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: Borders on Multiple Paragraphs with Differing Indents.

Borders on Multiple Paragraphs with Differing Indents

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated March 19, 2015)

Dirk knows how to add borders around paragraphs, but when paragraphs contain indents (such as with a bulleted list), then the border is also indented which is not good looking at all. Dirk wonders how he can avoid this border indenting and keep his bulleted lists indented.

There are a few ways you can go about solving this problem. Unfortunately, none of those methods include adjusting paragraph or border formatting. (That would be too simple.) If you adjust the paragraph indent of the problem paragraphs—which does cause the border to be correct—it ends up moving your bullets all the way to the left margin. If you adjust the border formatting so that the left-border distance from the text is set to a larger or smaller value, it adjusts for all the paragraphs that are bordered, not just the paragraphs with the bulleted lists.

The only satisfactory method we've been able to come up with involves placing the paragraphs that you wanted bordered within a table cell, a text box, or a frame. Of the three, the frame approach is perhaps the best because the borders on the four sides of the frame can be independently formatted and (more importantly) the frame is treated as part of the actual text, not placed on separate layers as is a table and a text box. One drawback to using a frame is that it can't break across pages, but this may not be that big of a deal for short selections of text.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (12034) 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: Borders on Multiple Paragraphs with Differing Indents.

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

Adding Tags to Text

The Find and Replace capabilities of Word can be used to add HTML tags to your document text. This is easier to do than it ...

Discover More

Using Data Validation

Want to control what users put into a cell? It's easy to do using a feature called data validation, as described in this tip.

Discover More

Specifying Your Target Monitor

When you create a worksheet that is destined for viewing on the Web, you will want to specify the monitor resolution you ...

Discover More

Learning Made Easy! Quickly teach yourself how to format, publish, and share your content using Word 2013. With Step by Step, you set the pace, building and practicing the skills you need, just when you need them! Check out Microsoft Word 2013 Step by Step today!

MORE WORDTIPS (MENU)

Basing Headers and Footers on the Previous Section

Word treats the headers and footers in a document independently, based on the section in which they appear. This means that ...

Discover More

Drop Shadows for Tables

When adding borders and shading to a document's elements, Word allows you to quickly add drop shadows to paragraphs, text ...

Discover More

The Line that Won't Go Away

Have you ever had a line appear on your document that you can't seem to get rid of? It could be due to a built-in ...

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 for this tip:

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. 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 two more than 9?

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.

Links and Sharing