Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. If you are using a later version (Word 2007 or later), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for later versions of Word, click here: Quickly Inserting Tables that Don't Go From Margin to Margin.

Quickly Inserting Tables that Don't Go From Margin to Margin

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated July 23, 2018)

The Insert Table tool is a handy way to create a table in your document. (The Insert Table tool is available on the toolbar.) When you insert a table using this tool, Word assumes you want the table spread over the entire width of your available page. You may not want this in all instances. For instance, you may want the table to be a bit narrower so you can subsequently center it on the page and have it actually stand off from the margins better.

One way to compensate for this default behavior is to always create a table that is one column wider than what you need. For instance, if you need a five-column table, you would actually create a six-column table. The six columns are, of course, spread from margin to margin. Next, just delete one of the columns. What you are left with is your desired five-column table, and it does not spread from one margin all the way to the other.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (873) applies to Microsoft Word 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. You can find a version of this tip for the ribbon interface of Word (Word 2007 and later) here: Quickly Inserting Tables that Don't Go From Margin to Margin.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

MORE FROM ALLEN

Turning the Legend On and Off

When you create a chart in Excel, the program may automatically add a legend that explains the contents of the chart. In ...

Discover More

Comparing Strings

When writing a macro, a common task is the need to compare two strings. You can do this by "normalizing" the strings, as ...

Discover More

Changing Your Printer Settings

Want to change how your printer does its work? You can easily control your printer by modifying the settings maintained ...

Discover More

The First and Last Word on Word! Bestselling For Dummies author Dan Gookin puts his usual fun and friendly candor back to work to show you how to navigate Word 2013. Spend more time working and less time trying to figure it all out! Check out Word 2013 For Dummies today!

More WordTips (menu)

Creating Tables with Specific Column Widths

Create a table and Word figures out column widths by dividing the horizontal space by the number of columns you want in ...

Discover More

Tables within Tables

Inserting a table in a document is easy. Did you know that you can also insert a table within another table? Word allows ...

Discover More

Creating a Table Using the Keyboard

Want to easily add a table to your document simply by typing a few keystrokes? Here's how you can do it in one easy step.

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WordTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.

Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is 2 + 2?

There are currently no comments for this tip. (Be the first to leave your comment—just use the simple form above!)


This Site

Got a version of Word that uses the menu interface (Word 97, Word 2000, Word 2002, or Word 2003)? This site is for you! If you use a later version of Word, visit our WordTips site focusing on the ribbon interface.

Newest Tips
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WordTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.