Change the default settings for a shape or text box

If you don't like the appearance of a shape or text box when you add it to your file, you can format the shape or text box, and then designate it as the new default format for that open file. After that, any new shapes or text boxes use that formatting.

But remember, these steps only set defaults for the spreadsheet, slide presentation, email message, or document that you have open. To set defaults for all files you can create a template

  1. Add the shape or text box to your spreadsheet, email message, or slide presentation.

  2. Select the shape or text box.

  3. Apply any formatting. You can change the fill color or add an effect, change the color, style, or weight of a line, or make any other changes.

  4. Select the shape or text box, right-click the border, and then click Set as default on the shortcut menu.

When you add a shape to that file, it uses the formatting you applied.

  1. Add the shape or text box that you want to change the formatting defaults for.

  2. Select the shape or text box.

  3. Change the shape or text box fill, color, style, or weight of a shape or text box border, font color, and any other changes that you want.

  4. Do one of the following:

    • Select the shape, right-click the border, and then click Set as Default Shape.

    • Select the text box, right-click the border, and then click Set as Default Text Box.

      Note: If you don’t see the Set as Default Shape or Set as Default Text Box options, make sure that you first selected the shape or text box and then right-clicked the shape border or text box border, not inside the shape or text box.

  1. Add the shape or text box that you want to change the formatting defaults for.

  2. Select the shape or text box.

  3. Change the shape or text box fill, color, style, or weight of a shape or text box border, text color, and any other changes that you want.

  4. Select the shape or text box, right-click the border, and then click Set AutoShape Defaults.

  5. When you next insert a shape or text box, it appears with the default formatting that you’ve set.

    Notes: 

    • Separate defaults cannot be set for shapes and text boxes. So if you change the defaults for a shape, those same defaults are also applied to any text box in the email message.

    • If you don’t see the Set AutoShape Defaults option, make sure that you first selected the shape or text box and then right-clicked the shape border or text box border, not inside the shape or text box.

  1. Add the shape or text box that you want to change the formatting defaults for.

  2. Select the shape or text box.

  3. Change the shape or text box fill, color, style, or weight of a shape or text box border, text color, font color, and any other changes that you want.

  4. Do one of the following:

    • Select the shape, right-click the border, and then click Set as Default Shape.

    • Select the text box, right-click the border, and then click Set as Default Text Box.

Tip: If you always want these new defaults available when you create a new presentation, change the default theme that is used for new presentations.

Note: If you don’t see the Set as Default Shape or Set as Default Text Box options, make sure that you first selected the shape or text box and then right-clicked the shape border or text box border, not inside the shape or text box.

  1. Add the shape or text box that you want to change the formatting defaults for.

  2. Select the shape or text box.

  3. Change the shape or text box fill, color, style, or weight of a shape or text box border, text color, and any other changes that you want.

  4. Select the shape or text box, right-click the border, and then click Set AutoShape Defaults.

  5. When you next insert a shape, it appears with the default formatting that you’ve set. To insert a text box with the default formatting, on the Insert tab, in the Text group, click Text Box, and then click Draw Text Box. If you select a text box from the Built-In section, it won’t appear with the default formatting that you’ve set.

    Notes: 

    • Separate defaults cannot be set for shapes and text boxes. So if you change the defaults for a shape, those same defaults are also applied to any text box in the document.

    • If you don’t see the Set AutoShape Defaults option, make sure that you first selected the shape or text box and then right-clicked the shape border or text box border, not inside the shape or text box.

See also

Set text direction and position in a shape or text box

Change or remove a text box or shape border

Add, copy, or delete a text box

Wrap text around an object in PowerPoint

Change a shape into another shape

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