Ok, fairly new to blend options here and I am having trouble even after watching tutorials on how to make a clipping mask with a shape and a set of lines created with the blend tool.

Here I have my lines made with the specified step blend, and an expanded path which is the shape I want to make the lines fill:

enter image description here

I have tried expanding the blended lines, selecting in different order, everything, however when I make clipping mask everything disappears except a little sliver of a line.

enter image description here

What am I doing wrong here?


2 Answers 2


You have a left over line in the middle of your expanded stroke caused by expanding a stroke with a fill attribute. This is what's stopping you from using it as a clipping mask. A clipping mask must be a single vector, not two.

Either draw your stroke again, add endcaps, set the fill to none. Adjust the thickness, and then expand.


Simply use the direct selection tool to delete the middle line.

Then you can turn it into a clipping mask.

If my explanation is not clear, this is the line you need to delete

Example showing line to delete


I can't really tell what the issue is based on the information you've provided.

Offhand I'd say check the stack order before you make the clipping mask. The mask shape needs to be on top of everything.

However, based on that last image are you sure you are referring to clipping masks and not opacity masks?

The soft edges of that "little sliver of a line" lead me to believe you may actual mean opacity masks. Clipping masks and opacity masks are not the same thing in Illustrator. In addition, clipping masks generally don't have soft edges.

If it is actually an opacity mask... check the Transparency panel. You may need to tick the "invert" option.

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