Copy Pivot Table Custom Style to Different File

How can you copy a pivot table custom style to a different workbook? There isn’t a built-in way to do that, but there is a workaround solution. There are instructions that worked in Excel 2013, and earlier versions (way back to Excel 2007). Those stopped working, unfortunately, but there’s an easy way to do this in Excel 2016 too.

Create a Pivot Table Custom Style

Excel comes with many built-in PivotTable Styles, in Light, Medium and Dark colour themes. You can quickly apply any of those styles to the selected pivot table – just open the style palette, and click on the style that you want to apply.

You can’t change those built-in styles, but you can create your own pivot table custom style, based on a built-in style. Then, modify your custom style, with the formatting that you want.

This video shows how to create a custom style from an existing style, and make changes to its formatting.

Copy Custom Style in Excel 2013

If you’re using Excel 2013 or earlier, this short video shows how to copy one of your fancy custom styles into a different workbook.

There are written instructions on my website, if you’d rather read than watch.

NOTE: If you’re using Excel 2016, see the instructions in the next section.

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Copy Custom Style in Excel 2016

Thanks to Annie Cushing from, who let me know that the old method  to copy a pivot table custom style wasn’t working in Excel 2016.

With a bit of experimenting, I found a new way to copy the custom style. It’s even easier than the old way, and it worked in Excel 2016 and Excel 2013.

  1. Open the workbook (A) with the pivot table that has the custom style applied.
  2. Open the workbook (B) where you want to add that custom style
  3. Position the workbooks, so you can see the sheet tabs in both files
  4. Press the Ctrl key, and drag a copy of the pivot table sheet from workbook A, into the workbook B.
  5. The custom style is now copied into the new workbook, and you can see it in the PivotTable Style palette.
  6. In workbook B, you can delete the sheet that you copied from workbook A.

copy custom style in Excel 2016

More Pivot Table Format Tips

For more pivot table formatting tips, go to the Excel Pivot Table Format page on my Contextures site.

There are written instructions and videos, that show how to create and copy PivotTable Styles, keep pivot table formatting, and other tips.


Copy Pivot Table Custom Style to Different Workbook


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