Office Watch

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Text Effects in Word 2003 and Word 2007
Tuesday, July 27, 2010 - Office for Mere Mortals

Word 2003 - WordArt.jpg
 Word 2007 - WordArt ribbon.jpg


Making ordinary texts look extraordinary has been possible for many versions of Word. Alas, the features can make ordinary text look awful – if you’re not careful.

Word 2003

Back in Word 2003 you had WordArt – a limited set of formatting features for text. It’s somewhat hiding under Insert | Picture | WordArt.

Word 2003 - WordArt image from Text Effects in Word 2003 and Word 2007 at

There’s a gallery of choices – most of which have been grossly overused. Choose one that’s near what you want, enter the text, choose a font and size.

To tweak some more, right-click on the WordArt and choose Format | WordArt.

Word 2007

Initially, WordArt seems little different in Word 2007. Under the Insert tab, there’s a WordArt button which opens up the same gallery options as in Word 2003.

The big difference is in the ability and ease of formatting. After you’ve made the initial WordArt object, click on it to see a whole ribbon of options.

Word 2007 - WordArt ribbon image from Text Effects in Word 2003 and Word 2007 at

Some of the options available (from left):

  • Edit Text – opens the initial dialog to set the text, font and text size
  • Spacing – changes the horizontal spacing of the letters.
  • Even Height – makes all letters the same height
  • Vertical Text
  • Alignment – some common options like left, center and right plus Word, Letter or Stretch justification.
  • Styles
  • Color
  • Outline
  • Warp – changes the path that the text takes across the box.
  • Shadow Effects
  • 3-D effects

And finally there’s formatting and positioning options for the entire WordArt box.

The big change is Live Preview which was introduced in Office 2007. With Live Preview you make selections on the ribbon and see those changes immediately appearing in the document.

In a follow up we’ll see how the text effects have been much improved in Office 2010.

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