This is something I can do with Illustrator, and that I would like to reproduce with Inkscape 0.91:

I want to scale up several identical objects and I want these objects to remain exactly at the same initial place. When I scale up a selection of objects, they move to the proportion of the scale I indicated, in the larger box of the selection, this is not what I want.

4 Answers 4

  1. Ungroup your objects, if needed.
  2. Object → Transform → Scale.
  3. Select the desired scaling factor.
  4. Check apply to each object separately.
  5. Apply.

This is something I do fairly frequently. While Wrzlprmft♦ provided an answer that works, it's a real pain if you have lots of objects. But the solution is actually very easy (using Inkscape 0.92).

  1. Select all the items you want to scale; you may have to Ungroup (shift-ctrl-G) items so they display as separate objects
  2. Pull up the Transform menu (shift-ctrl-M or Object->Transform) Select Scale tab
  3. Make sure Apply to each object separately checkbox is on
  4. Click 'Apply' button

picture of transform window with correct item selected

I like to use very modest scale amounts and apply again and again until I reach the desired size. Since it's vector graphics, no information is lost each iteration (unlike bitmap graphics programs).

  • 1
    Note that you can select similar objects by selecting one and right click to choose "Select same" -> "Fill color" etc. This will select all objects with the same color.
    – mrossi
    Mar 14, 2019 at 19:40
  • 1
    +1 for mentioning the need to ungroup. I was tearing my hair out until I saw that.
    – almcnicoll
    Nov 30, 2022 at 0:03
  • 1
    +1 for the green circle mark on the image Mar 9, 2023 at 9:52

As your objects are identical you should consider making clones for your duplicates.

  1. Make your object (the parent)
  2. Duplicate as required: Edit - Clone - Create Clone (Alt+D)
  3. Scale or otherwise redefine your parent object and watch the children follow suit.

The advantage of this approach is that you don't have to explicitly select all of the instances - they all get updated. Although there is a way to select the parent of a child object I find it more straightforward to create my parent objects off the page for simpler direct selection.

Of course my answer presumes that you want to scale all of your objects - if not you can always start out with clones and unlink those that you don't want affected by subsequent edits to the parent.


The method above seems to be a bit touchy on complex images with a lot of layers.

  1. I don't think it works for text but if you convert text to paths it should work.
  2. Any grouped layers have to be found and ungrouped and I didn't have any luck with selecting all objects in all layers and ungrouping. I think you have to actually get the grouped objects.
  3. Finally, on my image, I had to not check "Apply to each object separately". When I did that it got all weird and nothing was recognizable, or in the correct places. I also had to do my full scale all in one go not in steps.

After the first go it stopped scaling. So if you follow the above steps (which are good) and get weird results, remember the text issue, check for groupings, then try the settings in the Transform tool.

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