Themes are an excellent way to add an element of professionalism, consistency and branding to your reports. While you can certainly hand-code your own Power BI JSON theme file using the official documentation and this handy github repository or this excellent blog article, let's face it, nobody really wants to do that. While you can pay someone to create a theme for you, like Nowalls Analytics (@belisqui) there are also a number of available options out there for quickly and easily creating your own custom Power BI theme without the heavy lifting of hand-editing JSON code.
If you are just looking for a quick custom theme or a starting point for your own theme, the Themes Gallery on the Power BI Community site is a great place. There are over 150 themes available for download. However, the Themes Gallery itself does not provide any method of customizing themes.
One place that you can customize themes however is within the Power BI Desktop by going to the View tab of the ribbon:
Unfortunately, the options in the Customize theme dialog are extremely rudimentary and only cover a few dozen of the 2,000+ available theme settings. However, it is nice that you can import any theme from some place like the Themes Gallery and then modify at least a few of the settings.
I found this site and had high hopes since, well, since whoever created it went through the trouble of purchasing the domain name "powerbithemegenerator.com". However, this tool is extremely dated and super basic. There are only about 9 theme settings available and there is the questionable choice to generate about 100 colors in your theme file. (It says 200 but I counted). Also, the JSON theme file generated is literally a single line of text, no page breaks or tabs or anything. Can't really recommend this one.
So, I found an old blog article by @ruthpozuelo regarding a Power BI Template App she built. The link there pointed me to Curbal's website but for the life of me, I can't figure out how to purchase or download the file. Became a member, and there are certain things that have buttons for purchase, but not the theme material. So, can't really provide a review on this one but figured I'd mention it in case someone is smarter than myself and knows where the download button is.
PowerBI.tips is an excellent website run by @Mike_Carlo and @Seth_C_Bauer and this site provides an excellent, free, web-based Power BI themes generator. The tool is simple and easy to use and provides a color palette picker as well as hundreds, if not 1000+, of property settings for global and individual visuals. Property settings for 32 different visuals are available. However, there are no Page or Filter Pane settings available in the tool nor are there settings for shapes, buttons and images. Also, one complaint, the export of the JSON file suffers the same problem as powerbithemegenerator.com, no formatting or line breaks.
OK, by happy circumstance and the graciousness of on Brian Julius and @SamMcKay, I recently gained access to EnterpriseDNA's platform. Wow! I literally had no idea just how cool this platform is. Now, there is a cost for membership, about $40/month but holy smokes, there are so many learning videos and nifty little tools, it is worth taking a look at if you are serious about building up the skills of your data analytics team. Anyway, specific to themes, they have three different really cool options for building color palettes.
The fan app is a ton of fun to mess around with but the Image to Colours app is the stand-out. It does just what it says. Upload an image and it automatically creates a palette of colors that you can save into a theme file. It is super cool and probably the best way I can think of to go about quickly creating a color palette. For example, I was able to upload various customer logos and presto! instant matching color theme!
OK, then there is the separate Power BI Themes Generator app. Absolutely the most comprehensive of any Power BI theme generator that I have seen in terms of available theme settings. Includes Global settings as well as Page and Filter Pane settings and supports 40 individual visuals and elements, including shapes, images, buttons and text boxes. Anyway, I'm just starting to scratch the surface of everything the EnterpriseDNA platform has to offer but I'm already seriously impressed by the overall breadth and quality of tools.
Now, a few small complaints. First, it would be nice if the color palette tools were more integrated like that of PowerBI.tips and, again, non-formatted JSON file export. But, if you are serious about easily creating your own custom theme file and playing with all of the different settings available, this is the only tool that I have seen that does it. For example, the PowerBI.tips theme generator has 1 setting for Visual Headers while the EnterpriseDNA Themes Generator has 19 settings for Visual Headers.
OK, thanks to Federico Pastor from a comment on LinkedIn I found this really excellent theme generator. I don't feel too bad for missing it originally as no amount of Internet searching returns this page in like the first 10 pages and the tool isn't even linked off of their home page. It's too bad, because I feel like more people would want to be using this tool!
This themes generator is more comprehensive than PowerBI.tips but not quite as comprehensive as EnterpriseDNA. Similar to EnterpriseDNA, this tool also supports Global settings as well as Page and Filter Pane settings and supports 40 individual visuals and elements, including shapes, images, buttons and text boxes. However, it does not have quite all of the theme settings that EnterpriseDNA supports. For example, themes.pbix by POINT supports 6 Filter Pane settings versus EnterpriseDNA's 9 and it is a similar story for things like Available filter cards, 4 versus 8 and and Applied filter cards, 4 versus 8.
That said, there are some great features. Chief among these is the Upload Theme feature! Yep, it is as cool as I imagined it would be! So, yes, you can upload an existing theme file and then customize and tweak it from there. This tool is also available in English and German and I really like the thoughtful Expand All/Collapse All buttons. Super nice. Also, the ability to upload an image for the Page Background is really cool and I have not seen that setting in any other theme generator.
OK, the minor complaint? You guessed it, no formatting of the exported JSON file. Not the end of the world.
In the original version of this article, I recommended PowerBI.tips as the best free themes generator for PowerBI. That has to change. themes.pbix by POINT is more comprehensive, polished and includes the ability to upload an existing theme file.
I also originally stated that f you don't mind paying a little bit of money, the EnterpriseDNA color palette tools and themes generator are the best in class. I still feel this way but it is a much closer call. The EnterpriseDNA color palette tools are simply amazing and their theme generator is the most comprehensive in terms of available settings I *think*. It is very tough to compare all of the different theme settings I will admit and POINT has a few that EnterpriseDNA does not like page background and page alingment settings. It's very close. In addition, that Upload Theme feature from POINT is huge. However, the Upload Theme feature does have its problems which is why it doesn't overtake EnterpriseDNA in my opinion. So, what I did was use EnterpriseDNA to create a theme file that set some settings that were not present in POINT. These were largely global Available Card filter and Applied Card filter settings. I confirmed that this was a a valid theme file and then uploaded to POINT. The sections that included unsupported settings were then broken in the POINT tool, so the entire Global Level settings page just appeared blank. So...bug. Seems like unsupported settings could be handled better.