Articles, Blog

How to make a seamless pattern in Photoshop

September 2, 2019

Hello! I’m Cristina from Elan Creative
Co and in this tutorial I will show you how to make a simple repeating pattern
using Photoshop. I usually use Illustrator for pattern design because
vector patterns are easy to scale and recolor, but if you’re not familiar with
Illustrator Photoshop works well and you can create seamless patterns in only a
few minutes. Open Photoshop and create a new document. I’m going to use a canvas
that’s 400 by 400 pixels at 72 pixels per inch. The Color Mode is set to RGB
and the background content to white. If you want to use the pattern for print,
use a higher resolution and change the color mode to CMYK. Click Create to
continue. Click on the lock next to the background layer to unlock it and then
change the background color. I’m going to use this light pink. Then I’m going to
lock the background again. I’m going to use clip art from the Magical Unicorns
collection, but you can also use hand-drawn graphics, watercolor
illustrations, or even brushes. I’m going to create the pattern around this
unicorn illustration. So just select the illustration you want to use and drag it
into Photoshop. If you see this bounding box around your artwork, it means you
can resize it. I’m going to make this smaller and you can also rotate it. When
you are done, just press this check button. If you want to transform the unicorn
again after you’ve placed it, you can press Ctrl+T or Command+T or just go to
Edit>Free Transform. Then you can use the arrows to make it smaller. Now I’m going
to bring the other graphics into Photoshop. You can select more than one
item and then drag them into Photoshop. Now I’m going to resize each of
these stars and arrange them around the unicorn. If you want to re-position them after
you’ve resized them, you can now use the Move tool, the shortcut is V and make
sure that Auto Select is checked. You can just click on each item and move them
around just like you do in Illustrator. You don’t have to select each item from
the Layers panel. When you’re happy with the design, just select all the layers
right-click on them and choose Merge from the menu. We are going to use the
Offset filter to make the repeating patterns. So go to Filter>Other>Offset.
Photoshop will usually enter half of the width of your canvas and have the
height of your canvas in the horizontal and vertical boxes. This will move your
image 200 pixels right and 200 pixels down and it will be cut into four parts.
You’ll also notice that there’s a empty area in the middle and we are going to
add other graphics here. So click OK to save it. I’m going to add another unicorn
here in the middle and then a few stars. Sso I’m going to make it smaller and then
I’m going to go to Edit>Transform and Flip Horizontal. Now we’re going to drag
a few more stars to add in these areas. When you are happy with the design,
merge the layers again. To save your pattern, just go to Edit>Define Pattern
and give it a new name. Press OK to save it. To test the pattern, open a new
document that’s larger than the pattern tile, and go to Edit>Fill, and choose the
pattern from the list. You can use this pattern with the Fill tool or with the
Shape tools. Hope you’ve enjoyed this tutorial. If you want to see more
Photoshop and Illustrator tutorials, please subscribe to my channel or visit
my blog. Thanks for watching!


  • Reply Trisha May October 18, 2017 at 4:48 pm

    Brilliant tutorial – love the unicorn 🦄 pattern too ❤️ I’ve designed a polka dot pattern but would really love to know what tools to use in PS CS6 to make the dot(or other patterns I design) to look either distressed or grunge looking, also to adapt this method to textured background designs. Would you consider making a tutorial on this ? Many thanks ❤️

  • Reply Trisha May October 18, 2017 at 7:19 pm

    Thank you so much for replying. I’ll try that 👍🏻 XxX

  • Reply Devin Nunez October 19, 2017 at 2:24 pm

    I was wondering where you get the art for the backgrounds like this 😋 Do you do it youself? I stumbled on your videos and I love it. Could you do something Halloween like this month? Plus thanks! Your videos come in handy

  • Reply M W October 28, 2017 at 11:24 pm

    Best explanation thank you 😊

  • Reply Ingrid Opitz November 15, 2017 at 4:31 pm

    love your channel, your voice is very soothing 🙂

  • Reply Marie Appert January 12, 2018 at 9:01 pm

    Thank you for this quick and simple explanation!

  • Reply 35pbb January 18, 2018 at 1:59 pm

    Hello Cristina, how are you? I hope you are ok. I am with some doubts and maybe you can give me some tips: I am with dificult to make seamless pattern on Photoshop with the style I like, that are watercolor flower and plants. I like when they become intertwined and seamless, not with some space between the motif. But I hardly can reach some good result. Do you have some tips or could you make some video about it? I send many kisses and I watch all of your videos as part of my studies 🙂

  • Reply Beth Picton January 20, 2018 at 6:55 pm

    Very helpful!! Thank you!

