Modifying Quick Access Toolbar Images

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated July 27, 2016)


Sarah wondered if it is possible to change the images associated with a button added to the Quick Access toolbar. She rightly notes that in earlier versions of Word you could use a built-in button editor to make changes, but no such tool exists in Word 2007.

As part of their wholesale radical change to the user interface in Word 2007, Microsoft did away with many of the ways that Word users used to modify the user interface. Gone were the simple ways to add items to menus and toolbars, and gone was the button editor you could use to modify the buttons that appeared on toolbars.

It is possible to make changes to how buttons appear on the Quick Access toolbar, but the process isn't as simple as some people would like to assert. In previous versions of Word the customizations were quite easy; not so in Word 2007. (There is rumor that Word 2010 will include capabilities that allow easier customizations.)

To see what I mean, take a look at this article by Word MVP Greg Maxey, which provides a great overview of how you can make changes to button images:

The steps that Greg provides relies upon a tool called the Office 2007 Custom UI Editor. You can find information about this utility here:

If you don't want to use such a utility, there is an outstanding article here:

This article is for users of Excel, but the same techniques apply to Word. (Microsoft used the same general approach to creating Word 2007 documents as it does to creating Excel 2007 documents—they are all stored in XML format now.)

If you take the time to read through these articles, you quickly discover that making changes to user interface buttons is not a task to be undertaken lightly; it is more oriented towards developers and geeks than towards users. You'll want to set aside some time and make sure that you keep backups of anything that you mess around with. You could also take a look at commercial solutions that are available, such as the popular RibbonCustomizer by Patrick Schmid:

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (7401) applies to Microsoft Word 2007.

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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