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In Excel for Mac 2011 Essential Training, author Curt Frye gives a comprehensive overview of Excel, the full-featured spreadsheet software from Microsoft. The course covers key skills such as manipulating workbook and cell data, using functions, automating actions, printing worksheets, and collaborating with others. Exercise files accompany the course.
Not everyone is a talented graphic designer. I'm certainly not. To help us out, the Office team defined themes, which are collections of colors and fonts we can use to make sure our documents have a coordinated color palette. Office themes have replaced the old AutoFormat feature, which resets a formatting that you can apply to your worksheets. The idea is that each Office theme has a set of colors and fonts that work well together. To apply an Office theme to an existing worksheet, you go to the Home tab of the Ribbon, and then, here in the Themes group, click Themes and then select the theme that you want to apply.
The default theme, the one that Excel applies normally, is called Office, and I'll just select another one, I'll call it Advantage, and when I do, you'll see that several things changed. First, the fonts changed, both here in the body of the worksheet and also for my headings, and also you'll see that the color scheme changed. Instead of having blue underlines, I now have purple here and here, and also the text is a bit more purplish as well. If you apply a theme and decide that you don't want to have it applied anymore, you can either go back to the Themes gallery and just select another one, or you can press Command+Z, and that will undo the operation.
A theme's colors are divided into two categories. First, you have the Standard Colors, which don't change, and the Theme Colors, which will, if you change your theme. So, for example, let's go ahead and change the fill color for the cell, and I will change it to one of the Theme Colors, and I will select a light red. When I do, Excel fills the cell with that color, but now, if I change the theme to call it Austin, Excel changes the color here. It also changed the underline, and it changed the font, and in this case the font size.
I'll press Command+Z again to undo those last two changes. If I were to change the cell's fill color to one of the standard colors by clicking the down arrow next to the fill color button and then filling it with yellow, now if I change the theme to Civic, nothing happens to the cell. That's because I selected a Standard Color, and it will not change, even if everything else around it does. I'll press Command+Z to undo those last two changes, so my formatting is back to where I started, and what I'll do now is instead of applying a theme entirely, what I will do is I will just select a theme's colors.
Let's say that I want to apply the colors from the Angles Office theme. When I click it, Excel applies the colors. It's kind of subtle, but you'll see that up here, we changed from blue to a slight gray, and I can also change the fonts separately. So, if I go over here to the Themes group on the Home tab and click the Fonts button, I can select a new set of fonts, and in this case, I will change to a combination of Arial for headings and Times New Roman for the data. So, I've combined this color scheme with these fonts, and together they make up a theme.
So if I wanted to, I could save this combination as a new theme. To do that, you click the Themes button and click Save Theme. When you create a theme, Excel saves it as a file, so you can apply it not only to your Excel documents, but also to your Word and PowerPoint documents as well. So, in this case, I will save it as Office2 and press Return to save it. Now, if I click the Themes button to display the Themes gallery, my theme, Office2 appears at the top.
Office themes help you design worksheets with colors and fonts that work well together. If you prefer, you can mix and match the existing color and font sets to create a theme of your own design.
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