How to duplicate or copy an object in Illustrator

Duplicating objects in Illustrator makes it easy to create patterns, build complex designs and save endless hours by not having to create the same shapes and graphics over and over again.

As you use Illustrator, you will find yourself copying objects within your projects so often that shortcuts will become second nature to you.

You can duplicate objects and layers within Illustrator in different ways, using simple drag-and-drop techniques or one of several other features within the platform.

In the following, we have described two of the simplest ways to duplicate objects.

Here’s how to do it:

Duplicate objects by dragging:

  1. Select one or more objects
  2. Alt-drag (Windows) or Option-drag (Mac OS) the selected layer.

Duplicate objects using the Layers panel:

  1. Select the layers you want to duplicate in the Layers panel
  2. From the menu at the top right of the Layers panel, select Duplicate «your layer».
  3. Or drag the item in the Layers panel to the New Layer icon at the bottom of the panel.
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