I see that when I wrote my post in December 2015 I mentioned the ability in Embird to save SVG files (and JPG files) so that you could use them with your Silhouette Cameo.
I am going to chat a little about that to you today.
I have the original Silhouette Cameo 1 and since I bought it there have been two new Cameo machines. There’s both a 2 and a 3 now – but I have stuck with my original Cameo as its still working fine and does all I need. So anything I write here will be with me using the Cameo 1. There are, of course other little Silhouette machines as well but I have not had anything to do with them – I haven’t even seen them. So no questions please about the Cameo 2 and 3 or the other machines – unless its something easy that I can answer. I’ll try my best but cannot guarantee that I’ll no the answer. AND, please bear in mind that I am still learning the Silhouette Studio software as well. There might be other ways of doing what I show you – even easier ways – but as these lessons are coming to you free I figure that you get what you pay for. LOL!!!
If you are going to use Embird Studio to create any SVG files and export them into Silhouette Studio (all these Studio names gets confusing doesn’t it?) then you will need to buy the licence for the Silhouette Studio Designer Edition. Its just a code that you need to enter into the Silhouette software and well worth the money. I have gone one step further and bought the code yesterday for the Designer Plus version of Silhouette Studio as that allows you to open some embroidery file formats. (That will be interesting too but as I only got that yesterday you’re going to have to wait until I get that figured out). I will keep my brain active with scheming about all the things we might be able to do.
You might not have a Silhouette machine but I can highly recommend them – they’re so much fun and you can do such a lot on them. Not only cutting vinyl for t-shirts but you can use outdoor vinyl for decorating lots of stuff – like your car, coffee mugs, wine glasses – almost you name it and you can do it. You’ll end up like you were when you first started embroidery – everything will be covered in it. However there’s even more stuff that you can do – not only vinyl – you can cut applique shapes to use with your embroidery machine using Embird and the Cameo and you can even cut your fabric pieces and then vinyl the edges without using your embroidery machine. You can use vinyl edges instead and attach them with your domestic iron or a heat press if you have one. A friend of mine makes the most beautiful cards and decorations using her Cameo. I will add a photo here of some flowers that she has made just to whet your appetite and give you some ideas.
Barbara makes exquisite items with her Cameo. She is very much into Card Making and other beautiful things whereas I’m a bit boring and just make things like images to put on my grandchildren’s clothing. There are loads of SVG designs around that you can use with your Cameo – just like there are loads of free and purchasable embroidery designs. But as you know, there’s always the time when you cannot find what you want as a design and you have to resort to creating it yourself. And that’s where making your own SVG designs in Embird Studio comes to the fore.
Here’s a couple of my designs I’ve used and then you can see how different mine are to Barbara’s.
Here’s Eevee – a little Pokémon character. Yes, I know that she is a licenced character but I am NOT selling these designs or the clothing that they are on. They are for my Pokémon crazy grandchildren and I’ve never found clothing with these more obscure characters on anyway. The same goes for the sports logo that I created. The hoodies cost over $150 NZD here and for me to make my basketball crazy grandson one cost me $25 for the hoodie and my time and vinyl for the design. I will never sell the design or the clothing if they are licenced. Its all for purely personal use.
I used a JPG in Embird Studio, created the shapes and saved it as an eof file (a must if you want to use it again) and then exported it as an SVG and opened it in the Silhouette software.
Personally I find the Silhouette Studio software not so great if you wish to create your own design – its a bit clunky – and that’s when I use the easy option and pop back into Embird Studio and create my design there. I have written a tutorial about how to create designs into Embird Studio before and how to save them as an SVG. Its available at Secrets of Embroidery. The Silhouette software is great for lots of other things like preparation of your design etc, etc but actually creating your own design in there isn’t as intuitive as Embird Studio.
When you open an image in the Silhouette Studio software you must “Trace” it first to convert it to lines for the Cameo to use as a guide for the blade to cut. Basic shapes are really easy to trace but when you come to a file with outlines then its not quite as simple and even though I have checked a lot of information I have yet to find any information about how to “Trace” a design with an outline and get a good trace. Maybe I’ve not been looking in the right place – and maybe you can point me in the right direction but I’m going to show you how to work in Silhouette Studio – primarily using Embird Studio to create your design in the first place.
In Embird Studio today, lets just create a simple shape and save it as an SVG for cutting.
Open Embird Studio and go to Shape/From Library/Basic and choose the Heart1.eof.
Generate the stitches.
Go to Design/Save As and save firstly as an EOF file. If you don’t do this your file will only save as the SVG and if you need to return and edit it as we often do, then you wont have an EOF to open as you didn’t save as that format.
Now go to Design/Export and Save in your preferred folder as an SVG file.
Great! Got that! Now open your Silhouette Studio Software. This only works if you have the Designer Edition upwards, remember – but well worth the upgrade fee (around $30- $50 I think)
Go to File/Open and move to the folder where you sabed the SVG file.
Select it and click OK. The SVG file will be on your Design Page
Select the image using the Select Tool and move to the right side and click on the Color Palette icon. Click on the Black color and the heart will change to black. This is necessary to get a good trace for cutting.
Move to the right of the screen (I’m using the newer version 4 just released) and click on the Trace Tool The Trace screen opens. Click on Select Trace Area and, holding down your left mouse button drag over the heart on the Design Page. The Heart should turn Yellow. This is what you want.
This is just a quick and simple intro to creating your own design, please bear in mind. I’m not going into too many details here today.
Once the design/heart is completely filled – as above – click on Solid Fill in the Trace screen and then click Trace near the bottom of the Trace Screen. You could also click on Trace and Detach seeing as you don’t need the original heart any longer.
Your file is now ready for your cameo to cut. You can select and right mouse click and delete the black fill if you used the Trace only option but if you used the Trace and Detach option then the file is now a Cut file. I only delete the black fill when I use Trace just to confirm that the cut lines are there. Your choice! Now move to the Send screen, choose your fabric/vinyl etc, select your blade settings, decide if you need a Test Cut, load your media and/or mat and click Send.
My Cameo wasn’t turned on so I have an error message on the screen saying it wasn’t connected but as I am only writing this and not cutting I don’t need the Cameo on.
Depending on what media you’re using you may have to flip your image. If you’re use Heat Transfer Vinyl for clothing then you need to flip. If you’re using Oracal 651 Outdoor Vinyl then you don’t as you use a transfer tape to attached it to your objects. For fabric (applique) then your design doesn’t need flipped if the fabric is right side up.
This is just a wee taste of how to create your design from Embird Studio and get it to cut in the Silhouette software. I will do some further wee lessons as I go. I cannot promise when but I will as I find the time. This is something else that you can get addicted too……
I hope that you enjoyed my come-back! I will write as and when I can. There’s so much more to show you all.
Take care for now.