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Slides & layouts
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Slides & layouts

Add color and design to your slides with Themes

PowerPoint provides a variety of design themes—including coordinated color schemes, backgrounds, font styles, and placement of placeholders. 

Note: You may be looking to learn about using the Design Ideas button available for Microsoft 365 subscribers. See about working with PowerPoint Designer.

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Try it!

  1. Pick a theme when you do File > New to start a new presentation.

    These built-in themes are great for widescreen (16:9) and standard screen (4:3) presentations. To change the slide size, see Change the size of your slides.

  2. If offered, choose a color variation, and then select Create.

If you change your mind, you can always change the theme or variant later on the Design tab.

  1. On the Design tab, pick a theme with the colors, fonts, and effects that you like.

  2. To apply a different color variation of a particular theme, in the Variants group, pick a variant.

    Note: If you don't see any variants, it could be because you're using a custom theme, an older theme designed for earlier versions of PowerPoint, or because you imported some slides from another presentation with an older or custom theme.

  3. Select right arrow in the Variants group to select different Colors, Fonts, Effects, or Background Styles and choose from built-in options or customize your own.

    On the Design tab, in the Variants group, click the down arrow at the bottom right corner to expand the gallery and see the Fonts menu.

Create and save a custom theme

You can create a custom theme by modifying an existing theme or by starting from scratch with a blank presentation.

  1. Select your first slide, and then on the Design tab, select the down arrow in the Variants group.

  2. Select Colors, Fonts, Effects, or Background Styles and choose from built-in options or customize your own.

  3. When you're done customizing styles, select the down arrow in the Themes group, and then select Save Current Theme.

  4. Give your theme a name, and select Save. By default, it is save with your other PowerPoint themes and will be available in the Themes group under a Custom header.

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