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Configure spacing between list elements

asked 2015-10-03 20:02:08 +0100

0fficer gravatar image

Hi everyone,

I think my target is not very ambitious, though I simply can't find a solution myself. Hopefully someone of you can help me.

In Writer, I would like to configure the the space between list elements (currently bulleted list in my case, but should be same for numbered lists). I do not want to do this via Format -> Paragraph -> Spacing -> Above Paragraph, because I would like to do this for all my lists. But I tried it to see if this was the right setting to play with and it definitely works for individual entries. So I tried to find the correct Style to define the "spacing above paragraph", but none of them work, except "Default Style" (which, of course, I don't want to change). All others, viz. List, List 1, List 1 Start/Cont./End, List 2, ..., List Contents, List Heading, ..., didn't have any effect at all! Very surprising ...

I can't believe, that this is so uncommon to do, but using styles to define that, I gave up now. Does someone have a clue for me?

Thanks a lot in advance! Regards, 0fficer

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answered 2016-10-07 12:38:37 +0100

ajlittoz gravatar image

All formatting magic in LO Writer is based on styles as you guessed, even more than with other word processors.

For that to work, your paragraphs must be adequately "typed". That's the purpose of the paragraph styles. You give a "paragraph style" to your paragraph either with the paragraph menu in the top tool bar -- single click -- or through the style panel (Format->Styles & Formatting... or F11) -- double click.

Once your paragraph have a specific style, you can change their appearance simultaneously by changing the style definition. The easiest way is right-click on the style name in the style panel, then Modify... in the contextual menu.

Lists can be numbered (Numbering x family of styles) or unnumbered aka. bulleted (List x family of styles).

But, beware, for an obscure reason, List x and Numbering x styles are not associated by default with bullets or numbers. As such, they are just equivalent to Standard style. To get the list property, change the style definition:

  1. Open the style definition,
  2. Go to the Outline & Numbering tab,
  3. Select one of the numbering/bulleting option you'd like (List 1 for bullets will do for any paragraph style and Numbering 1 the same for numbers)
  4. Click OK

List x is the base style for bulleted list. List x Start can be configured if you want different appearance (like more space above) for the first item, likewise List x End for the last one. List 1 Cont. would be used for non-bulleted items related to the previous bulleted one.

Note that the semantics proposed here is only a personal interpretation and you are free to give a different interpretation to the style names.

There are many parameters to customise your lists. The paragraph style will act on spacing above/below, font, stylistic variations, background and borders (but never try to change the left and right spacing otherwise you'll create a real mess -- there is a bug in LO about this property in lists). The numbering style (the fifth icon from the left in the style panel, the rightmost one for style category selection) will allow you to tune left indentation, bullet symbol, automatic insertion and many more.

An important last caveat:

Always refrain from adjusting the appearance from the buttons in the toolbars (such as bold, bullets, indents, ...). This is called direct formatting and takes precedence over the styles. This means that a style change might not be reflected in the document if you applied a conflicting direct formatting.

Possibilities are nearly infinite but it is tricky to master it from the beginning. You are strongly encouraged to read to Writer guide which contains an introduction to styles, though you'll need to experiment to really squeeze LO to get what you want.

If this answer helps, please tick it so that others can find it easily. If you find it valuable, upvote it as soon as you have enough karma.

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If this doesn't deserve an upvote, I don't know what will.

rautamiekka gravatar imagerautamiekka ( 2016-10-07 12:44:05 +0100 )edit

Should also be checked as correct answer.

mark_t gravatar imagemark_t ( 2016-10-08 00:08:02 +0100 )edit

Excellent explanation, you made my day! Thanks!

valkalon gravatar imagevalkalon ( 2018-09-05 18:46:56 +0100 )edit

answered 2016-10-07 04:55:22 +0100

JeffDB gravatar image

My wife wanted a bulleted list such that when a bulleted line word wrapped onto a second line it was single spaced, but that there was about 1.5 spaces between each of the bullet points.

The default was giving single space everywhere including between the bullet points.

I selected her lists and changed the style from the drop down list on the left from "Default" to "Text Body" and that seemed to do the trick.

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Probably any of those styles you mentioned, have programed to not space between paragraphs or to space something you disliked.

Denis J Navas gravatar imageDenis J Navas ( 2018-04-16 01:55:06 +0100 )edit
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Asked: 2015-10-03 20:02:08 +0100

Seen: 2,509 times

Last updated: Oct 07 '16