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Cutting Cookie Stencils with Silhouette

The Silhouette is becoming increasingly popular with cookie and cake decorators. I've shared a few lessons in the past about how to cut sugar sheets with Silhouette CAMEO and how to sketch and cut with Silhouette and food safe markers, but today we're going one step further to create perfect cookie stencils with Silhouette.

Silhouette Cameo, cookie stencil, DIY, do it yourself

I have no skills in the cookie baking department, so today I'm teaming up with the extremely talented Laura from Cadillac Cookies.  When I say extremely, it's pretty much an understatement if you go by her mad skills displayed on her drool worthy Instagram page!

Silhouette Cameo, cookie stencil, DIY, do it yourself

Laura is a Silhouette owner too and she's finally figured out how to make stencils for decorating cookies, by cutting food safe stencil material (like Acetate sheets) on her die cutting machine. Stencils make for MUCH easier cookie decorating, especially when the design is very detailed or a background pattern.

Silhouette Cameo, cookie stencil, DIY, do it yourself

To make your own cookie stencils with Silhouette, start by opening up Silhouette Studio and opening up your design.  For this example we're using the Silhouette School logo because...well, just how cool is that?!

Now depending on your design you may need to make some modifications to get a better cookie stencil.  For instance, if we used the Silhouette School logo without any modifications this is the type of stencil you would get...

Silhouette Cameo, cookie stencil, DIY, do it yourself

You can see that the o's and e's don't have any counters (that's the official world for centers or cutouts). 

But by using the erase or knife tool, as I explained in this tutorial on how to make 100% better stencils, I can quickly and effectively turn this design into a more stencil friendly design. Simply by removing a very tiny section of the e and o (in the circled areas) it 'bridges' the counter to the rest of the stencil so they don't fall out leaving you with the above result - but instead an ideal stencil.
(NOTE: You won't have all of these eraser options if you do not have Silhouette Studio Designer Edition)
Silhouette Cameo, cookie stencil, DIY, do it yourself, Silhouette Studio

Okay so once your design is all ready, you want to size it.  The cookies are about 4" so we made the stencil slightly smaller. Laura cut it on a food safe Clear Acetate sheet (.003 NOT .007!!) on her Silhouette CAMEO.  (I did a few test cuts myself to make sure the settings worked well, too.)

Note: Be aware that if you are cutting food stencils on your Silhouette CAMEO you should keep a blade and mat exclusive to these materials. 

Silhouette Cameo, cookie stencil, DIY, do it yourself

I found the best cut settings for the acetate sheets to be the default vinyl settings in Silhouette Studio. (Do a test cut first!)

Silhouette Cameo, cookie stencil, DIY, do it yourself, Silhouette Studio, cut settings

Also, if you have really small and detailed areas you may want to slow the speed down slightly.

Silhouette Cameo, cookie stencil, DIY, do it yourself

 And here's how the finished stencil looked before removing it off the mat.

Silhouette Cameo, cookie stencil, DIY, do it yourself

Once the stencil is cut, remove it from the cutting mat and weed it. You want a lot of excess acetate around the stencil so don't be stingy when cutting (or skip cutting around it all together)...cut wayyyyy out and around giving yourself at least a few inches on all sides of the stencil. 

Silhouette Cameo, cookie stencil, DIY, do it yourself

Now comes the tricky part - getting that perfectly airbrushed stenciled cookie look!

Laura and I were tag-teaming this tutorial from half way across the country so I wanted to test out this method for myself before I told her the perfect cut settings...

Since I don't have all this fancy schmancy cookie decorating equipment like an airbrush gun and compressor I tested on cardboard with spray paint.  As you can see it was a perfect stencil every single time - even in the most detailed areas. 
 Silhouette Cameo, cookie stencil, DIY, do it yourself

So with that...Laura got to work on some actual cookies.  She ices her cookies first so she has a nice even (and delicious base) to airbrush on.  To hold the stencil in place while airbrushing, she uses a technique using magnets, which she picked up from Callye at Sweet Sugarbelle blog.

