Align or arrange a picture, shape, text box, SmartArt graphic, or WordArt

In this article


Overview of aligning and arranging pictures, shapes, text boxes, SmartArt graphics, and WordArt

In 2007 Microsoft Office system programs, you can align (alignment: The consistent positioning of text, graphics, and other objects. Types of alignment include left, right, and justified.)  objects (object: A table, chart, graphic, equation, or other form of information. Objects created in one application, for example spreadsheets, and linked or embedded in another application are OLE objects.), such as pictures (picture: A file (such as a metafile) that you can ungroup and manipulate as two or more objects or a file that stays as a single object (such as bitmaps).), shapes, text boxes (text box: A movable, resizable container for text or graphics. Use text boxes to position several blocks of text on a page or to give text a different orientation from other text in the document.), SmartArt graphics, and WordArt (WordArt: Text objects you create with ready-made effects to which you can apply additional formatting options.), in the following ways:

  • With other objects, such as when you align the sides, middles, or top or bottom edges of objects.

Objects aligned at the bottom

Objects aligned at the bottom
  • In relation to the entire document — for example, at the top or left edge of a document.

Objects aligned at the top

Objects aligned at the top

Objects aligned to a guide

Objects aligned to a guide

Object aligned to a grid

Object aligned with a corner of a grid
  • By distributing objects so they are an equal distance from each other — either vertically or horizontally, or in relation to the entire document.

Objects distributed evenly

Objects spaced at equal distances from each other

Objects in stack

Stacked shapes showing overlap

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Align a picture, shape, text box, SmartArt graphic, or WordArt

Which program are you using?


Excel

  1. Select the pictures (picture: A file (such as a metafile) that you can ungroup and manipulate as two or more objects or a file that stays as a single object (such as bitmaps).), shapes, text boxes (text box: A movable, resizable container for text or graphics. Use text boxes to position several blocks of text on a page or to give text a different orientation from other text in the document.), or WordArt (WordArt: Text objects you create with ready-made effects to which you can apply additional formatting options.) that you want to align.

If Align options are unavailable, you may need to select an additional object (object: A table, chart, graphic, equation, or other form of information. Objects created in one application, for example spreadsheets, and linked or embedded in another application are OLE objects.).

To select multiple objects, click the first object, and then press and hold CTRL while you click the other objects.

  1. Do one of the following:
    • To align a picture, under Picture Tools, click the Format tab.
      Picture Tools, Format tab
    • To align a shape, text box, or WordArt, under Drawing Tools, click the Format tab.

Drawing Tools, Format tab

  1. In the Arrange group, click Align, and then do one of the following:
    • To align the edges of the objects to the left, click Align Left.
    • To align the objects vertically through their centers, click Align Center.
    • To align the edges of the objects to the right, click Align Right.
    • To align the top edges of the objects, click Align Top.
    • To align the objects horizontally through their middles, click Align Middle.
    • To align the bottom edges of the objects, click Align Bottom.

 Notes 

  • When you align objects relative to each other by their edges, one of the objects remains stationary. For example, Align Left aligns the left edges of all selected objects with the left edge of the leftmost object — that is, the leftmost object remains stationary, and the other objects are aligned relative to it. If you align an object to a SmartArt graphic, the object is aligned to the leftmost edge of the SmartArt graphic, not to the leftmost shape in the SmartArt graphic.
  • Align Middle aligns objects horizontally through the middles of the objects and Align Center aligns objects vertically through the centers of the objects. When you align objects relative to each other by their middles or centers, the objects are aligned along a horizontal or vertical line that represents the average of their original positions. No object necessarily remains stationary, and all of the objects might move.
  • Depending on the alignment option that you click, objects will move straight up, down, left, or right, and might cover an object already located there. If you align your objects and find that they are stacked on top of each other, you can undo the alignment, and then move the objects to new positions before you align them again.

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Outlook

  1. Select the pictures (picture: A file (such as a metafile) that you can ungroup and manipulate as two or more objects or a file that stays as a single object (such as bitmaps).), shapes, text boxes (text box: A movable, resizable container for text or graphics. Use text boxes to position several blocks of text on a page or to give text a different orientation from other text in the document.), SmartArt graphic, or WordArt (WordArt: Text objects you create with ready-made effects to which you can apply additional formatting options.) that you want to align.

If Align options are unavailable, you may need to select an additional object (object: A table, chart, graphic, equation, or other form of information. Objects created in one application, for example spreadsheets, and linked or embedded in another application are OLE objects.).

To select multiple objects, click the first object, and then press and hold CTRL while you click the other objects.

  1. Do one of the following:
    • To align a picture, under Picture Tools, click the Format tab.
      Picture Tools, Format tab
    • To align a shape, text box, SmartArt graphic, or WordArt, under Drawing Tools, click the Format tab.

