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10 Distress Fonts for Silhouette Crafters (and Tips for Easy Cutting and Weeding)

silhouette cameo distressed vintage font
This is a sponsored post, but all opinions are my own.
Distressed or Vintage fonts are hugely popular with crafters, but many shy away from them because they're not the easiest to cut or weed. 

Well, guess what..not only am I sharing a bunch of awesome distress fonts, but I'm going to share my little trick to making the vinyl weed just like a normal solid font would! Are you ready to have our mind blown?!

Alright first here are a list of the Best Distress Fonts for Silhouette my opinion. Just so happens, you can get them all in one fell swoop if you pick up the new Tasty June Bundle from The Hungry JPEG. They're ALL included (along with a whole TON of other awesome stuff which I'll get to in a minute) and they all come with the commercial license. Doesn't get much easier than that!
  1. Aswatama Rough
  2. Voltunes Wild
  3. Scratchbook Rough
  4. LeOsler Rough (Border, Shadow, Inline, Light)
  5. Pantel Rough
  6. Pratiwi Vintage
  7. Juvenile
  8. The Bridges Rough
  9. Sparkles
distressed fonts silhouette cameo vintage fonts how to cut weed

Now for my secret to easily cutting and weeding distress fonts... I'm going to use The Bridges-Rough for this example. The process I'm sharing for cutting this distressed font on vinyl works the same for pretty much all of these distress fonts (and all materials).

Keep in mind, as we work through this, the key is to NOT use all of the distressed areas...otherwise you'll 1) be cutting all day 2) overwhelm Silhouette Studio.

Start by downloading and installing the font on your computer. The next time you open Studio it will be in your font list.

For this example, I typed out the word 'Distressed' and then changed the text style to The Bridges Rough. If I cut like this it would take the software and the machine to cut because each of those tiny little distress marks is a cut line. They're so small, they're pretty much invisible on vinyl or htv anyway.

cut weed distressed vintage fonts silhouette cameo tutorial
So what we want to do is separate out and remove some of those distressed areas. To do this, select the text > right click > release compound path.

It looks like nothing happened, but go one step further and right click > ungroup. 

Now you can see every little cut line has a line around it. Holy cow that's a lot of cut lines.

What you're going to do is hold down Shift and use your mouse to click on the LARGEST areas of the text only...basically the outline of the letters. Don't forget the counters (insides of letters). Holding down shift allows you to select multiple areas at the same time.

Once you've got what you think you need selected, drag them away from the distressed parts of the design.

If you missed any obvious areas (top of S, parts of T, E's) just go back and select them and move them into place...

At this point you want to select the large areas > right click > make compound path.  Now we are going to use the Fill tool and Line Color tool (blue along top tool bar below) to fill the letters in solid black. Make the line color 'white'. This will give you a great idea of the amount of distressing in your design.*

You can see that with The Bridges Rough there is still a lot of distressing going on with just the solid pieces, that's because all of the distressed areas are cutting in from the outside edge of the letters like inlets as opposed to be 'tiny' islands inside the letters. This means when you weed all those little 'inlets' will weed out at the same time....

Check this out...I simply put a weeding box around the design and after I cut it I removed excess vinyl...this is what happened with that one piece weeded away! (By the way, this cut took 7:43 on a speed of 5.  I timed the cut because I wanted to be able to tell you how much longer cutting with the distress marks takes.)

vintage distressed fonts easier weed cut sihouette cameo beginners tutorial

Then all I had to do was use my Silhouette hook to remove the three counters in the Ds and R and this is what I got...that's NO more weeding than a regular solid font. BAM!

Easy weed distressed fonts silhouette cameo

You can see on a close up of the weeded vinyl, all those little 'veins' came out with the larger piece!

Now let's say you want more distressing than problem.

Follow the tutorial to the * and then continue here.  Go back up to all those distressed areas you left behind and select SOME small areas throughout the design.  I turned them green so you could more easily see.

Now take them and drag them down onto the solid letter areas. I circled the bigger clusters so you can more easily see the distressed areas... (the top "Distressed" has no extra distressed areas).

NOTE: If the distressed areas are too small and/or there are not many 'inlets' put a small offset around the distressed areas and use them to cut out the distressed areas. Checkout the full tutorial on that distressed fonts cutting method here. This method words will with fonts like Scratchbook and Pratiwi Vintage. 
Group everything together.

And now you're ready to cut...just keep in mind this will take longer to cut because you have a few more distressed areas. Just to give you an idea this same design with the same speed settings, size, material and blade, but more distressing took 12:15 to cut as opposed to 7:43 for the previous design.  Imagine how long it would take to cut if you used ALL those distressed areas you we originally pulled out. This is why you need to remove the majority of them.

Here's a look at the difference in the cut lines.

Again, I put a weeding box around the design so that I could simply remove the vinyl around my text while weeding. And again a lot of the distressing came with it...but this time since I have some added distressed areas I have some internal weeding to do.

Instead of trying to pick out all of those little 'islands' with your Silhouette Hook or tweezers, use a piece of washi tape to blot on the distressed areas. This will peel them up without pulling the entire larger vinyl design off the backing.

Here's a side by side of the two designs we cut...remember the bottom had the additional cut/distressed areas.

Easy to weed distressed fonts silhouette cameo washi tape

And here's a close up so you can really see what the difference is by adding the additional distressed areas vs leaving them out.

As if that's not enough to convince you you need to grab The Tasty Bundle from The Hungry now... I'm sure this will give you every excuse! Just take a look at some of the awesome other stuff that's included...and don't forget it expires at the end of June!

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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  1. You can develop all these idea through more creative way. Have you heard about inventive writing tips? There are some different types of writing technique such as style, design, and format. If you include all these styles you can make your blog more attractively.

  2. Thank you Melissa! This is awesome! With the Fourth of July coming up I want to try to do a flag that is distressed. I'm figuring its about the dame idea. Thanks again! Love you! <3

  3. Hi Melissa! I have two of your books Ultimate Guide and Sticker Book. Some time ago you mentioned that past owners will get free updates to your books but I have never received any email with link to receive my updates. Please email me with instruction as to how I get my free updates. Thank you so much. I love you books and I'll be getting your Pix Scan book soon too. Thank you so much! Betty Walk

  4. Thank you... I have abstained from doing distressed not knowing how they to weed all the areas.

  5. Thank you Melissa but how do you start the distressing process when using custom designed lettering? I would like to give this a try however cannot use any provided fonts.


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