Themes in Word Documents

Posted on Updated on


By formatting our document, the headings the lists and other elements in the document is a time consuming procedure. With all the options that we have available, such as type of font, colors and the different graphic elements in order to present our document in the best possible way may seem exhausting.

That is why a lot of users are satisfied with type of fonts such as Times New Roman and headings with font type Arial, just to be sure what they are doing. Thankfully, Word gives us the possibility to change the overall appearance of our document by applying a Theme.

Themes are coordinate type of fonts, colors and designs that we apply to a document in order to give it a professional look.

Difference between Themes and Templates

Themes have got to do with the appearance and the style of the document; on the other hand Templates have got to do with the content of the document. Templates contain styles, formatting, sometimes headers and footers and some text. All we have to do is to replace the text that is there with the text that we will type in. We create a template just like a document but we save it in a different way. That is because we never actually use the template but we use a copy of it actually. In my next post I will describe how to download and create custom Templates.

In order for us to apply a Theme in our document we must select the Page Layout tab and then from the area of the ribbon named Themes to select the Themes as shown in the image below.


Once the drop down menu appears with all the Themes we just move on top of each Theme with our mouse, and we have a live preview of what our document would look like.

Once we have decided which Theme we want we just click on it.


When we select a Theme we apply on our document color, font and effects on the elements of our document.

Themes consist of three parts:

  • Colors: Each theme applies a set of colors in order to format the text foreground and background. Other colors are applied for Headings Styles and other for hyperlinks.
  • Fonts: Each Theme uses two fonts, one for the main body and one for the headings.
  • Graphical Effects: Effects are applied to the graphics and other design elements in our document.

Themes can be applied in Excel, by activating the Page Layout tab, and in PowerPoint by activating the Design tab.

Below are some examples of the elements that are formatted when we select a Theme:

  • Body Text: Font, Size, Style and Color.
  • Headings: Font, Size, Style and Color.
  • Tables: Font, Borders, Line Styles And Color.
  • Charts: Font, Borders, Lines, Graphic Style and Color.
  • Graphic: Color of Border.
  • Smart Art: Font, Graphic Color.
  • Clip Art: Border and Color of Border.
  • WordArt: Color of Font, but the style remains the same.

At the bottom of the drop down menu of Themes, there are the following commands:

Reset To Theme From Template:

We can remove a theme that we have already applied by selecting this command.

Browse For Themes

At the bottom of the drop down menu of the Theme command we also have the command Browse For Themes as shown in the image below.


By selecting the command Browse For Themes the Choose Theme Or Themed Document dialog box appears where we must navigate in order to look for the Themes that we have saved or created on our computer. We then just select it and press the OK button.


Save Current Theme

At the bottom of the drop down menu Themes, the command Save Current Theme is located. If we have formatted our document and we want to save it as a Theme, we just select the corresponding command in order to save it for further use.

By selecting the command the Save Current Theme dialog box appears, with default folder location the Themes Folder, and all we have to do is to type in the name for our Theme, and then press the Save button.


We notice that the extension of the file is .thmx, which stands for Office Themes.

To apply a Theme that we had just saved, we must expand the drop down menu of the Themes command and from there to navigate to the category Custom as shown in the image below.


Below you can check out the video showing the steps in order to apply a Theme to a Word document.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s