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How To Group Pictures And Shapes In MS Word

You can group shapes in MS Word. It’s an easy way to create diagrams and charts in the word processor and manage them all easily. Grouping multiple shapes allows you to apply the same formatting to them in one go, and it’s easier to move them without messing up their order. You can also group pictures and shapes though the method isn’t as straight forward as it is for grouping shapes.

When you group shapes, the option is always there. When you try to group pictures and shapes though, the picture cannot be selected which gives the impression that it isn’t possible to group pictures and shapes. It is, and it’s pretty easy.

Group Pictures And Shapes

Open MS Word and insert a picture in the document. You can insert a picture by dragging & dropping it, or you can use the Insert menu. Next, insert a shape from the Insert menu. Right now, when you try to select both the shape and the picture, it won’t work. This is where the small, extra step comes in.

Move your mouse over the image and you will see the layout button appear. Click it and from the menu that opens, select one of the other layouts. The Square layout is a good choice. Repeat for all pictures that you want to group.

Once you’ve changed the layout, you’ll find you can select both shapes and the picture. Click on a shape, hold down the Shift key, and click the picture. This time, you will be able to select it. Repeat for all other shapes and pictures you want to add to the group. Once they’ve all been selected, right-click one of the selected items and select ‘Group>Group’ from the context menu.

That’s about it. The group border will appear around the pictures and the shapes that you’ve grouped together. You can drag the single group around and move all items within that group at once.

To ungroup the items, select the group and right-click it. From the context menu, select the Group>Ungroup option.

Pictures are normally inserted as in-line objects. This means that they will follow the same alignment settings as that of the text before them. This prevents them from being grouped with shapes which are far more flexible in how they are aligned. This is why you need to first change the layout of the picture so that it can move freely once it is part of a larger group of items.


  1. As usual, this is a BS answer and does not work. MS fuk.ed up this software. It used to be simple to combine pictures and text because I used to create work instructions while working as a quality engineer. As usual, MS fu.ks up their software and makes it completely useless.

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