High-Powered Invoice Customization in QuickBooks 2011

Perhaps you've used QuickBooks 2011's Basic Customization dialog box to make some changes to your invoice's appearance. And you haven't been satisfied. Maybe you've gone the extra mile and noodled around with the Additional Customization dialog box to make further changes with your QuickBooks invoices. And even that hasn't left you happy.

If you click the Layout Designer button, which is available in both the Basic Customization and Additional Customization dialog boxes, QuickBooks displays the Layout Designer window, which lets you move invoice information around on the actual printed invoice.

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Here are some of the things that you may want to try:

  • Moving and resizing objects: To move some bit of the form, first select the bit by clicking it. Then use the arrow keys or drag the mouse to move the selected bit. You can resize the selected bit in a similar way. Resize the selected object by dragging the black squares (called resizing handles) that show the object is selected.

  • Selecting objects: To select multiple objects on the invoice, click at a point above the upper-left-most object that you want to select and drag the mouse to a point that is just below the lower-right-most object that you want to select. As you drag the mouse from one corner to the other, QuickBooks draws a rectangle. Any object that's inside this rectangle when you release the mouse gets selected.

  • Resizing multiple objects: You can change the height, width, and size of multiple selected objects by clicking the Make Same Width, Make Same Height, and Make Same Size buttons.

  • Changing column widths: You can change the width of columns in the column area of the invoice form by clicking the Column object. After you do this and QuickBooks selects the columns area, drag the column divider line left or right to resize the column.

  • Positioning text within fields: If you click an invoice object and then click the Properties button, QuickBooks displays the Properties dialog box. The Properties dialog box includes a Text tab that lets you specify how text should appear within an invoice object area.

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  • Changing fonts: You can change the font used for the selected object by clicking the Properties button, clicking the Text tab of the Properties dialog box, and then clicking the Font button that appears on this tab.

  • Adjusting margins: If you click the Margins button, QuickBooks displays the Margins dialog box, which includes a Top, Bottom, Left, and Right text box that you use to specify the margin around the invoice.

Center a selected object on an invoice form by clicking the Center button to activate the Layout Designer. You can click the Zoom In and Zoom Out buttons to see more or less detail.

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