I have owned a Silhouette Cameo for a couple of years now, but I’m ashamed to admit I hardly use it. Let me start by saying that I am technology challenged- computers stump me, my printer hates me- if it has a plug, I struggle. It was pretty simple to learn how to cut titles with the Cameo, but I haven’t ventured much past that. Time and again, I’ve scrolled through Pinterest, envious of all the amazing layouts using cut files. But it just seemed over my head.
Until I discovered The Cut Shoppe. I found Ashley Horton’s Easy store after listening to an episode of the podcast Live Inspired, hosted by Tracie Claiborne. Ashley was so funny and smart and I loved hearing about how she grew her creative business by designing and selling cut files. First chance I got, I checked her store out and instantly fell in love! Her cut files are versatile and adorable and the Design Team on her blog is amazing. I couldn’t wait to put one (or twenty) of the files to use.
See that cool triangle background? A cut file. The title? A cut file. Oh- and the cute cat face? Yep. A cut file. Now I know people have been using their electronic cutting machines for years and you’re wondering what the big deal is. The big deal is I picked my Cameo up off the floor, dusted it off and figured out how to use a PNG file to make the cut. Now, I’m no expert (see above) and Ashley has a FREE class on different techniques for using cut files here, but I’ll give you the short version.
- Open the PNG file in your Silhouette software.
- Open the Trace window and select the area you want to cut
- Click off the High Pass box
- Click the Trace button
- Delete the original PNG file and you are left with a perfect cut file!
I used a 12×12, white sheet of cardstock to cut the background. I wanted to keep the colors bright and fun, so I chose a 4×6 Studio Calico paper pack and went to work. I started at the top right, picked a paper, and traced the backside of the paper with a pencil. When I cut it out, I made sure to trim a little larger so I would have something to glue to the backside. To keep it from being too busy, I only backed about every other triangle. When I was happy with how it looked I adhered the whole thing onto a 12×12 piece of yellow cardstock. And viola- a custom background!
Because I wanted to use a variety of patterned papers, I printed the photo in black and white.
The Cut Shoppe has all sorts of incredible background cut files, but they also have all sorts of themes too. My daughter and her fiancé recently got a new kitten and when I saw this cut file, I knew I had to have it! The mini flair is from Feed Your Craft and I just love her designs and quality.
The cat is from the same set as the title. I backed it with white paper to set it off from the background and added it next to a sticker from the Simple Stories Life in Color Collection. I stamped the date on a tag from Elle’s Studio and tied a piece of embroidery floss through the hole. It only took a second to find the floss, but I think it’s one of those little details that finishes things off.
Another mini flair from Feed Your Craft with a couple of hearts punched from matching patterned paper. I loved how the layout came together and I can see using this file over and over. Cut it out with black cardstock and use Halloween paper to fill in the triangles. Or put it over a piece of paper that you’ve painted with watercolors.
Are you a regular user of cut files on your layouts? Any tips or tricks you’d like to pass on? I’d love to hear them!