Save items to a style

Styles are containers that can store symbols, colors, label placements, layout elements, and more. When you connect a style to a project, the items in the style appear in the galleries you use throughout the application to modify the appearances of maps, layouts, and other project items.

When you use symbols or other style items in maps or other project items, you are using a copy of the version that is in the style you chose it from. No reference is retained back to that style. You can modify these applied style items without changing the version in the original style.

There are two ways to save the modified style items for use elsewhere. You can save them to a style one at a time, which allows you to specify the name, category, and tags of the item as you create it in the style. Alternatively, you can save all of the style items in a project to a style at once.

When you save them all at once, every instance of a style item in the project is created as a style item in a style. By default, duplicate style items are saved to the style. For example, if you used a gray color for a map title in a layout, and that identical gray color is used for labels in the map, two versions of the color are saved to the style. To save only one gray color, uncheck the option to include duplicate style items.

The style that you save the items to is named the same as the project and stored in the home folder unless you specify otherwise. If the style already exists, you are prompted to replace the entire style. Once it is created, the style is connected to the current project. You can then manage the style to refine style item names, tags, and other properties. You can delete unnecessary style items from the style without impact to the appearance of the project.


Symbols that result from visual variables (by varying symbols by color for example) or attribute-driven symbology are not captured when you save items to a style.

Follow these steps to save all the items in a project to a style.

  1. On the Share tab, in the Save As group, click Style Items Save items to style.
  2. On the Save Items to Style dialog box, type the name and location of the style to be created in the Style text box or click the Browse button Browse and browse to the style.

    The default location for the new style is the home folder of the project.

  3. Optionally, check Include Duplicate Style Items.

    When this option is checked, duplicate versions of some style items are saved to the style. For example, if the same feature layer is used in two maps in the project, two versions of the symbols in that layer are saved to the style. Uncheck this option to save only one version of each.

  4. Click OK.

    If the style exists, you are prompted to overwrite it.

    The style is created in the location specified and added to the project. Use the Catalog pane or a catalog view to view and manage the style as necessary.