Drawing Tools, Format tab

  1. In the Arrange group, click Align, and then do one of the following:
    • To align the edges of the objects to the left, click Align Left.
    • To align the objects vertically through their centers, click Align Center.
    • To align the edges of the objects to the right, click Align Right.
    • To align the top edges of the objects, click Align Top.
    • To align the objects horizontally through their middles, click Align Middle.
    • To align the bottom edges of the objects, click Align Bottom.

 Notes 

  • When you align objects relative to each other by their edges, one of the objects remains stationary. For example, Align Left aligns the left edges of all selected objects with the left edge of the leftmost object — that is, the leftmost object remains stationary, and the other objects are aligned relative to it. If you align an object to a SmartArt graphic, the object is aligned to the leftmost edge of the SmartArt graphic, not to the leftmost shape in the SmartArt graphic.
  • Align Middle aligns objects horizontally through the middles of the objects and Align Center aligns objects vertically through the centers of the objects. When you align objects relative to each other by their middles or centers, the objects are aligned along a horizontal or vertical line that represents the average of their original positions. No object necessarily remains stationary, and all of the objects might move.
  • Depending on the alignment option that you click, objects will move straight up, down, left, or right, and might cover an object already located there. If you align your objects and find that they are stacked on top of each other, you can undo the alignment, and then move the objects to new positions before you align them again.

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PowerPoint

  1. Select the pictures (picture: A file (such as a metafile) that you can ungroup and manipulate as two or more objects or a file that stays as a single object (such as bitmaps).), shapes, text boxes (text box: A movable, resizable container for text or graphics. Use text boxes to position several blocks of text on a page or to give text a different orientation from other text in the document.), SmartArt graphic, or WordArt (WordArt: Text objects you create with ready-made effects to which you can apply additional formatting options.) that you want to align.

If Align options are unavailable, you may need to select an additional object (object: A table, chart, graphic, equation, or other form of information. Objects created in one application, for example spreadsheets, and linked or embedded in another application are OLE objects.).

To select multiple objects, click the first object, and then press and hold CTRL while you click the other objects.

  1. Do one of the following:
    • To align a picture, under Picture Tools, click the Format tab.
      Picture Tools, Format tab
    • To align a shape, text box, SmartArt graphic, or WordArt, under Drawing Tools, click the Format tab.

Drawing Tools, Format tab

  1. In the Arrange group, click Align, and then do one of the following:
    • To align the edges of the objects to the left, click Align Left.
    • To align the objects vertically through their centers, click Align Center.
    • To align the edges of the objects to the right, click Align Right.
    • To align the top edges of the objects, click Align Top.
    • To align the objects horizontally through their middles, click Align Middle.
    • To align the bottom edges of the objects, click Align Bottom.

 Notes 

  • To align one object to the slide, click Align to Slide.
  • When you align objects relative to each other by their edges, one of the objects remains stationary. For example, Align Left aligns the left edges of all selected objects with the left edge of the leftmost object — that is, the leftmost object remains stationary, and the other objects are aligned relative to it. If you align an object to a SmartArt graphic, the object is aligned to the leftmost edge of the SmartArt graphic, not to the leftmost shape in the SmartArt graphic.
  • Align Middle aligns objects horizontally through the middles of the objects and Align Center aligns objects vertically through the centers of the objects. When you align objects relative to each other by their middles or centers, the objects are aligned along a horizontal or vertical line that represents the average of their original positions. No object necessarily remains stationary, and all of the objects might move.
  • Depending on the alignment option that you click, objects will move straight up, down, left, or right, and might cover an object already located there. If you align your objects and find that they are stacked on top of each other, you can undo the alignment, and then move the objects to new positions before you align them again.

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Word

  1. Select the pictures (picture: A file (such as a metafile) that you can ungroup and manipulate as two or more objects or a file that stays as a single object (such as bitmaps).), shapes, text boxes (text box: A movable, resizable container for text or graphics. Use text boxes to position several blocks of text on a page or to give text a different orientation from other text in the document.), SmartArt graphic, or WordArt (WordArt: Text objects you create with ready-made effects to which you can apply additional formatting options.) that you want to align.

If Align options are unavailable, you may need to select an additional object (object: A table, chart, graphic, equation, or other form of information. Objects created in one application, for example spreadsheets, and linked or embedded in another application are OLE objects.).

To select multiple objects, click the first object, and then press and hold CTRL while you click the other objects.

  1. Do one of the following:
    • To align a picture, under Picture Tools, click the Format tab.
      Picture Tools, Format tab
    • To align a shape, or WordArt, under Drawing Tools (or under Text Box Tools if you are aligning a text box, click the Format tab.

Drawing Tools, Format tab

  1. In the Arrange group, click Align, and then do one of the following:
    • To align the edges of the objects to the left, click Align Left.
    • To align the objects vertically through their centers, click Align Center.
    • To align the edges of the objects to the right, click Align Right.
    • To align the top edges of the objects, click Align Top.
    • To align the objects horizontally through their middles, click Align Middle.
    • To align the bottom edges of the objects, click Align Bottom.

