Word 2010 Format Painter

The format painter in Word 2010 allows us to copy formatting that is applied to one piece of text and apply it to others. Suppose you spend a while trying different combinations of fonts, sizes and colours for a particular piece of text until you get just the right combination. Instead of having to remember the precise formatting you applied, so that you can then apply it to other places, you can simply copy the formatting.

Let’s look at an example. You can copy the following lorem ipsum text and paste it into your Microsoft Word document:

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit.
Mauris pellentesque libero eu lectus laoreet eu consectetur velit placerat.
Donec rutrum venenatis eros.
Proin a libero id leo pretium aliquam.

Select the first line and then change its font to be something weird! I chose Acme Explosive. Now change the font size to be 18 and the colour to be green. Italicise it to, by pressing ctrl-i.

Imagine that we need to apply the same formatting to the second line, but we can’t remember what that formatting is. Don’t worry, all we have to do is select that first line and then copy the formatting by clicking Home > Clipboard > Format Painter.

Format Painter In Microsoft Word 2010

The format painter brush will then follow your cursor around, letting you know that it’s active. To apply the formatting, select the second line of text. When you release the mouse, the formatting is applied and the format painter tool is turned off again.

But what if we want to apply that formatting to several more pieces of text? At the moment, we’d have to select the first line again, activate the format painter and then select another piece of text – and then repeat the whole cycle again.

Thankfully, there is an easier way.

Select that first line of formatted text again. This time, double click on the format painter button. Then you can keep applying your copied formatting by selecting more pieces of text. To turn off the format painter, press escape or click the format painter button again.