Excel cell color: Coloring and shading cell backgrounds


You already formatted your Excel table. Now you want to add color to your table by using background colors, i.e., shading.

In this learning module “excel cell color”, you will find out how to fill the backgrounds of cells and cell ranges with colors.



First select the cell or cell range that you want to fill with background color. Then click the small black arrow on the Fill Color button (Home tab, Font group).

The Theme Colors catalog will appear. Here you can select the color of your choice by clicking on it. The background(s) of the selected cell(s) will now be filled with the selected color:



If you do not see a color you like, click .

If you want to control the fill-color characteristics more closely, click the dialog box launcher on the Home tab, in the Font group.


The Format Cells dialog box will appear. Now go to the Fill tab.


In the Background Color area, you will find a variety of colors. Click on the color you want to use.

If you are looking for a special color, you can find a greater variety or mix a color yourself by clicking More Colors…

In the Pattern Color and Pattern Style selection lists, you can specify a pattern style to serve as a background and color it as well.

To use a special color effect (i.e., graduated shading) on cell backgrounds, click Fill Effects…

If you do, the Fill effects dialog box will appear:


In the excel cell Colors area, you can specify how many colors you want to use for the fill effect.

Select the excel cell colors you want to use in the Color 1 and Color 2 selection lists.

Use the Shading styles area to select a look that suits your purpose.

For some shading styles, you can also apply a Variants option.

In the Sample area, you can see the result of your current settings.

When satisfied with your settings, click OK.


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