Friday, August 17, 2018

We Can't Get Enough Unicorns! More Unicorn Party Favors both Vinyl and Etched Tutorials!

Welcome today's guest blogger back, Alyssa Cardin! 

We are preparing for a sleepover birthday party for 9-year-old girls, so I thought it would be fun to personalize hairbrushes and compact mirrors as favors. It looks like a lot is going on here, but customizing with vinyl and etching the mirrors is probably easier than you think!


Items listed with an * are clickable links to the products

Black hairbrush

* Metal Compact Mirrors

* Oilslick Adhesive Vinyl 

Electronic Cutting & Etching Equipment   

Transfer tape

Cutting Mat and weeding tools

SVG or other digital design

Let's make the hairbrush first!

First open the image you plan on using. Next let's work on the name in the middle of the image. The name Abby is written in the font: Too Freakin Cute Demo.

Type this out, resize if necessary, then place the name on the image.

Once the name is properly placed,  You will need to subtract the word from the image. In the Silhouette Studio software, open the modify panel. Making sure both the image and the name are selected then click subtract all. 

Then you can move the name away from the image and delete the name. 

Place the oilslick vinyl on the cutting mat and load in the machine. Select vinyl as the material, set the cut settings and click send. Do a test cut, this material feels a bit thicker, so I used the following settings: blade 2, speed 3, and force 10. however I am also using an older blade, so these settings may be too much for users with a newer blade. 

Now the design is cut and weeded 
Time to apply transfer tape to the front of the design and rub the back.

Peel the backing off from the vinyl and apply the vinyl to the brush.

Follow the same steps if you want to place a vinyl image on your compact mirrors.

Want to etch your compact on a Curio? Follow the steps below.

To etch the mirror, open the mirror and put it face down on the embossing mat. I found this to fit in the curio best this way. Have the front cover toward the bottom of the mat. My mat is still pretty sticky, so my mirror didn't move while etching. But I have also used painters tape around the edges of irregularly shaped items to keep them in place on the mat.

Select your design and size it to the appropriate size. Make you leave enough room around the edges. My designs were about 1.5 by 1.5. 
Click on the emboss menu.
Select Deboss and then use these settings:
Cross Hatch
Spacing - .004
Angle - .5

Close up of etch lines

Set material to metal etching sheets and make sure you select the etching tool. I do speed 3, Force 26, and pass 1 with Platform 3 (2 plus embossing mat). Again, these settings work for me but other settings might work best for others. Check that the mats slide smoothly and freely under the etching tip on your Curio. Then take a deep depth and click send.

I usually put the mirror through 2 or 3 times before taking it out. As long as you don't move the mirror between passes, you can send it back through and it will etch in the same spot.

When satisfied with the quality of your etch, remove the mirror from the mat. I find it helpful to peel the mat away from the mirror. There will be extra dust on the mirror from etching, but brush that off away from the mat. You want to be careful to not to get dust on the mat, the dust makes your less sticky which leads to you mat replacement sooner.

Once the dust is brushed off you should have a beautiful etched mirror!

Thank you Alyssa! I know there were quite a few excited girls at that birthday sleepover!
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Wednesday, August 8, 2018

How to Size your Acrylic's SVGs in Cricut Design Space Tutorial - 2018

Hello! Jamie with Craft Chameleon here writing today's blog post. I also did a corresponding video that is on our YouTube channel. If you want something a bit slower paced or to be able to print out, you are in the right place here!

Open your Cricut Design Space.

Choose the file you want to open.

When you order a Craft Chameleon acrylic shape you will get 3 free files. You will need 2 of these. The png or jpg image which has dimensions you will need and the SVG which is your cut file. We are going to open the baseball or softball batter acrylic SVG first.

You can rename your image or add tags to the image for ease in searching later on. Save your SVG.

Now go back and upload the png (or jpg) image.

The png we only need to be able to read the dimensions, so choose "Simple" on the image type and continue.

With both images uploaded into Cricut Design Space it is time to upload to the canvas.

Now that both files are open and on your canvas, select the PNG file and enlarge so you can easily read the image dimensions.

Next select the cut file portion of the SVG. Align the various pieces or layers.

Enlarge the SVG to roughly the size shown in the png file. This is 2.973" but needs to be 2.820".

You can use the size bar at the top to input the exact dimension.

After the first dimension is correct, if the second dimension is still a bit off, unlock the size bar. Then you are free to input the exact measurement.

Now all the measurements are correct!

Now separate the layers to be cut. In this design, you will need to add a number or monogram and make sure it fits inside the laces. Then proceed on to cutting and applying the vinyl.

Thanks for stopping in today and I hope you found this Cricut Design Space tutorial helpful. If you would like specific Cricut or Silhouette tutorials comment below!

Wednesday, August 1, 2018

Back to School Teachers Tote & Tag using Cricut Tutorial 2018

Welcome to this weeks guest blogger Amanda Eaker!

Hello everyone, I chose to do a back to school tote because my stepmom is a Kindergarten teacher that LOVES Pete the Cat. Everything in her room is decorated with Pete the Cat. 

Items listed with an * are clickable links to the products

Black Canvas Tote

* Siser Glitter HTV (Heat Transfer Vinyl)

* Triangle Bails

Oval side cut jump rings

Swivel Lobster Clasp

* Blue Saphire Birthday Charm

* Red Apple Acrylic Charm

1" Clear Acrylic Circle

* 2 bent nose pliers (I used needle nose ones I already owned)

Electronic Cutting Equipment   

Transfer tape

Cutting Mat and weeding tools

Heat Press or Iron

SVG or other digital design

I used the tote bag template on Cricut Design to make sure my wording was sized correctly and visually appealing.

