We all love the gorgeous mason storage jars, and the funky storage solutions we find on Pinterest. Many require labels. You might want to paint some chalkboard paint on or buy some stickers, but why not make your own bespoke labels using simple computer programmes like Word or Powerpoint.
Why make your own pretty labels in Word
It’s obvious to me:
- You’re not restricted by themes or colours that are on offer
- You can print off as many as you want, whenever you want.
- There’re different options for sticking them to your storage, or stationery, or photo albums, or whatever item you want them for.
Oh, and they’re probably cheaper than buying labels from online shops that might not be right once you get them home.
I’m a big fan of Microsoft Powerpoint. Until I started work, I’d never used it before, but up until my current job I used it pretty much every day. Word, I’m not so keen on. It mucks up formatting and never does what I want it to. However, what I do in Powerpoint for the purpose of this label tutorial, you can also do in Word. You can obviously use Picmonkey or Canva too, but if you want a sheet of labels all the same to use over and over again, it’s probably quicker to create a tile effect on a page in Word than an online editing websites. Plus for printing out it’s easy to get an A4 page to print out than checking sizing in online software.
How to make your personalised labelsHow to make personalise labels in Powerpoint or Word. Proving you don't need Picmonkey or Canva Click To Tweet
Note: I’m running this through in Powerpoint, but you can easily use the same instructions but in Word.
1. Open Powerpoint, open up a new page.
It doesn’t matter if it’s landscape or portrait orientation, but having your gridlines showing is helpful for lining shapes up. To show gridlines, hit VIEW on the top toolbar and tick gridlines.
2. Pick your label shape.
Click INSERT, SHAPES and choose the shape you want.
You’ll see the cursor change to a cross shape, click on the page, hold and drag to create the shape.
3. Change the colour
If you right click on the shape, you get a choice of short cut buttons. You can change the SHAPE OUTLINE – width, style, colour, and alter the SHAPE FILL. – either changing the colour or removing the fill to just leave the outside edge.
When changing the fill, you can click on either the standard tab to choose set colours, or set your own by clicking custom and using the gradient or changing the RGB number levels. In this way you can match colours to your blog if you’re making a blog badge for example.
4. Overlay another shape to create more detail
You can create another shape the same, but it’s easier to click on the shape you have, right click, copy and paste. Once you have the second shape you can change the colours, or outline, and resize to slightly smaller than the first. Then click and drag the new smaller shape into the middle of the first.
This can be used to have 2 shades of shape, or have the coloured shape underneath and a white inside shape on top.
The example I created had the same colour shape on top, but I changed the second shape outline to be white and dashed.
5. Add text and format
INSERT, TEXT BOX
You probably want just a standard text box, the first one you see if you click the down arrow.
Click and drag the text box over your shape and change the size by clicking on the corner squares to fit.
Click into the text box and type your copy.
Resize by highlighting the text and using the make larger/make smaller icon, or using the font size drop down. You can also change the font the same way from the font drop down.
You may need to play with the font size to make it fit. You can change the size and font of individual letters or words by highlighting just those words first.
If you get funny spacing between rows, use the line spacing icon to adjust.
6. Group all the shapes/text together
To make it easier to work with, you need to group your label together.
In Powerpoint, hold Ctrl, click to the top corner just outside your label, and drag to make the box surround your label. Let go, and all pieces of your label should be highlighted.
In Word, you can’t do this. You’ll need to hold Ctrl, and click on each shape/text/image in turn to highlight them together.
Then, FORMAT, GROUP, GROUP ALL. This will create one grouped label, with a box surrounding it.
Once you have this, you can save it as a picture, or copy and paste it into other pieces of work.
7. As well as text, you can add clip art, or other images to your labels
Add clip art to your shape – right click on the shape, INSERT, CLIP ART. A side bar search will appear, type in an item (I typed in needle), click the one you want, then move it or resize it within your shape using the resize squares when you click on the picture.
You can change the colour of clip art – stick to those that are only one colour.
Right click on the clip art image, FORMAT PICTURE, and you’ll see the full options for formatting a picture. To change the colour choose PICTURE COLOUR.
Fill shape with texture – right click on your shape, SHAPE FILL, TEXTURE, and choose the texture you want.
Right click, FORMAT SHAPE = essential tools for altering shapes & pictures in Powerpoint or Word to make personalised labels. Click To Tweet
8. To make a photo cut out/label
Create a shape, right click, SHAPE FILL, PICTURE, and select the photo you want in the shape. You can adjust the alignment through right clicking, FORMAT SHAPE, FILL and OFFSET.
If you want to print out multiple labels, you can click on the shape, right click copy, right click somewhere else and paste. Copy and paste several (maybe 3 or 4 depending on the size of the labels), then drag them next to each other.
To align them, hold down Ctrl and click on each in turn, click on FORMAT which will have appeared on the top toolbar, ALIGN. First align to top. You may need to resize them to fit across the page.
If they’re on top of each other, move the left and right hand ones out to the sides of the page, Ctrl and click on all of them again, the FORMAT, ALIGN, distribute horizontally. Then you can copy and paste the row of labels underneath, until you fill the page.
Using the labels
If you want to create sticky labels you can buy sticky back paper for printers. The alternative is simply printing on normal paper, then cut out and modge podge the label onto jars, boxes or whatever else. Just a quick layer of modge podge on the surface, put on the label, then more modge podge over the top and let it dry. Just wipe off the excess before it dries.
Using websites to create labels
If you prefer online editing and design, the easiest website is Picmonkey – using overlays and text. I use this for most of my photo editing at the moment, and for designing some pinnable images. You can always resize your own creations in picmonkey which is handy if you need a specific resolution. The alternative is Canva. I’ve never got to grips with it and I don’t find it particularly user friendly but lots of people love it.
Hopefully this tutorial has been helpful. I’ve included a printable label sheet sample – just click on the link, right click and save, then you can print off and use for non-commercial use. Otherwise do let me know how you get on with both making labels and blog badges (which can be done in the same way).
What software do you use to make labels or badges? Any tips?
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