While you can use it for layering vinyl, the Layers function is layering within your design inside the software, before the actual cutting takes place. Utilizing layers is beneficial when you have a multi-layer project that will be cut from different materials or different colors (pretty similar to Cut by Color).
Here's the run-down. To access Layers, go to the EDIT menu and select Layers. There is also a shortcut at the bottom of the software screen. (Or along the top towards the left if you have Business Edition). The icon looks like two diamonds.
When you open the Layers tools, the dialog window will actually display at the bottom right of the Silhouette Studio screen.
There are a few options to look for when utilizing layers.
First, find the "lock" and "eye" icons. These represent the ability to lock a layer and the visibility of a layer. These are useful for several reasons.
One: Locking a layer prevents it from being moved, selected, or changed in any way.†You literally cannot click on the objects in that layer at all. So if you are trying to get something lined up, you can lock the other layers to prevent the headache of moving them by mistake.
Two: Depending on the complexity of your design, it could be beneficial to temporarily remove a top or middle layer, without actually moving it. You can turn off the visibility, make changes, then turn it back on when you're ready.
The Layers tool will also allow you to move, add, or remove layers, as you need. You can also see that a description is listed for each shape in your layer.
You can click on these names to rename them more appropriately. This can be useful for identifying which shapes are in which layer.
As you're sorting layers, you can drag and drop shapes where you need them, without actually moving or changing anything in Silhouette Studio.
When it comes to cutting, the Advanced Cut Settings allow you to choose various materials and settings based on layers. As stated before, this is pretty similar to Cut by Color.
The benefit of cutting by layers instead of colors is you don't have to change your design in any way. For example, if I had a design with 10 colors that I wanted cut from two different materials, that could be a headache to change my design colors, then coordinate colors with cut settings 10 different times. With layers, I can choose my settings by layer and incorporate more than one shape or object color.
We hope some of that makes practical sense for you. Layers isn't a tool that you will use every day, but it's a nice addition to your Silhouette Studio design arsenal for when you have those complex designs that need a little extra care.
If you're interested in more information about the Advanced Cut Settings, check out How to Cut By Color in Silhouette Studio!
As always, if you're interested the this cute summertime cut file, hop on over to My Paper Craze and download a copy for free!
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