Change Color Scheme in Office 2013?

Hi All,

First let me apologize, I am of limited technical capability.  I just installed Office 365 (Feb 1, 2013) and found the really light color of the ribbon area to be highly distracting.  I was hoping I could get it back to the soft blue color I eventually got use to in Office 2010.  But I could only figure out how to get light gray or dark gray.  I am absolutely convinced these are not the only options Microsoft would build into the program (I mean who would intentionally do that?).  But as I say, I am limited in my capabilities.  Could someone tell me how to change the color scheme?

Thanks a bunch,


February 2nd, 2013 12:55am

 I am absolutely convinced these are not the only options Microsoft would build into the program (I mean who would intentionally do that?).  

You can't change the color scheme. You can't buy or add-in any additional themes. You also can't program any themes yourself. Microsoft is not planning on releasing any more themes at this time either. Microsoft really did intentionally limit the color choice to gray. Microsoft can't seem to explain to anyone in any coherent manner why this was a good idea. There are no case studies we can see that would explain this. There have been zero (and I mean ZERO) attempts to explain to us why this was a good thing. It was a completely boneheaded decision apparently made by a few "managers" at Microsoft that have some serious eye-related problems they wish to foister upon the rest of the world.

I've seen suggestions to simply add a simple theme color picker wheel to the Office theme choices (or just adhere to the user designated OS choice) - which would solve the problem for everyone . You know, something that would take any other programmer only a few hours to code and implement and is documented 10000 times. Something they teach in beginning programming classes to 3rd graders. Unfortunately this feature appears to be completely baffling to the Office coders and they can't implement any color anymore. They've gone completely color stupid apparently. The next version of Office, I hear, is going to be black text on a black background with black highlights, so thank your lucky stars we at least have gray and white in this version.

I digress. In any case, to answer your question, Microsoft would intentionally do that. Yes, they would. They have gone completely bat crazy as of late.

  • Edited by ABCFED Saturday, February 02, 2013 5:11 PM
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February 2nd, 2013 5:02pm

Yes , I agree with you, I am gonna go back also to office 2010. The colors of 2013 are horrible

  • Edited by bajrami1 Wednesday, March 20, 2013 2:31 PM
March 20th, 2013 2:30pm

I'm watching the various forums/tech websites for indications of lawsuits from AARP, ADA, any professional users groups (Medical and legal come to mind) or any combination thereof.

Maybe that'll get Microsoft to make some real changes.

Mind you, I love the product features and performance, and that I can put it on nearly all my machines with one subscription.  I just can't differentiate the so-called "color" themes.
  • Edited by Shawlin Monday, July 22, 2013 11:52 PM Added last paragraph
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July 22nd, 2013 11:49pm

It's July 2013... and still not color options... Please provide instructions on how to navigate Office 2013 for the blind as our retinas are now rendered useless.  
  • Edited by AirJarvis Friday, July 18, 2014 4:34 PM
July 18th, 2014 4:34pm

This is no surprise that MS has taken away features in a new product line. Just look at the OS systems. Nothing has been as good as XP and yet they refuse to fix any OS since. They just keep pumping out new OS, claiming it the newest and greatest that you should buy. Then they force you to buy new by not supporting XP.

MS became known for being intuitive in their applications. Since the Ribbon they have taken a NOSE DIVE into obscurity in designing their applications.

Since Win 98 MS has been notorious for coming out with new features and discontinuing great features. Why do you think the public is resistant to moving to the next OS or OFFICE? Too many great features in the past have been forgotten. Only after the public gets into an uproar do they put it back in the next version. They never update the current with the fix, although they pack out updates by the zillions for every software system they have.

If I had another choice, I would get the hell way from MS. Unfortunately, too many companies still buy MS products.

If they followed their own propaganda of being intuitive, making quality programs with quality features, kept standards from version to version, I would have no problem with MS. There are many things I love about MS products but the headaches are just now worth it. Being a customer since 91 has proven to me I wasted too much time and money with MS carelessness to customer needs.

PS Gray is not a color, it is a shade of white. So don't even claim to have a color scheme.

  • Edited by Frhrich Saturday, February 07, 2015 8:57 AM
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February 7th, 2015 8:56am

As a software consultant in my late 50's I am really having trouble with this. Guess I was not paying attention to recent MS Office reviews when I bought my latest laptop. Got one without all the garbage on it so I did not have a preview of the latest version of Office before I installed it and now I wish that I hadn't.  Please show me some reputable data indicating that these grey themes are good, healthy or improve productivity!!! It use to be that the more color the better, gray was bad and unreadable and now your latest and greatest product wants my 50+ year old eyes (with a few floaters) to differentiate between shades of grey???  I am back using my old cracked screen laptop (the one I wanted to replace) and 2010 for most work where I must use Office. Maybe I should have typed this in grey so it would be easier for the MS people to read!

Swallow your pride and give us back the color! 
September 11th, 2015 12:36pm

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