To apply a background color to a field using iReport...
1) Click on the field you wish to modify. Open the Properties panel and click on the three dot box located next to the Backcolor option.
2) You can choose a color form the Swatches tab or create your own custom color using one of the other tabs. Click on Ok to apply your changes to the field.
The field color has been changed.
Adding a Field Border
1) Right click on the field you want to add a border to and choose Padding and Borders from the menu.
2) Select your line width, style, and color from the Borders menu and click on Ok to apply the changes to the field.
The border has been added.