 Notes 

  • To align objects relative to the page instead of to other objects, click Align to Page.
  • When you align objects relative to each other by their edges, one of the objects remains stationary. For example, Align Left aligns the left edges of all selected objects with the left edge of the leftmost object — that is, the leftmost object remains stationary, and the other objects are aligned relative to it. If you align an object to a SmartArt graphic, the object is aligned to the leftmost edge of the SmartArt graphic, not to the leftmost shape in the SmartArt graphic.
  • Align Middle aligns objects horizontally through the middles of the objects and Align Center aligns objects vertically through the centers of the objects. When you align objects relative to each other by their middles or centers, the objects are aligned along a horizontal or vertical line that represents the average of their original positions. No object necessarily remains stationary, and all of the objects might move.
  • Depending on the alignment option that you click, objects will move straight up, down, left, or right, and might cover an object already located there. If you align your objects and find that they are stacked on top of each other, you can undo the alignment, and then move the objects to new positions before you align them again.

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Arrange objects equal distances from each other

Which program are you using?


Excel

  1. Select at least three objects (object: A table, chart, graphic, equation, or other form of information. Objects created in one application, for example spreadsheets, and linked or embedded in another application are OLE objects.) that you want to arrange equal distances from each other. To select multiple objects, click the first object, and then press and hold CTRL while you click the other objects.

To select objects that are hidden, stacked, or behind text, do the following:

  • On the Home tab, in the Editing group, click Find and Select, click Select Objects, and then draw a box over the objects.
  1. Do one of the following:
    • To arrange pictures equally, under Picture Tools, click the Format tab.
      Picture Tools, Format tab
    • To arrange a group with shapes, text boxes, or WordArt equally, under Drawing Tools, click the Format tab.

Drawing Tools, Format tab

  1. In the Arrange group, click Align, and then do one of the following:
    • To center the objects horizontally, click Distribute Horizontally.
    • To center the objects vertically, click Distribute Vertically.

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Outlook

  1. Select at least three objects (object: A table, chart, graphic, equation, or other form of information. Objects created in one application, for example spreadsheets, and linked or embedded in another application are OLE objects.) that you want to arrange equal distances from each other. To select multiple objects, click the first object, and then press and hold CTRL while you click the other objects.

To select objects that are hidden, stacked, or behind text, do the following:

  • On the Format Text tab, in the Editing group, click Select, click Select Objects, and then draw a box over the objects.
  1. Do one of the following:
    • To arrange pictures equally, under Picture Tools, click the Format tab.
      Picture Tools, Format tab
    • To arrange a group with shapes, text boxes, SmartArt graphics, or WordArt equally, under Drawing Tools, click the Format tab.

Drawing Tools, Format tab

  1. In the Arrange group, click Align, and then do one of the following:
    • To center the objects horizontally, click Distribute Horizontally.
    • To center the objects vertically, click Distribute Vertically.

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PowerPoint

  1. Select at least three objects (object: A table, chart, graphic, equation, or other form of information. Objects created in one application, for example spreadsheets, and linked or embedded in another application are OLE objects.) that you want to arrange equal distances from each other. To select multiple objects, click the first object, and then press and hold CTRL while you click the other objects.

To select objects that are hidden, stacked, or behind text, do the following:

  • On the Home tab, in the Editing group, click Select, click Select Objects, and then draw a box over the objects.
  1. Do one of the following:
    • To arrange pictures equally, under Picture Tools, click the Format tab.
      Picture Tools, Format tab
    • To arrange a group with shapes, text boxes, SmartArt graphics, or WordArt equally, under Drawing Tools, click the Format tab.

Drawing Tools, Format tab

  1. In the Arrange group, click Align, and then do one of the following:
    • To center the objects horizontally, click Distribute Horizontally.
    • To center the objects vertically, click Distribute Vertically.

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Word

  1. Select at least three objects (object: A table, chart, graphic, equation, or other form of information. Objects created in one application, for example spreadsheets, and linked or embedded in another application are OLE objects.) that you want to arrange equal distances from each other. To select multiple objects, click the first object, and then press and hold CTRL while you click the other objects.

To select objects that are hidden, stacked, or behind text, do the following:

  • On the Home tab, in the Editing group, click Select, click Select Objects, and then draw a box over the objects.
  1. Do one of the following:
    • To arrange pictures equally, under Picture Tools, click the Format tab.
      Picture Tools, Format tab
    • To arrange a group with shapes, text boxes, or WordArt equally, under Drawing Tools, click the Format tab.

Drawing Tools, Format tab

  1. In the Arrange group, click Align, and then do one of the following:
    • To center the objects horizontally, click Distribute Horizontally.
    • To center the objects vertically, click Distribute Vertically.

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Applies to:
Excel 2007, PowerPoint 2007, Word 2007