Tuesday, 25 July 2017

Sketch Pens & Water colours

Hey there, Niki here today with a tutorial about sketching and offsetting. I chose a heart background that I already had in my library and opened it up on my mat. What I wanted to acheive was for a design to be sketched with sketch pens and for the shape as a whole to be cut out around the outside edge so that I could then place that onto my layout.

So I probably shouldn't have chosen such a complicated design but I liked the file as a whole so decided to roll with it - I'm a big believer in using the files that I already have to their full advantage so figured I would find a way to make this work. So I began by ungrouping / releasing the compound path of the whole design but that meant that every little tiny stitch line was then an individual file - goodness, what a lot of pieces! 

Rather than attempting to delete all the stitch lines, I clicked on the outside edge, held down my shift key and then clicked on all the bits in-between the hearts. Once I was sure I'd got all the bits I needed selected, I simply dragged the selection over to the right of my mat. I then grouped them all together and deleted all the stitched bits that were still on the mat. I then put my outline design back on the mat.

The heart design on the mat is going to be sketched in sketch pens. But I also want to cut te design out, just around the edge, ie I didn't want any of the sections in-between the hearts to be cut out. I selected the design and then went to the Offset menu.

I applied an offset at 0.125 but this gave me an offset for all the in-between pieces too which I didn't want.

I simply picked up the offset and moved it off the mat. I then released the compound path and deleted all the middle bits so I was just left with the outside edge.

 I was then able to put the outline back over the hearts still on the mat.

So finally ready to draw and cut. I set Tool 1 to cut the outside edge and set Tool 2 to draw the middle design with a sketch pen.

Once drawn and cut, I coloured in the hearts with watercolour paints, chopped off the left edge of the design and added it to my layout.

 Which files do you have in your library that you might be able to use in a different way?
Thanks for joining me today, happy scrapping xx

follow me on Instagram: @nikiclaire

Stitched Heart Page Mat / Background by Sarah Hurley


Sunday, 23 July 2017

Scrapbooking layout with regular polygons

Hello Silhouette friends! Maria here with you today with a very quick scrapbooking layout.

When people are considering buying a Silhouette machine, one of the arguments against that I hear the most is that people have already invested money in manual cutting machines, dies and punches, and they can't justify spending money in another machine. Well, if we forget the fact that you can do so much more with your machine,  if you are really into dies and craft punches, there will always be a shape that you haven't got. And here is where the Silhouette comes in so handy. You can create geometrical shapes so easily!

For today's layout I wanted pentagons. I saw a very similar layout on Pinterest recently and I got a bit sad that I didn't have any dies in that shape. I have circles, squares, hearts... but not pentagons! But I didn't need be sad, as the Silhouette came to the rescue!


Open your Silhouette Studio and figure out which shape you want to create. On the right hand side of your screen is the option for drawing regular shapes and circles. You can choose as many sides as you want for your polygon. But if you go to over 12 sides, then your shape just resembles a circle, to be honest. So I would say keep it under 8 or 9. I went for 5, but 6 is another very popular polygon in scrapbooking layouts.

Move the slider to the right to increase the number of sides in your polygon.

I have turned the grid lines on my mat, so I can use them as a guide. Once my shape is the right size, I went to the replicate tab and selected fill page.

The way the page has been filled is perfect for using scraps. I happen to have quite a few 6x3 inches scraps from a paper pad, so I will be using those (although I don't end up using all of them on my layout. I have kept the rest for a different project)

For my layout, I am also going to create part of the title with my Silhouette. I am going to use the same font as I used for the baby card I made the other day, which is gorgeous, but it is very thin so you really need to use the offset function after you have welded them!

I welded twice, at 0.1 cm each time, and deleted the original, as I was worried that it wouldn't cut well. The welded versions cut very well!

And here is my finished layout. I hope you have liked it!


Friday, 21 July 2017

Faux Stained Glass Butterfly Cards

Hi, Janet here with one of my favourite card-making techniques - faux stained glass. The Silhouette cuts great frames to show off the pattern variations and rich colours of decorated vellum paper.  I've adapted the card design so that the card base has the open pattern, as well as the card front, so that light can pass through. Using adhesive cardstock gives a clean, smear-free finish.

