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I've installed the clipboard manager diodon, a status panel applet I've used before with Ubuntu that works very well. The only annoyance is that in elementary it doesn't use a monochrome icon, but rather the default, colored icon.

I found some instructions for changing the icon manually which basically included copying the icon from /usr/share/icons/ubuntu-mono-dark/status/22 to my own theme's icon folder. Since elementary didn't appear to have 22px resolution icons, I copied from and to the 24 folders instead. But this didn't have any effect, the panel applet icon is still the same as before, even after having run sudo gtk-update-icon-cache /usr/share/icons/elementary/.

What am I doing wrong here?

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I don't know why it didn't work, but I'd suggest you try elementary+.

elementary+ is a community maintained addition to elementary OS's default icon theme. It contains icons for several third party applications that resemble elementary OS's style.

While it may not have many application icons, this theme contains almost every indicator icon:

indicator icons

application icons

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