Monday, 30 October 2017

Last minute Halloween costume. Applying HTV with an iron

When you child comes to you and says “actually I would like to dress up a bit for the disco at youth club”…. Tomorrow night!

If you have never used Heat Transfer Vinyl (HTV) here’s a quick overview how you can get started. In this project, I am going to use an ordinary iron to apply the HTV.

Begin by opening a new project in Silhouette Studio©
In the "page" settings create a virtual page to match your media and set your mat size to match the mat you will be using (HTV) comes with its own built-in carrier mat and it is not necessary to have a mat in position when cutting it is personal as to if you use one or not).

Go to the store and select one of the skeletons I have selected a design by Carina Gardner detail are at the bottom of the page.
Measure the top that your design will go onto and size the cut file to fit within the given space.

To make the best use of your media right click on the design and select ungroup. this will allow you to arrange the pieces to fit onto the media with as little waste as possible (this is a simple design so will be easy to reposition the pieces).

I am creating a t-shirt so I only need the upper body and have deleted the bones that would be used for the legs. It is requested that I make his body look small so his head looks big (apparently its a thing and it will be funny). If your design has text or a design the must be orientated a particular way it is at this stage you must mirror your project as we will be cutting from the back of the material ( the side with the glue).

When you happy with your layout click the SEND tab. if you have chosen to use the cutting mat load the HTV onto the mat and load the mat into the machine. 
If you are cutting without the mat ensure you have selected no mat in the page set up panel if you have selected this method the mat will not be visible on screen in the Design or the send Tab. 
This is important as it tells the machine how far to feed the material into the machine.
 In the materials, list select the "Vinyl glow in the dark" carry out a test cut to ensure a clean cut, adjust the settings where necessary. Remember you are cutting through only the thin white layer and do not want to cut through the thick clear sheet.
click Send and allow the job to complete. remove the media from the machine and remove all the unwanted areas of vinyl from the clear backing sheet. 
 Turn on your iron and set to no steam the recommended settings for applying this HTV is given in Degrees, as most irons don't have actual temperature readings you will need to gauge the correct setting for your iron. take a scrap of material and some of the clear carrier sheet Snip a piece off the corner. Place the piece of carrier sheet onto a scrap of fabric, to obtain the right temperature slowly increase the heat of the iron and press onto the carrier sheet remember to protect your iron as suggested on the packaging. When the heat starts to crinkle the carrier sheet turn the iron back down a little you now have a good temperature to work with.

 A heat press will apply an even pressure over the whole of an area at once, With an iron, we can only apply pressure in an area as big as the plate on the iron. Place the Iron on an area of the HTV and apply pressure allowing the Iron to move slightly back and forth. You want to maintain the heat in one area long enough to melt the glue into the fabric, I recommend the use of a timmer as it is very difficult to judge accurately the lapse of time. Proper application of HTV relies on the correct temperature for the correct length of time. 
Allow to cool for a moment and peel away the carrier sheet. If any areas of your design have not bonded correctly replace the carrier sheet and reapply the heat and pressure.

Glow in the dark HTV needs to be "charged" before it will glow. to do this hold a bright light in front of the design and allow the vinyl to absorb the light. If there is a Blacklight source the HTV will glow without the need for charging.  

Designs used:
Halloween skeleton bones by Carina Gardner
Design ID #49873

Monday, 23 October 2017

Trick or Treat safety lantern.

With Trick or Treating just around the corner and the nights getting darker, use this little trick to help keep your little one safe while out and about this Halloween!

Turn any storm lantern into a temporary spooky Halloween lamp.

Open a new project in Silhouette studio and select some spooky silhouettes from your library (or from the Silhouette store).

Trim a sheet of paper to the correct height to fit within your lantern. Measure the inside of your lantern by rolling up the sheet of paper and placing it inside the lantern. Allow the paper to unroll until it touches the sides, mark the paper where it overlaps. Remove the sheet from the lantern and trim off the access. Measure the sheet of paper and create a rectangle the same size on your virtual workspace.
 Use the scale tool located in the top toolbar to easily get the correct measurements. This rectangle gives you a guideline to keep your design within. I have turned this line blue as I will cut it separately from the main design.

Arrange your silhouettes within the guidelines.

Tip: Remember that the left edge will meet with the right edge when curled around inside the Lantern, make sure they will match up. You can check this easily by copying your design and placing the copys next to each other. Remember to delete the copy before sending to the cutter.

Load a sheet of acetate onto the cutting mat and load into your machine. click "send" in the software.

When the send window opens choose cut by "line" and ensure that only the blue line will cut.

Tip: Active cut lines are bold and inactive lines that will not cut on this pass are faded

Choose the correct cut settings for your media and remember to carry out test cuts to ensure a clean cut.  Send the project to your cutter and allow the job to complete. unload the mat and remover the media.
Place some dark coloured vinyl on the cutting mat and load into the machine.

