Themes in Word 2007

Posted by: Minal Agarwal , on 6/13/2008, in Category Word 2007
Views: 84754
Abstract: We all know Word can be used for creating personal documents, business documents, letters, and mails and now with Word 2007; for creating blogs. But how many of you have actually used themes and styles to give it a professional look. Office 2007 provides a number of predefined themes for Word, Excel and PowerPoint. In this article let us explore how to use document themes in Word 2007.
Themes in Word 2007
Many of us open a Word document and start typing with an aim of creating a document. Whenever we want to format it we use individual tools for font, paragraph, alignment, headings, tables, border and so on. But with Word 2007 you can quickly and easily format your document by applying a document theme and give it a professional and modern look.
A document theme is a collection of formatting tools for color, font and styles that you can apply in combination. This saves your time and lets you apply professional designs to your document by a simple click. You can also choose to customize the themes according to your selection and these custom themes can be shared across all the Office programs. Document Themes determine and enable you to set the text, tables, headings and graphic elements throughout your document.


Apply a document theme
The default theme applied to all the blank documents is the ‘Office Theme’ which gives a white background and black colored font. When you choose a different theme for your document this theme is replaced with your new selection. Follow the steps below to apply themes:
1.    When you launch Word, a new document is opened. Go to the Page Layout tab on the ribbon and in the Themes group click on ‘Themes’ or on the arrow below Themes to explore all the predefined themes.
Ribbon - Themes
Built-In Themes
The default theme as you can see in the figure above is the ‘Office Theme’.
2.    To apply a predefined theme, choose any of the ‘Built-In’ themes.
3.    To apply a custom theme, choose any of the ‘Built-In’ themes you want your custom theme based upon. Then follow the steps given under next heading – ‘Customize a document theme’.
4.    Choose to explore ‘More Themes on Microsoft Office Online…’ if you want to use a new theme that is not available in this list.
5.    If you want to use a document theme that is not listed in Built-In Themes the ‘Browse for Themes…’ and find it on your computer.
Customize the Document Theme
To customize a document theme you can change colors, font and effects used in the document. These changes would be immediately applied to your current document. And if you want to use this theme across your documents and other Office programs, then save this custom theme.
Customize theme colors
Theme colors consist of four text and background colors, six accent colors and two hyperlink colors. To customize document theme color follow these steps:
1.    Click on the Color button next to Themes in the same section. See figure below:
Color List
2.    Choose any of the listed color themes or keep the existing color theme (default is ‘Office’) and click on ‘Create New Theme Colors…’.
 Create New Theme Colors window
3.    You can change any or all of these existing colors by clicking on the drop down boxes, give a name to the theme and click on Save.
Customize theme fonts
Theme fonts contain a heading font and body font.
1.    Click on the font button below the color button.
Font List
As seen in the above figure, the heading font and body font are listed one below another.
2.    Click on ‘Create New Theme Fonts…’ and choose the font in the ‘Create New Theme Fonts’ window.
Create New Theme Fonts window
3.    Give a name to the theme and click on Save.
Select a theme effect
Theme effects include line and fill effects. Click on the last button in the column and choose an appropriate effect for you document.
Theme Effects
Save a document theme
Any changes made to the current theme would be applied to the document. Save these changes to use the same theme across Word documents and Office 2007 programs. Choose ‘Save Current Theme’ by clicking on arrow below Themes in the Themes section of the ribbon.
I hope this article has made you familiar with the concept and use of theme and now all of you would be able to create professional documents with the help of themes.
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This article has been editorially reviewed by Suprotim Agarwal.

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Minal Agarwal, Expression Web MVP, MCDST, works as a freelance web designer (SaffronStroke) working on Expression Web, Photoshop and other Graphical tools. As a hobby, she also runs a famous Food site called Follow her on twitter @ saffronstroke

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Feedback - Leave us some adulation, criticism and everything in between!
Comment posted by Brian Wells on Wednesday, November 19, 2008 2:42 PM
Dear Minal,
This is a great post. But I have a serious problem that no one can seem to fix.
The option to "Create New Theme Colors" in Word and Powerpoint 2007 on my PC are "grayed out"/disabled.  They are not available and I can't seem to find how to turn them on.
Any ideas.
Most grateful,
Brian Wells
Comment posted by ændrük on Friday, January 16, 2009 11:52 PM
I have the same problem. "Save Current Theme," "Create New Theme Colors," "Create New Theme Fonts," and "More Themes on Microsoft Office Online" are all grayed out. I can't find any documentation on this restriction.
Comment posted by someone on Monday, January 26, 2009 6:38 PM
Solution to the two above comments - you may be working in a document that is Office 2003 compatible (ie. *.doc, *.xls, *.ppt) rather than 2007 compatible (*.docx, *.xlsx, *.pptx). I believe the default file type is Office 2003, so you'll need to save your document as a different file type (go to Save As, and make sure the "Save as document type" says, for example, "Word Document (*.docx)".

This will allow you to use all of Office 2007's new features, such as colour themes and object effects.
Comment posted by Minal Agarwal on Thursday, January 29, 2009 9:50 AM
Hi Brian and aendruk,

To solve the issues you have mentioned, you need to ensure following points:
1. Are you opening an older file format (.doc, .dot, .xml) in Word 2007. These documents would be opened in [Compatibility Mode] and hence few features would be disabled. So Themes feature would disabled in this case. In my opinion saving the older file format with the newer would not help. (The options were still disabled when I tried) Please correct me if I am wrong.

2. Browse to this location - "C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Document Themes 12". All your themes are placed here. If this folder is absent or empty then the themes are not installed. And hence themes feature would be grayed out in all of the Office 2007 applications. Probably you have not installed your Word 2007 or Excel 2007 from the same Office 2007 Suite/Package. In this case re-install the Office Suite and that should work.

I hope this helps, if not please do write back.
Comment posted by Nicole on Friday, July 10, 2009 7:22 PM
You have NO idea how long I've been struggling with this problem. I'd get so furious when I set a color scheme as default and when I opened word again I'd have the same old boring scheme on and the themes panel grayed out.

Only thing I did was save the document again as docx and problem solved!

Thank you, thank you!
Comment posted by Minal Agarwal on Friday, July 17, 2009 2:49 AM
Nicole: Glad you liked it! Thanks
Comment posted by Suzi on Saturday, December 19, 2009 6:09 PM
Help!  It did not work for me!  I am writing a research paper. I retained an original document with correct formating. I opened the same document, saved it with new name and thought the formating would be saved. When I cut and paste, the formating is changed. My themes box is greyed out.  How can I take the formating as a whole from the oriignal and apply it to the new document that has information in it already?  Is that possible? I have struggled for hours with this.  Please help, I have a deadline coming up!!  Thanks, for anything you can suggest that will help. Suzi
Comment posted by Emilly on Friday, May 25, 2012 11:13 PM
I can't find the "Customize a Document Theme" button on my Microsoft Word. I need help ?!?! I press a theme , and nothing happens .Nothing shows up on my document . Please help me ! Thank You !
Comment posted by Niman on Saturday, June 30, 2012 6:13 AM
Thank you. I solved the problem. The document should be saved as word 2007 and I had it saved on 2003-2007. Regards to all of you.