Creating Style Shortcuts for Word Styles


Believe it or not, this post isn't geared towards developers (although some may benefit from this tip when writing specs). What follows are some handy shortcuts I use when working with Word documents to make it just a little quicker to style some text. I'll start with creating your own styles, follow that up by showing how to create a toolbar button to easily access that style and then top it off by creating a keyboard shortcut to do the same.

To create your own Word style
  1. Assuming you have a Word document open, highlight some text that has some custom styles applied (e.g. text with Bold and Italic styles applied).
  2. On the style toolbar, in the style field, type the name of the new style (Bold/Italic in this instance) and press Enter.
     
To create a Word style toolbar button
  1. Click on the Tools menu and then select Customize.
  2. Click the Commands tab.
  3. In the Categories list, select Styles. The list of styles in the applied document template as well as the styles in the current document will then display in the Commands list in the right pane.
  4. Find the style you want to create a toolbar button for and drag and drop it onto a toolbar in Word.
    Note: You may want to create your own toolbar for your style shortcuts. You can do this by clicking the Toolbar tab and then clicking the New button. After the new toolbar is created, drag and drop the styles you use frequently onto this toolbar.
  5. After dragging and dropping the new style button, right click on it to change its properties. You can choose a new icon for it using the Change Button Image option. If you do this, make sure you select either the Default Style or Image and Text option to display the icon.
  6. Click Close to close the Customize dialog.

To create a keyboard shortcut
  1. Click on the Tools menu and then select Customize.
  2. Click the Commands tab.
  3. Click the Keyboard button at the bottom of the dialog to open the Customize Keyboard dialog.
  4. In the Categories list, select Styles. The list of styles in the applied document template as well as the styles in the current document will then display in the Commands list in the right pane.
  5. Select the style you want to create a keyboard shortcut to (Bold/Italic in this case).
  6. Place your curso in the Press new shortcut key field by clicking on it and then type a shortcut key combination. For this example, I might use something like CTRL+B,I).
  7. Click Close to close the Customize Keyboard dialog.
  8. Click Close to close the Customize dialog.

There you have it. This will shave a few milliseconds off each time you need to style something. If you find yourself using a particular style frequently, which I do, those milliseconds will add up quickly. Let me know if something doesn't make sense and/or I really messed something up.

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