Silhouette Cameo

At the beginning of March I invested in a Silhouette Cameo cutter. After weeks and weeks of contemplating I finally placed the order and I was beyond excited when it arrived! For those of you who haven’t yet been introduced to this marvellous machine, it’s a fancy little thing that looks a bit like a printer but has a little blade instead of an ink cartridge. It cuts paper, card, vinyl and even fabric! (although I haven’t ventured into the fabric thing yet). It’s basically my new favourite toy piece of equipment. After I unpacked and installed my new wonder, the first thing I did was to open the accompanying software and personalise my machine with the free bonus file that came with it, so I could have a nice colourful control panel instead of the default white one. I then proceeded to test some cuts (all of which have since perished in my overly eager attempts to try everything at once) and then made a (very small) batch of (very simple) business cards for a friend. I managed to completely forget to take a photo of them even though they were lying around on my desk for weeks before I posted them to him. I tried my first vinyl cut – a number for the front door. We share a hallway with another flat and since they had a number on their door we never bothered getting one on ours till then.

I then spent quite a while trying to cut a little butterfly decal for the back of my phone – partly because I wanted something on it and partly because I wanted to test how long it would last. It took quite a few goes to convert one of my old drawings to a design that was simple enough to cut that small without getting ruined but eventually I managed. It’s still very much on there and is going strong but it’s partly covered in various colours of ink because I accidentally put it down on another project I was working on. (excuse the rather random mix of quality of photos, I used whatever I had at hand – compact, DSLR, phone)

first cameo projectsI’ve also made a few cards with a little help from my Cameo. Some include free designs included with the software, one has a design from the Silhouette online store, one with a background from Birds Cards, all modified a bit and one I did completely from scratch. They’re all pretty simple but I might try some more elaborate designs as I learn how to use my Cameo more and more.

silhouette car designsI’ve also cut quite a few of the designs from the Silhouette Store (you get free credit with your machine and when everything was half price for a while I took the opportunity to play around with some things) but there’s something more fun about doing your own things. I did a couple of pieces of artwork for a friend who wanted something simple with letters:

artwork They are both made by cutting out letters on my Cameo and then sticking matching colours behind the spaces.

My favourite project so far has to be my solar lamps though. I explained the project in a previous post but I just wanted to add a couple more photos of my work in progress and another shot of the final lamps.

lampsWIP lamps2 I’ve also used my Cameo in another project for Ayr Townscape Heritage Initiative but I can’t show the finished work till it’s been on display down in Ayr a bit later in the year. Also working on a little craft project for a birthday present which involves both vinyl and card cut with the Cameo so I’ll be sharing that after the birthday in question. Loving this new gadget!

Solar Lamps

I was approached by the Ayr Townscape Heritage Initiative to do another little project for them. This time it was for their annual Earth Hour event. Last year they created a solar garden with glow in the dark paintings and wind chimes created by local school pupils. This time it was a shop window display of solar powered lamps, again with designs by pupils from local schools. Unfortunately I couldn’t make it along to see the shop window in the High Street with all the lamps but I did get a look before the designs were applied to the lamps and they looked pretty good!

I did my own design of a modified version of Ayr’s skyline and used my brand new Silhouette Cameo to cut it out on vinyl for me. It took a while to even make the design cuttable (only having used the software for text until that point and having decided to design it in PhotoShop to start with) but with a little help from Joy over at Joy’s Life I eventually managed to get it to cut right and learned a few things on the way. I cut four of the same design and applied the vinyl to four solar lamps. I thought they turned out pretty well.

Solar Lamp4_web IMG_8068_web