Microsoft Publisher 2010 - Greeting Card

Birthday card with people in background

Westend61/Getty Images

After installing Microsoft Publisher 2010 we wanted to start getting familiar with it by jumping in and creating a simple greeting card using one of the installed templates. We made a few changes, explored the template customization options, the Text Tool Box, and the Backstage View. We discovered a few quirks along the way but creating a basic card is not difficult at all. Take a quick tour and follow along as we make a birthday card in Publisher 2010.

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Publisher Opens by Showing You Templates

Available Templates in Publisher 2010


The very first time we started Publisher after installation it opened with a view of Installed and Online Templates for Flyers.

We found that on subsequent uses that you can set Publisher to either show you a blank template when starting or to show you the New Template Gallery. The Startup options checkbox is found in Backstage View under File > Options > General. This is also where you can customize the Ribbon and Quick Access Toolbar, set AutoCorrect options, add additional languages, and otherwise customize the program for how you work. For this greeting card project, we're using all the default settings for Publisher 2010.

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View Installed Templates

Use the drop-down to show only Installed Templates in publisher 2010


You can choose to view both Installed and Online Templates, just Online Templates, or only Installed Templates using the drop-down menu.

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Available Templates

Publisher has templates for all kinds of personal and business documents.


From the Home position of the New documents, Publisher groups the Most Popular templates together for quick access. That includes Greeting Cards.

There are a variety of template categories for personal projects such as greeting cards, banners, and paper folding projects and lots of business-related templates including business cards, advertisements, resumes, and letterhead.

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Greeting Card Template Categories

Greeting Card Templates in Publisher 2010


Within each category of templates are more subcategories. Publisher 2010 displays a sampling of templates from each sub-category with a folder you can click on to view all the rest.

In addition to all the pre-designed templates, there is a selection of blank templates as well as folders for manufacturers such as Avery. The Avery folder for greeting cards contained a blank template for the greeting card paper we ended up using for this project but we used one of the pre-designed templates instead.

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All Birthday Card Templates

Birthday greeting card templates in Publisher 2010.


After choosing the Greeting Card templates we then chose to view all the Birthday Greeting Card templates.

For this project, we decided to whip up a birthday card. There are 78 Birthday card templates installed.

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Choosing a Greeting Card Template

Using Microsoft Publisher 2010 Initially I chose the Birthday 66 template from the Publisher 2010 template selection


For this birthday card, we chose template number 66.

Sometimes looking at a blank page can be daunting. Looking through dozens of templates can be just as daunting. And once you start playing with the customization features it gets worse. So many choices can be overwhelming.

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Customize the Color Scheme

Using Microsoft Publisher 2010 A Color Scheme change in Publisher 2010 affects all the templates you're viewing.


If you like a template but aren't in love with it, change it. Publisher 2010 offers you pre-set Color schemes and Font schemes you can apply to any template (installed templates only, not online templates).

When you select a template, a slightly larger thumbnail appears in the right side panel above the customization options. However, when you select a new color scheme or font scheme, it affects all the templates in the main window. This is rather convenient if you know you want certain colors but haven't settled on a template layout yet. Get a quick view all at once. Note that the colors affect only certain elements in the template. Some graphics will retain their original colors while other decorative elements, shapes, and text will change to match the selected color scheme.


When you select a color scheme, it follows you around. That is — when starting a new project (even after shutting down and re-starting Publisher) the last color scheme you used will be the one displayed with all the templates. You can, of course, simply select the (default template colors) option to get your colors back.

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Changing Layout Options Affects All Templates

Using Microsoft Publisher 2010 Changing the Layout changes the displayed layout for all the templates in Publisher 2010


While selecting your template you can also change its page size and layout (installed templates only, not online templates).

The greeting cards use a variety of layouts. If you spot a graphic on one template that you like but you prefer a different layout, just choose a new layout from the Options menu. Just like the Color and Font schemes, the layout you choose will affect all the templates you're viewing. We switched to the Image Classic layout for this greeting card.


Unlike the Color and Font schemes, there is no default option for the Layout. Once you apply it, all the templates stay in that layout. You can choose other layouts, but you can't go back to the original view showing a variety of templates with different layouts. The only way to get back to that all-inclusive default view (that I've found) is to shut down and restart the program.

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After Customization, Create Your Card

Screenshot of creating a greeting card in Microsoft Publisher 2010


Once you've selected a template (with or without modifications), click the Create icon to get started making any further changes or additions to your document.

The first page opens in the main window. You can navigate to other pages using the Page Navigation panel on the left.

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Editing Template Text

Screenshot of Microsoft Publisher 2010 Click within the text and start typing to change the template text in Publisher 2010


To change the text in your template, simply click in the text box and start typing.

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Make More Template Changes

Screenshot of Microsoft Publisher 2010 After creating your initial document you can still change the color and font schemes under the Page Design tab


If you decide that you don't like the colors or fonts, you get another chance to change them in the Page Design tab of Publisher.

Color and font changes under the Page Design tab affect the entire document. You don't have to use the pre-set schemes. You can also create your own. For this card, we simply made a few text and font changes.

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Change Text With Text Box Tools

Screenshot of Microsoft Publisher 2010 Edit the font and color for selected text under the Text Box Tools Format tab


To make font and color changes to only some text, use the tools under the Home tab.

To change only the "Happy 30th Birthday!" text we selected it by clicking in the text box and highlighting the text we wanted to change. With the text selected the Drawing Tools and Text Box Tools appear. Click on the Format tab under the Text Box Tools to do things like Emboss the text, change the font and change the font color. Although not used in this project, this is also where you would access the new Ligatures and Stylistic text features of Publisher.

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Backstage View

Screenshot of Microsoft Publisher 2010 The File tab is the Backstage area of Publisher 2010


Under the File tab is where you'll find Save, Print, Help, and other things that you can do with your document that don't involve writing, editing, and formatting.

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Design Checker

Screenshot of Microsoft Publisher 2010 The Design Checker in Publisher 2010 notes that the graphic is falling off the page


Under File > Info is the Design Checker tool.

Before printing a document you can run the Design Checker to look for problems. When we ran the Design Checker on our greeting card it warned us about the graphic that is falling off the front page. In this case, it's not a problem since it is designed to print on the back of the card — which is all on the same side of the sheet of paper. But if you had other problems that might affect how your document would print or what it would look like when sending via email, the Design Checker will alert you so you can fix the problem.

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Print Preview and Print Options

Screenshot of Microsoft Publisher 2010 Under File > Print you can set all your print options


Print Preview and Print options in Publisher 2010 are all in one place — in the Backstage View.

Along with the print preview you get handy menus for selecting paper size, number of copies, and other printing options all on one screen.

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Front/Back Transparency in Print Preview

Screenshot of Microsoft Publisher 2010 Use the slider in upper right to adjust transparency so you can see how front and back sides line up


For double-sided printing, the Front / Back Transparency slider in Publisher 2010 lets you see how things line up.

Once you select Print on Both Sides as a print setting a little slider appears in the upper right corner of the print preview. Slide it to the right and the print preview will show you what's going to print on the other side of the page you're viewing. A great feature for making sure things line up the way you intended.

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Finished and Printed Birthday Card

Screenshot of Microsoft Publisher 2010 The finished, printed, and folded greeting card created in Publisher 2010


Here's our half-sheet side fold greeting card designed from a template and printed from Microsoft Publisher 2010.