Understanding the Format object dialog in Publisher

Use the following options on the Format Object dialog box to apply formatting to text boxes, AutoShapes, tables, pictures, and WordArt in Publisher.

Note: Some of the tabs on the dialog box are only available depending upon what object you have selected.

Which tab do you want to learn about?

Colors and Lines tab

Use the Colors and Lines tab to apply color fills, lines, or border art to a selected object or table cell.

Fill

Color – Select the fill color from the palette, or select one of the options in the list:

  • Scheme Colors – Select colors from the applied color scheme of your publication.

  • Standard Colors – Select from a standard set of colors.

  • No Fill – Click this option to give the selected object no fill of any kind. Objects with no fill have a transparent background.

  • More Colors – Click this option to open the Colors dialog box. You can select a new color from the standard color palette, or you can select a custom color that you can define by using the RGB, HSL, or CMYK color model. You can also select a PANTONE® color.

    Note: PANTONE® Colors displayed here may not match PANTONE-identified standards. Consult current PANTONE Color Publications for accurate color. PANTONE® and other Pantone, Inc. trademarks are the property of Pantone, Inc. © Pantone, Inc., 2007.

Fill Effects – Click this option to open the Fill Effects dialog box, where you can apply fill effects like gradients, textures, patterns, picture fills, and tints.

Transparency – Enter a percentage of transparency in the Transparency box, or use the slider to set the transparency for the fill. This option is available only if you selected a fill of some kind.

Line

Color – Select the fill color that you want from the palette, or select one of the options in the list:

  • Scheme Colors – Select colors from the applied color scheme of your publication.

  • Standard Colors – Select from a standard set of colors.

  • No Outline – Click this option to give the selected object no outline of any kind.

  • More Colors – Click this option to open the Colors dialog box. You can select a new color from the standard color palette, or you can select a custom color that you can define by using the RGB, HSL, or CMYK color model. You can also select a PANTONE color.

Transparency – Enter a percentage of transparency in the Transparency box, or use the slider to set the transparency for the fill. This option is available only if you selected a fill of some kind. (Not available in Publisher 2007.)

Width – Enter a line weight. This option isn't available if No Color is selected. (In Publisher 2007 this is called Weight.)

Compound Type – Select a combined line style and weight from the list of options, or click BorderArt to go to the BorderArt dialog box. This option is available only if you selected a fill of some kind. (In Publisher 2007 this is called Style.)

Dash type – Select a style of dashed line from the list. This option isn't available if No Color is selected. (Not available in Publisher 2007.)

Cap type – Select Round, Square, or Flat from the list. This option isn't available if No Color is selected. (Not available in Publisher 2007.)

Join type – Select Bevel, Miter, or Round from the list to have different corner types for your line. This option isn't available if No Color is selected. (Not available in Publisher 2007.)

BorderArt – Click this button to open the BorderArt dialog box, where you can select a graphical border for the object.

Preview – Shows the selected fill and line styles. The Preview section is available only for object types that have rectangular dimensions, such as text boxes, tables, pictures, and rectangular AutoShapes. The buttons around the Preview section correspond to the lines for the object. You can apply line formatting to individual lines by selecting only the buttons that correspond to the lines that you want to change. Publisher displays buttons that correspond to the vertical and horizontal lines that divide the table cells. If you've set up cell diagonals, Publisher displays a button that corresponds to the diagonal line. If the object type is a table, Publisher displays buttons that correspond to the vertical and horizontal lines that divide the table cells. Also, if you have set up cell diagonals, Publisher displays a button that corresponds to the diagonal line.

Presets – Click one of the Presets options to apply a set of lines to the object. You can select options that correspond to no lines, all borders, or all borders and cell dividers.

Draw border inside frame – Select this option to draw a border that is added equally to the inside and the outside of the object's frame, rather than to the outside of the frame only.

Note: For certain AutoShapes, such as a Smiley Face, Can, or Lightning Bolt, this option is not available.

Apply settings to new object type – Select this option to retain your fill and line settings as the default settings for any new objects of the same object type.

Note: This check box is available only if the object that you are formatting is a text box or an AutoShape.

Shape Effects – This opens the Format Shape dialog, giving you access to Fill, Shadow, Reflection, Glow, Soft Edges, 3-D Format, and 3-D Rotation effects. (Not available in Publisher 2007.)

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Size tab

Note: If you select a table, and you have enabled support for an East Asian or right-to-left language through the Microsoft Office system Language Settings, this tab is called Size and Direction.

