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Add Texture Fills to Shapes in PowerPoint 2011 for Mac

Add texture fills to shapes in PowerPoint 2011 for Mac. Seamless textures work best for such fills.

PowerPoint's fill options for shapes are extensive, you have already learned how to apply solid fills, gradient fills, and picture fills for shapes in PowerPoint 2011 for Mac. The next fill option is Texture Fills, which incidentally are not too different from picture fills other than the fact that they can be tiled. PowerPoint includes a built-in library of textures, and you can also import any picture, to be used as a texture. If you want to see a sample presentation showing Texture Fills in PowerPoint, scroll down to the bottom of this page.

PowerPoint treats textures differently from pictures, both textures and pictures are bitmaps saved in pixel based formats like JPEG, GIF, BMP, PNG, TIFF, etc. The main difference between textures and pictures is that while textures are seamless, pictures are not necessarily seamless. Seamless means that if you tile up a texture, it will not show any edges while tiling thus providing an illusion of a seamless expanse.

In Figure 1, the graphic on the left shows how a texture tiles up, while the graphic on the right shows how a regular bitmap that is not seamless tiles up. If you want to see the Figure below in a larger size, click on it to open a new window that shows a larger preview.

Figure 1: Seamless and non-seamless samples

Of course you can also use a non-seamless picture as a texture, almost like the sample on the right in Figure 1 above!

PowerPoint 2011 includes 24 seamless textures which can be applied to any shape, and you can even import more seamless textures that you can buy from third-party providers like

Related Link: has a great collection of textures that you can use in PowerPoint as shape fills, look here.

Follow these steps to change or apply a Texture Fill to a shape:

  1. Select the shape that you want to change the fill for. Alternatively, if you just want to follow this tutorial step-by-step, launch PowerPoint. You will see the Presentation Gallery which allows you to set all attributes of your new presentation, such as a preset Theme or template. Make selections or just click Cancel in this gallery to open a blank presentation with a new slide, PowerPoint 2011 users can change the slide layout of this slide to Blank by selecting Layout | Blank within the Home tab of the Ribbon.
  2. Within the Home tab of the Ribbon, locate the Insert group and click the Shape button to access the Shape gallery with different types of shape options that you can see in Figure 2. Select any shape option to access the related submenu, select the shape you prefer (we selected the Teardrop shape, as you can see in Figure 2).

  3. Figure 2: Shape gallery
  4. Click and drag on the slide to insert the shape, or click once on the blank slide to place an instance of the shape. Select the shape so that the Ribbon area now shows the Format tab, as shown in Figure 3 (highlighted in red). Activate this Ribbon tab by clicking on it.

  5. Figure 3: Format tab of the Ribbon
  6. Note: Format tab is a Contextual tab. These tabs are special tabs in the Ribbon that are not visible all the time, they only make an appearance when you are working with a particular slide object which can be edited using these options.

  7. Within the Format tab, locate the Shape Styles group. Then click the downward arrow next to the Fill button to view the Fill drop-down gallery that you can see in Figure 4. Within the Fill drop-down gallery, select the Fill Effects option which is the last option.

  8. Figure 4: Fill drop-down gallery
  9. This opens the Format Shape dialog box, make sure that the Fill panel is active, and click on the Picture or Texture tab that you can see highlighted in red within Figure 5. Then click on the Choose Texture list box (highlighted in blue within Figure 5).

  10. Figure 5: Picture or Texture options within Fill panel of Format Shape dialog box
  11. This will display the texture drop-down list, as shown in Figure 6. In this gallery you will find 24 different textures which you can choose from. Use the arrow button at the bottom of the gallery (highlighted in red within Figure 6) to explore more texture previews.

  12. Figure 6: Textures gallery in PowerPoint 2011
  13. Click on a texture to apply as a fill. This will take you back to the Format Shape dialog box, where you can now see the selected texture in the preview area, as shown in Figure 7.

  14. Figure 7: Texture Fill chosen for the selected shape
  15. At this point, you can make some more changes to the Texture Fill using the other options in the Format Shape dialog box as explained below:
    1. If you want to change the transparency of the Texture Fill, you can use the Transparency slider that you can see in Figure 7.
    2. Also, if you want the Texture Fill to rotate when the container shape itself is rotated, do select the Rotate with shape check-box as shown highlighted in red within Figure 7.
    3. When you use the texture as a fill, the Tile check-box which you can see below the Rotate with shape check-box in Figure 7, will be selected by default. You can deselect it if you want. Taking this option further, you can also add your own picture as a fill, and then check the Tile option to use that picture as a tiled texture.
    4. Note: When you are making changes to the shape attributes within Format Shape dialog box, you can see the Live Preview of the changes in the selected shape. So, always place the Format Shape dialog box on the slide such that it won't hide the selected shape.
  16. Once everything is done, click OK to apply the Texture Fill to the selected shape and get back to the slide where you can see the shape filled with selected texture, as shown in Figure 8.

  17. Figure 8: Shape with Texture Fill
  18. Remember to save your presentation often.
Note: Once you add a texture as a fill for a shape as explained above, you may also explore some advanced tricks like recoloring or resizing, or applying some filters, or cropping the picture (texture) fill. All Adjust options for Picture fills, except the Remove Background option work for Texture Fills also.

Sample Presentation of Texture Fill in Shape:

Click below to view this presentation on SlideShare

Click below to view this presentation on YouTube

See Also:

Fills for Shapes: Add Texture Fills to Shapes (Glossary Page)

Add Texture Fills to Shapes in PowerPoint 2016 for Windows
Add Texture Fills to Shapes in PowerPoint 2016 for Mac
Add Texture Fills to Shapes in PowerPoint 2013 for Windows
Add Texture Fills to Shapes in PowerPoint 2010 for Windows
Add Texture Fills to Shapes in PowerPoint 2007 for Windows
Add Texture Fills to Shapes in PowerPoint 2003 and 2002 for Windows