Thursday, October 21, 2010

How to Make a Custom Print and Cut Tattoo from Silhouette

The first thing you will want to do is, import your shape from your library. It will automatically come into your document.

Because I am making this a tattoo for a costume, I am wanting to cut it into a few pieces to allow for a nice placement. My shape is already grouped together so I will use the knife tool and click on the first point I am wanting to cut and drag it to the end point of the cut. You will be able to click on your shape and drag the "pieces away from each other. They will split at the knife line.

You can see in this picture that I split the butterfly in the middle and at the two sides allowing me to have 4 pieces created from the wings.

My next step is to ungroup the wing sections so that I can fill each individual piece with a color. I used the gradient fill because it adds nice dimension to the print and cuts.

Once I am done filling in all the ungrouped pieces I will select the entire image and group together. That way non of the little pieces will move as I resize to fit the face. You can also resize before you start any of this process, I just like to resize once I have it just how I want it.

Now we are ready to add the registration marks. These marks will print onto your paper allowing the sensor in the Silhouette to detect and align perfectly with the print and cut.

There is one final step you need to check before you print. Because there are so many pieces in this shape I want to make sure that the outline of the butterfly is the only thing that gets cut. The Silhouette automatically defaults to cut all the lines in the shape. So you will need to click on the cut line settings and change the cut lines from "cut" to "cut edge". Again this will allow only the outline of the wings to be cut out. You are now ready to print your document.

Some of you may need to change your printer settings before you print.  You can do this when you click on the printer button.  It will take you to a pop-up box that will allow you to change the properties of the printer.  I chose to use the photo quality print option and I also needed to change my paper size to 8.5 x 11.  So I made all of my adjustments and then clicked print.
Now that the document is printed, place your paper on the mat (carrier sheet) at the lined markings on the mat. You will then need to "feed" your mat and printed paper into the Silhouette.  Make sure your Silhouette says "load w/ carrier".  This will feed the mat into the Silhouette a little farther than if you were to simply "load media".  The mat will feed into the Silhouette just above the registration marks.
Once that is completed you can click on "cut" and watch the show. And there you have it, a custom print and cut! Now you are ready to print and cut until your little hearts content!

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