Summary:

Border Patterns in Illustrator

    ●   Border Design patterns consist of repetitive swirling shapes.


Learn About:

Reflect Blending Modes Swatches

  •   This tutorial is part of the Free Trade Project and/or the CD Cover Design Project.

Other People's Work:

Here are examples of work inspired by this tutorial.

Guillloche example border-patterns-example3.png

Step #1: Open Your Project in Illustrator ~

Open YOUR CURRENT PROJECT in Illustrator

 

 

… (Remember: all these tutorials are intended to be
applied to YOUR PROJECT) …

… make a New Layer

new layer


Step #2: Set Up Your Artboard~

Turn on the Grid by going to: View > Show Grid

… then go to: View > Snap to Grid

… and also Snap to Point.


Step #3: Pen Tool ~

Get the Pen Tool or hit the keyboard shortcut letter (p) …

pen tool

… set the stroke weight to 0.5 pt, Color to Black and the Fill to None.

stroke weight


Step #4: Draw Your First Shape ~

Draw a curve like the one below with 3 anchor points only.


Step #5: Make a Copy of the Shape for Later ~

Using the Selection Tool selection tool and holding down the alt/option key make a copy of the line …

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Move that line way outside and leave it alone - you will use it later …

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Step #6: Reflect the Shape ~

Select the remaining path and go to: Object > Transform > Reflect and select Vertical. Click Copy to make a mirror reflection.

image


Step #7: Blend Tool ~

Select both lines by shift-clicking them …

… then go to: Object > Blend > Blend Options set Specified Steps to approximately 6.

Then go to: Object > Blend > Make or hit the keyboard shortcut: Alt (⌥)+Cmd (⌘)+b

blend lines

You don't have to use these settings! Try other Stuff! EXPERIMENT! Whatever works for U!


Step #8: Oval Shape ~

Select the Ellipse Tool or hit the keyboard shortcut letter (L)

… and make an oval in the middle of everything.

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Step #9: Copy and Paste the Oval Shape ~

With the oval selected, go to: Edit > Copy or hit the keyboard shortcut Cmd (⌘)+c and then go to: Edit > Paste in Front or hit Cmd (⌘)+F.

 

 

 

This makes a copy of the shape and pastes it on top of the other - you just cant see it, but it's there.

 


Step #10: Duplicate the Shape ~

Then select the shape with the Selection Tool selection tool and hold Alt (⌥)/Optionalt optionand squeeze the inner circle down.

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Try squeezing the object without holding Alt (⌥)/Option and see what that does …


Step #11: Select Both Shapes and Blend ~

Select both objects by Shift-Clicking them …

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… and go to: Object > Blend > Make hit the keyboard shortcut: Alt (⌥)+Cmd (⌘)+b again like before.

2 shapes


Step #12: Delete the Bottom Half of the Circle ~

Get the Direct Selection Tool direct selection tool now by hitting the keyboard shortcut letter (a) and select the bottom anchor points of your circle …

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… and hit Backspace/Delete to remove the bottom half of the oval shapes.

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Step #13: Adjusting with the Arrow Keys ~

Using the Direct Selection Tool direct selection tool again, click both inner Anchor Points while holding the Shift key down …

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… now you can adjust the shape with the arrow keys.

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Step #14: Make Another Line ~

Get the Line Segment Tool or hit the keyboard shortcut (\) …

line tool

… set the stroke weight to 0.5 pt, Color to Black and the Fill to None as before

stroke weight

… and draw a short line outside your design somewhere.

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Step #15: Zig Zag ~

Go to: Effect > Distort & Transform > Zig Zag

zig zag

 

 

 

… set the Size and Ridges to whatever you want and set Points to Smooth.

 


Step #16: Expand ~

Go to: Object > Expand Appearance to expand the effect.

expand appearance


Step #17: Copy the Shape ~

Select the line and go to: Edit > Copy or hit the keyboard shortcut Cmd (⌘)+c and then go to: Edit > Paste in Front or hit Cmd (⌘)+F like before …

expanded line

Get the Free Transform Tool or hit the keyboard shortcut letter (E) …

… select the bounding box of the line and resize the height to make it smaller.

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Step #18: More Blend Options ~

Select both lines …

select both lines

… go to: Object > Blend > Blend Options and change the number of Specified Steps to 2 or 3 or whatever, and press OK.

Then go to: Object > Blend > Make or hit the keyboard shortcut: Alt (⌥)+Cmd(⌘)+B and watch what happens …


Step #19: Combine the Shapes ~

Line up the shapes.

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Step #20: Make a New Brush ~

Select all the shapes by dragging with the Selection Tool

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… open the Brushes panel …

brushes panel

… drag and drop your design into the Brushes panel.

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Make sure you select New Pattern Brush.

pattern brush


Step #21: Modify the Brush Settings ~

When this window shows up, name your new brush …

pattern brush options

… change the colorization method from the dropdown menu to Tints …

tint

… and lower the scale to approximately 15 to 25 percent.

scale-pattern-brush-ai.png

You now have a new brush … .

my new brush


Step #22: Corner Pattern ~

Remember the copy of the line you made back in Step #2? If not, just make another one …

remember me

Right-Click on it with the Selection Tool, go to: Transform > Reflect - select Horizontal and hit Copy …

reflect

… line up the two shapes with the down arrow …

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… then select both shapes …

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Right-Click and go to: Transform > Rotate and set it to - 45°

rotate 45


Step #23: Blend the Pattern ~

Right-Click the objects and Group them or hit the keyboard shortcut Cmd (⌘)+g

right click

… then go to: Edit > Copy or hit the keyboard shortcut Cmd (⌘)+c and then go to: Edit > Paste in Front or hit Cmd (⌘)+F like before …

… then hold the Shift Key and squeeze the top down …

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Select both objects by Shift-Clicking them …

… then go to: Object > Blend > Make and blend the 2 shapes together - change the Blend Options to whatever looks good …

blended corner


Step #24: Add the Corner to Swatches ~

Open the Swatches Panel …

swatches

… and drag the corner pattern into Swatches.

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Step #25: Open your Pattern Brush ~

Go back and open your Pattern Brush by Double-Clicking it …

my new brush

… click the Outer Corner Tile box and select your New Pattern Swatch.

pattern brush


Step #26: Apply Your Pattern Brush ~

Get the Ellipse Tool or hit the keyboard shortcut letter (L) …

… and draw an oval shape around your image, or a circular shape …

… and apply the New Pattern Brush to it.

Or draw a Rectangle shape and apply the New Pattern Brush to that.

In fact, you can apply a pattern brush to almost any shape …

star shape pattern brush


Last Step: Save and Attach ~

Save your work as - FIRST_NAME_LAST_NAME_PROJECT_NAME.ai]

Attach it!

  •   ALWAYS save your projects using the following naming convention:
FIRST_NAME_LAST_NAME_PROJECT_NAME

  •   DO NOT name your project any other way - Improperly named projects will not receive credit and you will be sad.

  •   NEVER leave your work on the desktop or depend on a flash drive - instead, save your work in a folder you can find later - preferably on a virtual drive where it can be backed up.