Today we’re continuing our series on how to make a custom design t-shirt by adding text in Silhouette Studio. My Silhouette Cameo is, by far, my favorite crafting machine and I know that with a little time and patience, it can be yours too. You can find the one that I have here.
This post contains affiliate links.
I’ve broken this series into 3 different posts to make it easier. You can “knock it out” at your own pace.
Here’s what our finished shirt will look like.
I’ve already shown you how to make a custom design (the arrows) in Silhouette Studio (we’ll refer to it as SS from here on out). If you missed that tutorial, you can find it here. Now that we have the arrows for the shirt done, let’s add the text!
Start by clicking the letter “A“ on the left side of SS and then type in your text. Next, you’ll open the “text window” on the upper right of SS by clicking the “A”, and then begin scrolling through the fonts until you find the one you like. For this tutorial, I used “Merry Light.”
As you know from my previous post in this series, I like to work with my designs in color, so I colored the text in. If you missed that post, I’ve got you covered! You can find it here.
I love this font, however, when you’re working with vinyl, you’ll find that this font is a little too narrow. Therefore, we’ll just thicken it up a bit.
Important Tip: When working with vinyl, thin fonts can be difficult to weed. You can, however, cut almost any font as long as you “thicken it up” by doing an offset.
To do this, open the “offset” window on the upper right of SS, click “Offset” and then change the distance. We want to thicken the font up a bit, but not make a big change to it. For this text, I changed the distance to .025.
Once you have done that, move the original text out of the way and delete it.
At this point, the new text is not grouped together (note in the “offsetting the text” picture above, the word “THREE” has just one box around it, but in the picture below, you can see “YOUNG, WILD” has boxes around each individual letter). Simply drag your cursor around all the letters in “YOUNG, WILD,” right-click and then hit group. Do the same thing with “THREE.” Leave the “&” sign by itself for now. You’ll have three separate lines of text. (If you’re like me and prefer the text colored in, you can color it in at this point.)
Important tip: If you want to perform the exact same function on multiple lines or designs, rather than doing each task one by one, drag your cursor around all the text/design and you’ll see that all are highlighted. Another way to do this is to click one line of text/design, hold down the shift key and click on the other lines of text/design and you’ll capture all of them as well.
Now it’s time to bring the arrows back in. If you already have them on this mat, great! You’re one step ahead. If not, let’s do that now.
To open the image in SS, click “file” in the upper-left corner, then “merge” in the drop down menu, and open up the arrows you’ve saved from our previous tutorial.
Important Tip: If you click “open” instead of “merge,” it’ll open your design on a whole new mat.
Once you have the arrows merged in we need to align the center design of the text. At this point, you can align them by “eye-balling” it, but why go through the hassle of that when we can let SS do it for us? Simply open the “align window” from the upper right of SS. Highlight the two arrows as well as the “&” sign, click “Align Middle.”
Ta-da! I love this feature in SS. Takes the guess work out of eyeballing it! Since that line is still highlighted, right click and hit “group.”
You will now have three separate lines…
- “YOUNG, WILD”
- “ARROWS, &”
To align these properly, we’ll do the same thing as above. Highlight all three lines, open the “align window” (if it isn’t already opened), but this time, click “align center.
All that’s left to do now is “right click” and hit group again. Your entire image will now be one complete design.
Important Tip: Once you complete the alignment, it’s important to group it all together so that if you need to change the size of the design, it all stays in proper proportion.
There you have it! A completed design from start to finish. To continue on with the final post in this series, Adding Heat Transfer Vinyl to a T-Shirt, click here.
If you’re looking for more help with your Silhouette machine, I highly recommend Melissa Viscount’s books (from Silhouette School Blog). She has an array of e-books that walk you step-by-step through the process of creating your own masterpieces! You can find them here.
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Until next time, my friend…..
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