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: Smushing Text Together.

Smushing Text Together

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated February 22, 2014)

10

I'll bet you already knew that "smushing" is a technical term, right? It is, I believe, a combination of the words "smashing" and "pushing." In this usage, it simply means to squeeze text together by reducing the distance between characters.

Normally, each font installed on your system has a default distance between characters. This distance is calculated based on the typeface used and on the way the font designer wants the typeface to appear. There are simply times when it is necessary to push text closer together, however. In order to do that, simply follow these steps:

  1. Select the text you want to condense.
  2. Choose the Font option from the Tools menu. Word displays the Font dialog box.
  3. Make sure the Character Spacing tab is selected. (See Figure 1.)
  4. Figure 1. The Character Spacing tab of the Font dialog box.

  5. Using the Spacing drop-down list, choose Condensed.
  6. Using the By control, just to the right of the Spacing drop-down list, specify how much you want your text condensed, in points.
  7. Click on OK.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (1473) 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: Smushing Text Together.

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. ...

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What is 6 - 3?

2017-08-15 20:00:34

Salomon Gerchinhoren

Hi Allen! Any ideas on how to have this command handy?? I deal with this ALL the time, but need to access this easier, if possible... I already use CTRL+D to access the menu, but then I need to set the amount "By" and accept, if this is not what I'm expecting then I need to re-access... Any thought would be EXTREMELY welcomed. Thanks a lot! Salo.


2016-12-18 16:02:26

Donna

Hi
I would like to know when I use the bergamot font with all those designs and I have one at the top and one at the bottom and then I want to print let's say Happy Birthday in the middle. How do I get the two bergamot fonts at the top and bottom closer together so I don't have so much space between the print in the middle and the begarmot fonts? Please can you guide me on how to put these closer together? Let's say I want to do a wedding invitation with bride and grooms names between the bergamot fonts, how do I print the names so the bergamot font at the top and bottom are closer to the names of the bride and groom? Thanks and will be waiting for you reply. This is really driving me nuts. I have been trying but no success.

Donna


2015-12-22 21:05:28

Bret

I used this method to condense Chinese text. Worked perfectly! Thanks!


2015-07-01 10:54:15

Mesheril

How do I smush words on Mac Word? We don't have a box come up when going into fonts - just a list of all the fonts.
The old Apple program AppleWorks was so much better & easy to find 'smushing' options but I've never been able to find it in Office.
Please help. Thanks!


2015-05-16 13:33:12

Wendy

This is exactly what I was looking for! Thank you!!

Any tips to smush text vertically? :)


2014-04-02 12:22:15

shelly coleman

how do i condense separate words together/overlap?


2014-03-07 06:25:54

Mickey

This was a very good tip, I didn't catch the typo, but I went to format out of habit. This is one of those tips that will be worth it's weight in gold when the need arises. Great work Allen


2014-02-22 19:14:50

awyatt

That's a typo, Bill. Step 2 should say "Choose the Font option from the Format menu."

Sorry for the confusion.

-Allen


2014-02-22 12:17:08

charlie

Bill, click Format > Fonts from top toolbar. Adjustment will be in 2nd tab.


2014-02-22 09:26:06

Bill M.

Under the Tools menu I find 15 choices. None are for fonts. There is a choice called "options". Under it there are 10 tabs --none refer to fonts. I have Word2000.
What am I missing?


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