Badges have a unique place in the marketing business. Due to their eye-catching quality, they grab the viewer’s attention instantaneously. There is no shortage of stock badge resources on the web, but it’s always better to create your own and tailor it to suit your exact needs. Today we’ll create a compelling discount badge in Illustrator.
In this tutorial, I am going to walk you through the full process of designing a colorful discount badge from scratch. Along the way, you’ll learn the use of various tools in Illustrator like shape tools, pen tools, etc. You will also learn how to bend text into a circular shape and much more. So, let’s get started!
Final result: (To download the completed, layered file, click here.)
Create a new document in Illustrator with a 600px width and a 400px height. Select RBG as your color mode.
Select color #0ABC99 as your fill and use color #6D6E71 as your stroke. Choose a 0.5pt stroke weight in the top properties bar. Now, draw an ellipse using the ellipse tool. Hold the Shift key while drawing the shape to get a perfect circle. Label this shape “base.”
Select the ellipse layer, click on the options panel at the top-right corner of the layers panel, and choose “duplicate layer.” Select the duplicated layer now by clicking the ring-shaped target on the right side of that layer. Set your stroke to “none,” and apply the “dashed lines” pattern as the fill. Open the swatches window by going to “Window” > “Swatches.” Now, open the swatch libraries menu from the bottom-left corner of the swatches window and choose “Patterns” > “Basic Graphics” > “Basic Graphics Textures.” Pick the “dashed lines” pattern from these textures.
Select the textured layer by pressing the ring-shaped target. Change the blending mode of this layer to “overlay” and reduce its opacity to 30%.
I want to add some thickness to the base. To achieve this, duplicate the base layer, change its fill color to #065B4B, place it below the original base layer, and drag it a bit downward to create a subtle shadow.
Next, we’ll decorate the center of the badge. Create a new layer, pick #231F20 as your fill color, and select the star tool. Now, left-click the document and use the given settings to draw the shape as shown below.
Duplicate this new shape, change its color to #BCB3AC, and drag it slightly downward after placing it below the original layer.
Create a new layer at top. Set your fill color to none and set a stroke of #BCAC9B with a 1pt weight. Now, draw the shape shown below using the following star tool settings.
Select this new shape layer and go to “Effect” > “Distort & Transform” > “Pucker & Bloat.” Use the following settings here.
Slightly reduce the shape size using the selection tool (“V”) and change its blending mode to “overlay.”
Next, we’ll make a circular stroke. Create a new layer, set the fill to none, and set a stroke using color #096654. Select a 1pt stroke weight and the width profile shown below from the top properties bar. Now, select the ellipse tool and draw a circle as shown below.
Make another smaller stroke using the same technique.
Next, we’ll draw the front of the ribbon using the pen tool. Once you are done, apply the “analogous 5” gradient to it. You can find it in the swatch libraries menu by selecting “Gradients” > “Color Harmonies.”
Now, draw the following shape using the pen tool and #E8D8C4 as your fill color.
Duplicate this pattern layer and go to “Object” > “Transform” > “Rotate.” Rotate it by 180⁰ and position it over the right edge of the ribbon. Reduce the pattern layer’s opacity to 30%.
Now, we’ll make the backside of the ribbon. Draw the following triangular shape below the rest of the layers using the pen tool with #1E1E1E as your fill color. Duplicate and rotate the shape 180⁰.
Draw the ribbon side using the pen tool and position it below the rest of the layers. Apply the same “analogous 5” gradient to it, but change its angle to 46⁰ according to the tilt on the ribbon side shape.
Duplicate this layer and rotate it 180⁰. Position it over the other side of the badge.
Now, I’ll show you how to type text in a circular shape in Illustrator. Draw an ellipse on a new layer in front of the others. Now, select the “type on a path tool” and click on the top edge of the circle. The circle will convert into a path. After that, type in the desired text. I am using the “Century Schoolbook” font here with #EF4F07 as my fill color.
To position it properly, select the rotate tool (“R”) and drag the text into position.
Now, select the text layer and go to “Effect” > “Stylize” > “Inner Glow.” Use the following values here.
Draw few stars and arrange them as shown below. Use the same color and inner glow settings for the stars that we used for the text.
To add text within the lower arch, select the previous text path, press Ctrl + “C” to copy it, and then press Ctrl + “F” to paste it in front. Now, go to “Type” > “Type on a path” > “Type on a path options.” Use the following settings here.
Replace the text on this flipped text layer. I am going to use the same font as before. Decrease the size of the font a bit. Now, select the rotate tool (“R”) and simply drag this text in the direction shown below. I’ve dragged it slightly downward as well so that it fits between the circular strokes.
Now, change the fill color of the lower arched text to #4F4F4F.
Next, we’ll add text over the ribbon. Select the type tool and type in the desired text. I’ve used #ECEDD9 as my fill color and “Androgyne” as my font. Once you are done, rotate the text layer using selection tool (“V”) according to the ribbon’s tilt.
Duplicate the text layer, and change its fill color to #414042. Place this layer below the original layer and drag it downward and to the right slightly.
To make a shadow for the base, duplicate the base layer, and change the duplicate’s color to pure black. Position it below the original base layer and drag it downward. Change its blending mode to “multiply” and reduce its opacity to 30%.
Make shadows for the ribbon using the same technique.
That’s it! I hope you learned something along the way. Do share you thoughts.