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How to Create Binder Inserts in Microsoft Word

Updated April 17, 2017

Some three-ring binders come with a clear plastic cover on the front, back and spine. Purchase a new binder or reuse one from a business project or old school report, and personalise it by creating new inserts in Microsoft Word. The standard binder size requires a front and back insert that is 8.5-by-11 inches. If you want a spine insert, make it 11 inches long, with the width the same as the spine width -- typically 1.5 inches, 2 inches or 3 inches.

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  1. Measure the spine width of your binder.

  2. Open Microsoft Word and click "File" and then "New."

  3. Type "Binder" in the box next to "Office.com Templates."

  4. Select the correct spine size insert by clicking it, and then click "Download" to open the spine template in your document window.

  5. Click "File" and then "New" again to choose a template for the front and back cover. Type "Binder Insert" in the search window as before, and download the cover template you choose. You will have to document windows open: one for the spine and one for the cover.

  6. Change the text of the cover or spine template by clicking highlighting the current text and then typing in the new text, which will replace the highlighted area.

  7. Change the colour of the text by highlighting it and clicking the "Home" tab and then choosing a colour from the drop-down menu next to the "Text Color" icon in the "Font" menu. The icon is a capital "A" with a bar of colour -- the current text colour -- below it.

  8. Delete an element you don't want by clicking it and pressing "Delete" on your keyboard.

  9. Insert a new element by opening the "Insert" tab and choosing "Picture," "Clip Art," "Shapes," "Word Art" or "Smart Art."

  10. Save and print your templates. Insert the front and back cover printouts by pulling open the clear plastic sleeve slightly and pushing the paper or card stock into the "pocket" created by the plastic. Cut out the spine with scissors or a paper cutter and insert it into the spine "pocket" of the binder.

  11. Tip

    If it's difficult to push the spine inserts down all the way, try a thicker paper or card stock. Use a knitting needle or butter knife to help push the paper down into the spine. Microsoft Office offers thousands of free templates, including many binder inserts, so if you don't see one you like, search for "Binder" on the Microsoft Office Templates website. Make a binder insert without a template by creating a cover that fits within an 8.5-by-11-inch page and a spine that will print in the dimensions of your spine. Some ideas for personalised binders include: scrapbook, child's artwork keepsake, homework organiser, school report, personal journal, vacation memorabilia book, home appliance and furniture inventory, and warranty file.

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Things You'll Need

  • Ruler
  • Letter-size paper or card stock, white or coloured
  • Scissors or paper cutter

About the Author

Deanne Lachner has been writing and editing fiction and nonfiction for more than 15 years. She has published articles in "Working Women," "Performance Magazine" and the "Direct Selling News." Lachner holds a master's degree in English from Texas Woman's University and is pursuing a second master's degree in instructional design and technology.

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