How to Merge Shapes in PowerPoint [Create New Objects]

Written By Steven Arends

While creating the best presentation for your client or class, PowerPoint’s default shapes are insufficient to shape your imagination.

Fortunately, the merge shape feature permits you to create zillions of shapes by merging multiple shapes.merge-shapes-in-powerpoint

If your inquisitive mind is curious to create beautiful abstract shapes, keep reading this article to use the merge shape options for creating new objects.

Let’s get started!

How to Use Merge Shapes Feature on PowerPoint

The merging shape feature in PowerPoint allows users to create a new shape using the existing shapes. Select the shapes you want to merge and then go to the Format tab. Click on Merge Shapes under the Insert Shapes group and choose any merge options from the drop-down menu.

This great feature comes in handy when the default shapes cannot fulfill your requirements. The Merge Shape option allows you to create various shapes with simple drag and drop.

If you see the merge shape option grayed out, you must ensure you have selected multiple shapes.selected-multiple-shapes

For step-by-step instructions, consider the following procedure for PowerPoint 2021,19,16,13 and PowerPoint for Microsoft 365 on Windows and macOS.

Here are the methods to use the merge shapes feature in PowerPoint:

On Windows

  • Launch PowerPoint and open a presentation file.
  • Switch to the Insert tab and add one or multiple shapes.
  • Click on a shape to select.
  • Hold down the Shift key to select multiple shapes.
  • Switch to the Format tab.
  • Click on Merge Shapes and choose one of the following merge options:
    • Union
    • Combine
    • Fragment
    • Intersect
    • Subtract merge-shapes

On macOS

  • Launch PowerPoint and open your presentation file.
  • Add shapes using the Insert tab.
  • Select a shape by clicking on it and then hold down the Shift key to select multiple.
  • Switch to the Shape Format tab.
  • Select Merge Shapes and choose one of the following options:
    • Union
    • Combine
    • Fragment
    • Intersect
    • Subtract merge-shapes-mac

The merge options can show a different result for the chronological selection of shapes. When you don’t get satisfying results, start over by selecting a different shape first.

Pro Tips: Hovering over the merge options will show you a live preview of merged shapes. It will help you to choose suitable merge options for enhanced output.

How to Use Edit Points to Change Any Shape

The edit points allow users to change any shape by adjusting the curvature of the line and the lines of the shape. Navigate to Format > Edit Shape > Edit Points to enable the edit points option. Use the black edit points to adjust the line shape and the black edit points to adjust curvature.

The edit point option will be grayed out if you select multiple shapes at once. So ensure to choose only one shape to use the edit points feature.

Check the subsequent process to use edit points for changing any shape for PowerPoint 2021,19,16,13 and PowerPoint for Microsoft 365 on Windows and macOS.

Here are the ways to use edit points to change shape:

On Windows

  • Select a shape.
  • Navigate to Format > Edit Shape > Edit Points. edit-shape
  • Select a point and adjust as you wish.
  • Click anywhere outside the shape to apply the changes.

On macOS

  • Select the shape you want to change.
  • Go to Format > Edit Shape > Edit Points. edit-points
  • Select and drag edit points to change the shapes.
  • Apply the changes by clicking outside of the shape. black-and-white-edit-points

Using the black edit points, you can change the shape. On the other hand, white edit points can assist in adjusting the curvature of the line.

Quick Note: If the shape has any fill or style, it’s challenging to use edit points. So before applying color or fill effects to the shape, ensure to complete editing points.

How to Save the Merged Shapes for Reuse

After merging a shape, you can save the file for reuse. PowerPoint allows you to save it in different formats and use the saved file for any of your presentation files.

Moreover, you can store the files on your local storage and share them with others. Consider the subsequent instruction to save your merged shapes for reuse.

Check the following procedure to save the merged shapes:

  • Select the merged shape you want to save.
  • Right-click on the shape.
  • Choose Save as Picture from the context menu. save-as-picture
  • Set the folder location, type a name and choose the file format.
  • Click Save. file-location

After saving the file, you can reuse it by navigating to Insert > Pictures. Then find and select the merged shape picture and click Insert.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do you merge shapes with unions in PowerPoint?

Select the shapes and navigate to Format tab > Merge Shape > Union to create one unified shape from multiple shapes with unions.

How do I merge two shapes in PowerPoint using subtraction?

Select the shapes and click on Merge Shape under the Format tab in the Insert Shapes group. From the pop-up Merge Shape list, choose Subtract.

How many types of merge shape options are there in PowerPoint?

The Merge Shapes tool has five (5) different options: Union, Combine, Fragment, Intersect, and Subtract.

Final Thoughts

Creating various shapes for your presentation file helps to stand out the presentation from others. Five different merging shape options provide the facility to make any possible shape.

Remember, when you don’t get satisfying or expected results, you can always start over by selecting a different shape first.

I hope this article assists you in creating some incredible shapes. Do you need further assistance regarding this topic? Let me know in the comment section.

About The Author
Steven Arends is a computer science graduate and tech enthusiast with over 10 years of experience in the field. He has a vast collection of computer hardware and loves exploring the latest advancements. As a contributing author to 10Scopes, Steven shares his expertise to make the world of technology more accessible and easier to understand for all readers.

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