money for a feature that is typically included.

1) is the only option that doesn't make Atlassian look like at best fools and at worst a-------.

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"Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity."

...or a business decision that makes sense in someone's head, but isn't flowing down the line.  It could be a lack of devs; more likely their priorities are simply elsewhere.  I tend to err on the side of "they have what they believe is a good reason," because... I dunno, I like to see the good in people.  It'd still be nice to see this feature added down the line.  You know, when they've got time.  Right guys?

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No.

I haven't attributed anything to them, but to remove unethical intent from the table is to live in some fairy-land in your imagination.  

I'd rather not assume anything, period.

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Deleted user Jan 26, 2019

Absolutely right you are, Matt! 

I'm looking forward to see Trello's Nachos design system extended with more colors. 

There could be a color picker too in Trello and it would perfectly fit right next to custom stickers and backgrounds. If they decide to make it a premium function. 

But anyway these questions must be answered wisely and developed carefully in such a worldwide product. 

Ps. Ben, if you check out Google's Material design system (which was released in 2015 or '16 and updated regularly since then) you might note the Predefined color palette. I bet it's not the laziness or manipulation or preschool or whatever behind having a palette, but a result of hard work to see what colors match together and look good on a website.

Trello isn't about CSS-customizing a webpage (although can be done with custom power-ups!) but rather creating an easy to use and ready to go workspace.

In my opinion.

I looked briefly at the material design for predefined color palette and didn't find any, if you know where it is I'd like to look at it.  I did, however, notice on their main material design page a color picker ready to go.

You think a color picker is a "premium function"?  Are you effing serious?

What a joke, I'm not surprised you and Matt agree.

Like David Krawczyk likes this

I briefly checked their Material Design system and did not find the predefined palette you described, if you know where it is I'd like to see it.

BTW giving users a color picker to define their own colors isn't about anyone "CSS-customizing" anything from their perspective, it's about picking a color and defining it.

Like David Krawczyk likes this
Deleted user Jan 30, 2019

Some reference to material design colors:

https://material.io/tools/color/ - The color tool, on the right you can see material palette

https://material.io/design/color/the-color-system.html#tools-for-picking-colors - You must scroll to the bottom of the page, it was updated since I last visited the site, but there is a good description why: 

2014 Material Design color palettes

These color palettes, originally created by Material Design in 2014, comprises of colors designed to work together harmoniously, and can be used to develop your brand palette.

And there are many frameworks that still use Material Palette: 

https://getmdl.io/styles/index.html - Bottom of the page.

https://materializecss.com/color.html - Each color has a named class so you can easily add them to your site. 

Card labels in trello currently have the same solution as seen above. Each label has a color identifier class (ex. "card-label-yellow") which adds the background color on CSS.

Anyway. I checked out if it is possible to solve the problem with some custom Power Up, but not really. Cards don't have any unique identifier in DOM and the labels area can't be accessed with capabilities. The only option that seems possible to me is adding badges to the cards which is the worst solution of this problem. 

I didn't come here to argue, but this seems a great way to keep this thread active :)

Fent, all I see when I follow your links is evidence on how much support these people have to generate an environment with more than a handful of colors.  I see nothing here that excuses them from this abomination.

I would have responded the first time I looked at it, but it was disheartening.

Poking around the Nachos design standard (https://design.trello.com/style/color) while Labels are defined as "one of ten colors", the Trello colour palette actually supports 10 shades of each colour.  So why can't we have labels that pull from that 100-colour list?  For example, a long-press on the label colour picker would then allow you to choose which shade you want?

Ben David, thanks for the link to that color chart! https://www.w3schools.com/colors/colors_names.asp
Just an aside: It's odd that what they call "chocolate" is so orange. I'd call that something like rust or light sienna, and even as a chocolate addict, I'd hesitate to eat chocolate that color unless it was supposed to contain orange zest or something.

Shameful. If your organization has 10 products and each needs a color... Screwed. 

I could easily see organizations wanting to use their signature branded colors, etc. Open this product up to developers. If your dev team is too small, ask the community to fix it. There are many people adding chrome extensions to fix this, why not just let the users fix the product?

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Atlassian obviously doesn't understand the priority this limitation should be taking, and our complaints are doing nothing to refocus their efforts, so I'd recommend you tweet Trello from time to time until this issue starts to be handled professionally.

#atlassian-knows-best

Like ThePricingDepartment likes this

I have the same issue though not for the same reason. I use colors to keep things organized across multiple apps. Some of those colors exist in Trello but some do not. Adding colors of my choice would be really helpful. 

