Join Gini von Courter for an in-depth discussion in this video Themes and styles: The basics, part of Word 2016: Styles in Depth.
- [Instructor] Every Office document that we create is based on a theme. The theme exists whether we're creating an Excel spreadsheet, a PowerPoint presentation, or a Word document. Themes are an extension of the design templates in Microsoft PowerPoint, because that's where they started out, and PowerPoint which we see here is still the tool of choice if we wanted to create a new custom theme from scratch. Themes contain three things, first a set of colors, or a color palette, second a set of fonts, two fonts, and finally graphic effects that are applied to things like charts and SmartArt and determine what the finish will look like, is it satin or matte or glossy, is there a glow, are there lines around the different elements of the object.
Themes also integrate with other features in Microsoft Office, for example, SmartArt depends on themes, and charts get their colors and their fonts from these same themes. Here in Word, we'll find our themes on the design tab. If I click this drop down, you'll se a palette of themes that are available. If your organization has custom themes, they'll typically appear at the top. These are the themes that are built into office, and again, every theme that I see here is also going to be available to me in Microsoft Excel and Microsoft PowerPoint.
There's no such thing as a Word theme, there are simply Office themes. This is particularly powerful, because if I'm creating documents for a project or for a particular client, a specific initiative, I can have all of my documents look the same, have a common look and feel, simply by choosing the same theme in Word, Excel, and PowerPoint. If I point to a different theme, you'll notice that I get a preview in the gallery quickly applied. You'll see for example if I point to Badge that I get different fonts, not just for the headings, but also for the body, I get a different color palette and some different graphic effects.
I can create custom themes, simply by modifying this theme, choosing for example different colors, different fonts, I can create custom color palettes if I wish, and when I'm all done if I want to save that as a new theme, I simply choose save current theme. Give it a unique name, typically the name of your organization or if it's a theme for a particular client's work, the name of that client, so that the theme has meaning to other people who might use it, or to you when you return to use it later on.
And that new theme created here, will also be available in Excel, and in PowerPoint. Themes determine the overall look of our document, and themes are often used in branding, so your organization may have color palettes that are specific to your organization, and those would be enforced by creating a theme for your organization, use those color palettes. But once I've selected a theme, now I have access to something else, and that something else is called styles.
Let's go back to the home tab for a moment. This is a list of styles over here on the right hand side. Now many, many word users do most of their formatting here, they'll select some text and say, I'd like to take this text and I'd like to make it bold, so I'll simply select it and click bold here for example. Or I'd like to change the font size, so I'll change the font size, I'll change information about the paragraph. And then if I want to make those same kind of changes elsewhere, I do it again and again. You'll see that, where someone has something that they'd like to treat as a title, or a section head, and they'll choose that section head and change it, and then choose another one and change it, or perhaps hold control and choose multiples and change them.
However, all of this is simply a process of putting lipstick on the pig so to speak. I've taken text and I've formatted it, but I haven't really given it any meaning if that's what I do. I'm going to undo a couple of times, and show you that this text, if I change it, is still considered to be normal text. What I'd like to do is I'd like to use these different styles, not just to change how my text looks, but to actually mark it as headings, to mark it as emphasis.
Part of my goal in this particular course, is to convince you to use the font and paragraph formatting much, much less, in favor of styles, because styles are going to do some amazing things for you when you create documents, when you create them collaboratively, and when you reuse documents or sections of documents in the future. One of the great things about Word is how easy it is to create documents that look like they were professionally designed. Often I find that I focus on adding illustrations to a document or tweaking page layout to create a more compelling report, but the text in our documents deserves our attention too.
And when we focus on the text in our document, we create documents where the body text is consistently formatted, where headings contrast with the body text, but they don't clash with them, where the different paragraphs are separated by enough white space for ease of reading, but not too much, and where our lists are consistently formatted, where text is emphasized perhaps with a contrasting color or using basic formatting like bold or italics as opposed to underlining.
In longer documents, like reports, our design will often include elements like headers and footers, or even a table of contents, and styles drive each and every one of these features. A style is a saved set of formatting choices, a font for example, and a size, a color, items that we've chosen from the font group and from the paragraph group but saved as a group, so rather than needing to select some text and then make multiple choices, for example bold, and a little bit larger, and blue, and instead of having to make all of those choices one at a time, we can simply put that set of choices together and save them as a style.
And once we've saved them as a style, we can apply them all with one click. So if, for example, I want to emphasize a section of text, like this section, I can choose a style called subtle emphasis. And this is a gallery, notice that I can hover to see what it will look like. Here's an intense quote, a subtle reference. How did I get each of these styles? Well this is a style set. Let's go back to the design tab. Once I'd chose my theme, I have all these different style sets available to me here.
This is the style set used in this document, but there are others, so what I'll have in my style set is I will have a normal or body style, one with no spacing, headings one, two, perhaps three and four as well, titles, subtitles, and then some typical document elements, subtle emphasis and emphasis, intense emphasis, a quote, a reference, and then styles for a list paragraph. Some style sets will have more styles than these.
A few have a few less, but this is a really minimal set. Let's return to the design tab, because when I've chosen my theme, I'm then choosing, if I wish, a different style set. This is one I use a lot, I really like how strong it is. Notice that my headings now are different than they were just a moment ago, because I'm choosing a new style set. Let's go back to this specific style set that's called shaded. Now let's go back to the home tab, and notice my style set is these styles.
So if I add text to the document, if I want to format different parts of the document, I now have this style set available to me. With styles I can quickly and easily create professional documents and reports, quickly apply formatting changes, have a consistent look to my documents, collaborate very easily with my colleagues, because if I insert text anywhere in this document, it takes on the formatting attributes the document already has. The theme's automatically applied, by default the styles are automatically applied.
I can navigate very quickly in this document, because I've used styles and I've used headings, I have access to document navigation right here, where I can skip to one section or another of the document, based on the headings. I didn't have to do anything to create this, all I had to do was use styles, and when I'm all done with this document, if I wish, I can easily generate a table of contents 30 seconds or less, that I can dynamically update, I don't have to type a thing. All I need to do is ask for a table of contents that will be created based on the styles that I've used in my document.
Styles can do a lot for us, and themes and styles work together. Themes for organizational branding, styles for the look and feel for a particular document or a template. Always choose your themes first, then apply your styles.
- Understanding the different types of styles
- Creating styles
- Applying styles
- Customizing styles
- Basing new styles on existing styles
- Managing style sets
- Copying, deleting, and renaming styles
- Creating a table of contents with styles