You know all those cool monogram and personalized products on Etsy in the form of insulted mugs, t-shirts, backpacks, blankets, and just about any product you can think of? Most of those personalizations are made on either a Silhouette or Circuit. Those are the two most popular machines on the market right now. After talking with my friend Bryanna and my friend Holly, I decided the Silhouette is an easier machine to learn to use. They both own this machine and found it to be user friendly. Another friend who owns a Cricuit said it was difficult to get the hang of using it. It was an easy decision for me to make, based on this advice.

For Christmas I bought myself a Silhouette machine. I purchased the Cameo III on Amazon and I highly recommend this machine (FYI I am not compensated for this article, I simply love this product). I actually opened and used it before Christmas even arrived because I wanted to make personalized capes for Alex and Charlie and their classmates for their birthday party in December. It took me a few hours to set it up and start using it. It is not hard to use, but I do suggest reading the instruction manual. Once you get the hang of it, you will find it is quick and easy to use.

This week my friend Holly hosted myself and a few friends at her home. She showed us how to use the Silhouette and I learned some additional techniques that I had no idea that the Silhouette was capable of doing!

Below are some videos that I captured while Holly was teaching us. She walked us through basic use of a Cameo III Silhouette. Don’t mind the chit-chat in the background. We were socializing and learning at the same time. 😉 It’s called multi-tasking.

Once you have loaded the software onto your computer (they provide you with a link when you purchase) and you have your machine connected to your computer, then you ready to try it out! The videos below will help you get started.

The first video provides basic instructions on using the Silhouette software on your computer.

This second video shows how to enter your cutting settings in the software. The key is knowing what kind of vinyl you are using and selecting that option. The video also show how to load your vinyl into the machine. Be sure the white rollers that hold the vinyl in place are in the correct position. Mine, out of the box, were incorrect so I had to manually adjust them according to the instructions in the manual.

The third video shows how to use transfer tape/paper. Using transfer tape makes applying vinyl so much easier. I didn’t know about this product with the first few projects I completed. Without it, applying letters is tedious. Once I learned about this inexpensive and super helpful product, applying the vinyl became much easier. The video also provides instructions on how to actually apply the vinyl to your product. Holly provides wonderful tips and some great products in this clip.

The fourth video clip was the most helpful and interesting to me. She taught us how to capture images online and then drop them into the Silhouette program. Once the image is in the software program you can use the tracing option to capture this image. Amazing!! I can now use all sorts of free clip art online to decorate cheer megaphones, cheer sticks, and cheer buckets. Obviously as a cheer coach I have plans to use my Silhouette for our cheer season!

Keep in mind that you are not allowed to use copyrighted images. Only use images online that are not copyrighted.

The fifth video is a very short clip that shows how to print on HTV- Heat Transfer Vinyl. This product is used when you want to apply your image onto fabric. Make sure when you use HTV that you reverse your words in the software before cutting. You only need to reverse when using HTV, not with regular vinyl.

The sixth and final video clip shows how to use a heat press to apply HTV. Holly applied her HTV to make a cute t-shirt for her son. It was quick and easy with a heat press! I applied my HTV using an iron. It worked just fine, but I do love the ease of the heat press! It’s now on my wish list for Mother’s Day. 😉

Thank you Holly for the tutorial! I think others out there will appreciate your instructions and tips.

Did I mention Holly’s pantry? Oh that’s right she said I shouldn’t say it’s hers, lol. I will brag on her anyway. Her organization skills rock!! I love her pantry bins which she personalized using her Silhouette machine. I am inspired! #pantrygoals #Hollyhasthebestpantry #targetbins

If I go missing for a few days you can find me in my pantry organizing and labeling with my Silhouette. 🤣