Same here... I have a large team and we use contractors for a lot of stuff. We have run into the same issue with not having enough label colors. I love the organization of trello and having a custom color picker for labels would greatly increase our ability to use it.

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+1

We definitely need the possibility to chose more colours / shades, especially when working with custom fields.

Eg. a field estimation / story points: I'd ideally be able to use different shades of one colour. 

Let's say, for example, three shades of blue for the three categories of estimation. Three shades of green for priority, and so on. 

The current – very limited – colour palette enforces you more or less to use red, yellow and orange at some point. Although I'd really like to reserve those very intense signal colours for, well, maybe priority or other important labels such as "blocker", "critical issue", etc.

Please, Atlassian, why not add a simple hex code input field? That would help a lot, already.

absolutely agree...

Like Jochen Rieger likes this

The current – very limited – colour palette enforces you more or less to use red, yellow and orange at some point. Although I'd really like to reserve those very intense signal colours for, well, maybe priority or other important labels such as "blocker", "critical issue", etc.

I'm having the same problem. We use a five-level priority system using the Custom Fields power-up. 1 through 3 have no color, 4 (high) has orange, and 5 (critical) has red. I should be able to tell my teammates "if you see the color red, it's really important", because it's either a critical item or a Trello notification. But because I have so few label colors to choose from, one of my labels has to be red. As a result, important things get missed because the color red doesn't carry the weight that it should.

#atlassian-knows-best

Like Jochen Rieger likes this

Our development team has been looking for boards to utilize and some shortcomings are deal breakers such as this. Some things your team should really sit down and develop:

  • Color picker for custom label colors.
  • Global label names/settings. Why should we setup labels per each board?

 

These seem like doable things and a request that has been going on for over a year. Is there any plan to add this?

A huge +1 also for the global naming. At least per team, or so, would be great.

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Maybe a hierarchy?

 

Global>Teams>Board?

Agree! We would really love to see global labels for teams as well.

We currently accomplish something similar by having "template" boards with appropriate labels already set up. Each new project board we create is a copied fork of one of those templates.

Thats a rather fiddly work-around, and having proper globally-managed labels would be very welcome. (Side note: having proper board template support would be nice too!)

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Like Alexander Wehrum likes this

My workaround for this issue is to always create boards by copying another board with the correct labels. However, if you need to change them, it is a real chore. Lots of wasted time. +1 for global or team-level labels.

Like Ivo_van_Zon likes this

Global and team level mixed (or multi layered teams), that should work… Like toolkit level (wait for vendor, bug reported to vendor), Company general (wait for customer, Database change needed), customer specific version numbers and so on. 

Regarding label colors: well it's up to the organisations to decide, but there will always be people who have problems with certain combinations… so providing a safe set with a good contrast ratio is a good start

Who's here in 2020 and still seeing notifications coming in for this feature request from 2017?

Maybe we should start holding annual get togethers?

_104219765_hi001437320.jpg

We can have a cookout and everyone bring their own recommended color palettes.

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I've just gone googling for an answer or powerup for more label colours and sadly have ended up here.

I'm sorry, are you from the past?

I've joined this community just to add my voice here +1 for infinite colour labels - 'karn Atlassian/Trello, it ain't 1999 any more...

Please respect all those that have posted here with an update on your resolve to fix this issue (that isn't a workaround, gosh knows I've been doing them for years already...).

Wonder how many others read here, never posted and just switched platforms?

Thanks.

+10 (purely as there is 10 of us here and we all want label colours)

4 votes
Mike Atlassian Team May 11, 2017

Hi Kearsten,

We're not aware of any way of adding new colors to the set of labels, unfortunately! I'll pass this on to the team, though, so they can better understand how this is affecting you.

You do have the ability to add an unlimited amount of labels, including the ability to repeat colors. To make that a little clearer, there a number of Chrome extensions that will allow for the label name to be shown on the front of the card, which can help you distinguish between multiple labels of the same color: https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/trelabels-for-trello/annjdmkbhchmobehkcfilecnlhibedbj?hl=en

I love this idea. We run into an issue where we have a need for a multitude of colors. Would be great to have the ability to create custom colors. 

Github is a good example of the use and need for colored labels.Screen Shot 2017-09-08 at 2.00.10 PM.png

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There you go! Thx Jay!

No problem Courtney! I actually am looking at scaling our process which leverages JIRA and because I am also working on a Github project, I want to use some of Github's practices  in JIRA including the use of color lables. That is what landed me here. 

