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Add images to your custom Outlook forms

Have you ever wanted to put a face with a name in your Outlook Contacts list? Now you can, with these quick steps.


In this day and age, when business meetings take place online and some client relationships are based entirely on phone calls, it’s nice to be able to put a face with a name. To help you literally personalize your custom Outlook forms, we will explain how to increase the functionality of custom Outlook forms by adding a picture to a Contacts form. This handy image can be used for a person’s picture, a map to the person’s location, or any other visual reference you might need.

Find the right form
Before editing the form, you need to open it in design mode.
  • Open Microsoft Outlook.
  • On the Tools menu, click Forms, and then click Design A Form.
  • In the Design Form dialog box, click the type of form you want to modify (see Figure A).

Figure A

  • Click the Open button, and the form will open in the form Design box, shown in Figure B.

  • Figure B


    Add the image control
    Now you need to add the control so that you can have an image on the form.
  • Click the Control Toolbox (the hammer and wrench icon in the toolbar) to open the Toolbox (see Figure C).

  • Figure C

  • Click the Image button, then click and drag the + icon to draw the image control onto the form (see Figure D).

  • Figure D


    Add the image
    At this point, it is time to add the image you want to display on your Outlook form.
  • Right-click the image control, and then click Advanced Properties (see Figure E).

  • Figure E

  • Double-click the Picture property. Navigate to the Load Picture dialog box and select the image file, as shown in Figure F.

  • Figure F

    • Click OK.
    • Close the Properties box. Your new image should now appear on the form (see Figure G).

    Figure G
    Note: The image control will not automatically resize to the image file. You must resize the image control manually.


    Publish your form
    Only a few steps remain before your new custom form is ready to use.
  • Once your form is configured to your liking, click the Publish Form button shown in Figure H.

  • Figure H

  • Enter a Display name and location for your new form. Since this is a Contact, I chose Contacts from the Look In drop-down menu. Click Publish, and you’re finished (see Figure I).

  • Figure I

  • Upon clicking Publish, you’ll probably get the error message shown in Figure J. This message warns that you have not entered a name or company for this contact. Because you will add this information later, you can ignore this message and click Yes to save and publish the form. The form should disappear, and you should be returned to Outlook.

  • Figure J


    Using the form
    Your custom form is now ready to use.
  • Open your Outlook Contacts folder, and you should see a blank contact as the first entry (see Figure K). The contact is blank because you have not yet added any contact information (name, address, phone, and so on).

  • Figure K

  • Double-click the blank contact to open the form and add the desired information (see Figure L).

  • Figure L

  • Click Save And Close when you’ve entered the contact’s information.

  • That’s all there is to it. Now, whenever you need a visual cue for a client, a map, or a client’s product, you will have one at your fingertips.

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