Creating quad fold cards using Microsoft Word – by Jerry Niebaum – December 2008


Take a sheet of 8.5 by 11 inch paper and fold it into 4 equal rectangles. With folds on the left and top as a card would open, number the 4 pages 1 thru 4 as shown in the next diagram.



Now, unfold your page and you will find that the numbers and sequence appear as in the next diagram.



Note that the Front page appears in the lower right quadrant and that the inside pages are upside down, with page 3 in the upper left quadrant. These locations are key to placing your content on the card.


Open a new blank document in Word on your computer. Under the File menu option select Page Setup and adjust all 4 margins to .6 inches then click OK. This step is not essential but helpful.


We are now going to create a   quad fold holiday greeting card using your word processor. Note that all of the printing will be done on the same side of paper. Hence, it will pass through the printer only once.


Step 1 – Design your card. Do you want a picture on the front? Do you want text as well? What is the first thing you want viewers to see when they look at your card? What message do you want to give on the inside of the card? Finally, what do you want to say about the cards creator for the back of the card?


Step 2 – Create the front page of your card. Start by placing your content for the front page (1) in the lower right hand corner of your word processor page. You will find it easiest to use only pictures on your card. This does not imply that you won’t have “words” on the card, but only that we will be using pictures of words for reasons that will be explained. Each picture that you place on your sheet can be formatted to make it easier to position on the page.


On your blank page select the Insert command from the menu. Select Picture and then Clip Art. From the Clip Art task pane enter a subject of your choice in the Search for: line and click on Go. Select one of the Clip Art items and click on it to move it to your word processor page. Click on the picture when it appears on your page. A box is shown surrounding your picture with corners and mid-point handles visible.


To make your picture easily movable on the page, with the picture selected (rectangle around it with 8 handles visible) select the Format option from the menu and select Picture. A Format Picture menu page will appear. Select the Layout option. Then select the Behind Text option and click OK. This option makes it possible to move your picture anywhere on the page and text will show over top of it. Note that the handles have changed from small rectangles to circles. Now move your picture to the lower right hand quadrant of your page. This image is now on the front of your card. Your page should now look something like this:



You can change the size of the picture by clicking any of the 8 handles and moving the mouse. To change the size without changing the ratio of the dimensions, click a corner and slide the mouse. Resize your image to a size that will fit comfortably on the lower right quadrant of your page.


Step 3 – Create the back of your card. From the Word menu select Insert and then Picture and Word Art. The WordArt Gallery menu should appear. Each of our text items will use the WordArt Gallery to create pictures of words. Select one of the choices of WordArt and click OK. An Edit WordArt Text window will appear. Type “Created by (your name here) 2008” and click OK. To easily move this text on the page select Format then WordArt and then Behind Text as you did before with the front page image. Now move your text image to the lower left quadrant of the page, which now should look something like this:

If you want to change the content of your text. Double click on the text picture and the text box reappears.



Step 4 – Create the inside of your card. On your Word page making sure that none of the pictures are selected, select Insert then WordArt and choose the font and design you want to use. Enter your text as you want it to read, inserting a carriage return (Enter) each time you want a new line. After you have entered all of the text click OK. The text picture now appears on your page. Click on it to select it and choose Format then WordArt and then Behind Text so that it can be easily moved on the page. Move it to the upper left hand quadrant of the page. However, you must turn the text upside down so that it will read properly on the card. Note that one of the handles at the midpoint of the top of the selection rectangle is now green. This is the rotation handle. Click and hold that handle and move the mouse to turn the text upside down. The rotation handle should now be at the bottom of the picture. Choose a corner handle to resize the text to fit in the quadrant. Your page should now look something like this:

For this exercise we will leave the upper right quadrant blank. If you want to put a picture or text there please repeat step 4 above noting that you will need to turn it upside down to have it print correctly. You are now ready to print your card.


You can print on regular paper or card stock available at office supply stores. If your card includes pictures you may want to select higher quality print options depending on your print preferences.


Like any skill, your ability to create cards easily comes only with practice. Once your basic card is created,  you can personalize the text by editing the text picture, even if it is upside down. Enjoy the process!