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Microsoft Office 2007

Using Fill Effects in Word

Shapes and text boxes can be easily customized by adding a gradient, pattern, texture, or picture as fill. However, only one of these effects may be applied to your object. Word provides you with a number of tools to customize the appearance of these fill effects.

For information about fill effects in Excel or PowerPoint, please refer to Using Fill Effects in Excel and PowerPoint.

return to topAccessing the Fill Effects Dialog Box

The Fill Effects dialog box is easily accessible in Word after you have created a shape that you wish to format.

  1. Select the shape(s) that you want to adjust

  2. Right click the shape » select Format AutoShape...
    The Format AutoShape dialog box appears.

  3. Select the Colors and Lines tab

  4. In the Fill section, click FILL EFFECTS...
    The Fill Effects dialog box appears.

return to topAdding Color Gradient

Rather than filling an object or text box with one color, you may want to fill it with gradations of one or two colors. The most commonly chosen options are available from the Ribbon, while additional variations are available through the Fill Effects or Format Shape dialog boxes.

Adding Color Gradient: Ribbon Option

  1. Select your shape

  2. From the Ribbon, select the Format command tab

  3. In the Shape Styles group, click SHAPE FILL » select Gradient » select the desired gradient style

Adding Color Gradient: Dialog Box Option

  1. Access the Fill Effects dialog box

  2. Select the Gradient tab
    Fill Effects dialog box, Gradient tab

  3. In the Colors section, select One color, Two colors, or Preset
    Your selection will determine further options available to you.

  4. If you selected One color, use the Dark/Light scroll bar to adjust the darkness and lightness of the gradient
    If you selected Two colors, from the Color 1 and Color 2 pull-down lists, select the other colors you want to use
    If you selected Preset, from the Preset colors pull-down list, select a preset color combination

  5. In the Shading styles section, select the proper shading direction
    Variations of your shading style appear in the Variants section. 

  6. From the Variants section, select the style you prefer
    Your selection appears in the Sample pane.

  7. When satisfied with your selections, click OK

  8. Click OK

return to topAdding Texture

You may decide that you want to add texture to your color. You can choose from the Office preset textures or use a graphic file that you have downloaded or created.

Adding Texture: Preset

  1. Select your shape

  2. From the Ribbon, select the Format command tab

  3. In the Shape Styles group, click SHAPE FILL » select Texture » select the desired texture

Adding Texture: From a File

  1. Access the Fill Effects dialog box

  2. Select the Texture tab

  3. Click OTHER TEXTURE...
    The Select Texture dialog box appears.

  4. Navigate to and select the graphic file you want to use

  5. Click INSERT
    In the Fill Effects dialog box, a preview of your selection appears in the Sample pane.

  6. Click OK

  7. Click OK

return to topAdding a Pattern

Office offers 48 patterns to fill your object. You may choose the background and foreground colors.
NOTE: This option is only available in Word and Publisher.

  1. Access the Fill Effects dialog box

  2. Select the Pattern tab
    Fill Effects dialog box, Pattern tab

  3. In the Pattern section, click a pattern to select it

  4. From the Foreground pull-down list, select a color 
    The Sample reflects your choice.
    HINT: This is the color of the lines or pattern.

  5. From the Background pull-down list, select a color  
    A preview of your texture appears in the Sample pane.
    HINT: This is the color the pattern will appear on.

  6. Continue to adjust your selections until the Sample pane reflects the pattern and colors you want

  7. Click OK

  8. Click OK

return to topAdding a Picture

Office gives you the option of filling your object with an image that you have downloaded or created.

  1. Select your object

  2. From the Ribbon, select the Format command tab

  3. In the Shape Styles group, click SHAPE FILL » select Picture...
    The Insert Picture dialog box appears.

  4. Navigate to and select the desired image

  5. Click INSERT
    The object is filled with the selected image.

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