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It uses Grid Graphics (package grid) to Convert a flextable into a grob object with scaling and text wrapping capabilities.

This method can be used to insert a flextable inside a ggplot2 plot, it can also be used with package 'patchwork' or 'cowplot' to combine ggplots and flextables into the same graphic.

User can vary the size of the elements according to the size of the graphic window. The text behavior is controllable, user can decide to make the paragraphs (texts and images) distribute themselves correctly in the available space of the cell. It is possible to define resizing options, for example by using only the width, or by distributing the content so that it occupies the whole graphic space. It is also possible to freeze or not the size of the columns.

It is not recommended to use this function for large tables because the calculations can be long.

Limitations: equations (see as_equation()) and hyperlinks (see hyperlink_ftext()) will not be displayed.


  fit = c("auto", "width", "fixed"),
  scaling = c("min", "full", "fixed"),
  wrapping = TRUE,
  autowidths = TRUE,
  just = NULL



A flextable object


Reserved for extra arguments


Determines the fitting/scaling of the grob on its parent viewport. One of auto, width, fixed, TRUE, FALSE:

  • auto or TRUE (default): The grob is resized to fit in the parent viewport. The table row heights and column widths are resized proportionally.

  • width: The grob is resized horizontally to fit the width of the parent viewport. The column widths are resized proportionally. The row heights are unaffected and the table height may be smaller or larger than the height of the parent viewport.

  • fixed or FALSE: The grob will have fixed dimensions, as determined by the column widths and the row heights.


Determines the scaling of the table contents. One of min, full, fixed, TRUE, FALSE:

  • min or TRUE (default): When the parent viewport is smaller than the necessary, the various content sizes (text font size, line width and image dimensions) will decrease accordingly so that the content can still fit. When the parent viewport is larger than the necessary, the content sizes will remain the same, they will not increase.

  • full: Same as min, except that the content sizes are scaled fully, they will increase or decrease, according to the size of the drawing surface.

  • fixed or FALSE: The content sizes will not be scaled.


Determines the soft wrapping (line breaking) method for the table cell contents. One of TRUE, FALSE:

  • TRUE: Text content may wrap into separate lines at normal word break points (such as a space or tab character between two words) or at newline characters anywhere in the text content. If a word does not fit in the available cell width, then the text content may wrap at any character. Non-text content (such as images) is also wrapped into new lines, according to the available cell width.

  • FALSE: Text content may wrap only with a newline character. Non-text content is not wrapped.

Superscript and subscript chunks do not wrap. Newline and tab characters are removed from these chunk types.


If TRUE (default) the column widths are adjusted in order to fit the contents of the cells (taking into account the wrapping setting).


Justification of viewport layout, same as just argument in grid::grid.layout(). When set to NULL (default), it is determined according to the fit argument.


a grob (gTree) object made with package grid


The size of the flextable can be known by using the method dim on the grob.


It's important to note that captions are not part of the table itself. This means when exporting a table to PNG or SVG formats (image formats), the caption won't be included. Captions are intended for document outputs like Word, HTML, or PDF, where tables are embedded within the document itself.


# \dontshow{
# }
#> [1] TRUE

set_flextable_defaults( = "Liberation Sans")

ft <- flextable(head(mtcars))

gr <- gen_grob(ft)

png_f_1 <- tempfile(fileext = ".png")
  filename = png_f_1, width = 4, height = 2,
  units = "in", res = 150)
#> agg_png 
#>       2 

png_f_2 <- tempfile(fileext = ".png")
# get the size
dims <- dim(gr)
#> $width
#> [1] 8.25
#> $height
#> [1] 1.763638
  filename = png_f_2, width = dims$width + .1,
  height = dims$height + .1, units = "in", res = 150
#> agg_png 
#>       2 

if (require("ggplot2")) {
  png_f_3 <- tempfile(fileext = ".png")
  z <- summarizor(iris, by = "Species") |>
    as_flextable(spread_first_col = TRUE) |>
    color(color = "gray", part = "all")
  gg <- ggplot(data = iris, aes(Sepal.Length, Petal.Width)) +
      gen_grob(z, scaling = "full"),
      xmin  = 4.5, xmax = 7.5, ymin = 0.25, ymax = 2.25) +
    geom_point() +
    filename = png_f_3, width = 7,
    height = 7, units = "in", res = 150
#> Loading required package: ggplot2
#> agg_png 
#>       2