4 Replies Latest reply on Apr 8, 2012 2:14 AM by GuyStevens

    Printing labels: leave some empty?



      Printing labels: leave some empty?


      Let me sketch the problem: at work we have to print sheets of labels to stick on the boxes when we ship them out to show the customer what's inside. Some orders are small and then we only need 5 labels or so while an entire sheet is 21 labels.

      When I leave the records empty, I still get the annoying tags that get printed ("Product ID:" "Amount per box:" etc.). I tried to fix it but the only solution that worked, was adding extra label fields to every record so when there's not a record for a certain label, it's completely empty instead of it showing the tags but that really adds a lot of needless data into the database.

      Does anyone know a more elegant solution? Right now, I'm making these labels by adding the product IDs to the table view - 21 entries per sheet. Except for the tags remaining (and wasting labels) it's working fine otherwise.

        • 1. Re: Printing labels: leave some empty?

          This is caused by inserting the field descriptors in your merge label. If you use just one calculated field in the merge label as shown below you can get the data you want when the record has the data or just a blank label.

          I'll give a short description:

          Create a calculated field to use as the label field. The calculation resembles:

          PP = pilcrow

          If(isempty(firstfield); "" ; "Product ID: " & firstfield & PP ) &

          if(isempty(secondfield); "" ; "Yadayad: " & secondfield & PP ) &


          if(isempty(lastfield); "" ; lastfield)

          In this example if the field is empty, then there is no label id and no empty line.


          Your merge label then is a one liner:  <<caclulatedfield>

          • 2. Re: Printing labels: leave some empty?

            Wouldn't it be easier to apply conditional formatting to your tags?

            For instance to your ProductId tag you would apply conditional formatting to change the font size to 500 in the condition:

            IsEmpty (Table::ProductId)

            Changing the font size to 500 is essentially the same as making the text invisible. But filemaker doesn't give you an option to hide text or make it invisible. So you need to use a trick.


            Let me know if it works.

            • 3. Re: Printing labels: leave some empty?

              Thanks, I used that  and it worked - oddly enough, there's the option to fill it with "transparency" but instead it fills it with white. What I did instead, is give it a font size of 1 which makes it invisible as well.

              • 4. Re: Printing labels: leave some empty?

                You can experiment with that, I guess you could also set your text color to white in your conditional formatting.

                Normally a printer doesn't print white.

                But I always use the 500 point option.

                It makes your text 500 points in your tiny little box (for instance 18 by 75 pixels) wich makes so large it doesn't show up in that little box.

                Maybe your 1 point text does still get printed.

                Ans if you pront the same label sheet many times all those 1 point prints might start showing up.

                I'm not sure, it might work. I guess you just neet to experiment.