Same here, we need more colors ! =)

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Visualize this in same fashion as Epics - you can have color coded epics.

Like Charisma Riley likes this

I love this idea. I recently started using a project board to organize planning, and it would be great to have the labels be colored so we can see which items belong together. 

Sooooo, it's been a while . . . any word on those colors yet? Is there a chrome extension that allows you to add more colors? In summation: I NEED ALL THE COLORS/UNLIMITED COLOR OPTIONS!!!!

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Definitely need more colors! Or if we can't have that, then patterns with existing colors. I need more labels. 

+1 colours for labels! 

+10000 for label color, it's so bad label compare to github and gitlab,  jira likes  in 90's year web page  style, only the original simple label

@Mike how can you be confident this isn't desired by the majority of your user base?
Who exactly is requesting what in your current list of priorities?
Where do these requests come from?
Is this list, and priorities representative of the majority of your users?
How do you define priorities?

Respectfully, that this remains as it is, not even in a factored somewhere-near list of priorities, seems an overt miscalculation, and a classic case of only looking for answers to questions you posed yourselves, within the box you work.

april 2020 and still waiting

iodied I'm New Here Jun 06, 2020

June 2020 checking in, still waiting!

I have almost the same problem.

I use the color to tag diferent gols. But in this moment we have more gols than colors.

Anyone can help me?

Thanks.

Joana

2 votes
Devon_Henderson Community Leader May 16, 2017

Hello Kearsten!

If I am understanding you correctly, each team member has a color assigned to them, and then you use yellow, green, and red to signify task progress, correct?

I have a bit of an unorthodox suggestion. Perhaps you could change, just slightly, how you show your team member colors. Instead of using labels, what if you each uploaded a solid block of your own color as your Trello profile picture? So say your color is salmon pink. Instead of using a salmon pink label, you upload a solid block of salmon pink as your profile picture, and assign yourself to your cards.

This way, cards assigned to you would look like this:

ScreenClip.png

Whatever color you're assigned will be in the bottom right, and then your progress labels at the top. This allows you to essentially scale infinitely, as you can just keep creating different profile colors for people outside of Trello. It has the added benefit of enabling the various shortcuts involved with assigning yourself cards, like being able to see all of your salmon pink cards on your Cards page, as well as to filter a board to just your tasks by pressing Q.

Hope this helps!

That's a really good workaround. Though any users you have for that board may want to make an account specifically for that board so that any other boards they may be using aren't influenced by the profile pic change.

Like Susan Hamby Kridler likes this

Although I appreciate the suggestion, frankly I think it's about time that users STOP working around what amounts to neglect and stupidity on the part of developers.  We should not be investing our time in something that this developer is apparently too stupid or too uncaring to implement.  Frankly I think they're attempting to manipulate their customers with the lack of colors, because it's tough to rationalize how people who design such a piece of software are THAT stupid and incompetent.

There is absolutely NO good reason users should not be able to choose any color they want in 2018.  Period.  It's time to stop allowing them to shrug their neglect onto the users shoulders where they can get people doing work for them for free that they should be competent enough to do in the first place.  

The best thing for all of us to do is trash Trello and Atlassian and support companies that are not filled with either morons or outright assholes.

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Yeah, whatever reasoning there is for a limited color swatch might work, at a minimum, for the default Trello.

Yet, not allowing i.e. a free add-on to select label colors, esp when you've now added unlimited labels, really contradicts your own workflow logic (and obviously irks more than a few, myself included). Your labels ARE colors, the title doesn't even show on the card - how are people supposed to effectively organise in the workflow Trello themselves are proposing, without a customisable pallete!?

Also, for a minimum of colors, as mentioned above, this material swatch makes much more sense, at a minimum: https://getmdl.io/customize/index.html

I just noticed that this is now the single highest liked (and still third-highest viewed) question on the Trello board.  Surely this is something that's being looked at by now?

One would think. But what do we, the customers, know?

@Garrett @Teddy @Mike @matt @Blair Johnson 

Sorry to tag you all, but the lack of response on this highly requested issue is ridiculous. Is an update to address this issue being discussed? We'd just like some transparency please.

Mike Atlassian Team Jun 24, 2019

Hi there,

 

I've tried to be transparent this whole time that this isn't a priority for the team, and it's not something that we're working on. We hear you that this is highly requested, but the team already has a roadmap defined for the short term, and as I've suggested, overall, this is not very highly requested.