Size and rotate

Height – Enter the height that you want for the object.

Width – Enter the width that you want for the object.

Rotation – Enter the amount, from 0 to 359 degrees, that you want to rotate the object clockwise.

Notes: 

  • The Height and Width settings are always the dimensions of an unrotated object.

  • When you change the Height and Width settings under Size and rotate, the proportional Height and Width settings under Scale change accordingly.

Scale

Height – Enter the height that you want for the table as a percentage of its original size.

Width – Enter the width that you want for the table as a percentage of its original size.

Notes: 

  • The Height and Width settings are always the dimensions of an unrotated object.

  • When you change the Height and Width settings under Scale, the exact measurement Height and Width settings under Size and rotate change accordingly.

Lock aspect ratio – Select this check box to keep the Height and Width settings in the same proportion. For example, if you change the Height to 150 percent, Publisher automatically changes the Width to 150 percent.

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Layout tab

Use the Layout tab to determine the exact position of the object on the page. You can also choose options for wrapping text around a table on top of a text box or on top of an AutoShape that has text in it.

Object Position – If the object is on top of a text box or AutoShape, choose whether you want it to be Inline have an Exact (fixed) position.

Position on page

Select these options to precisely position the object on a page. These options aren't available for inline objects.

Horizontal – Enter the amount of space you want between the object and the part of the page listed in the From box.

From – Choose the part of the page (Top Left Corner, Center, or Top Right Corner) where you want the horizontal position of the object to be measured from.

Vertical – Enter the amount of space you want between the object and the part of the page listed in the From box.

From – Choose the part of the page (Top Left Corner, Center, or Top Right Corner) where you want the vertical position of the object to be measured from.

Wrapping Style – If the object is on top of a text box or AutoShape with text, you can choose how you want the text to wrap around the object.

  • Square – Wraps text around all sides of the selection rectangle of the object.

  • Tight – Wraps text as closely as possible to the object.

  • Through – Wraps text around the perimeter and inside any open portions of the object.

  • Top and bottom – Wraps text above and below the object, but not on either side.

  • None – Removes all text-wrapping formatting so text doesn't wrap around the object. If the object is transparent, the text behind it will show through. Otherwise, the text will be hidden behind the object.

Wrap text – If the object is on top of a text box or AutoShape, and you've selected Square, Tight, or Through under Wrapping Style, you can choose how you want to place the text.

  • Both sides – Places text on both sides of the object.

  • Left only – Places text on the left side of the object.

  • Right only – Places text on the right side of the object.

  • In largest space available – Places text on the side of the object with the most space.

Distance from text – If the object is on top of a text box or AutoShape, and it's an inline object or you've selected Square under Wrapping Style, you can determine the distance between the selection rectangle of the object and the text that wraps around it.

  • Automatic – When you select this check box, Publisher automatically places text the default distance (0.04 inch) away from the object. To change the settings, clear the Automatic check box, and then enter the measurements you want in the Top, Bottom, Left, and Right boxes.

Horizontal alignment – If the object position is Inline, you can choose whether you want it to stay to one side of the text box or AutoShape, or move from one side to the other as text is added or deleted.

  • Left – Click this option to keep the inline object near the left side of the text box or AutoShape as text is added or deleted.

  • Right – Click this option to keep the inline object near the right side of the text box or AutoShape as text is added or deleted.

  • Move object with text – Click this option to keep the inline object at a specific place in a line of text, so it moves from one side of the text box or AutoShape to the other as text is added or deleted.

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Text box tab

If you'd like choose options for placing and fitting text in a text box or in an AutoShape with text in it, you can use the Text Box tab.

Note: The Text Box tab is available only when the selected object is a text box or an AutoShape with text.

Vertical alignment

Choose whether you want to align the text at the top, middle, or bottom of the text box or AutoShape.

Text Box Margins

Left  Enter the amount of space you want between the left edge of the text box or AutoShape and the text inside it.

Right  Enter the amount of space you want between the right edge of the text box or AutoShape and the text inside it.

Top  Enter the amount of space you want between the top edge of the text box or AutoShape and the text inside it.

Bottom  Enter the amount of space you want between the bottom edge of the text box or AutoShape and the text inside it.

Text Autofitting

Do not autofit  This option keeps the text size exactly as you set it for the text box or AutoShape.

Shrink text on overflow This option reduces the point size of the text in the text box or AutoShape until there is no text in overflow.

