March 2007 Vol. 12 Issue 1
How to change the size and number of panels in the Publisher brochure template

The Purdue Extension publication templates on the Communication Survival Guide Web site have been quite popular; however, users have been asking, “How can I turn the Publisher template for a tri-fold brochure into a bi-fold brochure?” and “How can I change the brochure’s size?”

The steps below answer these questions and can help you adapt the templates to your needs.

Changing the paper size

Changing the paper size is easy and works with any Publisher template (not just the tri-fold brochure template).

Please note: if you plan to change the paper size and number of columns, it’s a good idea to resize the paper first — after you resize, Publisher automatically resets the number of panels again, so if you’ve already changed this, you’ll have to do it again.

To change the paper size:

1. Go to the “File” menu at the top of your screen and select, “Page Setup”.

2. A box will appear. Select the “Printer and Paper” tab.

3. Under “Paper:” you should see a dropdown menu for “Size.” It’s currently set to “Letter” (that is, a standard sheet of 8.5 x 11-inch paper). Click on the arrow and select the paper you want. “Legal” is 8.5 x 14-inch paper, “Tabloid” is 11 x 17-inch paper. You can also set your own size.

4. Click “OK.” You’ll be asked if you really want to change the size. Unless you’ve changed your mind, click “Yes.” Don’t forget: if you’ve changed the paper size, Publisher will automatically change the number of panels you have (so if you set it to legal size paper, you’ll probably see four panels).

Changing the number of panels

Converting the tri-fold brochure to a two-panel or four-panel format is also pretty easy:

1. Go to the “Arrange” menu at the top of your screen and select “Layout Guides”..

2. A box will appear. Select the “Grid Guides” tab.

3. Find the option for “Columns.” In the template, that’s set to “3” by default. Change it to “2” for a bi-fold brochure, or “4” if you want four panels, etc. Then click OK.

Resizing the Purdue Extension banner

Whether you change the number of panels, the size of the paper, or both, the size of the Purdue Extension banner at the top will be off a bit. That’s easy to fix by resizing it.

You can do that by holding down the SHIFT key and grabbing a corner of the graphic until it fits. Alternatively, you can select the graphic, click on your right mouse button and select “Format Picture” (or “Modify Picture” depending on your version of Publisher). A box will appear. Select the “Size” tab. The size that will fit should be 146 percent. Make sure the “Lock Aspect Ratio” box is checked (this ensures that you don’t distort the banner by stretching or squeezing it).

No matter how you resize the banner, don’t stretch, squeeze, or otherwise distort it. You wouldn’t stretch the U.S. flag to make it fit in a space on your page. You shouldn’t do it with the Purdue Extension identity either.

If you can’t get the “double-headed” banner that’s part of this template look right, then substitute. Copy and paste the “standard” Purdue Extension banner from a standard Publisher template.

Finding more help

When in doubt about how everything should look, refer to the Purdue Extension Style Guide.

You’ll also notice that the text boxes and other graphics are in the wrong places. Don’t panic. You’ll just have to move and resize them according to your new layout. If you’ve used Publisher before, that’s easy.

Kevin Leigh Smith,

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