 In the send window unselect the blue line cut and select the red line to active cut.

Select the correct media in the material list and carry out test cuts to ensure a clean cut. Send the project to the cutter and allow the job to complete.  Unload the mat and remove the media from the mat.
Remove all the unwanted pieces of vinyl leaving only the design on the backing sheet. Lift the design from the backing sheet with some transfer tape and apply to design to the piece of acetate.

Roll the acetate so it fits into the lantern. Lower into place and allow to unroll to the inside edges of the lantern. Replace the lid in the lantern and enjoy some safe trick or treating.

After all the fun, simply remove the sheet and store for next years fun.

Desing used:

haunted house by PHOTOPLAY


Light hold cutting mat for Cameo

Sunday, 22 October 2017

You Say Witch Like it's a Bad Thing: Creating an Internal Offset

Hey! Niki here with you today, with a quick tutotial on how to create an internal offset...for those of you who know me well by now, you'll know I like to add stitching to my cut files and layouts, so today's layout takes a pre-made cut file from the Silhouette Design Store and I am going to add an internal offset and stitch around that.

I started off with this witches hat cut file with a phrase inside.

I went to the Object menu and Released the Compound Path so that all parts of the cut file were separate.
I then selected the outline only and went to the Offset window on the right. I selected Internal Offset and played around with the amount until  was happy that my internal offset didn't effect the wording within the file. I could have created an external offset of course but this time I went internal.
I then selected the internal offset that I have just created and went up to the Line Style dropdown menu. I choose the third one down, the dashed line and that turned my internal offset into a stitched line instead of a solid line. I then sent my cut file to cut - the machine cut all the solid lines but perforated the internal offset. I could then apply stitching around the internal line of the hat.
I love the black shape outlined by the orange stitching, what a fab cut file!

Thank you so much for joining me today and checking out my layout - happy scrapping xx 

Find me on my own blog: Being Scrappy and on Instagram as @nikiclaire


Thursday, 19 October 2017

Using Custom Watercolour Patterns as Backgrounds and Fills in Silhouette Studio

Hello, Janet here with some fun ideas for making gorgeous prints and cards from an original watercolour pattern.  This does include some actual painting, but no advanced skills are required.
I'll show how to bring the painting into the Silhouette Studio software, and how versatile the resulting pattern can be by combining it with files from the Silhouette Design Store.

What You'll Need

A painted/printed/inked background
Digital Camera (Camera, Phone or Tablet)
Silhouette® Studio (Designer Edition and above)

The Background

The technique I'm showing here should work for backgrounds created in all sorts of media such as stamping or printing inks, powdered pigments, or acrylic paints. Here I've used a panel painted with the watercolour paints and a flat watercolour brush. It was created from a series of horizontal brush strokes in two colours. Using one of the colours, paint from the centre upwards, in lines of diminishing length, and increasing dilutions of water.  Blend the second colour a little in the centre and work down the paper, roughly mirroring the shape and paint dilution of the first colour. Perfection is not required, nor necessary.

The only real requirement is that the resulting background painting is flat, so either use a thick watercolour paper, as here, or thinner paper that has dried flat.

Once the painting is dry, take a photograph with a camera, phone, or tablet held parallel to the paper to reduce distortion. Transfer the image to your computer and ensure that is saved in jpeg file format. For ease of transfer, save the image to your desktop.

Take the Image into the Silhouette Design Software

With the Silhouette software open, reduce the size of the program by making the window smaller (click and drag the bottom right corner toward the centre of the screen a little).

Move the window around until the image file icon on the desktop is visible.
Click and drag the image into the Patterns folder in the Local Users section. The image will then appear in the patterns preview window. 

The newly imported image will also appear with the other patterns in the Fill Pattern tab in the Fill panel.

Using your Imported Pattern

Open any file with a cut line on your screen and drag the imported image onto the shape that you want to fill. Here I've used the Spotted Succulent file by Nic Squirrell.

Then you can use the Fill Pattern options and make adjustments. The image can be manipulated in all sorts of interesting ways once it is taken into the software as a fill pattern. It can be mirrored, rotated, scaled, re-centred (panned), and made more transparent. These features are accessed in the Advanced Options in the Fill Pattern panel. Further adjustments, including recolouring the fill, can be made from the Image Effects panel. Play with the options and discover what works well with your pattern.

Alternative Images

The new fill pattern an be used in many images. Here I've shown some other Nic Squirrell designs from the store. In the first image, rather than fill the image, I've filled a circle behind the image.

Agapanthus Flower Border

Spotted Succulent

Using the Filled Images

The filled images can be used for many different projects. I love to print them onto paper to make  prints for framing, and onto printable cotton to adhere to stretched canvas, and of course, they are great for quick and easy notecards. I'll have step-by-step tutorials for these projects in the coming months.

I hope you'll try this out - the possibilities are endless!

Bye for now,

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