You can apply one or multiple strokes to a path using the Appearance panel. For the complete description of the panel's interface, refer the Appearance Panel section.

To open or hide the Appearance panel, use the Window > Appearance command from the main menu.

Appearance panel is used to set up strokes

1 - Strokes are listed in the Appearance panel among other properties.

2 - Add stroke.

3 - Delete stroke.

4 - Stroke width.

5 - Open stroke properties.

6 - Stroke color. Clicking this button opens the Color panel.

Add and Delete a Stroke

Before adding or deleting a stroke, you should select a path in your design.

To add a stroke, click on the ring icon in the bottom bar of the Appearance panel.

To delete a stroke, select it in the Appearance panel. Then click on the trash bin icon.

It is possible to hide a stroke without actually removing it. To do this, use the respective check box in the Appearance panel.

Properties of a Stroke

The Appearance panel gives you direct access to the width and color of strokes. The Color panel is described in the Color Panel section. To access all available properties, click on the gear icon.

Panel with stroke properties

The Width parameter is the same as the width you can set in the Appearance panel.

The Cap options define whether the stroke should end where the path ends, or it should go a half-width farther. In the second case, you can choose if the stroke should be rounded. The option applies to a solid line as well as to individual elements of dashed or dotted lines.

Examples of different cap options

The Corner options let you select how the stroke looks at corners.

The Align options let you align a stroke to the center of the path, or outside, or inside of the shape. Notice that the alignment options can work only with closed paths.

The following set of three controls lets you create dashed and dotted lines.

Settings for dashed lines

In the middle, there is a drop-down menu with different patterns with different combinations of dots and dashes. You can start the creation of that kind of lines by choosing an appropriate pattern.

Any dashed line can be described as a sequence of dashes and gaps of a particular length. So, in order to create your own pattern, you can fill in the dash and gap fields at the top. For example, to create a pattern like "long dash - gap - dot - gap", you can type in 10 - 5 - 1 - 5 starting from the leftmost dash field.

These settings
Settings for a custom dashed line pattern
create this pattern (shown with the ruler)
Example of a custom dashed line pattern

The slider below the menu with patterns moves the pattern along the path. With this slider, you can place dashes at corners of your shape, or align the pattern to other features of the path.

Shifting the pattern along the path to make dashes be at corners

The two pairs of identical controls let you add arrowheads and other elements to path ends. Each set of the controls relates to one of the path ends.

Examples of different cap options

To add an arrowhead to a path, choose a pattern from the drop-down menu. In order to adjust the arrowhead's size, change the numeric value below the drop-down menu.