Understand Themes in Word 2016

By Dan Gookin

Themes in Word 2016 apply decorative styles, such as fonts and colors, to your document, giving your written efforts a professionally formatted feel with minimal fuss or talent. It’s like having a graphics designer assist you but without having to suffer through her lamentable complaints about how her boyfriend pays no attention to her and never takes her anywhere.

A theme consists of three elements:

  • Colors: A set of colors is chosen to format the text foreground and background, any graphics or design elements in the theme, plus hyperlinks.

  • Fonts: Two fonts are chosen as part of the theme — one for the heading styles and a second for the body text.

  • Graphical effects: These effects are applied to any graphics or design elements in your document. The effects can include 3-D, shading, gradation, drop shadows, and other design subtleties.

Each of these elements is organized into a theme, given a name, and placed on the Design tab’s Themes menu for easy application in your document.

  • A professionally licensed, certified mentally stable graphics designer creates a theme’s fonts, colors, and design effects so that they look good and work well together.

  • A theme doesn’t overrule styles chosen for a document. Instead, it accents those styles. The theme may add color information, choose different fonts, or present various graphical elements. Beyond that, it doesn’t change any styles applied to the text.

  • The graphical effects of a theme are only applied to any graphics in your document; the theme doesn’t insert graphics into your text.

  • Choosing a theme affects your entire document all at once. To affect individual paragraphs or bits of text, apply a style or format manually.