Using Color in Headers and Footers

Written by Allen Wyatt (last updated June 13, 2020)
This tip applies to Excel 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003


When creating headers and footers for your worksheets, you can modify many attributes used by Excel. When you design a custom header or footer you can click the A tool in the Header or Footer dialog box to select a font or to change other attributes of the font (size, style, etc.).

If you are using Excel 97 through Excel 2003, one thing you cannot change is the color used for the text. Early versions of Excel allowed you to modify header and footer colors, but the capability was removed beginning in Excel 4.0.

If you can't change the color, the only thing you can do is try a workaround. If you are using Excel 97 or Excel 2000, you can simply create your "header" in the first row of your worksheet, and then repeat that row at the top of each printed page. (There is no way to repeat a row at the bottom of a page, so you'd be out of luck for color footers.)

If you are using Excel 2002 or Excel 2003, you can create a color graphic, and then place that graphic into the header or footer. This is often done when you need color in logos and other graphic elements, and you need them to repeat on multiple pages.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (3251) 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. ...

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