In the final shipping version of Office 2013, Microsoft has brought back the oft-requested themes and significantly expanded the list of available backgrounds. Both combine to make Office 2013 a more personalized experience.

Office backgrounds and themes aren’t exactly rocket science, but they’re a fun way to personalize Office 2013 and, in the case of themes, optionally tune down the glaring white application background that graced the preview version of the suite.

Backgrounds, which did appear in pre-release versions of Office 2013, are perhaps less useful but more fun: They appear as small, tattoo-like graphics in the top right corner of Office application windows. What’s changed in the final shipping version of Office 2013 is that there are more of them.

To access both features, select File and then Account. You’ll see both in the Backstage interface for the app in question.

account

If you select the Office Background drop-down, you can see that there are now many choices.

bgs
As you select each item, you can preview it in the top right corner of the application. If you don’t wish to use a background, simply select No Background.

bg-applied

Themes are a welcome addition. You now have three choices: While, Light Gray, and Dark Gray.

white

light-gray

dark-gray

Enjoy!