How to copy styles between Excel workbooks

Creating a format style in Excel can save a lot of time, especially if you have a number of custom formatting requirements. You might think you have to re-create these styles for each workbook, but you don't. Once you've defined a style, you can copy it to another workbook — you don't have to go through the process of re-creating each style in every workbook file. Here's how to copy a style:

  1. Open both workbooks — the source workbook that contains the style and the destination workbook to which you want to copy the style.
  2. From the destination workbook, choose Style from the Format menu.
  3. Click Merge.
  4. In the resulting Merge Styles dialog box, select the workbook that contains the existing style(s) you want to copy.
  5. Click OK twice.

In Excel 2007, click Cell Styles in the Styles group on the Home tab. Merge Styles is at the bottom of the resulting window.

At this point, the destination workbook contains all the custom styles from the source workbook, so start formatting!


Susan Sales Harkins is an IT consultant, specializing in desktop solutions. Previously, she was editor in chief for The Cobb Group, the world's largest publisher of technical journals.

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