Save a Custom Theme in PowerPoint

Created: Thursday, May 14, 2020, posted by at 9:45 am

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A reader asked how they could create a custom Theme in PowerPoint and share it with others in their company.

Now, creating a Theme is a specialized art and although you can technically create a Theme or template, it’s not the same as commissioning a subject-matter expert to create one for you. Now that I have provided this caveat, let’s get to the part where you can create a Theme.

To create a custom Theme, you will have to start with a basic Theme such as the default Office Theme. This is applied when you choose the Blank Presentation option in the Presentation Gallery within PowerPoint, as can be seen in Figure 1, below.

Blank Presentation
Figure 1: Blank Presentation

Thereafter make Theme-specific changes such as:

  • Adding backgrounds in the Slide Master,
  • Changing Theme Fonts, and
  • Changing Theme Colors.

It’s a good idea to first save this file as a conventional PowerPoint file with the PPTX file extension. When you are happy with your changes, it’s time to save this creation as a custom Theme. To do so, follow these steps:

  1. Access the Design tab of the Ribbon, and click the More button highlighted in red within Figure 2, below.
  2. More button in Design tab
    Figure 2: More button in Design tab
  3. Doing so brings up the Design drop-down gallery, shown in Figure 3, below. Click the Save Current Theme option, highlighted in red.
  4. Design drop-down gallery
    Figure 3: Design drop-down gallery
  5. Clicking this option summons the Save Current Theme dialog box. You can provide a name to your new Theme within the File name box, highlighted in blue within Figure 4, below. Also, note that PowerPoint automatically chooses your Themes folder as the save location, highlighted in red.
  6. Save Current Theme
    Figure 4: Save Current Theme
  7. You can change the save location, but, if you do so, you won’t see your new Theme in the Design gallery, shown in Figures 2 and 3, above. If that’s what you want, feel free to save to another location.

Theme Save Locations

Depending upon your version of PowerPoint and your operation system (Windows or macOS), your Theme’s default save locations may differ.

Look at our Where Are the Office Themes and Templates Located? page to understand better.

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