In this post, I am talking about some icons I created in Adobe Illustrator. I used the theme of hats and created five different hat icons under that theme. I will go over each one and have included a 60×60 and a 400×400 pixel version of each hat. All of these icons are vectors as well and can be scaled to different sizes.
You’ll notice that although most of the base colors of each hat are different, there are colors that I used to create repetition in the whole set. The blue is used in every hat, and all the rest have some form of the yellow, red, gray, and cream, and straw colors. I didn’t want them to all be the exact same, but by using this color set, I was able to still create correlations while having variety.
I started on this hat with an oval that I used for the top of the hat, then I duplicated it and made it bigger for the brim. With a rectangle to connect them, I wanted to show the curve of the hat, so I included lines as the edge of the top of the hat as well as the hat band. The stripes of the hat band, at least initially, were created by taking the line of the top of the hat and thickening the stroke. I didn’t want it to be too plain, and I wanted to give the image that it was straw, so I added the pound signs to lightly give that image.
This hat was the one I created as an experiment to test how well I could use the program. I used several circles and the shape builder tool to build the actual hat in red, then I used the pen tool to create the blue stripes going down the hat and the yellow bill on the front of the hat. I made one-half of the propeller by making an oval and using the angle converter tool to narrow one side and widen the other. Then I used the rotation tool and duplicated it. The little piece holding the propeller is made of an oval and rectangle.
To make it easier to see, I put this one on a white background. The sailor hat was how I got away from only doing hats with a brim. It was one of the first that I thought of. I was trying to figure out how to get a single color that was used in every design, I liked the idea of a dashed line acting like a seam in the hat. I created the actual hat with the pen tool, with a circle acting as the middle. The darker inside of the hat also was made with the pen tool.
This was the first hat I made, which may be evident from its simplicity. I created it with two ovals crossing over each other, and I used the shape builder tool to form the main hat. The band was a line curved across to create shape. The flower was created by having a star that I used the angle converter tool to widen out, then I added a yellow center, which color I used again later in the propeller hat. I tried to stay away from outlines in this icon set, but I felt that this hat was too flat without one, so I gave it a slightly darker outline just to help with shape.
The top hat was the icon that I thought would take the least amount of time but ended up taking longer than I planned. I originally had the sides curving in, but later found a more traditional form was better for this set. The band on this hat is different than the others because I created it using the shape builder and the top of the hat so the curve would match. To get it symmetrical I chose which side I liked more, and I took a rectangle, cut off the side I didn’t like as much with the shape builder, and then reflected a copy of the side I liked. After that, I fused it together using the shape builder again.
As you can see, I tried to design these hats with as little strokes as possible, while trying to give the impression of three-dimensional qualities. I toyed with the idea of using a top view looking down on the hats, but it didn’t give the image I wanted. I feel that how I created these icons captures these various hats in simple terms.