  • Reply Sky Above February 1, 2018 at 9:51 am

    Hello Elan, where do you press to select your other graphics like in 1:46 ? Thanks

  • Reply dushyant idhatia February 4, 2018 at 2:32 pm

    very nice and to the point tutorial ….thanks

  • Reply Bishal Sen HDRI March 17, 2018 at 8:08 pm

    Crystal Clear explanation 🤩🤗🙏

  • Reply Maverick March 20, 2018 at 2:52 pm

    What d0 y0u think is easier t0 d0 patterns, PS 0r Illustrat0r? My 0 butt0n is br0ken btw, huhuh.

  • Reply Charly Glez. March 30, 2018 at 7:22 pm

    Thank You so much <3

  • Reply Masha by Masha April 2, 2018 at 3:41 am

    Amazing tutorial.Than you!

  • Reply Tanya Key April 6, 2018 at 1:31 pm

    Great tutorial!!! Thank you very much for sharing!!!

  • Reply sweetblackblood1 May 3, 2018 at 5:42 am

    did anybody tell you that you have the most beautiful accent ever?

  • Reply sweetblackblood1 May 3, 2018 at 6:13 am

    can you do one were you actually draw the pattern and then make it a pattern? or have you already made a video of that?

  • Reply Jessica Gerald June 11, 2018 at 9:00 pm

    Thank you very much! This was helpful!

  • Reply Nohemí Arvizu July 13, 2018 at 4:51 am

    Thank you for this! Helped me a lot!

  • Reply stefiebea July 14, 2018 at 4:10 pm

    Perfect. Straight to point, no bs. Thank you. Mach appreciated.

  • Reply th studio July 16, 2018 at 10:24 am

    Thanks for the tutorial. Is there any way to save photoshop pattern for future use, just like we do in adobe illustrator? Suppose I want to make a photoshop pattern and want to give it to someone else. Is it possible?

  • Reply Marisol Acosta July 24, 2018 at 3:09 pm

    Thank you for this tutorial! I have seen so many and have toooo many steps. This tutorial was to the point, very informative! This will help me in the next step onto pattern design.:-)

  • Reply Anca Elena August 3, 2018 at 11:03 am

    Super helpful and easy tutorial! <3

  • Reply Haus of Eva August 7, 2018 at 12:03 am

    you had me at unicorn

  • Reply Connivery Dives August 12, 2018 at 2:26 pm

    Thank you! This was exactly what I was looking for. Well done 🙂

  • Reply diavlisia September 9, 2018 at 12:30 am

    Great tutorial, thank you 🙂

  • Reply SILAMBARASAN September 15, 2018 at 11:15 am

    Thanks very useful for me…!

  • Reply Ziad Khaled September 21, 2018 at 3:17 am

    Definitely Awesome!

  • Reply Rose Sen October 2, 2018 at 1:43 pm

    tus videos son los mas practicos que he visto. Gracias!! <3

  • Reply Louise Watson October 6, 2018 at 6:25 am

    what if you have a block colour Pic and want to just repeat the whole lot

  • Reply Noshila Nazir October 24, 2018 at 4:50 pm

    Thank you

  • Reply Sarah Wainwright October 28, 2018 at 3:49 pm

    thank you I am going to try this out <3

  • Reply A 380 October 31, 2018 at 3:23 pm

    Nice voice

  • Reply Devi Ch November 19, 2018 at 9:25 am

    thank u 🙂

  • Reply Heidi L November 23, 2018 at 7:48 pm

    Thanks for sharing & love your cute unicorn pattern!

  • Reply Silver Spatula November 24, 2018 at 6:52 pm

    Thank you so much for making this video, I owe you my life

  • Reply Jordan Caviness November 29, 2018 at 12:13 am

    What if I want the background transparent??

  • Reply Wejdan Alaradi November 30, 2018 at 8:46 am

    Thank you very much ❤️❤️

  • Reply Feared Beard December 8, 2018 at 4:29 pm


  • Reply Alireza Falamarzi December 11, 2018 at 9:18 pm

    Thank you for the tutorial. It was great.

  • Reply Mandy Cheung December 13, 2018 at 6:03 pm

    Amazing tutorial, thank you for explaining this in a very simple way!

  • Reply MrsPhantasy December 18, 2018 at 6:57 pm

    Thank you, this is such a great solution, I was gonna do it all manually by hand but this is SOOOO much easier!

  • Reply Viviane B December 19, 2018 at 11:29 pm

    Thank you so much!!!! 🌷

  • Reply ArtsyBritt December 20, 2018 at 1:40 am

    Simple and brilliant

  • Reply Cecilia Asmr December 21, 2018 at 7:50 pm

    Immediately subscripted!

