Do you want to create a pentagon-shaped table? Even better, don't you want to use a process that not only makes the table completely editable but which ends up with a particular shape? We are going to use two PowerPoint techniques to achieve this trick. Here are links to individual tutorial pages for both of these techniques:
Shapes you create using the Combine option can be used in all PowerPoint versions. We call these shapes "Cookie Cutters" because they let you cut parts of the slide almost the same way as cookie cutters cut parts of your cookie dough. Without further delay, let's follow this process step-by-step:
- Launch PowerPoint 2016 for Mac. Within the Presentation Gallery, select the Blank Presentation option. PowerPoint will open a new slide. Next, change the slide layout to Title and Content by selecting the Home tab | Layout | Title and Content option, as shown highlighted in blue within Figure 1 below.
Figure 1: Title and Content layout selected in Layout gallery
- This places a content placeholder on your slide that has six buttons, as shown in Figure 2. Click the Insert Table button (highlighted in red within Figure 2).
Figure 2: Slide with Title and Content layout
- This brings up the Insert Table dialog box as shown in Figure 3. Create a fairly small table. We opted for just 1 column and 5 rows. Click the Insert button.
Figure 3: Insert Table dialog box
- Type some text within your table and select all the text in the table and use Ctrl + E keyboard shortcut to center align all the text. Your table may look similar to the table you see in Figure 4.
Figure 4: Slide with a table
- Now, insert a shape to cover the table. In this example, we are placing a pentagon shape right over the table. Note we resized the pentagon so that it covers all the text in this table, as shown in Figure 5. Yes, you cannot see any text now!
Figure 5: Pentagon placed on the table
- Insert another shape, preferably a rectangle that covers the entire slide area, as shown in Figure 6. Note that nothing within the slide is now visible.
Figure 6: Rectangle placed to cover the entire slide
- Right-click the rectangle and choose the Send to Back | Send Backward option as shown in Figure 7.
Figure 7: Send Backward option selected
- This places your rectangle one layer back. This also brings the pentagon right in front, as shown in Figure 8.
Figure 8: Rectangle sent backward
- Now, first select the rectangle, then Shift + click on the pentagon so that both are selected. Now, within the Shape Format contextual tab of the Ribbon, click the Merge Shapes button to bring up a drop-down menu shown in Figure 9. Within this drop-down menu, select the Combine option (refer to Figure 9 again).
Figure 9: Combine option selected for pentagon and rectangle shapes
- This step creates a pentagon window within your rectangle. Note that your table is visible through this window, as shown in Figure 10. Yes, the pentagon is the cookie that the cutter removed! Now, apply the No Outline attribute to remove outline from this combined shape.
Figure 10: Pentagon windowed rectangle
- Note that your pentagon-windowed-rectangle is covering everything else, even the slide title! So, reorder the objects on your slide as marked in Figure 11, so that:
- The table is placed right at the bottom of all objects.
- The pentagon-windowed-rectangle is placed above the table.
- All other objects are over these two objects.
- Look at Figure 11 to understand this relationship.
Figure 11: Correct order of shapes in a cookie cutter
- Finally, select your pentagon-windowed-rectangle, and change its fill to Slide Background fill. Your cookie cutter shape is ready as shown in Figure 12 below.
Figure 12: Pentagon Cookie Cutter shape
- This cookie cutter shape will continue to work even if you change your slide background, or even if you apply a new Theme. Look at Figure 13, which is the same slide shown in Figure 12, but with another Theme applied.
Figure 13: Pentagon Cookie Cutter shape with new Theme applied
- Do remember though that whenever a new Theme is applied, your slide title will end up landing behind your table and combined cookie-cutter shape. So, you will need to again reorder your slide objects, as explained in step 11.
PowerPoint Keyboard Shortcuts
Do you want more keyboard shortcuts?
Explore our PowerPoint Keyboard Shortcuts and Sequences Ebook that is updated for all PowerPoint versions.
Exotic Shapes: Cookie Cutter Shapes in PowerPoint (Index Page)Cookie Cutter Shapes in PowerPoint 2016 for Windows
Cookie Cutter Shapes in PowerPoint 2013 for Windows
Cookie Cutter Shapes in PowerPoint 2011 for Mac
Cookie Cutter Shapes in PowerPoint 2010 for Windows