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How to insert frames into Microsoft Word documents

In MS Word, there are only two ways to box your content: textboxes and frames.

You might not have ever heard of frames. This is because they preceded textboxes.  Newer versions of Word now use text boxes. Although, one can activate and use frames.

Both frames and text boxes have their attributes. However, the capabilities of textboxes exceed those of frames.

Why may textboxes be preferred?

  • They look more organized because you can create links allowing text to flow from one textbox to another.
  • They have an extensive selection of text-wrapping options
  • You can change the alignment and orientation of text in a textbox.

Why may frames be preferred?

Frames can be part of a paragraph-style definition. In addition, they accommodate comments, automatic numbering, endnotes and footnotes.

Similarities

  • Both hold text.
  • Both can have a border (you can add color to it)
  • Both can contain images and other graphical features.
  • Both can have a background fill.
  • Both can be placed within a page margin.

MS Word does not show the Frame feature on the ribbon by design. Therefore, you must first add the Frame functionality to the ribbon to integrate frames into a document. This article will teach you how to activate the Frame feature and insert frames into your document.

  1. Open the document where you want to insert the frame.
  2. Go to the ‘File’ tab on the ribbon.
  1. From the backstage view, select ‘Options.’
  1. Word displays a ‘Word Options’ dialog box.
  1. From the left pane, choose ‘Customize Ribbon.’
  1. Another dialog box opens up when you do this: ‘Customize the Ribbon and keyboard shortcuts.’
  1. On your left, under the ‘Main Tabs’ section, check ‘Developer.’ If it is already selected, leave it.
  1. Click OK.
  2. Go back to the ribbon and select the ‘Developer’ tab.
  1. Under the ‘Controls’ section, choose ‘Legacy Forms.’ The option itself is not written words if you think your Word version does not have this function. Instead, a small briefcase represents it.
  1. When you choose ‘Legacy Forms,’ another box appears on your screen. From it, select ‘Insert Frame.’ It is the fourth symbol from your left.
  1. You will notice that your pointer now appears as a cross. This is to allow you to draw the frame and adjust it to your preferred size.
  1. By design, the frame has a border and is filled. You can adjust the appearance of your frame by right-clicking it and making changes from the contextual menu.

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