How to Duplicate a Layer in Adobe Illustrator

Copying and pasting an object in Adobe Illustrator does not create a new layer. This is because the duplicated object only remains on the same layer where you are copying from. In this article, learn how to easily duplicate a layer in Adobe Illustrator. how-to-duplicate-a-layer-in-adobe-illustrator-featured-header

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How to Duplicate a Layer in Adobe Illustrator

Duplicating a layer in your artwork or design is an efficient way to keep your work organized and avoid mistakes. Below are simple steps that you can follow if you to duplicate a layer to your design or illustration.

  • Step 1: Make a Layer

    Open a document of your design or illustration. Then, make the first layer where the objects of your work are placed together.

  • Step 2: Drag, Hold and Release the Layer

    If you want to iterate your design, keep it semi-organized, and duplicate layers to avoid crossing over each other and to give you a little more customization in your work, click the layer you want to duplicate and hold it. Drag it to the gray space and you will notice a plus icon with the hand, and release it in the area.

  • Step 3: Drag the Layer to the New Layer Button

    There is another way to duplicate the layer for your work. So, drag the layer you want to duplicate to the New Layer Button located at the bottom right of the Layers panel, and then, you will have a duplicate layer.


What is the shortcut to duplicate a layer in Adobe Illustrator?

If you need to duplicate a selected layer in Illustrator, use either of two keyboard shortcuts: ‘Ctrl+J’ or ‘Alt+(any up/down/left/right arrow)’.

What is a duplicate layer in Illustrator?

A duplicate layer is a new layer with an identical copy of the active layer to the image or design.

How to repeat and duplicate in Illustrator?

Type Ctrl + D until you have a line of duplicates across your canvas or you can repeatedly select Object – Transform – Transform Again.

Why is Ctrl + D not working in Illustrator?

Check if the Ctrl + D is the default shortcut on your computer located in the Keyboard Shortcuts in the Product Area > File Menu.