Unable to import .skm files

I have been trying to import a .skm file into sketchup. I open the paint bucket > go to the brick icon > under list i select a New > My textures > right click in the new texture area. then the file browser opens and i can navigate to where the .skm files are located, however the selections are not selectable (gray). I am using sketchup 15 on a MAC.

Any help would be much appreciated.

Thank you.

Allowing for differences in the interface between PC and Mac versions–I use the former–it sounds like you are describing the method used to import image files, such as jpg or png. That is, when you make a new texture, its definition consists of an image file, which you import, and other settings, which you adjust in the New Texture editor.

The resulting texture definition can be saved to disk as a skm file. That’s what skm files are: the original image plus things like scale, opacity, and other parameters defined within SU.

To open an existing definition already saved on disk as a skm–not an image file–use the Open or Create Collection pick on the Details menu.


Thank you for your reply, sounds simple enough. when i use open, and navigate to the file, the item is not grayed out but when i open the file, i receive an error message “This does not appear to be a SketchUp model!”

followed by “The document “Armstrong Raffia 55812 Sky Monolithic.skm” could not be opened.”

I looked and searched under help for create collection or even the details menu.

I think a fellow Mac user will have to come to your rescue…


I think you are not writing about the same “open”…

File > Open is for skp and skb model files.

The Details menu is the list of commands on the side of the Materials browser. As before, I assume there is a Mac equivalent. Here’s what it looks like on Windows:

The Open or Create a Collection command I referred to is right on top.


I’m having a similar problem and would love any solutions. On the PC, the Materials Window is awesome, and has a similar design to the other SU windows. On macs, for some reason, the Materials Window is a completely different beast. It’s like it belongs in a different program. It has no details button, and what is up with those crayons? The only way I’ve found to open/save a whole collection of materials on a Mac is to actually create/import a .skp file containing those materials. I have quite a few points of contention with the Mac version as far as textures go, the lack of consistency of design being the least of them. If anyone knows of a better way to save/import materials collections on a Mac, please let me know. I’m a PC person for my own work, but I often teach SketchUp to Mac users. The last few class groups were mainly interested in the materials, and for the first time ever, I felt sorry that someone graphics-focused was using a Mac.

I share your pain! On the Mac, the developers built the materials window by tweaking the standard Mac Color Chooser. Unfortunately, that interface was designed for different purposes. It just doesn’t quite “click” as a SU materials UI, wherein choosing solid colors is not what you typically want to do. It is confusing, obscure, and awkward for creating materials based on texture images. The Windows UI is far superior.

This is high on the list of standing complaints and feature requests, so hopefully Trimble will get around to fixing it (fingers crossed).


It’s just so ironic that a graphics feature would be worse when using a mac. =)
I heartily welcome any tips or best practices for workarounds until SU fixes it. Do you think importing a .skp file or with the desired materials into the SU file is the best workaround for the lack of a materials folder-opening feature? One guy I know just drags jpgs from the folder into the SU model window one by one (which turns them into discrete images, I believe), which loads the materials into the Materials Window as a byproduct. I guess that’s not too inefficient a process, it just involves some redundant image-object deleting. It still allows collections of relevant materials to stay in one shared folder, rather than collecting them into a model file for import.

Wasn’t there a issue with the Mac that some lists had greyed out members but were still selectable ?

The way to do it is to move the .skm files yourself into Sketchup’s Application Support folder i.e.
~/Library/Application Support/Sketch 2015/SketchUp/Materials/

It’s probably a good idea to quit SketchUp first.
Create a new sub-folder in Materials/, name it appropriately, and copy your .skm files into it.
And it’s done. Restart and the new sub-folder and imported materials should show up.

If you can’t see your Library folder, it’s because the Apple Nanny decided to hide it by default. You can unhide it thus:


Here is the way,

In Mac Material libraries are in the sketchUp.app package, You have to right click on the Sketchup Icon in Applications Folder and select “show package contents” and then navigate to: "Contents-> Resources-> Content → Materials. Place your skm files inside a folder inside the materials folder and they should show up in the SU materials browser.

See the picture how to access to “show package contents”

Credit :
Redirecting to Google Groups (@ Bryce Stout)
https://origin-discussions-us.apple.com/thread/6740790 (@Terence Devlin)

Putting anything of your own into the application’s package instead of your user Application Support folder (path given earlier in this topic) has been strongly discouraged and unnecessary for some time. The ones inside the package are the defaults distributed with SketchUp. The location described earlier by libelulacero is the preferred one for user-created materials and collections.

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if the materials or components created on a newer version of Google SketchUp you have, certainly will not be on the insert in the working drawings. it is a good idea to have the latest SketchUp in order to convert the entire material or component other than file bitmap form, jpg*, png*, bmp*, etc.
Hope it is useful

still wondering why the mac GUI for materials is different, asif they are not awear of this. Do i need to manually move materials from scene to scene to get it to work???

I want to be able to save files from a scene in a folder for easy reuse, just like on windows.

For now ive found this tool Redirecting to Google Groups
It makes skm files from textures, sort of what i want, now i need to adjust them manually to correct size

you can do it using ‘List’ >> ‘Duplicate’ but you need to do it in 2 steps…

from ‘In Model’ select ‘List’ >> ‘Duplicate’ and give it a ‘dummy’ name…

‘Right Click’ >> ‘Remove’ each of the ones you don’t want…

select ‘List’ >> ‘Duplicate’ and give it a ‘real’ name…

both new sets will be stored for later use, so you can either manually delete the ‘dummy’ set or you could run a simple ruby script to remove it from your ‘Materials’ folder…


thats indeed also good method. But combining /making lists isnt easy for mac users. Still dont understand why this isnt updated after alll those years

Welcome to the club! We Mac users keep criticizing the materials window (and other ways that the Mac GUI differs arbitrarily from the Windows one), and Trimble keeps ignoring us.

On my Windows machine, goto c:/Program Files (not the next folder Program Filesx86) /Sketchup and I see two versions of Sketchup 2015 and 2017. The original Application Support files including Materials are only in the 2015 folder, not in the latest 2017 folder. Open Sketchup 2015/Materials/Wood and you’ll see what’s in there now, the standard pallete of wood colors and textures that’s normally loaded in Sketchup, and they are all *.skm files.
I copied some new *.skm files there and rebooted. Opening Sketchup again and going to the materials window showed no change in the regular wood directory but when you click on the ‘house’ to show other files, they are all there. And they work!

Their location was changed in the 2017 version. Please read release notes.
USer materials collections are now in the user’s %AppData% path.

FYI, on a 64-bit Windows system, “Program Files” is for 64-bit applications. “Program Files (x86)” is for 32-bit applications. (A 32-bit Windows system only has a “Program Files” folder for 32-bit applications.)