This tip refers to the Themes option on the Options ribbon and in Stationery & Fonts, not the Outlook Color Schemes (which are limited to Green, Silver, and Blue).
We see a lot of questions about Outlook and Office Home & Student 2007 – the users have both installed but don’t have themes available in Outlook.
This is because themes are only available if you have Outlook installed as part of a suite. Theme support is not included in standalone Outlook. If you need themes, you’ll need to buy at least the standard suite.
If you use a standalone version of Outlook you won’t have the use of themes and stationery or some spell and grammar check features. Note, you can copy winword.exe to the same folder as Outlook.exe to restore some of the missing features, however, this will not restore Themes.
One workaround is using templates (*.oft) instead. You can copy the template to a folder in Outlook so it’s easy to access.
If you copy winword.exe to the same directory as Outlook.exe, many of the missing features are restored.
You can insert HTML stationery into a message using the Attach file button and after selecting the HTML file, click on the Insert dropdown and Insert as text.
Although the themes button is disabled, you can change the default stationery in Stationery and Fonts, by editing the registry. See Set Stationery using the Registry for the instructions.
Published March 24, 2009. Last updated on May 8, 2014.