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Silhouette Tips: Creating Your Own Designs in Studio with Basic Shapes

If there's one thing I want to scream from the roof tops it's that you should NOT be intimidated to create your own designs in Silhouette Studio.  There's nothing to be intimidated about...because you can always click UNDO.  I talked extensively about designing in Silhouette Studio at the All Things Silhouette Conference in November, and now Silhouette School weekly contributor, Becky Dykes from My Paper Craze, is here to share her tips on how to go about designing in Silhouette Studio.

Silhouette Studio, Silhouette tutorial, Silhouette Cameo, create your own designs, create your own shapes

One of my favorite things to work on is creating designs. It's a nice mix between challenging and relaxing and USUALLY, I like the end product. I also like utilizing shapes in Silhouette Studio vs. tracing or buying so that I (mostly) don't have to worry about copyrights and such. To prove how easy it is, I've put together a tutorial on how I created the a Valentine's Day shirt design for my toddler.

We'll go step by step on making a Valentine's Heart design in Silhouette Studio using nothing more than circles, rectangles and polygons. Don't believe me? Follow along.

First use the Draw an Ellipse tool along the right side bar to draw a circle. You can get a perfectly dimensional circle by holding down the SHIFT key while drawing.

Silhouette Studio, Silhouette tutorial, Silhouette Cameo, create your own designs, create your own shapes

Next, use the Draw a Rectangle tool to draw a rectangle. Select it to get and grab the green circle at the top to rotate it at a slope. Move it so it's sightly overlapping your circle.

Silhouette Studio, Silhouette tutorial, Silhouette Cameo, create your own designs, create your own shapes

Next, select both the circle and the rectangle. Go to the Replicate tool along the top tool bar (in blue) and click "Mirror Right."

Silhouette Studio, Silhouette tutorial, Silhouette Cameo, create your own designs, create your own shapes

Now using your directional arrows on your keyboard, move the mirrored design to the left until the tips of the rectangles meet.

Silhouette Studio, Silhouette tutorial, Silhouette Cameo, create your own designs, create your own shapes

TIP: Having trouble seeing the design? Fill the design in with a solid color using the Fill Color tool and from the Line Color tool, pick transparent. Your design will appear as it will when it's welded, but it will still maintain all it's individual shape cut lines for now. 

Silhouette Studio, Silhouette tutorial, Silhouette Cameo, create your own designs, create your own shapes


If you're satisfied, select all four shapes, right click and select weld from the shortcut menu.

Silhouette Studio, Silhouette tutorial, Silhouette Cameo, create your own designs, create your own shapes

Here is your finished heart. Wasn't that easy?

Silhouette Studio, Silhouette tutorial, Silhouette Cameo, create your own designs, create your own shapes

Now to work on the other parts of the design. Draw another rectangle, this time thin and long to go across the top of the heart. This will form the arrow shaft.

Silhouette Studio, Silhouette tutorial, Silhouette Cameo, create your own designs, create your own shapes

This is the most complicated step, but it's really easy, so don't stress if you haven't used polygons before....if you are stressing check out Melissa's tutorial on how to become a Pro at Polygons in Silhouette Studio.

Draw a polygon shape.

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In Studio, polygons all start off with five sides. Use the little slider and slide to the left, all the way to three. This forms a triangle

Silhouette Studio, Silhouette tutorial, Silhouette Cameo, create your own designs, create your own shapes

After you have three sides, right click to get the shortcut menu and click convert to path. This will lock the triangle into shape.

Silhouette Studio, Silhouette tutorial, Silhouette Cameo, create your own designs, create your own shapes

Reduce the size of the triangle, rotate using the free rotation handle (green circle), then move into place to form the tip of the arrow (the arrowhead).

Silhouette Studio, Silhouette tutorial, Silhouette Cameo, create your own designs, create your own shapes

Next, draw another rectangle and duplicate a copy (for a total of two equally sized rectangles). You'll want to group these together.

Silhouette Studio, Silhouette tutorial, Silhouette Cameo, create your own designs, create your own shapes

To create the other end of the arrow, you'll draw another rectangle and use the shear function to shear the rectangle horizontally by 30 degrees.  Please note, you'll only have the shear option if you have Silhouette Studio Designer Edition.

Silhouette Studio, Silhouette tutorial, Silhouette Cameo, create your own designs, create your own shapes

Once sheared, you want to create a duplicate copy (by holding down Command + Right Arrow on keyboard), then select both sheared rectangles and mirror below from the Replicate window. Once you have two on top and two mirrored ones below, make sure they overlap slightly, select all four sheared rectangles > right click > choose weld from the shortcut menu.

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Now you can resize and move the sheared shapes to form the end of the arrow (the fletching). Once sized, you'll want to use the Align menu to align the shapes properly. The fletching will be aligned to the arrow shaft through Align Right and Align Middle. The arrowhead will be aligned to the arrow shaft with Align Left and Align Middle. Be sure to group after each alignment. Select the rest of the design (the two "hanging" rectangles and the heart), and choose Align Center to make sure the arrow, the rectangles and the heart are all aligned to each other.

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Now that your design is aligned, select the heart and create an offset. The offset distance I chose was 0.30.

Silhouette Studio, Silhouette tutorial, Silhouette Cameo, create your own designs, create your own shapes

Now all you have to do is add your monogram and add your colors!

Silhouette Studio, Silhouette tutorial, Silhouette Cameo, create your own designs, create your own shapes

Wasn't that easy? If you want to make a few adjustments, you can always do a little point editing along the way, but there are plenty of designs you can make just using the tools at your disposal in Silhouette Studio! Don't be intimidated, go create something of your own!

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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4 comments

  1. What a great tutorial! I would never have thought you used circles and squares to make a heart!
    Thanks much!!

    ReplyDelete
  2. I see tutorials saying make a shape- & I never really understood more than the basics. Thank You! Now I am off to read about polygons. ;)

    ReplyDelete
  3. Great tutorial! Never knew that about the polygon / triangle thing, cool!

    ReplyDelete
  4. I love your tutorial , but I wish you would do videos because I'm more of a visual learner. Thanks for sharing all you know!!

    ReplyDelete

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