DreamweaverFAQ.com
Search the site!Search DWfaq.com | Print This PagePrinter Friendly Page
Current: Default | Default: Jay's Firehouse


DreamweaverFAQ.com » Tutorials » Tables » Creating Rules


Q. How do I create a thin line that expands with my text?

A. To create a vertical or a horizontal rule (using tables), use a 1x1 transparent GIF in a cell with a colored background, then force the table to collapse on itself by setting the adjacent table cell to 100%.

Creating Rules with Tables

Know What You Want

Although the question posed is, "How do I create a thin line that expands with my text?" it is quite possible to use rules in other ways. For instance, the lines found on both sides of this tutorial are vertical rules. Following this tutorial I have placed a few other examples of rules.

Obtain a "Spacer"

If you don't already have a spacer, I'll give you this one as a gift.

To download the transparent spacer.gif, (PC) right-click then choose "Save Picture As", or (Mac) Control+Click then select "Save As". You can save this file as anything you like, but shim.gif or spacer.gif are often used simply because Macromedia has used those names when transparent GIF files are automatically created within their products.

Note: If I would have placed a plain 1x1 spacer gif, you never would have been able to find it to save it (well, it would have been tough). What I did was give it a width and height of "20" and a border of "1" so that you could find it, rest assured that it is actually a 1x1 gif.

Pick a Place

First time up, you should try this in a new document. Create a new file and save it in the location of your choice. Once you get the idea down, you can place the text with vertical rule just about anywhere your heart desires.

Create a Table

To get started lets keep it simple and create a 1 row, 2 column table using one of the following methods:

  • Insert» Table
  • Objects Panel» Insert Table
  • (PC) Ctrl+Alt+T
  • (Mac) Command+Option+T

Make your selections as follows:

Tip: The Cell Spacing will create the distance between the rule and the content. To have absolute power over the width of the rule, it is important to have Cell Padding set to "0". It is also important to make sure your </td> tags are located directly after the content in each cell.

You should see:

Insert your cursor in the left cell (to create a left vertical rule). Once you have decided on a color for your rule, change the cell background using the Property Inspector.

Insert an Image

With your cursor in the same (colored) cell, insert an image using one of the following methods:

  • Insert» Image
  • Objects Panel» Insert Image
  • (PC) Ctrl+Alt+I
  • (Mac) Command+Option+I

The image you insert should be your spacer image (1 x 1 transparent GIF)

Apply Cell Width

You need to define the width of the right hand cell (for a left hand rule). Place your cursor in the right hand cell and in the Property Inspector make the width 100%.

I've also set the Horizontal cell attributes to Left and Vertical to Top.

Insert Copy

Now all you have to do is place the Copy (words) in the right hand cell. As your words increase, so will your vertical rule.

If for some reason your rule is not as thin as you would like it to be, make sure your transparent GIF has a width and height set to "1". Also, make sure your </td> tags are on the same line as the cell content, and do not have any spaces preceding them.

::This page last modified 8/13/2013 at 09:37::

Copyright © 2001-2017 DreamweaverFAQ.com All Rights Reserved.
All brands, trademarks, tutorials, extensions, code, and articles are the property of their respective owners.
A production of Site Drive Inc.
Legal Notice | Privacy Policy | Disclaimer & Notice