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July 8, 2009

Word Does Envelopes!

Filed under: Main — admin @ 12:01 am

All PC printers come with an envelope slot or feeder. Getting the envelope into the printer doesn’t seem to be any big deal any more. Getting text on the envelope, however, is the big deal.

Like most everyone else, I use Word as my envelope printer. Word has a handy Envelope dialog box, which you can use to fill in the recipient’s address as well as your own return address (if Word doesn’t supply that automatically). It all seems cinchy to set up and do.

Well, it’s all cinchy until you try to change the fonts on the envelope. Then you need to think outside the box. Or, in this case, outside the envelope.

Start by opening a new document in Word: Ctrl+N.

Now summon the Envelopes and Labels dialog box: To get to that dialog box in older versions of Word, choose Tools>Envelopes. In Word 2007, click the Mailings tab, then click the Envelopes button in the Create area.

Type the Delivery address and the Return address (if necessary).

Instead of clicking the Print button, click the Add to Document button. Word inserts the envelope into your document, placing it into a new section.

At this point, the envelope is “attached” to the new document as its own section. You can best see it if you use Print Layout view. You’ll see the envelope looking like an envelope in the window, with the return address and delivery address you typed into the Envelopes and Labels dialog box. Now you can format the thing.

What I do after formatting is to save the envelope as a document, especially if it’s an envelope I plan on printing again.

Some versions of Word attach the envelope as part of a two-page document, and you don’t really need to print the second page. So an even better solution is simply to create an envelope document:

Start a new document.

Open the Page Setup dialog box. In older versions of Word choose File>Page Setup. In Word 2007, double-click on the Ruler.

Click the Paper tab in the Page Setup dialog box and choose Envelope #10 from the Paper Size list. (You’ll have to choose whatever envelope style is used for your country if you’re not in the US.) You’ll see the envelope appear in the Preview part of the Page Setup dialog box. Yes, it’s oriented incorrectly; click the Margins tab and choose Landscape orientation. Click OK.

You now have a one-page envelope “document.” (Again, it looks best in Print Layout view.)

Word sets the return and recipient address into text boxes. You can do that too if you like, otherwise you can just type the addresses and be sure to set the indent margins for the recipient address so that it’s in the proper part of the envelope.

You can also use Shift+Enter to ensure that the address appears on one line after another, instead of with that weirdo space Word inserts between paragraphs.

Save the envelope if you plan on using it again. That’s what I do, especially for letters I send a lot.

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