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When designing your own forms in Microsoft Word, you may occasionally encounter problems in knowing how to create the particular sections or features that you need. With that in mind, today’s SuperUser Q&A post has some helpful solutions for a reader’s Microsoft Word woes.

Today’s Question & Answer session comes to us courtesy of SuperUser—a subdivision of Stack Exchange, a community-driven grouping of Q&A web sites.

Photo courtesy of Phil Parker (Flickr).

The Question

SuperUser reader MathMajor wants to know how to create evenly spaced letter slots for forms in Microsoft Word:

I was not sure how to describe this without a picture, so here is what I have in mind:

how-do-you-create-evenly-spaced-letter-slots-for-forms-in-microsoft-word-01

Is there a way to do this without drawing the lines manually? Preferably, the lines will look just like the ones shown in the image above.

How do you create evenly spaced letter slots for forms in Microsoft Word?

The Answer

SuperUser contributors Atzmon and wilson have the answer for us. First up, Atzmon:

You can create a table that includes the label and all the letter slots, then set the appropriate widths and borders as desired. For example, suppose you want nine letter slots:

  1. Create a table with one row and ten columns
  2. Set the width of the leftmost column wide enough to hold your label (3.5 centimeters, for example)
  3. Set the width of the other nine columns to 0.5 centimeters
  4. Remove the top, left, and bottom borders from the left cell (first column)
  5. Remove the top border from the other nine cells

And there you have it:

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This is what it looks like in Print Preview:

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The advantage of this method is that the user can move from cell to cell using the Tab Key, but cannot accidentally break the structure.

Followed by the answer from wilson:

If you want the vertical lines to have half of the “normal” height, you can split the cells into two rows, have the label span across two rows, and set no border for the first row. The outcome will be quite similar visually to the image provided by MathMajor.


Have something to add to the explanation? Sound off in the comments. Want to read more answers from other tech-savvy Stack Exchange users? Check out the full discussion thread here.