How to Design a Police Hat in Adobe Illustrator

We rarely publish an illustrator tutorial, I think Ravishing Heart was the last one we published. But bowing down to a request from one of our readers, we bought a tutorial from internet and today we’re sharing it. Please do comment if you like us to keep on publishing illustrator tutorials.

This tutorial shows how you can make a police hat with variable shadings without using the Mesh Tool in Adobe Illustrator. This is aimed both for beginners who are still learning the basics of Illustrator, and for advance users who are trying to find new ways on how to speed up making graphics.
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 Let’s get on with our illustrator tutorial now.

1. Create a new file by pressing Ctrl + N. You can use the same settings as below, but feel free to adjust them depending on your standard.

Tip: We advise that you make use of the hotkeys to work easier. You’ll benefit a lot of time by using them. Make sure to set the Color Mode in RGB as most techniques in this tutorial here don’t work in CMYK mode.

new document dialog box in illustrator

2. Before starting to vector, make sure that the Line Color is Black by pressing D key. Set the Fill Color to None by pressing / key.

illustrator screenshot

3. To create the outline for the Police Hat, use the Pen Tool by pressing P. Create an arced rectangle. Make sure to close this path by making your initial point the last point as well.


4. Follow another arced rectangle with bigger height but smaller width. Then create another that is about the same size as the first one that you created, but this one shouldn’t be arced upwards. This will be the middle part of the hat.

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5. Now create the belt attached to the hat. To do this, create a thinner arced rectangle (about half the size of the middle part of the hat). Use the Ellipse Tool (L) to create an oblong. Add one on each side of the belt. 6. Add the top part of the hat by making a rounded pentagon using the Pen Tool.

Police Cap Designing

7. Still using the Pen Tool, create the outline for the badge. This might be a bit tricky if you are not used on using the Pen Tool. The trick for these shapes is to minimize the points you use. For this badge shape, only 8 points were used. Make sure to adjust the arcs of the path by using the anchor handles on each point.

illustrator tutorial

8. Copy the badge by click-dragging it. Make it smaller. Copy it again and make another smaller one. Position it like illustrated below.

tutorial for outlining in illustrator

9. Use the Rectangle Tool (M) to create a rectangle.

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10. With the rectangle selected, click on Effect> Warp> Arc.

Adobe Illustrator

11. Bend the rectangle by 14%.


12. The arc effect will now be applied on the rectangle. This step is optional. If you want to completely apply the effect on the rectangle, click on Object> Expand Appearance. Doing this will change the path of the rectangle similar to the effect you added.

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13. Create another arced rectangle on the bottom part of the badge using step 9-13. You can also make the two rectangles first before applying the Arc Effect separately and then applying Expand Appearance the same time.

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14.  Using the Pen Tool, add in the other details on the badge.

desinging in illustrator

15. The last part of the hat is its brim. Create another rounded pentagon using the Pen Tool.


16. With the pentagon still selected, go to Object> Path> Offset Path. Change the value of Offset to -0.1 inch. This will create a same rounded pentagon with smaller size.

dialog box

17. The outline for the hat is now complete. Feel free to adjust any paths if you notice anything that isn’t arced or aligned properly. You can do this by simply clicking on the path you want to edit, pressing V, then Ctrl + Click on the point to be adjusted.

drawing in illustrator tutorial


Coloring the Outline

18. To start coloring the outline, choose the colors you need to use and drag them on the pointers on the Gradient Bar. For the top part of the hat, use a shade of blue for the left pointer, and then a darker blue for the right pointer. Make sure to set the Gradient Type to Radial.

options in illustrator

19. Select the paths that will be colored blue. Click on the Gradient box to add the colored gradient on them. You can adjust the angle of the gradient by simply Click + dragging the mouse until you achieve the angle and shade that you want.

illustrator designing

20. For the other part of the hat, change the colors on the pointers of the Gradient Bar. This time, use a dark grey and black.

illustrator tutorial for gradients

21. Apply the black gradient on the belt part and the brim of the hat.

designing illustrator tutorial

22. Choose another set of colors for the badge and apply the new gradient on it.

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23. Use different shades for the rest of the badge. Adjust the angles of the gradient to shade it properly.

desinging in illustrator

24.  Now that you have properly colored the hat, you can now add shadings on it to give more depth to it. Create a pentagon that is about smaller than the top part of the hat.

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25. On the Gradient Bar, change the colors on the pointer to white and black. On the Transparency Tab, change the Mode from Normal to Multiply. This way, only the black part will be visible. Note: This effect will look different if your file is on CMYK Mode.

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26. To make the shade appear smoother, click on Effect> Blur> Gaussian Blur. Adjust the Radius as you see fit. If you are not satisfied on the effect after you have applied it, you can edit it by simply going to the Appearance bar and clicking on the Gaussian Blur.

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27. Use step 24-26 to do the same effect on the other parts of the hat.

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28. For the shiny parts, you can also use steps 24- 26 but use Screen Mode for the Transparency instead of Multiply. This way, only the white part will be shown instead of the black. Adjust the opacity to make it lighter.

multiply illustrator tutorial

29.  Create an arc path using the Pen Tool. Press T for the Type Tool and then click on the path to add the text. Type in the word POLICE. Adjust the font and font size as needed.

text effect illustrator tutorial

30. To make the text a bit more realistic, go the Effect> 3D> Extrude & Bevel

designing illustrator tutorial

31. Adjust the Extrude Depth to a smaller value. You can change the perspective by simply dragging the cube under the Position Box. Once satisfied with the perspective, click OK.

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32. Alt + Drag the text to copy it. Adjust the path for the bottom text to make it arch downwards. Change the other text to SPECIAL. Once satisfied with the positioning of the text, you have the option to leave it as it is or apply Expand Appearance on it. Note that once you apply Expand Appearance, you will not be able to edit the text anymore as it will be converted to paths.

desinging in illustrator

33. Duplicate the badge shape by Alt + Dragging it.

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34. Apply a black color on it and then move it behind the colored badge shape by pressing Ctrl + [. Apply a Gaussian Blur effect and set the Transparency mode to Multiply.

illustrator designing tutorial

35. To add a star on the badge, click the Start Tool under the Ellipse Tool on the Tool Bar. Create a small star.

Designing a Star in Illustrator

36. Using the star you created as guide, create ten separate triangles using the Pent Tool.

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37. Drag this star to the middle of the badge and apply Gradient on it. Adjust the angle of the gradients for proper shading.

designing a police batch

38. Once done with the shading, you can leave it as it is. You can also change the color of the badge by simply selecting on its paths and then changing the colors on the Gradient Bar.


39. Add some lighting by creating a path on top of the badge and applying a White-Black gradient on it with Screen as its Transparency Mode.

illustrator tutorial

40. Select the whole path and duplicate it by Alt + dragging it. Under the Pathfinder Bar, click on the Unite icon to make one path for the whole hat.

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41. Move the duplicated hat shape on top of the original hat. Apply a Violet-Yellow Gradient and set the Transparency Mode to Hue with a low opacity to give the hat additional lighting.

designing a police cap in illustrator

Now that you are done, you can group all the paths by selecting all of them and pressing Ctrl + G. Make sure to always save your file to avoid loss of work. You can now export your hat to any format you need.