The process of adding Custom Colors to your PowerPoint Masters unfortunately is not as simple as clicking a button and selecting a color. It includes many steps and requires some techniques you might not be familiar with. Therefore, we’ll give you a detailed step-by-step guide of how to achieve this only using the standard Windows tools. Preparation – File extensions must be visible If you open Windows Explorer and navigate to a folder containing a Presentation, the file name must end on .pptx (or .potx for a Template). By default, Windows hides file extension from the user, only denoting the file type PowerPoint Presentation in the column Item type. To unhide file extensions, follow these steps:
- Click start (or press the Windows-Key) and enter “Control Panel” to open Windows Control Panel
- If the control panel items are grouped by category names, open the category Appearance and Personalization, if they are displayed as a plain list, just continue.
- Select Folder Options
- In the tab View, section Advanced settings, make sure the option Hide extensions for known file types is unchecked
- Click OK
- Open Windows Explorer and navigate to the folder containing the presentation or template file in concern
- Rename the file extensions from .pptx or .potx file to .zip, and click Yes in the confirmation pop-up. Example: If your file is called Company_Master.potx, rename it to Company_Master.zip
- Right click the file and select Extract all…
- In the following dialog, the suggested folder name can be used as is. Confirm extraction by clicking Extract
- Now a folder has opened containing several subfolders with names like _rels, docProps and ppt.
- Navigate to folder ppt and its subfolder theme
- Now for each file called theme?.xml (e.g. theme1.xml, theme2.xml etc.) in turn repeat Step 3 and Step 4
- Right click the theme?.xml file and click Open with… and choose Notepad
- In Notepad, make sure that in the Format menu the option Word Wrap is checked. It makes editing the file much easier.
- If the presentation already contains any custom colors, select Edit / Find… from the menu bar, enter the following search term and click Find next
- If you found the so called tag </a:custClrLst>, proceed to Step 4, if not, continue to create it
- Use Edit / Find… to find this tag
- Exactly before the opening bracket of <a:extLst>, copy/paste this text:
- It should look like this now
[...]</a:extraClrSchemeLst><a:custClrLst> </a:custClrLst><a:extLst>[...]Step 4 – Adding the colors For each color you want to add, repeat the following steps. Note that colors definitions must be provided in the hexadecimal form, e.g. 7835A0.
- Copy/paste the following text exactly before the opening bracket of </a:custClrLst>
<a:custClr name="Custom Color ?"> <a:srgbClr val="000000" /> </a:custClr>
- Replace the text Custom Color ? with a name for the color that continues the indexing from the previous colors, i.e. Custom Color 1, Custom Color 2, Custom Color 3 etc. Note: The sequence should start from 1 and be consecutive
- Replace the text 000000 with the hexadecimal color code, e.g. FF0000 for Red
[...]</a:extraClrSchemeLst><a:custClrLst> <a:custClr name="Custom Color 1"> <a:srgbClr val="FF0000" /> </a:custClr> <a:custClr name="Custom Color 2"> <a:srgbClr val="00FF00" /> </a:custClr> [...] </a:custClrLst><a:extLst>[...]Select File / Save from the menu and close Notepad Step 5 – Re-compressing the Presentation or Template
- Switch back to Windows Explorer and navigate back up to the folder that contained the subfolders _rels, docProps and ppt
- Press Ctrl+A to select all files and folders
- Right-click the selection and in Send To select Compressed (zipped) folder
- Finally rename the resulting ???.zip file back to the original Presentation or Template file name ending on .pptx or .potx and move it back to the original folder