Changing the Names of Multiple Styles

Written by Allen Wyatt (last updated August 28, 2021)
This tip applies to Word 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Word in Microsoft 365


Normand has documents with up to 25-30 custom styles. The names of these styles start with the letters NB. He would like to rename the styles by changing the NB to NF. Normand knows how to do it one by one, but is looking for a way to batch process the changes.

This type of change is easy to do with a macro. Word makes available, to VBA, the name of each style which can also be change through the macro. Here's an example:

Sub ChangeStyleNames()
    Dim s As Style

    For Each s In ActiveDocument.Styles
        If Left(s, 2) = "NB" Then s = "NF" & Mid(s, 3)
    Next s
End Sub

The macro steps through each style in the document and, if the first two letters are "NB", changes those letters to "NF". Note that the macro only needs to work with individual style objects (denoted by the s variable), and that the NameLocal property doesn't need to be explicitly cited. This is because in the absence of an explicit property, the NameLocal property is the one automatically assumed by VBA.

The macro is very fast to run. In testing on a document with almost 400 styles, it took less than 2 seconds to complete. It checks all styles, both built-in and user-defined.


If you would like to know how to use the macros described on this page (or on any other page on the WordTips sites), I've prepared a special page that includes helpful information. Click here to open that special page in a new browser tab.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (10120) applies to Microsoft Word 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Word in Microsoft 365.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...


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What is 1 + 4?

2023-08-27 08:50:34


Hi - I think this was just what I was looking for - but I am a bit of a newbie regarding using the correct syntax for macros and I wonder if anyone can help me customise the macro for my specific needs.

I have sets of styles which I use on various company documents. The styles will be H1Builders, H2Builders, AltH1Builders, AltH2Builders, B1Builders, B2Builders, AppendixBuilders, PartiesBuilders, RecitalBuilders, ScheduleBuilders, SubScheduleBuilders, etc (where 'Builders' represents the company name). Some styles will have 6 or 7 levels.

I want to change just the company name for each level. I do not know how to change the code in the macro to ignore everything in a style name apart from 'Builders' and just to change 'Builders' to 'Lawyers' for every style.

For Each s In ActiveDocument.Styles
If s = "Builders" Then s = "Lawyers"

This seems too simple? I am wary of running this and ending up with a hundreds of styles all called Lawyers+1, Lawyers+2, etc!

Does anyone have any advice for me please?

2022-06-19 16:38:49


Hi Allen,
your code is a piece of the puzzle I would like to complete, but as a beginner in coding I don't find a way to make it work for my needs.
I would like to change the last word of the styles in my docs and replace it by another one. My different tries only allowed me to put the new word in front of the name's style and the old word remains…
Any help would be much appreciated! Best, Stephane

2021-10-27 16:50:17

Doug Bond

I ran this code on my document and it only output built-in styles no custom styles:

Sub RenameLocalStyle()
' RenameLocalStyle Macro
Dim sty As Style
For Each sty In ActiveDocument.Styles
'If sty.BuiltIn = False Then
'sty.NameLocal = "A new style name"
Debug.Print sty
'If sty.NameLocal = "Document_Title" Then
' MsgBox sty.NameLocal
'End If
Next sty
End Sub

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