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How to set a custom color for a chart theme in PowerPoint for Office 365

PowerPoint, like other Office 365 apps comes with quite a few different color themes. With PowerPoint, these themes impact the various elements in a presentation, including the charts that are inserted. The themes are really great and make for easy to read, aesthetically pleasing slides but they don’t always fit what you’re working on. In some cases, you might have to make a custom theme and set all the colors of it yourself, in other cases, making a minor change to a theme might do the trick. Here’s how you can set a custom color for a chart theme without changing everything else.

Custom color for chart theme

First, find the best theme that PowerPoint has that fits your presentation. Enter the chart you want to use.

Select the item on the chart that you’d like to change the color of. This is really the only tricky part because, by default, PowerPoint tries to select the entire chart or all the elements that make up the chart since they are grouped together. Once selected, right-click it and from the floating bar, click ‘Fill’.

Select the color and it will be applied to the chart. This change is just for this particular chart so for all other charts you enter, the default colors of the selected theme will be used. You will have to manually change the colors in it. If you have one too many charts, it might be a good idea to create a custom theme with the colors of your choice. It can take a bit of time but in the end, you will always have a theme that is just right for your presentation.

You can repeat this for all the elements in the chart. The legend will update automatically to reflect the new color that you’ve given to a portion, line, bar, or dot.

Almost every part of a chart in PowerPoint can be customized down to the ‘plot area’ which is basically the area the chart sits on. If you’re using a color fill for the slides, changing the default color of the plot area can make the chart stand out on the background and make it easier to see from a distance. You can use the same color controls to change the color and background fill of the chart title and the chart area.

It is worth mentioning here that you can find more themes online for PowerPoint. If customizing or creating themes is too time-consuming, you can search for one online as well. They are mostly free.

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