How to Overlay Images in Word

writing in Word

A good way to place multiple images together in a Word document is to overlay them. This guide explains how.

A picture is worth a thousand words—or so the saying goes. What about more than one image, however?

If you want to place multiple images together in a Word document, but you don’t want to merge them or place them underneath each other, you can overlay them. Overlaying images in Word allows you to place part of each image over (or under) each other.

This is a good way to effectively layer images in your document for an impressive visual effect. If you’re unsure how to overlay images in Word, follow the steps below.

How to Adjust Text Wrapping Options

Before you begin to overlay images together in Word, you’ll need to configure the text wrapping feature to allow it. Text wrapping also affects other objects in your document, including images. Otherwise, Word won’t allow you to place your image above or beneath another one.

If your text wrapping is set to In Line with Text, you’ll need to change this before image overlaying will work.

To adjust text wrapping options for images in Word:

  1. Open the Word document containing your images.
  2. Right-click the image and hover over Wrap Text.
  3. Select one of the text wrapping options but don’t select In Line with Text.
    Word text wrapping options
  4. Repeat these steps for any further images in your document that you want to overlay.

How to Enable Image Overlapping in Word

At this point, Word will theoretically allow images to overlap. However, if you can’t place an image on top of another, you’ll need to configure your image layout options to enable image overlapping.

To enable image overlapping in Word:

  1. Open the Word document containing your images.
  2. Select the image and press the Picture Format tab on the ribbon bar (if it isn’t selected automatically).
  3. Next, press Position > More Layout Options.
    Word picture format options
  4. In the Layout menu, select Position.
  5. Make sure to enable the Allow overlap checkbox.
  6. Press OK to save.
    Allow picture overlap in Word
  7. Repeat these steps for each image you want to overlay in your document.

How to Overlay Images in Word

At this point, your images should overlap. You can use your mouse or touchpad to move your images around your document and drag and drop them on top of each other.

Overlapping images in Word

If you want to re-arrange the position of an image, make sure that it’s in view. Next, right-click the image and press Bring Forward or Bring to Front to move it forward (or to the front). Likewise, press Send Backward or Send to Back to do the same backward.

Send images to the back or front in Word

Troubleshooting Tips for Overlapping Word Images

Have trouble with your images? Are you used to overlaying images in Google Docs and finding that it doesn’t work quite the same in Microsoft Word? Here are some troubleshooting tips you can try. First, make sure you’ve selected the correct text-wrapping option for all of your images.

If the image is still not overlapping the text as desired, try adjusting the wrapping style option to Tight or Through.

Tight or Through text wrapping in Word

Otherwise, try adjusting the image’s position manually—right-click the image and select Size and Position to access this, then use the options in the Layout menu to change the image position.

Setting image position for Word images

If this doesn’t work, try saving and closing the document, reopening it, and attempting to adjust the image. You can also try copying and pasting the image into a new Word document or switch to using a totally different image file altogether—this should rule out pretty much every problem.

You could also upload your document to Google Docs and try your luck there. While the steps above aren’t the same, Google Docs does offer similar functionality for adjusting text wrapping to layer images together.

Creating Impressive Documents in Word

Using the steps above, you can easily adjust the text wrapping options in Word to allow images to overlap properly. If you’re looking to improve your document further, you may also want to consider using Microsoft Editor in Word to check your grammar and style.

Want to make your pages stand out? Consider adding a border to pages in Word to make them stand out better. You can also edit your images in Word directly to annotate them or make further changes without using a third-party tool.

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