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: Freezing Cell Size when Inserting Pictures.

Freezing Cell Size when Inserting Pictures

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated November 8, 2014)

2

Al wrote about a problem he was having with inserting graphics into a table. He created a table that had four rows and four columns, and then merged the center four cells. He ended up with one large cell surrounded by twelve smaller cells. When he tried to place a picture into the center cell, his table was thrown all out of whack as the table rows and columns would adjust to accommodate the inserted picture.

This is normal behavior for Word. According to Word's online help system, if you insert a graphic into a table cell, the cell is adjusted to fit the dimensional needs of the graphic. If you don't want Word to do that, then you must format the table so that it won't. This requires two passes through the Table Properties dialog box. Follow these steps:

  1. Right-click on the table and choose Table Properties from the Context menu. Word displays the Table Properties dialog box.
  2. Make sure the Table tab is displayed. (See Figure 1.)
  3. Figure 1. The Table tab of the Table Properties dialog box.

  4. Click the Options button. Word displays the Table Options dialog box. (See Figure 2.)
  5. Figure 2. The Table Options dialog box.

  6. Clear the Automatically Resize to Fit Contents check box.
  7. Click OK to close the Table Options dialog box.
  8. Click OK to close the Table Properties dialog box.
  9. Select the row or rows that will contain pictures.
  10. Right-click on the selected rows and choose Table Properties from the Context menu. Word again displays the Table Properties dialog box.
  11. Make sure the Row tab is displayed. (See Figure 3.)
  12. Figure 3. The Row tab of the Table Properties dialog box.

  13. Select the Specify Height check box, and indicate right next to it the height you want used for the rows that will contain graphics.
  14. Using the Row Height Is drop-down list, choose Exactly.
  15. Clear the Allow Row to Break Across Pages check box.
  16. Click OK.

Now, insert your picture as you normally would. The table will not resize. If the graphic is larger than the available space in the cell, then it is cropped to fit within the cell.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (13299) applies to Microsoft Word 2007, 2010, and 2013. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Word here: Freezing Cell Size when Inserting Pictures.

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

Printing Color Separations with VBA

When printing in color (at a commercial printer) it is necessary to print different colors of your document in different ...

Discover More

Understanding Outlining

Outlining, a feature built into Excel, can be a great way to help organize large amounts of data. This tip provides an ...

Discover More

Errors when Copying References to External Cells

If you copy a cell that contains a reference to external data, do you get an error? It could be due to the complexity of ...

Discover More

Do More in Less Time! Are you ready to harness the full power of Word 2013 to create professional documents? In this comprehensive guide you'll learn the skills and techniques for efficiently building the documents you need for your professional and your personal life. Check out Word 2013 In Depth today!

More WordTips (ribbon)

Differing Column Widths when Pasting

When you move information from one table to another, you may be faced with the problem of making that information fit ...

Discover More

Nudging a Table

When laying out a page, you often need to move objects around to get them into just the right position. Word allows you ...

Discover More

Table Won't Flow to Second Page

Have you ever created a table that never seems to flow to a second page, even when it should? This could be caused by any ...

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

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. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. 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 six minus 3?

2014-11-11 02:02:57

Dave

Can't believe I didn't see this. Now, how do you take this check mark off so that if you don't want this function to work all the time.


2014-11-10 02:46:17

Pietzke@Ferchau.Bremen

Great!
More and more templates from France use tables instead of paragraphs and by that more and more colleagues have exactly this problem. Good tip!
Pietzke


This Site

Got a version of Word that uses the ribbon interface (Word 2007 or later)? This site is for you! If you use an earlier version of Word, visit our WordTips site focusing on the menu 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.