Cutting Vinyl Rolls With Your CAMEO Or Silhouette
Using vinyl is a fun way to get creative with your CAMEO or Silhouette machine. Unlike paper or card, vinyl comes in rolls and can be cut to create any design and applied to various slick surfaces like cups, cars and windows.
To apply a vinyl design, start by applying the transfer tape sticky-side down over the cut image. Rub vigorously and smooth out any bubbles or wrinkles.
Vinyl is plastic, film-like product that can be cut into pretty much any design and placed onto a variety of slick, smooth surfaces like cups, cars, windows and signs. It comes in rolls, like contact paper or peel-and-stick wallpaper, and is available in a mind-boggling number of colors, sheens, textures and patterns. It’s also relatively inexpensive, making it ideal for DIY decor and labeling projects.
Before you start cutting it is a good idea to do a test cut, especially with a new material or cutter. This will ensure that your machine’s settings are set properly and that the blade can cleanly cut through the vinyl without cutting through the paper backing – a process called ‘weeding’.
Once you’re confident your machine is set correctly load the mat and press the flashing buttons to cut. Once the cutting is complete remove the mat and carefully peel away the vinyl.
If you’ve done a good job with your settings the images should come off the mat cleanly with frosted window film very little weeding required. If the resulting decal has a white background around each image you will need to use a weeding tool found in the Cricut Basic Tool Kit or Weeding Tool Set to remove the vinyl liner from each of the images. If you don’t do this the white liner will be stuck to your finished project and will make it impossible to apply.
Trimming the Roll
Vinyl is a plastic, film-like material that’s available in a wide range of colors, sheens, textures and patterns and can be cut into any design and applied to a variety of slick, non-porous surfaces, including cups, cars, windows and more. It comes in a range of widths from 4.5″ strips to 75′ rolls and can be used with transfer tape to adhere it to a variety of surfaces.
First, prepare your roll for cutting by removing any loose debris from the outside of the packaging. Then, using a sharp blade (I use and LOVE this Siser hook!), trim off the edge of the paper backing to expose the sticky side. Next, cut a small test piece to check your vinyl settings and make any adjustments needed. This will ensure you get a clean, “kiss cut” that makes it easier to weed and apply your decal in the next step.
Next, cut the rest of your roll of vinyl to your desired length and then load it into your Silhouette machine using the rolling feeder or a mat. If you’re using a CAMEO 4 Pro, make sure to adjust the roller bar lever before feeding your vinyl to line it up with the 12″ mark. Once you’re satisfied that your vinyl is the correct size, turn on your machine and follow the prompts to Set Base Material, selecting Vinyl from Cutting Vinyl Rolls the list of materials (or Browse All Materials if you don’t see it in the list). This will tell your cutting machine how thick or deep your cut should be.
Loading the Roll
It’s important to properly store vinyl rolls and take measures to prevent heat, moisture, direct sunlight, and dust from affecting their quality. Choosing an appropriate storage location, cleaning the rolls before and after storage, using protective sleeves or plastic wrap, and storing them upright or hanging help to preserve their shape and avoid any potential damage. Additionally, regularly checking and rotating the rolls helps to distribute any wear or tear evenly.
Cleaning the Rolls
Before storing your vinyl rolls, they should be cleaned thoroughly to remove any dirt, dust, or debris that may have accumulated. Using a soft, lint-free cloth and a vinyl cleaner solution can help ensure your rolls are clean and free of any contaminants.
Organizing the Rolls
Once your rolls are clean, it’s recommended to organize them into different categories to make finding specific rolls easier. This can be based on a number of factors, including genre, artist, or size. You may also want to consider creating a catalog or inventory to help keep track of your collection.
For a simple, cost-effective way to organize your vinyl rolls, you can use storage containers or tubes that are specifically designed for the purpose. These can be found at a variety of retailers, from Ikea’s stylish bins to specialized vendors like Stamp-n- Storage, which sells a cube divider insert that creates nine slots for their Kallax storage units. For longer vinyl rolls, you can hang them in an over-the-door hanger that can accommodate up to four standard rolls.
Cutting the Roll
All Cricut machines need instructions about where to cut, and those are done through their software program called Design Space. You can use the program on a desktop computer, iOS device, or Android device, but the desktop version offers the most functions. Once you have opened the program and signed in, select the base material for your project, which in this case is vinyl. If you don’t see your type of vinyl in the list, select Browse All Materials for a full list of available options.
You’ll then have the option to choose a cut setting. Choose a setting that is appropriate for the type of vinyl you’re using. For example, premium vinyl should be cut at a slower speed than basic vinyl.
Once you’ve selected a setting, load your base material into the machine and align it with the rails. You’ll then press the Make button in the top right of Design Space, and follow the on-screen prompts.