I know that Inkscape does not have the ability to export selected objects as svg, but is there a workaround that people have found that works?

  • 1
    Just shooting from the hip but wouldn't Copy, new Document, Paste, Save work?
    – Scott
    Commented May 19, 2013 at 3:59
  • 1
    I was almost sure one could do that with the command-line option. There is indeed an export-plain-svg option, but it does not respect the export-id :'(
    – Drasill
    Commented May 20, 2013 at 20:59
  • 3
    I don't have enough rep here to answer, but I wrote a script to batch export Inkscape layers into separate SVG - you could put each of your objects on a different layer. The script is here: github.com/splitbrain/material-icons Commented Jul 22, 2015 at 18:46
  • Alas, the link 404s :-(
    – Mawg
    Commented Feb 27, 2017 at 10:28

3 Answers 3


A straight-forward method is the following:

  1. Select the object(s) to export.
  2. "Resize to content" (File → Document Properties) or Ctrl+Shift+R.
  3. "Invert selection" (Edit → Invert selection) or !, and Del all other objects.
  4. "Save As" with Ctrl+Shift+S.
  5. Select Optimized SVG as the format if you want to use it on the web.

Not as quick as I would like but quicker than creating a new document for each graphic that you want to export.

  • This does not work. Inkscape 0.92.4 just shows popup "File %filename% could not be saved" even when trying to save a black document. Commented May 5, 2019 at 13:45
  • @user7860670 Which step didn't work for you? It works for me. But anyway, it's quite inconvenient that after these years, there's still no built-in Export Selection option in INkscape.
    – bytrangle
    Commented Aug 31, 2021 at 2:04

I keep another instance of Inkscape running on the side and just copy-paste the object I want to save into the scratch document, then save.

Another option if you just want the path data is to select the object, Shift+Ctrl+X to open the XML editor, grab the pieces you want (usually the d attribute), then paste to wherever.


As of Inkscape 1.2+ there is now a native way to batch export multiple objects to SVG, or any other supported export format for that matter.

You can do this from the regular File > Export dialog. In the Batch tab you can export either Layers, Selection, or Pages.

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Using the Object Properties dialog Ctrl + ⇧ Shift + O, add an ID or Label to your assets that will be used to determine their file name when exporting.

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Set up all objects you want to export into an organization method that best suits your needs. If they are composed of separate elements, you can either bundle them into separate groups, place each set into a dedicated layer, or set up one individual page for each element, one per desired exported file.

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You can even batch export to multiple file formats simultaneously, by pressing the Add button and choosing different extensions.

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It allows choosing any file format available in for saving, including vector ones. To take full advantage of this functionality you may have to enable it in Edit > Preferences > Input/Output > Show all outputs in Export Dialog.

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  • 1
    A nice update. Thanks for sharing +1
    – Billy Kerr
    Commented Oct 16, 2022 at 13:07

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