  • Reply fatma betul cetin December 22, 2018 at 4:47 pm

    Hi Elan, thank you for this great lesson. Can you upload this pattern to Shutter Stock or do you need to save the file as a different format. I just want to know if it is accepted to upload the pattern using this method. Thanks in advance. Have a great day 🙂

  • Reply Gaea Arliani January 5, 2019 at 6:28 pm

    i'm helped !

  • Reply Alex Eska January 8, 2019 at 11:34 am


  • Reply klnpd January 11, 2019 at 2:58 pm

    Short and sweet. Just how a tutorial should be. Thank you 🙂

  • Reply Misaki Ayusawa January 23, 2019 at 1:35 pm

    Great tutorial thank you so much!!! I only have one question how do you change the scale of the pattern?

  • Reply PG 79 January 28, 2019 at 9:41 am

    Really good tut :). Only minor thing is that i would use "convert to smart object" other then flatten… Then you can go back and make changes.

  • Reply Thar Chandran February 14, 2019 at 3:37 pm

    Thank you for this! Your explanation is very clear!

  • Reply Alessandro mele February 26, 2019 at 2:19 pm

    Wow very useful tutorial
    I love your Italian accent I'm Italian too!
    Anzi posso parlare italiano mi capisci lo stesso😂

  • Reply Iris Lizarraga March 4, 2019 at 7:10 pm

    Just wondering, if I wanted to print my pattern do I change the resolution before or after.

  • Reply Jade Peacock (Student) March 6, 2019 at 2:09 pm

    it dont wurk awful

  • Reply chris warb March 11, 2019 at 11:48 am

    Nicely shown, thanks, subbed .. 🙂

  • Reply Reginreivu March 15, 2019 at 6:01 am

    I've been looking for this, simple and clear. Thanks!

  • Reply Maac Desmond March 22, 2019 at 9:52 am

    very nice tutorial and your voice is very soothing to hear.

  • Reply Alera Alexander March 27, 2019 at 7:23 pm

    ugh why isnt mine coming out seamless

  • Reply CreatewithVinylandGlitz April 6, 2019 at 4:08 am

    I found what I was looking for, thank you!!!!

  • Reply Andrea Cordero April 16, 2019 at 1:20 am

    This tutorial is perfect! Thank you so much!

  • Reply Paul Chamberlain April 26, 2019 at 9:15 am

    Great tutorial!
    No messing about 🙂

  • Reply Iluviel May 17, 2019 at 11:03 am

    Brilliant! Short, concise, taught me everything I needed to know. Thank you!!!

  • Reply Arranszi A. Cempaka May 26, 2019 at 2:54 pm

    thank you, thanks for sharing it's very helpful!

  • Reply William CROOKS June 11, 2019 at 1:58 am

    bad music

  • Reply Rinkesh Patel June 11, 2019 at 5:07 pm

    its nice …. thanks….. 🙂

  • Reply Kiko Cassette June 12, 2019 at 5:34 pm

    This was so useful and adorable too 🙂 Thank you!

  • Reply Lone Jensen June 19, 2019 at 10:37 am

    This is such a helpful tutorial, thank you! When you upload your design to your webshop, say Redbubble for example, do you upload the small version or the last bigger one that shows the whole pattern?

  • Reply Ellis Sykes June 19, 2019 at 5:29 pm

    Thank you so helpful!

  • Reply Claire Jevon June 29, 2019 at 3:00 pm

    This didn't work for me at all.

  • Reply Barbara L.B. Storey July 15, 2019 at 2:07 am

    Thank you so much! I have been trying to learn to make patterns on PS forever, but it always seemed so confusing. Your tutorial has made it very clear, and I just finished my first pattern! 🙂

  • Reply MagsGraphics July 19, 2019 at 2:04 pm

    Thanks so much – I didn't know where to find the offset tool – what a lifesaver! Your tutorial was concise and easy to follow. Well done!

  • Reply anggola widya July 25, 2019 at 8:10 am

    thankyou for your tutorial, it's really helpfull
    i want to ask, i try this tutorial for my drawing
    but when i load the pattern, the cut of the drawing doesn't match
    how i fix this? thankyou

  • Reply MsNicoleGoff's Drawing Vids August 3, 2019 at 7:36 pm

    Amazing tutorial, great instruction – THANK YOU!

  • Reply Alfredo Sarraga Jr August 8, 2019 at 5:06 pm

    very helpful tutorial. glad to bump on this video. thank you so much ^^

  • Reply Ramyt Ramyt August 23, 2019 at 10:09 pm

    Cute voice!

  • Reply Yassine El Gamani August 31, 2019 at 4:51 pm

    80% making the pattern look good
    20% actually making the pattern

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