How to detach an envelope from a document
Word makes it easy to create envelopes for the letters you
In Word 2000 and earlier, open the Tools | Envelopes and Labels
In Word 2002 and 2003, this dialog is accessed via
Tools | Letters
and Mailings | Envelopes and Labels.
In Word 2007 and above, use
Mailings | Create
When you open this dialog and (if
necessary) select the Envelopes tab, the Inside Address in your letter may
already be inserted, especially if you have selected it before opening the
dialog. If not, you can use Ctrl+C to copy the address and Ctrl+V
to paste it into the dialog. Or, if you have access to an Address Book that
works with Word, you can click on the Insert Address button to insert the
address. Word’s Help topic “Create and print a single envelope” explains how to
do all this, and if you use the “Ask a question” box to search for “envelope,”
you will find many other helpful Help topics.
When you have pasted in the delivery address, added a return
address, and selected the other required options (as described in the Help
topic), you can print the envelope immediately, or you can click the Add to
Document button to attach the envelope to your letter (see Figure 1).
Figure 1. Envelopes and Labels dialog showing Add to
This is where a lot of users get into trouble. They may want
to print the envelope with the document and then remove the envelope, saving
only the letter, or they may have created an envelope attached to a blank
document, in order to print multiple envelopes (SASEs, for example), and want to
remove the blank page and save just the envelope. Here’s how to do both:
This is the easier of the two problems. Word inserts the
envelope as a separate section (Section 1, page 0). If you view the document in
Normal view (Draft view in Word 2007 and above), you will be able to see the section break clearly (Figure 2).
Figure 2. Document viewed in Normal/Draft view showing
Select everything from the beginning of the document up to and
including the section break and press Delete. You’ll be back where you
started, with just the letter.
This one is a little more complicated but not at all
difficult. If you know anything about
working with sections, you know that a section break stores information
about the paper size and orientation, margins, etc. These same settings are
stored in the final paragraph mark of the last section of a document. Your
Letter + Envelope document contains two sections. Section 1 is an envelope
(probably in Landscape orientation, with an envelope paper size), and Section 2
is a “letter” (a Letter or A4-sized page). If you try to delete the “letter”
portion of your document (which may be just a blank page), including the section
break, you’ll end up turning your envelope into a “letter.” You don’t want that!
The trick is to turn the “letter” into an envelope. When you
delete the section break, Section 1 is going to take on the formatting of
Section 2, so what you want to do is make Section 2 the same as Section 1.
With the insertion point in Section 1 (the envelope),
open the Page Setup dialog (Figure 3), as follows:
Word 2003 and earlier: On the File
menu, select Page Setup.
Word 2007 and above: On the Page Layout
or Layout tab of the Ribbon, click the dialog launcher in the
bottom right corner of the Page Setup group.
Any version: Double-click at the top of the
Note: You must place the insertion point in the return address in order
to access Page Setup. The delivery address is in a frame, so you cannot
access Page Setup if the insertion point is in the delivery address.
Figure 3. The Page Setup dialog
Without making any changes, click OK. This stores the
settings in that dialog.
Move the insertion point to Section 2 (the “letter”).
Click F4 (Repeat). This “repeats” the action of
choosing the Page Setup settings; your “letter” is now an envelope.
Switch to Normal view and select everything from the end
of the document up to and including the section break; press Delete. You now have only one
section, the envelope.
Save your document.
Another way to create envelopes
Often you need to print multiple copies of an envelope or
save it for reuse. Attaching an envelope to a blank document is not the only way
to create such an envelope. You can also do this by starting from scratch.
Create a new Blank Document.
On the Paper (or Paper Size) tab of Page Setup,
select your envelope size (as in Figure 3).
On the Margins (or Paper Size) tab of Page Setup,
select Landscape orientation.
Change the margins to dimensions that will be suitable
for an envelope; usually 0.38″ all around will be adequate, but, for what
it’s worth, the default envelope margins in Word (when you add an envelope
to a document) are 0.25" Top, 0.4" Left, and 0.5" Right and Bottom. You will
need to be sure the margins are within your printer’s printable area, and
note that the Envelope Address frame is formatted as Bottom Relative to
Margin, so the bottom margin will determine the placement of this frame.
Click OK to exit the dialog.
In the document, apply the Envelope Return style
to the default empty paragraph (see Important Note below). Type your return
address, pressing Shift+Enter
at the end of each line. Press Enter at the end of the return
Figure 4. Envelope showing Envelope Return and
Envelope Address styles
In the new paragraph, apply the Envelope Address
style (see Important Note below). This style includes a frame, which may not be positioned
appropriately if your envelope is a nonstandard size. You can double-click
on the hashed border of the frame to open the Format Frame dialog and
change its size and/or position.
Type an address in the frame, pressing Shift+Enter
at the end of each line.
Save your envelope.
Important Note: To access the Envelope Return and
Envelope Address styles in Word 2003 and earlier, press Shift
while clicking the arrow beside the Style dropdown to force Word to
display all styles. In Word 2007 and above, if you have added the Style dropdown to
the Quick Access Toolbar, you can use the same technique. If you are
using the Styles task pane (Home | Styles | Styles or
Alt+Ctrl+Shift+S), click on
Options… and choose "All styles" under "Select styles to show."
After you have created your envelope template, you can change this setting
back to "Recommended" or whatever setting you were using before.
The above is just a bare outline of the steps required to
create a custom envelope. For more on this subject see the articles “Modifying
the appearance of your envelopes” and “Changing
Word envelope layouts.” You can learn more about how to include graphics in
your return address in “Using
alternative return addresses on envelopes from the Envelope/Label Wizard.”
Graham Mayor also has sample envelope templates on his
This article copyright © 2006, 2008,
2011, 2014, 2018 by
Suzanne S. Barnhill.