Easier Table Fill and Stroke Formatting
A lot of new InDesign users (or experienced InDesign users new to working with tables) think that the only way to customize table fills and strokes is via those monstrous Table Options and Cell Options dialog boxes that you access via the Table menu or the Table palette menu.
After all, they have entire panels dedicated to Fill and Strokes of table elements. But unless you need a table-centric sort of feature (like Alternating Fill Color), you can just use the palettes you’re familiar with, like Swatches, Stroke and the Control palette.
To apply a fill color to a table element, select what you want (cell, row, column or the whole table), make sure the Fill icon is “in front” of the Stroke icon in the Tools or Swatches palette, and click on a Swatch name. The selection fills with the color you clicked on. You can adjust the color’s tint from the Tint slider in the palette, too.
To apply a stroke color, use the Swatches palette again, this time making sure the Stroke icon is front of the Fill icon before you click on a color swatch. As long as that Stroke icon is in front, you can change a selection’s stroke weight and style via the Control palette or the Stroke palette.
In fact, when you’ve made a selection in a table, both the Control and the Stroke palette show you a little display of the strokes that your selection will be applied to, just like in the Cell Options dialog box.
As in that dialog box, they’re all active (colored blue) by default. Click on the ones you don’t want your formatting to affect (they turn grey) before you make your formatting changes.