Add, change, or remove table shading

When a table has many rows and columns, it can be difficult to read. To make reading easier, you can add various types of shading to a table. For example, you can shade every other row with a color or pattern. Adding shading to a table can help make certain rows, columns, or cells—or the entire table—stand out in your document. For example, you could add shading to the header row of a table to make it distinctive. You can also change existing table shading, or remove it from the table altogether.

The easiest way to add colored shading to a table is to use the Shading option on the Table Design tab.

Add or change shading in a table

  1. Select the cells you want to change:

    • To select an entire table, click in the table, and then click the Table Move Handle in the upper-left corner.

    • To select a row, column, cell, or group of cells, click and drag your mouse pointer to highlight the cells you want.

  2. On the Table Design tab, click the arrow next to Shading.

    On the Table Design tab, Shading is highlighted.

  3. Under Theme Colors or Standard Colors, select the shading color you want. Or, for more color options, click More Colors.

    Shading color options with More Color highlighted.

Remove shading from a table

  1. Select the cells you want to change:

    • To select an entire table, click in the table, and then click the Table Move Handle in the upper-left corner.

    • To select a row, column, cell, or group of cells, click and drag your mouse pointer to highlight the cells you want.

  2. On the Table Design tab, click the arrow next to Shading.

  3. Click No Color.

    Shading color options with No Color highlighted.

See also

Insert a table

Show or hide gridlines for all tables

Delete columns and rows in a table

Add a border to a table

In Word for Mac 2011, you can do any of the following.

  1. On the View menu, click Print Layout.

  2. Click the table.

  3. Do one of the following:

    To

    Do this

    Add or change the shading fill color

    On the Tables tab, under Table Styles, choose any table style other than Table Grid.

    Remove the shading fill color

    On the Tables tab, under Table Styles, choose the Table Grid style.

    Tip: Table Grid is the first style in the Table Styles gallery.

  1. On the View menu, click Print Layout.

  2. Select the cells by clicking the beginning of the cell in front of the text, or if it's an empty cell, in front of the end-of-cell mark End-of-cell mark .

    Note: To view end-of-cell marks, on the Standard toolbar, click Show  Show button .

  3. Do one of the following:

    To

    Do this

    Add or change the shading fill color

    On the Tables tab, under Table Styles, click the arrow next to Shading, and then choose a fill color.

    Remove the shading fill color

    On the Tables tab, under Table Styles, click the arrow next to Shading, and then choose No Fill.

  1. On the View menu, click Print Layout.

  2. Select the text.

  3. Do one of the following:

    To

    Do this

    Add or change the shading fill color

    On the Tables tab, under Table Styles, click the arrow next to Shading, and then choose a fill color.

    Remove the shading fill color

    On the Tables tab, under Table Styles, click the arrow next to Shading, and then choose No Fill.

  1. On the View menu, click Print Layout.

  2. Click the table.

  3. Click the Table Layout tab, and then under Settings, click Properties.

    Table Layout tab, Settings group

  4. Click Borders and Shading, and then click the Shading tab.

  5. Do one of the following:

    To

    Do this

    Add or change a pattern fill

    Select the options that you want for Fill, Style, and Color, and then on the Apply to pop-up menu, click Table.

    Remove a pattern fill

    Under Fill, click No Fill, on the Style pop-up menu, click Clear, and then on the Apply to pop-up menu, click Table.

  1. On the View menu, click Print Layout.

  2. Select one or more cells.

  3. Click the Table Layout tab, and then under Settings, click Properties.

    Table Layout tab, Settings group

  4. Click Borders and Shading, and then click the Shading tab.

  5. Do one of the following:

    To

    Do this

    Add or change a pattern fill

    Select the options that you want for Fill, Style, and Color, and then on the Apply to pop-up menu, click Cell.

    Remove a pattern fill

    Under Fill, click No Fill, on the Style pop-up menu, click Clear, and then on the Apply to pop-up menu, click Cell.

  1. On the View menu, click Print Layout.

  2. Click anywhere in the paragraph.

  3. Click the Table Layout tab, and then under Settings, click Properties.

    Table Layout tab, Settings group

  4. Click Borders and Shading, and then click the Shading tab.

  5. Do one of the following:

    To

    Do this

    Add or change a pattern fill

    Select the options that you want for Fill, Style, and Color, and then on the Apply to pop-up menu, click Paragraph.

    Remove a pattern fill

    Under Fill, click No Fill, on the Style pop-up menu, click Clear, and then on the Apply to pop-up menu, click Paragraph.

See also

Add or change the fill color

Add a border to a table

Show or hide gridlines for all tables in a document

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