Do you have, or have found an image you would like to use in a papercraft project, but you don’t know how? Here’s a tutorial on how to use your Silhouette Studio / Silhouette Studio Designer Edition in 7 steps. The screenshots are in Dutch, but you’ll get the point. Anyway, lets’ get started!
STEP 1: Using a Pre-existing Image
There are two ways to use a pre-existing image from the internet; 1. Save file on local drive and load in to Silhouette Software or 2. Copy the image from the web and paste it in the Silhouette Software. And just in case someone doesn’t know: The drop down menu appears when you right-click the wanted image. You can also create your own design (see STEP 3), but for this example I Googled a Mickey Mouse file. REMEMBER TO RESPECT COPYRIGHT! If you want to use a Pre-existing Image, remember that it must be for personal use only unless indicated otherwise!
STEP 2: Tracing the Outline
With the image opened in the Silhouette Studio, select the Tracing-tool in the upper right ribbon of the Silhouette Software. Click Select tracing area and draw a box around your image, making it slightly larger. If you want, you can play around with the settings of the tracing filter tools, but for this tutorial it’s not necessary. TIP: The same method can be applied if you want to use your scanned artwork from your computer.
STEP 3: Drawing an Image
Using the traced image as a guide, “copy” the image by drawing over it. The drawing tools can be found on the left ribbon. If you don’t have an image to start with, you can create your own with the same tools.
STEP 4: Group and Color
In this example I want Mickeys’ ears, head, body and arms to be one piece and the same color. You can either click all the objects separately while holding the SHIFT-key on your keyboard or make a box around the objects while using the Select-tool (standard cursor). If you have selected everything you want, right-click to Group. Now they work as one piece. While the group of objects is selected, use the Fill-tool and Line-color tool on the upper right ribbon and selected your desired color. As you can see, I grouped and colored the rest Mickey as well using different colors.
STEP 5: Tweaking the Image
Now that the basic shapes and colors are in place, it’s time to tweak the image or in this case the drawing using the tools in the left ribbon of the Silhouette Studio. In the image below you can see Mickey transform from a basic stick-figure into a card embellishment.
STEP 6: Group, Trace and Cutlines
After assembling the digital design, it’s time to take it apart. No, I’m not joking. Make sure that all your shapes are grouped in place before you move the image around the grid. To waste less paper when cutting and to cut everything at once, group the image together by placing all the colors in a group. Rearrange the images on your digital grid mat so you know which paper to put in what position on the cutting mat. Luckily, they both have the same grid. (I changed the presents parts into green because I changed my mind about the design)
STEP 7: Cut settings and Cut
Make sure you have the right cut settings, by opening the Cut Settings from the upper right ribbon. Select your medium (material) and set the blade accordingly. Just because it works better on the cardstock I use, I always set my cutting speed to two. Keep in mind that this takes a while longer, depending on what you are cutting. If you completed all the 7 steps, it’s time to load the cutting mat with the paper into your machine and select Send to Silhouette.
Assembling your project
After your machine finished cutting, it’s time to peel off your papers from your cutting mat and assemble your project. Using the Mickey design from this example, I created a card for a card challenge. Off course you can use your cut file on whatever paper project you have in mind.
Getting to know the software takes time. Take the time to play around with it and you’ll find your way. I hope this tutorial was helpful. If you have any questions about this tutorial or the Silhouette Software, please leave a comment and I will do my best to help you. Thanks for stopping by and take care.