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How to Resize a Text Box in Illustrator

written by: Bruce Tyson•edited by: Michele McDonough•updated: 5/30/2010

Text boxes are a powerful feature in Adobe Illustrator, giving users the ability to create complex documents in combination with graphics. Text boxes in Illustrator can be resized and otherwise manipulated to give it the desired look. Here is how to resize a text box in Illustrator.

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    Creating a Text Box

    To get started with this Adobe Illustrator tutorial, let's create a text box in Adobe Illustrator. It doesn't have to be fancy.

    1. First, grab the "Type" tool from the Adobe Illustrator toolbox.

  • slide 2 of 4

    Type Tool 

    2. On the canvas, left click with the "Type" tool and then drag down and to the right to create the text box. Press <Control><T> (Or click "Window" on the main menu, then "Type," and then "Character" to open the "Character" palette.

    Text Box with Character Palette 

    3. Create text! In this example, we type in an excerpt from the Declaration of Independence.

    Text Box with Type 

    Unfortunately, the type in the text box is too big for the box. This is why you need to know how to resize text box in Illustrator.

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    How to Resize a Text Box in Illustrator using the Bounding Box and Selection Tools

    Text boxes in Adobe Illustrator can be resized using their bounding boxes. The size and the shape of the box can be altered to include all the text that has been entered and to create the best visual appeal.

    1. To do this, grab the "Selection" tool from the Adobe Illustrator toolbox.

    Adobe Illustrator Selection Tool 

    2. Click on the text box with the selection cursor to select it.

    Text Box Selected 3. Grab a handle on the box by clicking on it and then dragging to resize (Click "View" and then "Zoom Out" or press <Control>~ezentity_lt+ezentity_gt~ on the keyboard). You may have to re-zoom the window so you can see the whole box on the screen.

    Resizded Text Box 4. You can make other changes to the shape of your text box by using the "Direct Selection" tool. To start, grab the "Direct Selection" tool from the Adobe Illustrator toolbox.

    Direct Selection Tool 5. With the Direct Selection Tool, click on one of the corner handles of the Text Bounding Box and drag the handle to alter the shape of the Text Box.

    Text Box 

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    How to Resize a Text Box in Illustrator Using the Transformation Menu

    Using the handles on the text box to resize the text box is not the only way to resize it. Text boxes in Adobe Illustrator can also be resized by using the transformation menu.

    1. Select the text box with the "Selection Tool" and then click "Object" on the menu bar and then select "Transform," then "Scale."

    Adobe Illustrator Transform Menu 

    2. When the "Scale" window appears, you can resize the text box according to uniform or non-uniform percentages. Enter the percentages you want to use and then click the "OK" button.

    Scaling the Text Box 

    3. You can also scale text boxes in Illustrator by using the "Scale" tool in the tool box. To do this, grab the tool.

    Scale Tool 

    4. Click and drag the box to scale the text in real time. You will notice that you are even able to flip the box on its axes, producing an interesting effect.

    Scaling with the Scale Tool 






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