Turning Off Overlapping, by Default

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated May 18, 2019)

Len routinely places all of his figures within text boxes. He formats the text boxes so they do not overlap with each other. (He displays the Layout dialog box and, on the Position tab, clears the Allow Overlap check box.) Len would like this setting to be cleared by default, but it always seems to default to allow overlapping. He wonders if there is a way to turn it off entirely.

Unfortunately, there seems to be no way to turn it off entirely—Word just defaults to allow overlapping. You can, however, create a couple of macros that may be helpful. The first sets the overlap setting for a selected text box:

Sub AllowOverlapFalse()
    Selection.ShapeRange.WrapFormat.AllowOverlap = False
End Sub

All you need to do is to create your text box, select it, and then run the macro. You might even want to assign it to a shortcut key so that you can do the task quickly and easily.

The other approach is akin to this first one, but it works on all the text boxes in the document. Thus, you could create all the text boxes you want and then run this macro.

Sub FixTextBoxOverlap()
    Dim s As Shape

    For Each s In ActiveDocument.Shapes
        If s.Type = msoTextBox Then
            s.WrapFormat.AllowOverlap = False
        End If
    Next
End Sub

As you can tell from these macros, text boxes are treated like shapes in the VBA world. This macro makes sure, in stepping through all the defined shapes, that it only affects those that are actually text boxes.

Note:

If you would like to know how to use the macros described on this page (or on any other page on the WordTips sites), I've prepared a special page that includes helpful information. Click here to open that special page in a new browser tab.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (13631) applies to Microsoft Word 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Word in Office 365.

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

Typing Check Marks into Excel

Need to enter a check mark into a cell? There are a number of ways you can get the desired character, depending on the ...

Discover More

ExcelTips: Amazing Array Formulas

Array formulas allow you to accomplish amazing things with your data, including things you cannot do with regular ...

Discover More

Applying the All Caps Format

Want your text to always appear in uppercase, regardless of how you type it? Word allows you to add formatting to your ...

Discover More

Comprehensive VBA Guide Visual Basic for Applications (VBA) is the language used for writing macros in all Office programs. This complete guide shows both professionals and novices how to master VBA in order to customize the entire Office suite for their needs. Check out Mastering VBA for Office 2010 today!

More WordTips (ribbon)

Grouping Images Changes Text Wrap to Inline

When you group images together, Word needs to figure out how to set the text wrapping for the new group. This tip ...

Discover More

Placing Many Graphics in a Document

Word documents can contain more than just text. You can even create documents that contain almost no text at all. This ...

Discover More

Inserting from the Clip Art Gallery Doesn't Work

Ever insert a picture and it won't display in your document? It could be due to some of the display settings in Word. ...

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 four minus 3?

There are currently no comments for this tip. (Be the first to leave your comment—just use the simple form above!)


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.