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Custom 18" Doll Tees with Heat Transfer Vinyl (Free Cut File and GIVEAWAY)

Heat Transfer Vinyl, HTV, doll tees, Silhouette tutorial, DIY, do it yourself
I'm away on vacation so I'm thrilled to be having Jamie from Punch Place Plus in to teach today's lesson.  This is a great one - especially if you have little girls in your life.  I'll let Jamie take it from here...

Have you noticed the great fashion htv on the market today - My Vinyl Direct has a huge selection of pattern vinyl? I am in love with several of the patterns. I like to start small when trying new techniques or materials. Therefore, the combination of the htv on an 18” doll tee shirt seemed like a natural place to begin. Please join me, your substitute Jamie, for today’s class!

I have an 11 year old who loves to dress her American Girl Doll. She was more than happy to help me choose the shirt color, the fashion htv, and a design.

Heat Transfer Vinyl, HTV, doll tees, Silhouette tutorial, DIY, do it yourself

Together we decided on the hot pink houndstooth that we felt would pop on a black doll tee.

Heat Transfer Vinyl, HTV, doll tees, Silhouette tutorial, DIY, do it yourself

Next, we discussed the design. Her suggestions were #socute, hearts, and a butterfly. Now it was time to create then, audition the designs.

Heat Transfer Vinyl, HTV, doll tees, Silhouette tutorial, DIY, do it yourself, Silhouette Studio, text

I typed in #socute and sized it. To be able to demo the designs, I decided to cut the reverse out of black construction paper, so I added a cut box around each design. Here are the three designs in their boxes ready to be cut.

Heat Transfer Vinyl, HTV, doll tees, Silhouette tutorial, DIY, do it yourself, Silhouette Studio

The FREE studio cut file is available with this lesson...but please these are for the personal use only.


I used black construction paper on my well-worn mat, which was not exceptionally sticky. A friend had shared her horror story of placing construction paper on a new mat. She had to scrape it off and re-glue her mat! So remember to test your mat prior to using construction paper.

Heat Transfer Vinyl, HTV, doll tees, Silhouette tutorial, DIY, do it yourself, construction paper

Unfortunately for me, I did not notice the paper overlapped the right edge of the mat. This resulted in a bit of my friend’s problem, as the Silhouette roller pressed the paper onto the mat. It was small area so cleaning was less drastic than a whole sheet sticking.

Heat Transfer Vinyl, HTV, doll tees, Silhouette tutorial, DIY, do it yourself, construction paper, stuck, cutting mat

I peeled off the squares; now let the tryouts begin! I called my daughter in and we discussed the designs.

Heat Transfer Vinyl, HTV, doll tees, Silhouette tutorial, DIY, do it yourself

We both felt the #socute would be better suited to a glitter or solid htv.

Heat Transfer Vinyl, HTV, doll tees, Silhouette tutorial, DIY, do it yourself

I preferred the hearts but the butterfly won hers. So butterfly it was!

Heat Transfer Vinyl, HTV, doll tees, Silhouette tutorial, DIY, do it yourself

I read the manufacturer’s directions and found I had to fiddle with my settings to get a good cut.


I would recommend using the test cut feature before diving right in and cutting the design.

Heat Transfer Vinyl, HTV, doll tees, Silhouette tutorial, DIY, do it yourself

(Melissa here...chiming in on Jamie's GENIUS idea ^^^ to cut a vinyl decal for her machine to remind herself to mirror HTV! OMG you have no idea how many times I forget!) 

After cutting, I opened the tee shirt and centered the design by dropping the design down 1” from the neckline. Then centered it between the side seams.

Heat Transfer Vinyl, HTV, doll tees, Silhouette tutorial, DIY, do it yourself

After getting it in the right position, I applied the htv according to the manufacturer’s directions. This fashion htv was a hot peel, but I have used others that were cold peel.

Heat Transfer Vinyl, HTV, doll tees, Silhouette tutorial, DIY, do it yourself


Knowing which type has been the difference between success or failure on a few other tees I worked on.

Heat Transfer Vinyl, HTV, doll tees, Silhouette tutorial, DIY, do it yourself



Note: This post may contain affiliate links. By clicking on them and purchasing products through my links, I received a small commission. That's what helps fund Silhouette School so I can keep buying new Silhouette-related products to show you how to get the most out of your machine! 
 Thanks for coming to class today at Silhouette School.  If you like what you see, I'd love for you to pin it!


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