Just as you use text styles to format text, you can use table and cell styles to format tables. A table style is a collection of table formatting attributes, such as table borders and row and column strokes, that can be applied in a single step. A cell style includes formatting such as cell insets, paragraph styles, and strokes and fills. When you edit a style, all tables or cells to which the style is applied are updated automatically.
About table and cell styles
There is one important difference between text styles and table styles. While all character styles attributes can be part of a paragraph style, cell style attributes are not part of the table style. For example, you cannot use a table style to change the border color of interior cells. Instead, create a cell style and include it in the table style.
By default, each new document contains a [Basic Table] style that can be applied to tables you create and a [None] style that can be used to remove cell styles applied to cells. You can edit the [Basic Table] style, but you can’t rename or delete either [Basic Table] or [None].
When you create a table style, you can specify which cell styles are applied to different regions of the table: header and footer rows, left and right columns, and body rows. For example, for the header row, you can assign a cell style that applies a paragraph style, and for the left and right columns, you can assign different cell styles that apply shaded backgrounds.
A. Header row formatted with cell style that includes paragraph style B. Left column C. Body cells D. Right column
Cell styles do not necessarily include all the formatting attributes of a selected cell. When you create a cell style, you can determine which attributes are included. That way, applying the cell style changes only the desired attributes, such as cell fill color, and ignores all other cell attributes.
If a conflict occurs in formatting applied to a table cell, the following order of precedence determines which formatting is used:
Cell style precedence
1. Header/Footer 2. Left column/Right column 3. Body rows. For example, if a cell appears in both the header and the left column, the formatting from the header cell style is used.
Table style precedence
1. Cell overrides 2. Cell style 3. Cell styles applied from a table style 4. Table overrides 5. Table styles. For example, if you apply one fill using the Cell Options dialog box and another fill using the cell style, the fill from the Cell Options dialog box is used.
Table/Cell Styles panels overview
Use the Table Styles panel (Window > Styles >Table Styles) to create and name table styles, and to apply the styles to existing tables or tables you create or import. Use the Cell Styles panel (Window > Styles > Cell Styles) to create and name cell styles, and to apply the styles to table cells. Styles are saved with a document and appear in the panel each time you open that document. You can save table and cell styles in groups for easier management.
When you position the insertion point in a cell or table, any style that is applied is highlighted in either of the panels. The name of any cell style that is applied through a table style appears in the lower left corner of the Cell Styles area. If you select a range of cells that contains multiple styles, no style is highlighted and the Cell Styles panel displays “(Mixed).”
- Select Small Panel Rows to display a condensed version of the styles.
- Drag the style to a different position. You can also drag styles to groups that you create.
- Choose Sort By Name from the panel menu to list the styles alphabetically.
Define table and cell styles
- To define a style shortcut, position the insertion point in the Shortcut text box and make sure that Num Lock is on. Then hold down any combination of Shift, Alt, or Ctrl (Windows) or Shift, Option, and Command (Mac OS), and press a number on the numeric keypad. You cannot use letters or non-keypad numbers for defining style shortcuts.
- To specify the formatting attributes, click a category on the left and specify the attributes you want. For example, to assign a paragraph style to a cell style, click the General category, and then choose the paragraph style from the Paragraph Style menu.
For cell styles, options that don’t have a setting specified are ignored in the style. If you don’t want a setting to be part of the style, choose (Ignore) from the setting’s menu, delete the contents of the field, or click a check box until a small box appears in Windows or a hyphen (-) appears in Mac OS.
Load (import) table styles from other documents
You can import table and cell styles from another InDesign document into the active document. During import, you can determine which styles are loaded and what should occur if a loaded style has the same name as a style in the current document. You can also import styles from an InCopy document.
- In the Load Styles dialog box, make sure that a check mark appears next to the styles you want to import. If any existing style has the same name as one of the imported styles, choose one of the following options under Conflict With Existing Style, and then click OK:
Use Incoming Style Definition
Overwrites the existing style with the loaded style and applies its new attributes to all cells in the current document that used the old style. The definitions of the incoming and existing styles appear at the bottom of the Load Styles dialog box so you can compare them.
Apply table and cell styles
Unlike paragraph and character styles, table and cell styles do not share attributes, so applying a table style does not override cell formatting, and applying a cell style does not override table formatting. By default, applying a cell style removes formatting applied by any previous cell style, but does not remove local cell formatting. Similarly, applying a table style removes formatting applied by any previous table style, but does not remove overrides made using the Table Options dialog box.
In the Styles panel, a plus sign (+) appears next to the current cell or table style if the selected cell or table has additional formatting that isn’t part of the applied style. Such additional formatting is called an override.
Base one table or cell style on another
You can create links between similar table or cell styles by creating a base, or parent, style. When you edit the parent style, any changed attribute that appears in the child styles will change as well. By default, table styles are based on [No Table Style], and cell styles are based on [None].
Edit table and cell styles
One of the advantages of using styles is that when you change the definition of a style, all of the tables or cells formatted with that style change to match the new style definition.
If you don’t want the style to be applied to a selected table or cell, right-click (Windows) or Control-click (Mac OS) the style in the Styles panel, and choose Edit [style name].
In the Styles panel, double-click the style, or select the style and choose Style Options from the Styles panel menu. Note that this method applies the cell style to any selected cell or the table style to any selected table. If no table is selected, double-clicking a table style sets it as the default style for any table you create.
Delete table and cell styles
When you delete a style, you can select a different style to replace it, and you can choose whether to preserve the formatting.
Choose Delete Style from the panel menu.
Click the Delete icon at the bottom of the panel, or drag the style to the Delete icon.
Right-click (Windows) or Control-click (Mac OS) the style, and then choose Delete Style. This method is especially useful for deleting a style without applying it to the selected cell or table.
Redefine table or cell styles based on current formatting
After you apply a style, you can override any of its settings. If you decide you like the changes, you can redefine the style to retain the new formatting.
For cell styles, changes to only those attributes that are part of the cell style will enable the Redefine Style command. For example, if the cell style includes a red fill and you override a cell to use a blue fill, you can redefine the style based on that cell. But if you change an attribute that is ignored in the cell style, you can’t redefine the style with that attribute.
Override table and cell styles
After you apply a table or cell style, you can override any of its settings. To override a table style, you can change options in the Table Options dialog box. To override a cell, you can change options in the Cell Options dialog box or use other panels to change the stroke or fill. If you select a table or cell that has an override, a plus sign (+) appears next to the style in the Styles panel.
You can clear table and cell overrides when you apply a style. You can also clear overrides from a table or cell to which a style has already been applied.
If a style has a plus sign (+) next to it, hover over the style to view a description of the override attributes.
- To apply a table style and preserve cell styles but remove overrides, hold down Alt (Windows) or Option (Mac OS) as you click the style in the Table Styles panel.
- To apply a table style and remove both cell styles and overrides, hold down Alt+Shift (Windows) or Option+Shift (Mac OS) as you click the style in the Table Styles panel.
Right-click (Windows) or Control-click (Mac OS) the style in the Table Styles panel, and then choose Apply [table style], Clear Cell Styles to apply a style and clear cell styles.
- To apply a cell style and remove overrides, hold down Alt (Windows) or Option (Mac OS) as you click the name of the style in the Cell Styles panel.
Only those attributes that are part of the cell style are considered overrides. For example, if the cell style includes a red fill and all other attributes are ignored, changing a different cell option is not considered an override.
Break the link to table or cell styles
When you break the link between tables or cells and the style applied to them, the tables or cells retain their current formatting. However, future changes to that style won’t affect them.