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Why Can’t They All Look That Way?

Tuesday, November 16th, 2004 by | Filed Under: MS Excel

Why Can’t They All Look That Way?

Ever asked yourself that question as you’re looking at your latest Excel chart masterpiece?

I mean, you’ve just spent time creating a chart and it’s just gorgeous!

You’ve got the colors, fonts, text alignment… all of it! It’s just perfect.

Too bad you’ll have to reset all those things for the next set of data.

Or… maybe not.

What if we could save all that formatting and apply it to future sets of data to be charted?

Sound good to you?

Yep, me too.

Since we’re in agreement, I think we’re ready to begin.

First you have to have a file open that contains a chart you really like. A chart with a set up so good you’ll want to have other data charted the same way.

Got it?


Next you’ll need to select the chart (click on it).

With the chart selected, go to the Chart menu, Chart Type choice.

Once the Chart Type window opens you’re looking to go to the Custom Types tab.


At this point you have a decision—do you want the chart settings to be the default for this type of chart, or, do you just want to save this format for future use?

If you’re looking to make this chart the default model then click the “Set as default chart type” button in the bottom left corner.

The Add Custom Chart Type window will open.


Enter a name for your custom chart at the top and a description in the bottom section. (The description is optional.)

When you’ve entered the information click OK.


You’ll be returned to the Chart Type window where, if you click on the “User-defined” radial button (above the default button), you’ll see your new custom chart is in the list.

Also, if you click on the default chart at the top of the list you’ll find it’s there too!

Now, for those charts with formatting you want to save but not set as the default you’ll still need to select the chart, go to the Chart menu, Chart Type choice and then click over to the Custom Types tab.

This time immediately select the “User-defined” radial button.

Below you should notice that the Add button just became active – click it.

The Add Custom Chart Type window will open allowing you to name the chart.

When everything’s set click OK.

Back to the Chart Type window again—click OK to finish.

Next time you’re looking to chart some data you should find your new custom settings available to you under the Custom Types tab—bypassing the need for all the monotonous work of tweaking all the settings.

Got the perfect chart?

Well now they can all be perfect with just the selection of your new Custom Chart Type!

~ April

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