I am new to illustrator and am struggling to find answer anywhere to this seemingly simple task...

I am trying to align 3 narrow vertical rectangles inside a larger rectangle ( I am making a Trash Can Icon)

I am trying to use the align tools but have yet to manage to get these 3 rectangles to distribute equally inside this larger rectangle.

I am sure there is a very simple solution but I can't find it... enter image description here

3 Answers 3


This is one way of doing it. I am sure there are more elegant ways, but this works:

  • Create your rubbish bin outline

enter image description here

  • Draw five vertical lines
  • Align two of them with the sides of your rubbish bin

enter image description here

  • Select the lines, and use the align-tool to distribute them equally enter image description here
  • Delete the two guides, move, alter and adjust your three remaining lines.

enter image description here


You can first distribute the three rectangles horizontally and vertically.

Make sure you selected the option 'Align to selection'. enter image description here

Then group them as a single object. Now select the group and the outer rectangle and align center. If you want the spaces between the rectangles inside the box to be equal as the space between them and sides of the larger rectangle, then you can opt @Random suggestion.


It's much easier actually. Just select all the objects you would like to align, click once more on the object you would like to align all the other objects to and then do Align Objects as you wish.

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