Sometimes, a simple design secret can dramatically improve your slides. A belly band is such a secret. Well, it really isn’t a secret to designers, because designers use them all the time (just look in any magazine), but non-designers don’t know about it.
A belly band is just a band of color that holds content together and sets it off from the rest of the slide. Often, it contains text. It might be a solid color or a gradient.
Here’s a simple slide.
Now see how it looks with a belly band.
Nicer, isn’t it? The belly band adds a professional touch.
Here’s how to create a belly band:
- Insert a rectangle. Size and place it as needed.
- Format the rectangle to remove the outline.
- Right-click and choose Send to Back or Order>Send to Back.
That’s all there is to it! If you want, use a gradient fill. Go to “Create multi-color gradients in PowerPoint” for instructions.
Thanks to Julie Terberg for teaching me this technique at the Presentation Summit conference, several years ago.
Just tried your belly band tip; it worked and looks great too!
Thank you very much.
Years ago I read Presentations magazine cover to cover. It was an amazing publication for improving the design of my presentations. When they stoped the publication I didn’t know where to go to keep up-dated and continue to improve my skills. Recently I found your web site when I ordered an online book from you (101 Advanced PPTX). Your site is breathing new life into my designs. Thanks so much for taking the time to do this. I design presentations for litigation mediations and closing arguments during civil trials.
Thanks for your kind comments–glad to help! I used to write for Presentations magazine and many people felt the loss, just as you did. I’m sure that your slides can be a powerful tool for the legal clients.
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