Please note : This help page is not for the latest version of Enterprise Architect. The latest help can be found here.

Format Toolbar


Use the Format toolbar to change the appearance of a selected element (or several selected elements) in the current diagram; this does not affect any other occurrence of the selected elements anywhere else in the model.


  • To set the global appearance of all elements throughout a model, use the Options dialog. Select the Tools | Options menu option, then select Standard Colors and Diagram | Appearance from the options tree.
  • To override the global appearance and define a default appearance of a selected element (or several selected elements) on all diagrams on which it occurs, right-click on the element and select the Appearance | Default Appearance context menu option. The Default Appearance dialog displays.

The Format toolbar provides quick access to the following functions (in order):

  • Text font, style, size and effects, through the Font dialog
  • Text Color (drop-down color palette)
  • Fill Color (drop-down color palette)
  • Border or Connector Line Color (drop-down color palette)
  • Border or Connector Line Width (arrows increase/decrease between 1 and 5)
  • Apply Style to Element(s)
  • Copy Style from Element
  • Style list for selecting saved styles
  • Save style (see below).

If you click on the drop-down arrow for the Save Style (pencil) button, you can select an option from the following list:


The Fill Color button can be used in conjunction with the Project Custom Colors menu options to enable users to have access to custom-defined project colors. To activate this feature select the Tools | Options | Standard Colors menu option and ensure that the Show Project Custom Colors in Element Format checkbox is selected. To define a set of custom colors see the Get and Set Project Colors topic.

You can move this toolbar to any dockable position and it retains that position in subsequent sessions. You can hide or show the toolbar by clicking on the View | Toolbars | Format Tool menu option.