I want to make a useful calendar in AI. Thus far I have made 12 columns, which each stand for a month, and around 31 boxes in each with days and weekdays listed. There has to be a box because I want to have a space to write some short notes in them as I'm going to print it and laminate it in dry wipe.

I have managed to create these boxes but I don't have a clue how to efficiently (not typing manually in every single box) fill the dates inside.

Does anybody know a solution?

  • 2
    There's probably a way to do it with scripting but otherwise the most efficient way will be to suck it up and type it. Illustrator has very minimal variables (found in Variable Panel) and you'd have to type each date into a spreadsheet and give each its own variable... being more work than just doing it directly.
    – Ryan
    Commented Jan 28, 2015 at 16:32
  • I will go with scripts too.
    – Troy Woo
    Commented Jan 28, 2015 at 17:56

3 Answers 3


Type one object with the numbers 1 to 31 with a tab between each number, then set up 7 tabs (use a tab before the first day of the week to make it easier) to position them vertically and use the Space After or Space Before options in the Paragraph Panel to align them horizontally.

enter image description here

This only took a minute to set up.

With the proper tab and spacing options it's pretty easy to adjust the dates for each month. It's just a matter of adjusting line feeds.

Due to the lack of tables in Illustrator, I find this much easier than it is to try and use boxes, or threaded text.

InDesign is a bit easier in this respect due to proper text threading options and the ability to create tables. However, Illustrator just doesn't have those same features.


If you absolutely have to stick to AI, I'm not aware of any proper way to do it. I think you'll have to go with the solution Scott has provided.

Otherwise, I would highly recommend you go and grab the inDesign calendar script. The calendar generator is pretty flexible and you can pretty much customize everything using paragraph, table, table cell and character styles afterwards.

It will take atleast 4 or 5 tries at generating a calendar to get a hang of the parameters, and atleast 1 or 2 hours of styling to make it look like something even decent, but stick with it and within 3-4 hours you'll get a great calendar with perfect dates.

Here's the link and doc. (It works fine in inDesign CC as well) http://calendarwizard.sourceforge.net/

Have fun!


I managed to do it in other way. Not sure it is better than above ones but definitely answers my conditions. As i said i need 12 rows with 31 days straight from the top so i created my boxes using 3 big rectangles in the same place and splitting them into grids. At the moment i had 3 equal grids in one place. I left the bottom one as boxes which will contain days and produce the space where i will be able to write in the notes. I resized second grid almost all the way to the left (to be honest i resized every column individually from the right side to produce the space on the early left side of the box just to make a threaded text from it and using certain font size and copying a column from excel (just typed 1 in the top and two in a latter row and dragged the box down to 31) while i pressed type cursor at the first column of second grid in AI. It caused to fill 31 day numbers in the left on my boxes. Next i erased unnecessary days like 29, 30, 31 Feb and in latter months. Next i continued to paste the day numbers in next boxes. Coming to third grid i resized first and latter columns to the right just to leave some space for weekday names. So i made some columns in Excel from Mon dragging down to 31 as for 31 days and continued to do so for every weekday starting month. Next i copied the one which starts from Thu because 1.01 this year starts with Thursday and copied it in right side column (third grid). After all that i've been left with every single day in a year with weekdays and a box to fill in with my notes on a dry wipe later. I changed the opacity to 80 something % and put a nice picture in the background with my company name and inserted month names on the top of columns and arranged them to a key object a box below just to have them aligned in the centre of the box.

Hope it helps someone and thanks for responses! Regards

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.