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: Freezing Cell Size when Inserting Pictures.

Freezing Cell Size when Inserting Pictures

Written by Allen Wyatt (last updated October 29, 2022)
This tip applies to Word 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Word in Microsoft 365


1

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, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Word in Microsoft 365. 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. ...

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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}] (all 7 characters, in the sequence shown) 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 one less than 8?

2022-11-02 10:20:21

Nick From London

Hi

I use a table to add photographs in engineering reports. This looks very helpful.

I have a macro that lets me change the width of a set of selected shapes and inline shapes.

(see Figure 1 below)

Nick

Figure 1. Macro Screen shot


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