So as not to re-invent the wheel, simply flip over a cookie baking sheet. You can cover the back side of it with a paper towel if you want to protect the backside of the cookies. Place the cookie onto the paper towel and lay the stencil on top. Now to keep the stencil in place, use four large magnet, one on each corner of the stencil to hold it into place.  The magnets will stick to the cookie sheet and keep the stencil in place.

Silhouette Cameo, cookie stencil, DIY, do it yourself

Now you're ready to start airbrushing the cookies!   Laura started by airbrushing the black areas.

 Silhouette Cameo, cookie stencil, DIY, do it yourself

This stencil proved a little tricky because the S was cut separately as you can see here...

Silhouette Cameo, cookie stencil, DIY, do it yourself

But Laura got around that by using a chopstick to help secure the "S" in place, so it wouldn't blow away when she was airbrushing the pink area.

Silhouette Cameo, cookie stencil, DIY, do it yourself

And so my stenciled cookie-loving friends, that's how you cut DIY cookie stencils using a Silhouette machine.



Silhouette Cameo, cookie stencil, DIY, do it yourself



Oh and PS if you're a cookie or cake decorator who's considering getting a Silhouette to enhance your designs and create stencils...my book The Ultimate Silhouette Guide will teach you everything you need to know about the Silhouette software Studio and how to use the machine and materials!

Silhouette Cameo, Silhouette, Silhouette Studio, print and cut


Note: This post may contain affiliate links. By clicking on them and purchasing products through my links, I receive 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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Silhouette Cameo, cookie stencil, DIY, do it yourself


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51 comments

  1. You will want to center your stencil on a 5 1/2 x 5 1/2 in square if you use a stencil genie by Creative Cookier. You can get 4 genie sized stencils from a 12x12 in piece of acetate. It will fit exactly into the genie and it eliminates the need for magnets since the genie is already magnetized. It is a nice product.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I don't think I would be doing that, however, your creativity amazes me.

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  3. Yes, absolutely awesome! I would never have thought to do this. Ingenuity! Thank you for sharing your talents and a possibility for all of us.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I bought my silhouette specifically for stenciling cookies! I have made over 100 and I love them! I would have spent over $500 plus shipping if I bought the stencils individually.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This is my plan, if I can master the software and design! Are you using the .003 plastic with the settings referred to in this article?

      Delete
    2. This is my plan, if I can master the software and design! Are you using the .003 plastic with the settings referred to in this article?

      Delete
  5. Wow! I started reading this thinking I would never decorate cookies, and in the end I thought, that's pretty amazing, maybe I could try. This is perfect for someone like me with no artistic skills (can't even draw stick figures well) but who is great at designing on the computer. Great tutorial!

    ReplyDelete
  6. Thank you for posting this! I have just recently started cutting out stencils for my cookies using my Silhouette. I have one that is giving me trouble and when I searched "stencils" on your site, the first one that came up was this one for cookies!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Abby, do you have any tips for making actual designs or figures on stencils for cookies? I am struggling trying to figure out where to use the "bridges" to hold the pieces together?

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  15. I stocked up on .007 plastic, uhoh! I haven't tried it yet. I love the .007 plastic over the .005 plastic that I've purchased for my cookies. I can't imagine using a flimsier .003 plastic?! How do you guys like it?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I tried the .005 with 4 different blades and couldn't get it to cut through the acetate even if I double cut.

      Delete
  16. I stocked up on .007 plastic, uhoh! I haven't tried it yet. I love the .007 plastic over the .005 plastic that I've purchased for my cookies. I can't imagine using a flimsier .003 plastic?! How do you guys like it?

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  17. did this and followed the exact settings on the same plastic acetate .003 total fail! I am new to this Silhouette and wondered why it doesnt cut all the way thru. I used a new blade too.

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  31. I couldn't cut through the .005 acetate no matter how many different blades and settings I tried. It etched it but wouldn't cut it. Ugh! I guess I have to get .003. I didn't really want to go that thin but something would be better than nothing I guess.

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