Set text direction and position in a text box or shape

Text boxes and most shapes (except for lines and connectors) can include text, and you can position or wrap that text. You can also change the margins of text boxes, resize shapes for a better text fit, or change the direction of the text.

Position text horizontally in a text box or shape

  1. In the shape or text box, click in the paragraph or line of text that you want to modify; or, to modify all text, click the border of the shape or box.

  2. In Excel, PowerPoint, and Word, click the Home tab.

    In Outlook, click the Message tab.

  3. In the Paragraph, Alignment, or Basic Text group, click the horizontal alignment option that you want.

    Alignment buttons

Position text vertically in a text box or shape

  1. Right-click the border of the shape or text box.

  2. On the shortcut menu, click Format Shape.

    Format Shape on the shortcut menu

  3. In the Format Shape pane, click Layout & Properties Layout & Properties tab , and then click Text Box.

  4. In the Vertical alignment list, click the alignment option you want.

    Selecting vertical alignment in the Format Shape pane

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Wrap text in a shape

Change the margins between text and the edge of a text box or shape

Automatically resize a shape to fit text

Specify text direction in a shape or text box

Wrap text in a shape

In a text box, the text wraps automatically as you type. To turn text wrapping on or off, do the following:

  1. Right-click the border of the shape or text box that contains the text you want to wrap.

  2. On the shortcut menu, click Format Shape.

    Format Shape on the shortcut menu

  3. In the Format Shape pane, click Layout & Properties Layout & Properties tab , click Text Box, and then select Wrap text in shape.

    Wrap text in shape checkbox

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Change the margins between text and the edge of a text box or shape

The internal margin is the changeable distance between text and the outer border of a text box or shape.

  1. Right-click the border of the shape or text box.

  2. On the shortcut menu, click Format Shape.

    Format Shape on the shortcut menu

  3. In the Format Shape pane, click Layout & Properties Layout & Properties tab , and then click Text Box.

    Text box options in the Format Shape pane

  4. Do one or more of the following:

    • To specify the distance between the left border of a shape and the text, enter the new margin number in the Left margin box.

    • To specify the distance between the right border of a shape and the text, enter the new margin number in the Right margin box.

    • To specify the distance between the top border of a shape and the text, enter the new margin number in the Top margin box.

    • To specify the distance between the bottom border of a shape and the text, enter the new margin number in the Bottom margin box.

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Automatically resize a shape to fit text

You can automatically increase the size of a text box or shape vertically so that the text fits inside it.

  1. Right-click the border of the shape or text box.

  2. On the shortcut menu, click Format Shape.

    Format Shape on the shortcut menu

  3. In the Format Shape pane, click Layout & Properties Layout & Properties tab , click Text Box, and then select Resize shape to fit text.

    Selecting Resize shape to fit text in the Format Shape pane

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Specify text direction in a shape or text box

You can change direction of text in a shape or text box. For example, you can rotate text 90 or 270 degrees so that it appears sideways.

  1. Right-click the border of the shape or text box.

  2. On the shortcut menu, click Format Shape.

    Format Shape on the shortcut menu

  3. In the Format Shape pane, click Layout & Properties Layout & Properties tab , and then click Text Box.

  4. Select the option that you want in the Text direction list.

    Selecting text direction in the Format Shape pane

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See also

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