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Using an OttLite Light Box for Weeding Vinyl (Silhouette School Review and Giveaway)

Anyone else guilty of holding their vinyl and HTV up to the light or window at every possible angle to try to get an easier read on where to weed?
Ottlite light box, weeding, vinyl
This is a sponsored post, but as always, all opinions are my own.
Recently I was given the opportunity to test out an OttLite LED Light Box and Task Lamp Station as way to make weeding easier....plus I'm about to make someone's day because I have an extra to give away to one lucky Silhouette School reader!!!

The beauty of any light box is it provides back light or light from under the vinyl/htv, illuminating the cut lines and making it easier to see where to weed and where not to weed.  

Ottlite light box, weeding, vinyl

The OttLite is a simple plug and play LED lighting tool, with three brightness settings, that goes on with the touch of a button....but would it work for vinyl and HTV?

To test it, I cut the same design, in the same size on three different types of vinyl - glitter htv, smooth htv and adhesive vinyl  - to see how the OttLite LED Light Box might help with weeding.  In order to really put it to the test, I specifically picked a very intricate feather and sized it to just 3.75" x .975 inches in Silhouette Studio. I did this intentionally knowing some of the cut areas would be very small and difficult to see while weeding.

Here's how the cut vinyl looked after it was cut - with no back lighting.

Ottlite light box, weeding, vinyl

When I turned on the OttLite's LED light the cut lines for the adhesive vinyl became very clear with even the lowest light setting.  This made weeding very easy despite such a tiny, intricate design.  Definitely a huge difference from when the light was off.

Ottlite light box, weeding, vinyl

Glitter HTV is notorious for being difficult to weed.  Here's what the feather looked like cut, but with no back light.  I promise you the design is cut into the htv. :)

Ottlite light box, weeding, vinyl

Even on the OttLite Light Box it was still difficult to see cut lines in the glitter htv. The issue, I believe, is the thickness of the material and the clear backing.

Ottlite light box, weeding, vinyl

However, when I slightly bent the glitter HTV the weeding lines became much easier to see while on the light box.

Ottlite light box, weeding, vinylFinally, the smooth HTV was put to the test.  Here's what the cut lines looked like while I was attempting to weed with no special lighting.

Ottlite light box, weeding, vinyl

Turning the OttLite on definitely helped. The LED light box proved more effective with the HTV than with the glitter htv, but didn't make the cut lines quite as obviously as the adhesive vinyl.  Again, I think this has more to do with the paper vs clear backing as opposed to the light itself.

As you can imagine, it's extremely difficult to photograph the material on the OttLite, but in this photo you can clearly see the cut lines are much more obvious while being back lit by the LED Light Box.


Ottlite light box, weeding, vinyl


Keep in mind how just small this design is while you watch me weed - in 4x speed - this HTV design on the OttLite.   I apologize my hand is in the way part of the time.


The other thing I found useful is the light box can be flipped around and used as a task lamp. This is also beneficial in helping to see weeding lines especially on adhesive vinyl and smooth HTV.

Ottlite light box, weeding, vinyl


The OttLite LED Light Box and Tool Task Station is sold Hobby Lobby stores or through  JoAnn Fabrics' online store in the US and Canada. It should be available in Europe this summer.

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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