Best fit  This option shrinks or expands the text to fit in the text box or AutoShape when you resize it.

Grow textbox to fit This option expands the text box or AutoShape when the text would overflow. (Not available in Publisher 2007.)

Note: The text box or AutoShape may expand off the page or into other objects when this option is selected.

Rotate text within AutoShape by 90º  This check box turns the text inside the text box or AutoShape a quarter turn (90 degrees) to the right.

Include "Continued on page..."  This check box includes the notice Continued on page [page number] in the text box or AutoShape.

Include "Continued from page..."  This check box includes the notice Continued from page [page number] in the text box or AutoShape.

Columns  This button displays the Columns dialog box, where you can select the number of columns and the space between them.

Note: This option isn't available for AutoShapes, except rectangles, or if you select the Shrink text on overflow or Best fit option.

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Picture tab

If you'd like to compress images in a publication, restore the original colors of an image, or set options for cropping and controlling the color, brightness, and contrast of a picture, you can use the Format Picture dialog's Picture tab.

Note: The Picture tab is available when the selected object is a picture, or is a shape with a picture fill. If the object is a shape then the Cropping tools are disabled, but Image Control and Compression are enabled.

Crop from

In the Left, Right, Top, and Bottom boxes, enter the amount of cropping that you want for the picture. If you enter a negative cropping value, Publisher will outcrop the picture, which extends the frame out beyond the picture. If you applied a fill to the picture, the outcropped area of the frame will show the fill. Otherwise, the outcropped area will be transparent.

Transparency

Transparency – Enter a percentage of transparency in the Transparency box, or use the slider to set the transparency for the picture. This option isn't available in Publisher 2007.

Brightness and contrast

  • Brightness Enter a percentage in the Brightness box, or use the slider to set the amount of brightness for the picture. The default level is 50 percent brightness. Increasing the brightness makes the picture lighter. Decreasing the brightness makes the picture darker.

  • Contrast Enter a percentage in the Contrast box, or use the slider to set the amount of contrast for the picture. Decreasing the contrast lessens the difference between shadows and highlights, which washes out a picture. Increasing the contrast exaggerates the difference between shadows and highlights, which gives a picture a high contrast.

Recolor

  • Color – Select the fill color from the palette, or select one of the options in the list:

    • Scheme Colors – Select colors from the applied color scheme of your publication.

    • Standard Colors – Select from a standard set of colors ranging from red to blue.

    • No Fill – This gives selected cells or a table no fill of any kind. Cells with no fill have a transparent background.

    • More Colors – This opens the Colors dialog box. You can select a new color from the standard color palette, or you can select a custom color using the RGB, HSL, or CMYK color model. You can also select a PANTONE® color.

    • Tints – This opens the Fill Effects dialog box, where you can apply tints of the currently selected color.

  • Compress – This displays the Compress Pictures dialog box and control how your pictures are compressed.

  • Reset Color – This restores the original colors. (In Publisher 2007 this is called Reset.)

  • Reset All – This resets the cropping and image controls applied to the picture. Reset affects the formatting changes applied to the selected picture through the Picture tab of the Format Picture dialog. (Not available in Publisher 2007.)

  • Shape Effects – This opens the Format Shape dialog, giving you access to Fill, Shadow, Reflection, Glow, Soft Edges, 3-D Format, and 3-D Rotation effects. (Not available in Publisher 2007.)

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Cell Properties tab

Use the Cell Properties tab to select options for placing data within the cell of a table.

Note: The Cell Properties tab is available only when the selected object is a table.

Vertical alignment

Choose whether you want to align the text at the Top, Middle, or Bottom of the table cell.

Text Box Margins

You can use these settings to control the spacing between rows and columns of a table.

Left – Enter the amount of space you want between the left edge of the table cell or AutoShape and the text inside it.

Right – Enter the amount of space you want between the right edge of the table cell or AutoShape and the text inside it.

Top – Enter the amount of space you want between the top edge of the table cell or AutoShape and the text inside it.

Bottom – Enter the amount of space you want between the bottom edge of the table cell or AutoShape and the text inside it.

Rotate text within AutoShape by 90º – Select this check box to turn the text inside the table cell or AutoShape a quarter turn (90 degrees) to the right.

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Alt Text tab

Use this tab to enter alternative text for your object so that people with vision or cognitive impairments may be able to understand the object.

Note: In Publisher 2007, this tab is called Web.

Apply your changes

After adjusting the settings on all tabs, click OK to apply the changes to your object.

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