Create a Gold Seal With Ribbons in Microsoft Word 2010

Want to create a gold seal on your own and add the official-looking shape to some of your documents or certificates? This tutorial will help you create one, step by step. Use these instructions to create a seal with ribbons that you can put on a certificate or use in other kinds of documents. Add it to a brochure design, a diploma, or a poster.

Tasks and Steps in This Tutorial

  1. Get the template for the certificate of your choice.
  2. Set up a new document for use with the certificate template.
  3. Add personalized text to the certificate.
  4. Use Shapes & Text on a Path to create a gold seal with ribbons:
    1. Create seal
    2. Add text to seal
    3. Add ribbons
  5. Print the finished certificate.
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Start With Stars & Banners Shape

Create a Gold Seal

Screenshot/Jacci Howard Bear

The seal starts with a star. Microsoft Word has several suitable shapes.

Insert (tab) > Shapes > Shapes & Banners

Choose one of the star shapes with the numbers in them. Word has 8, 10, 12, 16, 24, and 32 point star shapes. For this tutorial, the 32-point star was used. Your cursor changes to a large + sign. Hold down Shift while clicking and dragging to create the seal in the size you want.

Too big or too small? With the object selected go to Drawing Tools: Format (tab) > Size and change the height and width to the size you want. Keep both numbers the same for a round seal.

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Add Gold Fill

Gold is standard, but you can use any color you want (make it a silver seal, for instance).

With your seal selected: Drawing Tools: Format (tab) > Shape Fill > Gradients > More Gradients

This brings up the Format Shape dialog (or, under just click the little arrow under the Shape Styles portion of the Format tab ribbon).

Select: Gradient fill > Preset colors: > Gold

You could change some of the other options but the default works fine.

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Remove the Outline

With the Format Shape dialog still open, select: Line Color > No line to remove the outline on your star shape.

To remove the outline on your star shape. Or, select Shape Outline > No Outline from the Format tab ribbon.

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Add Another Shape for Dimension

Now, you're going to add another shape on top of your star: Insert (tab) > Shapes > Basic Shapes > Donut

Again, your cursor turns into a large + sign. While holding Shift click and drag to draw a donut shape that's a little smaller than your star shape. Center it over your star shape.

You could eyeball it but for more precise placement select both shapes then choose Align > Align Center under the Format tab ribbon.

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Change Angle of Gold Fill

Repeat step #2, above, to fill the donut shape with the same gold fill. However, change the Angle of the fill by 5-20 degrees. In the demonstration seal, the star has an angle of 90% while the donut has an angle of 50%. 

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Remove the Outline

Repeat step #3, above, to remove the outline from the donut shape.

There you have it now — you have your completed seal. 

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Add Text to the Gold Seal

Add text to gold seal

Screenshot/Jacci Howard Bear

​Start by drawing a text box (Insert (tab) > Text Box > Draw Text Box). Draw it right over the top of your gold seal at the same size as the seal. Type the text. A short 2-4 word phrase is best. Go ahead and change the font and the color now if you want. Also, give the text box shape no fill and no outline under the Format tab ribbon.

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Format the Text

This step will turn your text into a circle of text. With the text selected, go to: Drawing Tools: Format (tab) > Text Effects > Transform > Follow Path > Circle

Depending on your text you might prefer the Arch Up or Arch Down paths which are the top half or the bottom half of a circle.


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Adjust the Text

This is where it gets tricky and depends on some trial and error. The length of your text will vary, but you can do several things to get the text to fit on your seal the way you want.​

  • Adjust the size of the font.
  • Adjust the size of the text box.
  • Adjust the start/end points of your text on a path. With the text box selected look for the little pink/purple diamond shape on the bounding box. Grab it with your mouse and you can move it in a circle that will change where on the circle path your text starts and ends. It also adjusts the font size as needed so that all the text still fits.
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Finalize the Text

If it's almost looking the way you want it but the text on a path is driving you mad, consider just using a simple #1, a graphic image, or perhaps the company logo centered on the seal.

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Add Some Ribbons

Add ribbon to gold seal

Screenshot/Jacci Howard Bear

You could stop with the seal text if you'd like, but adding some red ribbons (or some other color if you prefer) is a nice touch. Here's how to do it using a chevron shape.

The chevron shape when elongated makes a nice ribbon: Insert (tab) > Shapes > Block Arrows > Chevron

Draw the chevron to the length and width that makes a nice ribbon for your gold seal. The default shape is used here but you can make the ribbon points deeper or more shallow. Grab the little yellow diamond on the bounding box around the chevron and drag it back and forth to change the shape. Give it a solid or gradient fill as you wish and no outline. The example ribbon shown has a slight red to black gradient fill.

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Rotate and Duplicate the Shape

 Grab the green ball on the bounding box (your cursor turns to a circular arrow) and rotate the chevron to an angle that you like. Copy and paste another shape then rotate it, moving it up or down slightly. Select both ribbon shapes and group them: Drawing Tools: Format (tab) > Group > Group

Select the grouped ribbons and place them over your gold seal. Right-click the group and Send to Back to put them behind the seal. Adjust their position if needed.

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Add a Shadow

To make the seal stand apart from the certificate and look as if it is a separate item that's attached to it, add a subtle drop shadow. Select only the ribbons and the star shape and add a shadow: Drawing Tools: Format (tab) ​> Shape Effects > Shadow

Try different outer shadows to find the one you like.