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How to Format Table Borders in Microsoft Word

How to Format Table Borders in Microsoft Word

Here’s how to add, remove, and adjust borders in a Microsoft Word table.

Microsoft Word is an unavoidable productivity tool for many. But whether you’re a day-to-day user or just need them for urgent editing, some common tasks can be confusing.

If you work with tables a lot, we’ll show you how to get a better handle on table borders in Word.

Creating Tables in Microsoft Word

Depending on your choice, Microsoft Word lets you choose whether to adjust your table or add it automatically. Each of these options has its own applications and uses in various scenarios.

As expected, the automatic options offer limited initial control over your table. But useful if you want to make a table with multiple rows and columns work quickly.

Custom options are useful when you need to build a more interactive table with a personal touch.

Take Control of Your Table Borders

So you’ve created a Word document, then sorted and organized your pages as needed. You’ve also inserted your table, but now you want to know how their outlines come. There are several ways to do this.

First, the property that controls the table borders is the Border option at the top of Word’s Ribbon. You’ll see this option under the Table Design tab when you highlight a table, but it’s always on the Home tab too.

On the ribbon, go to Home> Paragraphs and click the down arrow button on the Boundary button. Then select the border of your choice.

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An alternative method is to right click on the table you created and click the down arrow icon on the Borders button. As with the Ribbon, use this to select your preferred outline options.

Note that if you highlight the entire table, the outline options you choose apply to the entire table.

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To apply a border effect to a specific part of the table, highlight only that part. Then repeat the above process to format the border as you wish.

Adding a Border Color and Stylizing a Border

You can also control how your outline appears by adding border colors and thinning or thickening the lines.

To do that, click the Borders button followed by Borders and Shading. Here, choose Color or Width to change the element.

You can also change the outline style by scrolling through the Style options in the Border and Shading window.

If you want to apply this style to specific cells in your table, highlight it first. In the lower right corner of the Borders and Shading window, click the Apply to dropdown menu and select Cell.

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To style each border manually without highlighting the cells, right-click the table. Next, open Border Styles and select the border option of your choice.

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Merging and Unmerging Cells

Another boundary control option is merging table cells. You can join two or more rows or columns by highlighting the ones you want to combine. Then, right click on the table and click Merge Cells.

To split merged cells into their default format, highlight the merged cells. Next, right click on the table and click Unmerge Cells.

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Taking Control of the Border Line is Easy

Manipulating table borders in Microsoft Word is not difficult. But you need a sharp eye to make your table more professional and attractive.

Play around with the several available options, and you’ll find a border style that works for your document in no time.

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