How to Use Sizing Handles in Excel to Resize Objects

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Sizing handles are used to change the size of objects located in spreadsheet applications such as Microsoft Excel and Google Sheets. These objects include clip art, pictures, text boxes, charts, and graphs.

The instructions in this article apply to Excel 2019, Excel 2016, Excel 2013, Excel 2010, Excel 2007, Excel Online and Excel for Mac.

Find the Sizing Handles

Depending on the object, the sizing handles may be different shapes. The sizing handles may appear as small circles or squares.

Screenshot of Excel showing a shape with sizing handles

Activate the Sizing Handles

The sizing handles are not normally visible on an object. They only appear when an object has been selected by clicking on it once with the mouse or by using the tab key on the keyboard. Once an object has been selected, it is outlined by a thin border. The sizing handles are part of the border.

There are eight sizing handles per object and they are located in the four corners of the border and in the middle of each side. This allows you to resize an object in any direction.

Use the Sizing Handles

When you want to change the size of a picture or a chart, drag a sizing handle until the image is the size you want it. Here's how:

  1. Hover over one of the sizing handles. The mouse pointer changes to a double-headed arrow.

    Screenshot of Excel showing a graph with resizing handles
  2. Drag the handle to increase or decrease the size of the object.

The corner sizing handles allow you to resize an object in two directions at the same time, the length and the width. The sizing handles along the sides of an object only resize in one direction at a time.

Sizing Handles vs. the Fill Handle

The sizing handles are not to be confused with the Fill Handle in Excel. The Fill Handle is used to add or copy data and formulas located in worksheet cells.

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