 

I can offer, as I always have, that I will continue to pass the request on to the team, but it's not something we're planning to work on right now.

@Mike I understand that you're just the messenger, yes you have been transparent that (and it's painfully evident) that the team doesn't care about this issue.

Yet it seems to me that the key issue here is not that there's no transparency, but that the passionate, very vocal (and what you claim is a minority of) users here* don't find that position acceptable. It's clearly making people look to other platforms, and if that doesn't make you take notice, I don't know what will. 

* I think we all believe that we aren't actually a minority, and that this thread points more to something objectively wrong with your factoring.

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I'm really starting to doubt if our company paying for Trello is worth the investment when there are other options out there that do what we need (GitHub project boards, Azure Boards, Monday, just to name a few). This asinine limitation has become a blocker costing us real time, and therefore money. Instead of giving us reasonable options for our label colors, Atlassian has decided on behalf of their paying customers that they actually know what's best for us, despite how much attention this issue has gotten for years. Not going to wait around much longer for Atlassian to do the needful, because they clearly know better.

#atlassian-knows-best

I find myself having to restructure our team's work flow around the available colours which seems backwards to me...this is highly frustrating! 

Maybe Atlassian should put the colour question to all Trello users for a vote to see if this is really not an issue as they claim...how about a pop-up with a yes/no/don't care question and a running percentage to be transparent.

Would adding more colour options to the labels help improve your team's workflow or how you set up tasks? 

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I'm adding a "+1" here because it was implied in the comments that the additional colors are not on the near-term roadmap because the feature "is not very highly requested".  So an additional comment saying "please add this" can't hurt.

Just out of curiosity: Does the Trello dev team dogfood its own product?  If they do, I guess they just haven't had a need for more colors.

Just chiming in here on how incredibly frustrating it is to effectively use Trello with a paltry 10 colors - I manage tons of projects of varying complexity and I'm frustrated enough to chuck Trello in favor of another app that can do the work I need it to do. I'm really disappointed about it, but what initially seemed like a fantastic resource has basically turned into more of a blocker. 

I was wondering about the color-limitation since I am using Trello. Now that I am annoyed (and needy) enough, I decided to create an account to simply +1 here to show that there are more people in need for this feature.

 

I assume there are more people like me who want this but are just not annoyed enough to participate here.

This is a good question and I feel it is another case of where the branding/profile of the brand overrides user need.

I understand that the app has a certain palette, Go ahead, have those as defaults. But as most have stated, colour is a powerful tool so it should be added to the users arsenal.
Having to have addons to the product for such a basic function is a bit ridiculous.

I could not agree more. How on earth would adding more colors (or the ability to add custom colors – my company would love to be able to use the same colors we use internally for other efforts) affect the software in absolutely any way?? There is no known security or resource-use reason that colors could not be unlimited, especially if unlimited labels per card are already a thing. The colors produced would add no problems whatsoever. It's quite bizarre that this is even an issue. Is there an official Jira issue where I can vote for this essential feature?

I find myself trying to think of technical or business reasons they might have made this decision. This is one that might actually have a technical basis: a limited colour palette (say 16 colours) can be represented at a database level in maybe a bytes worth of storage, vs an rgb hex value which is 3 bytes. That might seem trivial, but over a couple of trillion records it adds up significantly.

I’m in no way saying it’s right, but once again trying to figure out their rationale for not implementing this...

This *could* be a thing if they already didn't make it so that you can create and use an unlimited number of labels per card, with 8 bits per character of text and graphically represented color bars that are way larger in their file size per element than simply representing a color on the screen. This potentially makes each card how large?? The color itself becomes irrelevant, completely lost in the weight/size and bandwidth required by implementation of the graphical elements. And by them telling us that we can have "unlimited" labels per card, this tells me that none of these things are concerns for them. What we are talking about then, is simply allowing representation of more colors, which ends up a drop in the ocean compared to the rest.

I like to believe that the reason I play devil's advocate is so that when an Atlassian employee finally reads this thread all of their objections will have neatly been dealt with.

In reality, as soon as I clicked "submit" on this one it occurred to me how fallacious it was :)

I truly understand what you meant to do. I, too, tried to give them the benefit of the doubt at first. But how they have completely manhandled, neutered, and *still* buggified Confluence Cloud beyond belief has led me to realize otherwise. :)

I want to point out, by the way, that Microsoft Planner - which I'm forced to use for certain work projects - gives me 6 predefined colours which I can name.  6 colours.  No options.  So... kudos to Trello for the small upgrade I guess?

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