How to insert a watermark into a word document

Written by cathryn chaney Google
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How to insert a watermark into a word document
Place text like "sent," "draft," or "confidential" behind your text with watermarks. (Sent stamp image by jeremyhowell from Fotolia.com)

Originally, a watermark was a pattern or image pressed into a sheet of paper when the pulp was still wet. To see this type of watermark, the reader had to hold the sheet up to the light. In desktop publishing, the term refers to any image that seems to be located behind the body text so as not to obscure the main content. MS Word implements watermarking by allowing the user to insert a picture, photo or piece of text behind the main text. This can be done from the body of the document or from the header.

Skill level:
Easy

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Start Word and open the file to be watermarked.

  2. 2

    Click the "Page Layout" tab from the menu ribbon at the top of the screen in Word 2010 or Word 2007. Find the "Page Background" region of that tab and click "Watermark."

  3. 3

    Choose the desired watermark from the thumbnail list of available images. If you prefer to make your own watermark, click "Custom Watermark" instead. In Word 2007, the option will say "Printed Watermark" rather than "Custom Watermark." Click either "Text Watermark" or "Picture Watermark." Follow the on-screen prompts to choose your picture or enter your text. For picture-based custom watermarks, click the check box for "Washout" to lighten the picture if desired.

  4. 4

    Click the "File" tab in the menu ribbon. Then click "Print" and then "Print Preview." If the watermark does not give the desired effect, click "Cancel" and go back to the "Page Layout" tab to modify the watermark. In Word 2007, click on the "Microsoft Office" button instead of the "File" tab. This is the button in the upper left corner of the screen that has the Microsoft Office logo on it.

  1. 1

    Click on the "Insert" tab from the ribbon menu at the top of the screen in Word 2010 or Word 2007. Find the "Header & Footer" region of that tab and click "Header." After that, click the option for "Edit Header."

  2. 2

    Click the "Header and Footer Tools" tab. Find the "Insert" region of that tab and then click "Picture." Choose the picture you want to use and click "Insert."

  3. 3

    Go to the "Picture Tools" tab. Find the "Arrange" area of that tab and then click "Position."

  4. 4

    Find the group of options listed under the heading "With Text Wrapping." Choose the desired location for the watermark on your document page. Most watermarks are fully centred.

  5. 5

    Leave the "Arrange" area of the "Picture Tools" tab and go to the "Wrap Text" area. Choose the option for "Behind Text."

  6. 6

    Leave the "Wrap Text" area of the "Picture Tools" tab and go to the "Adjust" area. Click the option for "Color." You will see a series of variants of your picture with adjustments to the colour. Choose a version that is sufficiently washed out.

  7. 7

    Go back to the "Header and Footer Tools" tab and click "Close Header."

  8. 8

    Click the "File" tab in the menu ribbon. Then click "Print" and then "Print Preview." If the watermark does not give the desired effect, click "Cancel" and go back to the "Page Layout" tab to modify the watermark. In Word 2007, click on the "Microsoft Office" button instead of the "File" tab. This is the button in the upper left corner of the screen that has the Microsoft Office logo on it.

Tips and warnings

  • The header method will print the same watermark on all pages of the document unless your document contains sections with unique headers. If you want different watermarks on some pages, use section breaks to be able to individualise the headers on those pages. Breaks can be inserted under the "Page Setup" region of the "Page Layout" tab in the main ribbon menu.

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