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Creating watermarks

Unless otherwise noted, all instructions and screenshots are from Microsoft Office for Windows.

You’re circulating a draft of a brief — the key word there being “draft.”  You want to make sure no one mistakes it for something that needs to be filed or, worse, has been filed.

Sure, you could scrawl DRAFT in red ink on the top of the first page.  But, hey, you’re too classy for that, right?

Here’s how to put a nice watermark “DRAFT” on every page so nobody’s confused:

  • Go to Format, Background, Printed Watermark.


  • You’ll see a dialog box like this:


  • See “Text watermark” toward the bottom?  Choose that, then choose “DRAFT” from the Text drop-down (or you can type your own text in that box if you prefer).
  • Adjust the font if you want.  (I like Arial Black myself — it can be seen a mile away.)
  • Tip: I’d uncheck that “Semitransparent” box if I were you.  Some printers, especially older ones, don’t really play nicely with that feature.
  • Click OK.

And there you have it — a nice big DRAFT stamped in the background of every page.  Won’t your co-workers be impressed?

(To get rid of it when it’s time to finalize, just go through the first two steps above and choose “No watermark” at the top.  Gone!)

by Deborah Savadra

I spend an inordinate amount of my time playing with computers and attempting to explain technology to lawyers and law office staff. It's not always easy, but someone's got to do it.

WOW – You read that whole post!

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