What You'll Need

Butterfly Card #124784 file by StudioIlustrado
Silhouette® Cameo 3
Pearlescent vellum
Alcohol inks & blending solution
Black medium-weight cardstock
Liquid craft glue
Silhouette Adhesive Cardstock

Prepare the Vellum

Decorate a sheet of vellum and allow it to dry. I used a blending tool with a felt pad to dab a few drops of alcohol ink onto pearlescent vellum. Work with your paper in landscape orientation and try to make the the pattern vertically symmetrical. You can blur parts of the design by dabbing ink and blending solution at the same time.

The photo below shows two decorated sheets. I chose to work with the one on the left for this card.

Prepare the Card Base

The card base in the file is solid, but in order for the light to shine through, it is necessary to add the holes from the card front to the card base. 

Open the file on the virtual mat and ungroup it. Group the card base with its dashed lines. Discard the upside down copy of the butterfly. Make a copy of the butterfly front and move it aside. Release the compound path on the other (bring up the context sensitive menu by right-clicking your mouse and then select 'Release Compound Path').  Select everything and, while holding down shift, deselect the butterfly outline. Then group the selected pieces (Object > Group).

Select the newly grouped shapes and the outline and align them onto the card front.


Move the outer butterfly shape aside. If you have trouble selecting it, select the card outline first and send it to the back (Object > Align > Send to Back), then the butterfly outline is easier to grab. Select the butterfly card base and the grouped pieces and group them together (shown in black below). This will be cut from medium-weight card and the outline will cut from the patterned vellum, but not yet.

Prepare the Card Front

Make the card front slightly bigger than the card base to create a margin of card around the vellum. This sandwiches the vellum independently of the card base and ensures everything remains stuck together. 

Take the copy butterfly front and release its compound path. Selecting just the outer, create an offset:

  1. Open Offset panel
  2. Select Offset
  3. Set distance at 0.1"/2.5mm
  4. Select Square corner style
  5. Click Apply.

Move the original away to use as a template and group the offset and the small pieces. Make a mirror image copy.

Select ALL the card elements and resize to suit. I made the width of the biggest butterfly a little under 8"/200mm so that the card base could be cut from A4 cardstock.

Cutting Guide

Cut pieces as follows:
  • Card base from medium-weight black cardstock
  • Two large butterflies from black adhesive cardstock
  • One butterfly from scrap as a template (this will be smaller than the adhesive ones) 
I also added a few more butterflies (design #59805) to use in another project (ignore the butterfly bodies, which I didn't use).

Make the Stained Glass Insert

These steps show how to cut the butterfly from the best part of the the vellum pattern.

Take one of the adhesive cardstock butterflies, work out the best position and, without allowing it to stick to the vellum, draw around it. Remove it and centre the scrap butterfly within the drawn butterfly outline.

Draw around the scrap and cut it out with scissors. Centre the cut vellum onto one of the adhesive butterflies. Trim excess vellum from the butterfly body.

Align the other butterfly on the reverse of the vellum and press them together.

Adhere this finished front onto the card base.

Add a sentiment.

Oh, and don't forget to use the vellum scraps from around the butterfly to make smaller butterflies to use for other projects!

I hope you'll try this out - the stained glass effect is beautiful in real life.

Bye for now,

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Monday, 17 July 2017

Three Happy Girls - Using Stitching Templates

Hello, hello, Karen here.  Have you tried using stitching templates?  I realised recently that I often buy them but then never use them so decided to make a layout that focuses on sewing - even my title was sewn.
  • I chose this sewing template as the basis of my layout. 

  • Then I used the 'Draw a Polygon' to join all the dots to give me a solid chevron shape.
  • I used the 'Internal Offset' option to make a smaller shape. 
  • Removed the larger chevron and grouped the small one with the sewing template.  This formed the basis of my pattern.
  • The next step was to duplicate my shape in a column of 3.

  • Arrange them the distance apart I wanted and then, under the ALIGN menu, with the three shapes selected, spaced them vertically to give me an equidistant space.

  • I then duplicated the three chevrons below.
  • Next I moved the duplicated chevrons up match the spacing of the ones above.
  • Select the top four chevrons and duplicate right then do the same for the top two of this column.  Group each set of chevrons into columns and arrange onto your design.  The column of two chevrons is then mirrored below and this set is moved to the bottom right corner of your design. 

  • The next step was to make the stitched square that surrounds my photograph and for that I used this stitching template, using a section of the first one for each of the square's sides. 

  • Then I used a stitching font to add my title.

The final step was to complete the stitching and back fill my chevrons with pretty paper.  I added a few stickers and mounted my photo onto a piece of patterned paper and that was my page finished.

I hope I have inspired you to try a stitch template or two.