Here, the cut file has been arranged to gain the best utilization of the glitter htv.  Now we are ready to cut...almost! 

Be sure to set up your material size and turn on Mirror Cut. Mirror Cut needs to be selected since Siser glitter HTV has to be cut in reverse (shiny side down).  Make sure to set your Cricut Machine to cut mirror also. 

Weed the HTV and place on your tote. To use an iron consider placing a large tile on the floor, cover your project with parchment paper and press applying as much pressure as possible. You will not move the iron back and forth. You will select an area and apply pressure per the manufacturer's instructions on time. Repeat over the entire area. Make sure to follow the time and temperature dictated by the HTV manufacturer.

If your bond is not complete, try leaning on the iron throwing some body weight aka pressure down your arm/hand. Repreat the pressing process again. Applying HTV requires heat AND pressure, not heat alone.

Now for the bag tag, I added the glitter Initial to the 1" clear acrylic disc (be careful too much heat will cause the acrylic to fog.) Then I assembled the clear disc, the red apple charm, and the birthday charm.

Here is a great tutorial on this blog showing assembly methods:

Now is my stepmom going to be thrilled for Kindergarten to start this year!

Thanks, Amanda for this Cricut post! Makes me want to plug mine in and take it for a spin! If it has inspired you, please comment below!

Please consider sharing this post. The vertical image above is great for Pinterest and the horizontal image below is fantastic for FB, IG Twitter and others.

Thursday, July 26, 2018

Unicorn Birthday Party Favors Bag, 18" Doll Shirt, Unicorn Bag Tag and FREE cut file! (2018)

Our guest blogger this week is Darci Slager and she has a fabulous project for the perfect unicorn lover birthday party! Plus all the files are free. So let's get started!

SuppliesItems listed with an * are clickable links to the products
Cutting Mat and weeding tools

Heat Press or Iron - Cricut EasyPress Used

SVG or other digital design

Part 1 – Acrylic Unicorn Bag Tag

Open the unicorn SVG (provided by CC when the acrylic blank is shipped) in your electronic cutting machine’s design program and place it where you want it to cut. 

Place the Oil Slick vinyl on your mat (paper side down, shiny side up) load your machine and cut the vinyl on the default metallic vinyl settings.  It’s a good idea to do a test cut first though. 

When your machine is finished cutting, remove the whole sheet of vinyl from the mat and cut a square around your design so you can save the remaining sheet of vinyl for another use.  Then weed the unicorn design by removing the excess vinyl that is not part of the design.  

Place a piece of transfer tape (slightly larger than your design) over your vinyl unicorn and burnish.  Peel back the white paper backing leaving the vinyl unicorn on the transfer tape. 

Remove the brown protective cover from the acrylic blank.  Line up your cut vinyl very carefully over the acrylic blank and then place the transfer tape with vinyl onto the acrylic. 

Burnish well and slowly pull off the transfer tape leaving the vinyl on the acrylic.

You will need to punch a hole in the vinyl with either a diamond tip reamer or an Exacto knife.  

Loop the ball chain through the hole in the acrylic and fasten it.  I did not, but you could personalize a bag tag for each child attending the party if you like by adding a vinyl name or monogram after adding the unicorn design.  Your bag tag is done! 

Part 2 – HTV Doll Shirt
Now we’ll work on the doll shirt party favor.  You’ll use the same unicorn design provided by CC again and you don’t even have to resize it!  It’s already the perfect size for the doll shirts. 

First, open the unicorn design but this time you will mirror (flip horizontally) the image in your program.  

Place the purple HTV on your mat shiny side down, load your machine and cut on the default glitter HTV settings.  Feel free to do a test cut first to be safe though.  When you are finished cutting, remove the sheet of HTV from the mat and cut a square around your cut design so you can save your extra HTV for later. 

Weed your design by removing the excess HTV from the clear carrier sheet that is not part of the unicorn design.  

Place the HTV unicorn shiny side up on the front and center of the doll shirt.  

Press with an iron or heat press for 15 seconds at 320 degrees Fahrenheit. 

Remove the carrier sheet right after pressing.  Your doll shirt favor is done!

Part 3 – HTV Favor Bag

Lastly, we will create a favor bag to tie everything together and to package the doll shirt and bag tag beautifully.  First, find a design you love and open in your design program.  I used Silhouette Design Store Design #211952.

 Free SVG file
Craft Chameleon is offering this design for free! Click here or on the image to download.

I personalized the bag on the back, so I created a text box and added the name in a font I liked.  Then I mirrored the name and the purchased unicorn design.

I used both purple and cherry HTV, so I separated the design by color and cut the purple and then the cherry using the method outlined in the doll shirt section.  

After both colors are cut and weeded, you will press them one at a time onto the canvas bag.  I pressed the purple design on the front for just a few seconds at 320 degrees Fahrenheit, removed the clear carrier sheet, and then lined up and pressed the cherry portion for 15 seconds at the same temperature.

Lastly, I flipped the bag over and pressed the name on the back of the bag for 15 seconds at 320 degrees, and then removed the carrier sheet.

Now that the bag is complete, it’s time to pull everything together.  Start by folding up the doll shirt showcasing the unicorn design on it and tuck it inside of the canvas bag. 

Add the unicorn bag tag to the bag by fastening the ball chain around the bag’s loop closures and pull tight to close the bag.  That’s it, and now you have a beautiful unicorn party favor that can be used for years to come!

This party favor can be altered for almost any theme by selecting any one of the many CC acrylic blanks as the base (princess, mermaid, pirate, sports, animals, luau, holidays, etc).

Thank you, Darci, for another outstanding blog post! Comment below with the theme you would use for your party favors!

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