How to save a color to swatches in Adobe Illustrator

Tim Youngs
Last updated April 20, 2021

When working within Adobe Illustrator, you'll find yourself using the same colors over and over again.

Saving them to your Swatches panel is a great way to keep track of your colors (especially brand colors!) and work more efficiently.

In this mini tutorial, we will cover the basics of saving a swatch in Illustrator.

Here's how to do it:

Saving a New Swatch

  1. Open your Illustrator project file
  2. Select or create a object using the color desired
  3. With the object selected, open the Swatches panel (Window > Swatches)
  4. From the hamburger menu at the top-right of the Swatches panel, choose New Swatch
  5. Create a name for the new swatch and select whether it is a Process Color or Spot Color*, and select color mode

Pro Tip: Make sure the "Global" checkbox is selected when creating a New Swatch. This will allow you to edit the swatch later on if needed, and all objects using that color will update as well!

Editing a Color Swatch

  1. To edit an existing color swatch, simply double-click on the swatch (in the Swatches Panel), and the Swatch Options panel will open
  2. Edit the settings, and click OK
  3. If you are editing a Global color swatch, all shapes and text using that color swatch will update accordingly