Header and Footer Background Color

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated February 2, 2013)

Leonid asked if there was a way to set a background color for the header or footer of a page. The simple answer is that there isn't such a capability in Excel. There are a couple of ways around the issue, however. For instance, if you are using Excel 2002 or Excel 2003 you can add a graphic to a header or footer. With the right graphic, you can make it appear that the header and footer contain color when, in fact, it is the graphic that contains the color.

Another option is to make "fake" headers and footers. If all you want to do is have a different color header, then you can use the first couple of rows of the worksheet as your header. These rows you could format as desired, including setting the color of the rows. You could then instruct Excel to repeat those rows at the top of every page of the printout (us the Page Setup dialog box for this).

Repeating rows for the footer area becomes more problematic, as Excel doesn't include a feature that allows you to repeat rows at the bottom of each page. Creating a macro to add rows for the header and footer is possible, but it does result in a change to your worksheet—rows need to be added for the fake headers and footers.

As an example, consider the following macro. It assumes that you want one-inch borders on the left and right of the printout, and that you want to print only 46 rows per page. It sets the margins and then steps through the worksheet, adding the fake header and footer rows, as necessary. (Because the macro adjusts the design of the worksheet, make sure you save your worksheet before running the macro.)

Sub FakeHeaderFooter()
    Dim LHeader As String
    Dim CHeader As String
    Dim LFooter As String
    Dim CFooter As String
    Dim CBottom As Integer
    Dim CRow As Integer
    Dim PageSize As Integer
	
    LHeader = "Top Left"
    CHeader = "Top Center"
    LFooter = "Bottom Left"
    CFooter = "Bottom Center"
    PageSize = 46

    With ActiveSheet.PageSetup
        .PrintTitleRows = ""
        .PrintTitleColumns = ""
        .PrintArea = ""
        .LeftHeader = ""
        .CenterHeader = ""
        .RightHeader = ""
        .LeftFooter = ""
        .CenterFooter = ""
        .RightFooter = ""
        .LeftMargin = Application.InchesToPoints(1)
        .RightMargin = Application.InchesToPoints(1)
        .TopMargin = Application.InchesToPoints(0)
        .BottomMargin = Application.InchesToPoints(0)
        .HeaderMargin = Application.InchesToPoints(0)
        .FooterMargin = Application.InchesToPoints(0)
        .PrintHeadings = False
        .Orientation = xlPortrait
    End With

    CBottom = Range("A16000").End(xlUp).Row

    CRow = 1
    Do Until CRow > CBottom
        If CRow Mod PageSize = 1 Then
            Rows(CRow).Select
            Selection.Insert Shift:=xlDown
            Selection.Insert Shift:=xlDown
            CBottom = CBottom + 2

            Cells(CRow, 1).Value = LHeader
            Cells(CRow, 4).Value = CHeader
            Range(Cells(CRow, 1), _
              Cells(CRow, 8)).Interior.ColorIndex = 34
            Range(Cells(CRow + 1, 1), _
              Cells(CRow + 1, 8)).Interior.ColorIndex = xlNone
            CRow = CRow + 2
        ElseIf CRow Mod PageSize = PageSize - 1 Then
            Rows(CRow).Select
            Selection.Insert Shift:=xlDown
            Selection.Insert Shift:=xlDown
            CBottom = CBottom + 2

            Cells(CRow + 1, 1).Value = LFooter
            Cells(CRow + 1, 4).Value = CFooter
            Range(Cells(CRow + 1, 1), _
              Cells(CRow + 1, 8)).Interior.ColorIndex = 34
            CRow = CRow + 2
        Else
            CRow = CRow + 1
        End If
    Loop

    LastPageNumber = PageNumber + 1
    LastRow = LastPageNumber * PageSize
    If CBottom <> LastRow Then
            Range(Cells(LastRow, 1), _
              Cells(LastRow, 8)).Interior.ColorIndex = 34
            Cells(LastRow, 1).Value = LFooter
            Cells(LastRow, 4).Value = CFooter
    End If

    CBottom = Range("A16000").End(xlUp).Row

    CRow = 2
    Do Until CRow > CBottom
        If CRow Mod PageSize = 1 Then
            Cells(CRow, 1).PageBreak = xlManual
        End If
        CRow = CRow + 1
    Loop
End Sub

To change the number of lines per page, just change the value assigned to the PageSize variable. You can also change what appears in the "header" and "footer" area by changing what is assigned to the LHeader, CHeader, LFooter, and CFooter variables.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (3056) applies to Microsoft Excel 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He  is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

MORE FROM ALLEN

Understanding Properties

Most of the objects that Windows makes available in its interface possess properties. These properties allow you to configure ...

Discover More

Using the Fill Handle from the Keyboard

The fill handle can save a huge amount of time when you are editing a worksheet. If you are really good at using the keyboard ...

Discover More

Status Bar Summing No Longer Available

When you select a range of cells, Excel normally displays the sum of those selected cells on the status bar. If the sum no ...

Discover More

Create Custom Apps with VBA! Discover how to extend the capabilities of Office 2013 (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, and Access) with VBA programming, using it for writing macros, automating Office applications, and creating custom applications. Check out Mastering VBA for Office 2013 today!

MORE EXCELTIPS (MENU)

Multiple Line Headers and Footers

When working with headers and footers in a macro, you might find this tip helpful. It describes how you can create headers or ...

Discover More

Putting Headers and Footers On Multiple Worksheets

You can easily create headers and footers for multiple worksheets by working with a selection set of the worksheets you want ...

Discover More

Putting Spreadsheet Names in Headers or Footers

One of the things you can add to your page header or footer is the name of your workbook file name. Here's how to make the ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in ExcelTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.

Comments for this tip:

There are currently no comments for this tip. (Be the first to leave your comment—just use the simple form above!)

This Site

Got a version of Excel that uses the menu interface (Excel 97, Excel 2000, Excel 2002, or Excel 2003)? This site is for you! If you use a later version of Excel, visit our ExcelTips site focusing on the ribbon interface.

Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in ExcelTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.

Links and Sharing
Share