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How to Format Text to Fit a Shape in MS Word

Updated February 21, 2017

Create a shape for text in Microsoft Word by using WordArt. AutoShapes and text boxes let you add text directly into a shape of your choice. You can adjust the colour and size of your shape and rotate, flip or resize it. The text on an AutoShape drops to another line or cuts off when the text is too large to fit its current dimensions. Reduce the font size or resize the AutoShape to make it fit within the specific shape.

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  1. Open a blank or existing document in Word.

  2. Select "View," "Toolbars" and "Drawing" to open the drawing tools. The "Drawing" toolbar will be placed on the bottom of your page.

  3. Select "AutoShapes" from the pane and choose the shape you want to use, such as "Explosion 2" from the "Stars and Banners" group.

  4. Press the "Escape" key once to remove the drawing canvas from your document, then use your mouse to draw the shape onto the page.

  5. Right-click on the shape you added and select "Add Text" from the list of choices. Your cursor will flash within the shape. Type the words you'd like to add within the shape. Your text will move to another line and eventually cut off when you run out of space.

  6. Select the shape in Word and right-click on it. Choose "Format AutoShape" from the list and go to the "Text Box" tab.

  7. Adjust the internal margins for the left, right, top and bottom of the text box, giving yourself additional room for the text.

  8. Place a check mark by "Word wrap text in AutoShape" for that option. To adjust the AutoShape so all the text fits, add a check mark by "Resize AutoShape to fit text." Then press "OK."

  9. To format your text further, select the text in the AutoShape and reduce its font size. To change a font size, click on the "Font Size" button in the "Formatting" toolbar.

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Things You'll Need

  • Microsoft Word

About the Author

Foye Robinson is a freelance writer and Web designer with Precision Web Crafting. She shares her love for family/relationships, fitness and Web design in her writing. Robinson holds a Bachelor of Science degree from Webster University and also writes miscellaneous articles and novels.

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