Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 2007, 2010, and 2013. 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: Adding Diagonal Borders.

Adding Diagonal Borders

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated August 31, 2017)


Word allows you to add all sorts of borders to paragraphs, text boxes, and tables. You can place borders on the left, right, top, and bottom of these items. Many people don't realize that when it comes to table cells, you can also place diagonal borders. This means that a border can appear from the top-left to the lower-right corners of a cell, or from the top-right to the lower-left. To take advantage of diagonal borders, follow these steps:

  1. Create your table as you normally would.
  2. Select the cell you want to have the diagonal border.
  3. Display the Design tab of the ribbon. (This tab is only visible if you've done step 2.)
  4. In the Table Styles group, click the down-arrow next to the Borders tool. Word displays a series of border types from which you can choose.
  5. Choose Diagonal Down Border or Diagonal Up Border, as desired.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (12722) applies to Microsoft Word 2007, 2010, and 2013. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Word here: Adding Diagonal Borders.

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 5 + 9?

2015-10-27 01:00:25


Good Tip. Thanks for reminding this feature in Word!

2013-11-18 12:48:52


a fast and easy alternative is to select the cell, right mouse click, choose "borders and shading", then the tab borders, in the pop up window, right side (Preview) in the left and right corner you click on the the diagonal line

2013-11-18 09:19:35


Thanks! I've often wanted to do this (to label the columns and rows of a table) and never knew it was possible. I guess it was hiding in plain sight.

Surendera: I typed a label in the cell using two paragraphs. I right-aligned the first paragraph and left-aligned the 2nd paragraph, and they were a perfect fit.

2013-11-16 15:57:58


This we can do by clicking 'Draw Table' tool in 'Draw Border' Group on the 'Design Tab' and then dragging pen tool type cursor across the opposite corners of a cell, or multiple cells or the entire table.

But What is the use of such a border. The Text is not aligned in in such type of border

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