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The ability to use styles in your applications is one of those features that isn't well known, and I think that's too bad because styles can be a great timesaver. If you've never used styles either in Excel or your other programs, a style is simply a basket of formatting that you can apply whenever and wherever you need. Styles can contain fonts, colors, backgrounds, number formatting, and more. The whole idea of using styles is that you can keep your content separate from your formatting, which means that your formatting is not just faster to apply but it's a lot more consistent.
You don't have to worry about different colors or different fonts being applied in different places. I'll show you how to create styles later in the chapter but first, let's take a look at the styles that are already built into Excel that we can use. If you take a look at this worksheet here, you can see it's sorted by department. So let's select these Executive cells here, and here in the Home tab let's go over to the Styles section then click here on Cell Styles, and this shows you all sorts of different styles that are built-in. And if you roll your mouse over them, you can see that those cells there in Column B are changing dynamically. And I will just choose his Accent3, because it kind of fits in with the green olive oil look of our worksheet and with our company here.
Well, we can also format numbers. Let's format all of the dollars here, because right now under Wage, we can't tell is this dollars, is it yen, is it oranges, we don't know. So click the first one and to select the whole row you have a choice. You can scroll down to the bottom if you like. Honestly I think that's a little too difficult. Let me show you a much easier way. Scroll back up to the top, click the first one and press Ctrl+Shift+Down Arrow, and boom! That immediately selects all the way to the bottom of that list. Here we only go to Row 36 but imagine if you had several thousand rows.
You wouldn't want to be dragging all the way down. You'd be there all day. So back in the Styles section, let's go up here to Cell Styles and we have some currency and if you roll over this currency, you see what it does there in Column F. It gives you dollars. It gives you commas for thousand separators. It gives you pennies. Well, maybe you don't want the pennies. So if you choose this one here, Currency 0, it gives you the dollar signs and the commas but no pennies. And you can just select that and click off here to deselect. Now, you might wonder well what comes with this particular currency style, or what comes with this particular color style? Well, go back to Cell Styles and right- click this Accent3 and from the pop-up menu, choose Modify.
Now, in this Style dialog box, it tells you that Number, Alignment, Border, and Protection are not part of the style but any Font or any Fill that you apply is part of the style. If you want to change any of that, click this Format button here and this brings up the standard Format Cells dialog box that you would get elsewhere in Excel. We're not going to change anything right now, so you can just cancel out and cancel out, so you have your worksheet back. Let's do one more. Over here in cell A2 we have this Payroll. Click that Payroll, go up here to Cell Styles and you see we have some headings.
Heading 1 is maybe a little too big, Heading 2, but you might want to choose Heading 3 or Heading 4, and deselect it and take a look. So if you're okay using the built-in styles and you don't need anything more than that, then you're all set. But what if you want to create your own custom styles? That's what I will show you how to do later in the chapter.
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