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This is an actively maintained fork of Chris (defunkt) Wanstrath’s gem colored, which appears to be no longer supported.

This fork comes with a slightly spruced up syntax, some additional features, and a test suite written in RSpec.


In addition to the simple syntax of the original gem, which affected only the string to the left of the method call, the new “bang” syntax affects a string to the right. If the block or a method argument is provided, the contents is wrapped in the color, and the color is then reset back.

If no block or argument is provided, the color is left open-ended, and must be explicitly reset – when using the ‘bang’ notation.

Complete set of colors:

  • black
  • red
  • green
  • yellow
  • blue
  • magenta
  • cyan
  • white

Complete Set of Effects

Note: previous versions used method name clear instead of no_color, which clashed with many 3rd party frameworks that defined similarly named method in the global namespace. This highlights the dangers of introducing so many words into the String namespace.

  • no_color
  • bold
  • dark
  • italic
  • underlined
  • reversed
  • plain
  • normal

Usage in Other Classes

With this gem you can add color to not just strings, but to any other class. String class is automatically decorated as soon as require 'colored2' is parsed by the ruby interpreter. Note that future versions may refrain from auto-requiring colored2/strings, and rely on explicitly requiring components they need colorized, eg require 'colored2/numbers'.

To color numbers, require the following file, which automatically decorates Integer and Float. You can also add color methods to the Object. Finally, you can add the methods to any custom class by including the Colored2 Module.

Below is an IRB — session that shows a slightly more advanced usage.

Additional Helpers

There are several additional helpers tucked onto the String class.

  • #to_bol (to beginning of the line) will rewind the cursor back to the beginning of the current line.
  • #to_eol (to end of line)


Add this line to your application’s Gemfile:

gem 'colored2'

And then execute:

$ bundle

Or install it yourself as:

$ gem install colored2


To install this gem onto your local machine, run bundle exec rake install. To release a new version, update the version number in version.rb, and then run bundle exec rake release, which will create a git tag for the version, push git commits and tags, and push the .gem file to


Bug reports and pull requests are welcome on GitHub at


The gem is available as open source under the terms of the MIT License.