How do I flip my textbox?
June 25, 2006 11:00 PM   Subscribe

How can I flip text horizontally, without converting it into a picture?

I've been charged with creating invites for our firm ball. I am trying to print the image and text onto transparencies, but in reverse (or mirror image), so that you will look at the shiny "non-printed" side.
Ideally, I'd like to just group my text and image, and flip horizontally. But that seems beyond the capabilities of any of the MS Office products I'm stuck using (Publisher, Powerpoint, Word...) Google seems to confirm that you need to convert the text box into an image to flip it horizontally, which results in a degradation of quality, and the inability to mailmerge the names on the invites (preferred, but not compulsory).

Anyone think of a way around this? I don't have access to Photoshop on our standard office machines, but could probably arrange it if that's easiest. Or is there some simpler way I'm missing to print in reverse?

I figure there must be t-shirt printing Mefites out there who know how!
posted by szechuan to Computers & Internet (10 answers total)
Most printers have an option to flip/rotate/mirror/etc within the printer options.
posted by JPigford at 11:03 PM on June 25, 2006

You could print it on a transparency and then copy that. You'd lose some quality though.
posted by null terminated at 11:10 PM on June 25, 2006

... turn the transparency over before printing?
posted by nathan_teske at 11:33 PM on June 25, 2006

Response by poster: Thanks Jpigford, the print options do indeed have a flip option, but it appears to be grayed out.

nathan_teske, whichever way the transparency goes through the printer, the "shiny" side is the reverse of the print side. I need the image to mirror for this to work.
posted by szechuan at 12:28 AM on June 26, 2006

You could try printing to a PostScript or PDF file and then mirroring that.
posted by Rhomboid at 1:18 AM on June 26, 2006

One thought - perhaps it would be possible to use the mail merge as normal, but insert some user macro code in the "BeforePrint" section of Word, so that the textbox is automatically converted and flipped?

Not sure of the exact syntax required (I'm more of an Excel VBA fella; never got to grips with Word VBA) but I'm sure that there's somewhere out there who can take this "specification" and build something for you :)
posted by Chunder at 1:21 AM on June 26, 2006

You can do it with WordArt (MS Word). Once you have your text in the box, grab one of the middle handles on the side and pull it right across the WordArt box and to the other side. Works for upside down too. Using a corner handle might work but it buggers up both dimensions (height and width) whereas the middle handles just play with one or the other of those.

I don't believe this will work with a textbox.
posted by b33j at 3:44 AM on June 26, 2006

You could copy and paste the text into Corel Draw, flip it and print from there. The older versions of Corel are virtually free, and fun to play with.
posted by weapons-grade pandemonium at 8:38 AM on June 26, 2006

In Corel, if you hold Ctrl when you grab the side and flip, it maintains the proportions.
posted by weapons-grade pandemonium at 8:42 AM on June 26, 2006

Well, it'd be a pain to type out each line of your invitation backwards, but if you did, you could download & use a mirrored font.
posted by neda at 4:05 PM on June 26, 2006

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