July 2

14 comments

Make changes to a Design Ideas slide in PowerPoint

By Sharyn Baines

July 2, 2018

Formatting, Office 365, Popular, Shapes

Let's look at how to edit and make changes to a Design Ideas slide in PowerPoint.

If you're like me, you probably love, love, love the Design Ideas slides in PowerPoint.

Design Ideas is available in PowerPoint for Office 365.

You can find the Design Ideas option on the Home tab...

Design ideas PowerPoint 1

Or, as you create your presentation in PowerPoint, you may see the Design Ideas pane pop up on your screen.

PowerPoint displays on this pane a gallery of professional design ideas for the slide you are currently on.

Design ideas PowerPoint 2

Just scroll through the suggestions and click the design you most like and your slide will suddenly be transformed into this design.

Design ideas PowerPoint 3

I use this all the time. I do not mind telling you that I'm not creative. I know what I like when I look at it and see it, so I skim through these all the time, looking for slides that are going to make my PowerPoint presentation have a little bit more 'pizazz'.

But what I found, was when I wanted to edit and make changes to the objects that were on the slide, I couldn't select them.

However, when I used the Selection Pane, I could!

Change Design Ideas slides using the Selection Pane

To open the Selection Pane, on the Home tab go to the Editing area, click Select and then Selection Pane and turn it on. BTW, if you still have the Design Ideas pane displayed you might like to turn this off so that you have more room on your screen.
Design ideas PowerPoint 4

The Selection Pane allows you to select the objects on the slide.

Just click onto each one of the objects listed on the pane and you will see that as you do this you are actually selecting the object on the Design Ideas slide.


For example, clicking on 'Oval 26' on the Selection Pane will select the small grey circle in the centre of the slide.

Design ideas PowerPoint 5

Once the object is selected you can change the format (colour, outline etc) or you can delete it.

Design ideas PowerPoint 6


However, it’s not as easy if you want to move or resize an object.

Here’s a work-around to move and resize objects on a Design Ideas slide

You may have noticed that you can’t select the object to move or resize it, which can be a bit of a pain.

Whenever I have an object that is in the way, not placed where I want it, too big or too small, I just select the object using the Selection Pane, delete it and manually replace it.

If you’re unsure of how to do this, please watch my video for a demonstration on how I did this.

It’s not ideal, I know, but it will give you a work-around.

BTW, manually changing your slide doesn’t change the Design Ideas slide, so you will need to do this for every slide that you need updated.

Was this blog helpful? Let us know in the comments below.

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Sharyn Baines

About the author

Sharyn is an expert trainer. She became the first certified Microsoft® MOUS Authorised Instructor in New Zealand. She is endorsed by Microsoft® as a qualified Microsoft® Office Specialist and has more than 20 years of experience in the training industry, developing and delivering technology training workshops. Her approach to taking the “techie-speak” out of technology training has placed her as a preferred supplier to many of New Zealand’s leading organisations.

  • Wonderfully helpful! I’ve been wanting to do this for, like, YEARS!

  • Not necessarily for public reading, but as an FYI…to return the favor, I tried to share on Facebook, but when the link is clicked in Facebook, a 404 page is shown…

  • Thank you so much for this! I love Design Ideas formats but often abandon them because of colors – really appreciate you sharing this and your instructions were so clear. Thank you, thank you!

  • Thank you so much for letting us know. Really appreciate it! We’ll check it out.

  • This is exactly what I was looking for! I could not even find this information on the official Microsoft pages. Thank you!

  • Thanks Jessica. You are so welcome. I’m so glad it helped you out!

  • I’m so happy it was helpful Mohammad! Thank you for letting me know it helped 🙂

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