Edit SVG images in Microsoft Office 2016

Microsoft Word, PowerPoint, Outlook, and Excel 2016 on Windows support inserting and editing scalable vector graphics (.SVG) files in your documents, presentations, emails, and workbooks. Word, PowerPoint and Excel Mobile for Windows 10, or Android support inserting .SVG files in your documents, presentations and workbooks.

Note:This feature is only available if you have an Office 365 subscription. If you are an Office 365 subscriber, make sure you have the latest version of Office.

Tip: SVG is an open standard that was established in 1999.

For more information on how to add an SVG image to your file see Insert SVG images and icons in Office 2016

Edit an SVG file

There are several things you can do to customize how your SVG image looks in your document. To access those tools click on your SVG image and a contextual Format tab should appear on the Ribbon. Let's take a look at some of the more useful options the Format tab offers you.

Note: Editing is only currently available in Office 2016 on Windows, not in Office on Android or Office Mobile on Windows 10.

  • Change Graphic - This lets you select a different image to replace the current image with.

  • Graphics Styles - These are the primary tools for editing the appearance of your image.

    • The gallery contains a collection of pre-defined styles for converting your image to a line drawing or changing the fill color of it. In the example below I've inserted a logo of a bicycle and the original is all black. In the Styles Gallery I've selected a preset that has a black outline and a light blue fill to match my company theme.

      Tip: Hover your mouse over each graphics style in the gallery to see what your image would look like if you chose that style. It's just a preview; the changes won't take effect unless you actually click on that style.

      Change the look of your SVG image in PowerPoint 2016 with the styles gallery
    • If you want to change the color of your image and none of the styles in the gallery are quite what you want, Graphics Fill lets you choose from hundreds of colors. Whatever color you choose is going to apply to the entire image. In the example below I've selected our bicycle logo and applied a red fill to it.

      Note: If you want to fill individual parts of the SVG image with different colors you'll need to convert it to a shape first. See below for instructions on how to do that.

      The Eyedropper is a particularly interesting tool. When you choose it from the menu it changes your cursor to an eyedropper accompanied by a small box. Point the eyedropper at any object in your document, on your slide, or worksheet and the small box will fill with the color of that object. Click your left mouse button to acknowledge and your selected SVG shape will be filled with that color. It's a great way to quickly match the color of your shape with the color of another item you have such as a company logo. And yes, it works with colors in inserted photographs too.

      Use the Graphics Fill tool to change the color of your SVG image
    • To change (or remove) the line around your SVG image choose Graphics Outline. This lets you set the color of the border surrounding your image. The eyedropper tool described above works here too.

    • Looking to give your SVG images a little extra style? Graphics Effects helps you add drop shadows, glows, 3D effects and more to your images. In the example below I've selected a perspective shadow to make my image appear a bit more three-dimensional.

      Add effects like drop shadows to your SVG graphics with the Graphics Effects tool
  • Arrange - This group contains the tools you're probably familiar with if you've worked with other image formats in Office.

    • You can use the Bring Forward or Send Backward tools to layer your image on the page. This is handy if you want to place other objects in front of (or behind) your image.

    • The Selection Pane tool makes it a little easier to select specific items on a complex page.

    • Align makes it easier to place your selected image along the left edge, in the middle or at other known places on the page.

    • If you have multiple images that you'd like to treat as a single object, select the first object, hold down the CTRL key and select each of the other objects, then click Group. To ungroup them choose any object in the group, then click Group > Ungroup.

    • The Rotate command makes it easy to rotate your image, or flip it vertically or horizontally.

  • Size - These are tools for cropping or resizing your image. For details on how to use the Crop tool see Crop a picture. To use the size tools simply specify the height and/or width you desire, in inches.

Convert an SVG image to an Office shape

By converting an SVG image or icon to an Office shape you can disassemble the SVG file and edit individual pieces of it. Converting the file is quite easy; just right-click the SVG image in your document, workbook, or presentation and select Convert shape from the context menu that appears.

Here's a short video where Doug shows you how it's done.

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See Also

Insert pictures

Insert icons

Animate pictures, clip art, text, and other objects

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