Create Rounded Shapes in Excel 2013

If a workbook has macros, or needs navigation buttons, I usually create a button by inserting a rounded rectangle on the worksheet.

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In Excel 2010, I can click on the Shape Styles drop down, on the Format tab, and change it to a beveled shape. This makes the shape look “clickable”, rather than just a flat shape on the sheet. My theory is that people are more likely to click something, if looks like a button.

That theory could be wrong, but the beveled button looks pretty too!

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Excel 2013 Is Flat

Unfortunately, the Shape Styles n Excel 2013 are all flat – they look like iPad icons, rather than buttons. Maybe I’m just not hip enough, but that “Intense Effect” isn’t what I want.

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After I apply that effect, I can go to the Shape Effects command on the Format tab, and apply a bevel effect. That takes extra time and effort though, and I’d like to format the shape with a single click, like I did in Excel 2010.

Change the Theme

Fortunately, I found a way to get the beveled shapes back in the Shape Styles list.

  • Go to the Page Layout tab on the Ribbon.
  • In the Themes group, click Effects
  • Click the second option – Office 2007 – 2010

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Now, when you select a shape and go to the Shape Styles, you’ll see the old, familiar beveled shapes.

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Workbook Level Setting

This change only affects the active workbook, so you’ll have to change it in each file where you want the beveled shapes to show in the Shape Styles.

If you want the setting for every new file, you can create a new default template, with the Office 2007-2010 setting turned on:

  1. Open a new workbook.
  2. Change the Theme Effects setting to Office 2007 – 2010
  3. Make any other changes that you would like in all new workbooks.
  4. Click the Save command on the Quick Access Toolbar
  5. From the Save As Type dropdown, choose Template (*.xltx) or Macro-enabled Template (*.xltm)
  6. Name the file “Book.xltx” (or “Book.xltm”)
  7. Save it in the XLStart folder

(In Windows 8, I found this in C:\Users\YourUserName\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Excel\XLSTART)

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When you click the New button on the Quick Access Toolbar, the new workbook will be based on this template.

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