Inkscape - Path Offsetting (Inset/Outset)

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1 - About

Inkscape can expand and contract shapes not only by scaling, but also by offsetting an path.

Offsetting move each nodes of the path in a perpendicular way in the inside or outside direction.

Offsetting will convert the original object to a path if needed

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3 - Type

Offseting has three modes:

  • static: the operation will not remember the original path position
  • dynamic: the operation will remember the original path position
  • linked: the operation will connect to a parent path which remains editable

3.1 - Static

  • Inset Ctrl+) move the nodes inside
  • Outset Ctrl+( move the nodes outside.

3.2 - Dynamic

  • Select the path object
  • Path > Dynamic Offset (Ctrl+J)
  • Inkscape creates an object with a draggable handle controlling the offset distance

When you don't need it to be adjustable anymore, you can always convert an offset object back to path.

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3.3 - Linked

You can have any number of linked offsets for one source path. You can move or transform the offset objects independently without losing their connection with the source.