Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Word in Microsoft 365. If you are using an earlier version (Word 2003 or earlier), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for earlier versions of Word, click here: Putting Tables within Margins.

Putting Tables within Margins

Written by Allen Wyatt (last updated April 24, 2021)
This tip applies to Word 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Word in Microsoft 365


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Need to know a quick way to make sure a too-wide table fits within the margins of your page? Here's a really easy method:

  1. Position the insertion point anywhere within the table. Word displays a table anchor at the upper-left corner of the table. (This anchor looks like a small box with a four-headed arrow inside of it.)
  2. Right-click on the anchor icon. Word displays a Context menu.
  3. Click on AutoFit. Word displays a submenu. (See Figure 1.)
  4. Figure 1. The Context menu available for a table.

  5. Within the submenu, choose AutoFit to Window.

The result is that each of the column widths of the table is set evenly, with the entire table fitting from margin to margin.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (11646) applies to Microsoft Word 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Word in Microsoft 365. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Word here: Putting Tables within Margins.

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 two less than 3?

2021-04-26 11:39:30

Andrew

AutoFit has the unfortunate side effect enabling the "Automatically resize to fit contents" option. I find this so excruciatingly that I'll typically manually put the margins in the right places and then use the "Distribute columns evenly" command..

Andy.


2021-04-24 05:19:16

Ken Endacott

With autofit to Window the table border will be to the left of the left page margin by the cell left margin of the top left cell. To demonstrate this, right click inside the top left cell and click Table Properties > Cell tab > Options then set the left cell margin to a value such as 1.0, untick Same as the whole table, then OK.

Similarly, the right table border position is determined by the right cell margin of the top right hand cell.

It becomes a little tricky if you want the table borders to be exactly at the left and right margins.


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