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Silhouette Store Subscriptions: Pros and Cons to Monthly Design Store Plans

I get a lot of questions about the Silhouette Design Store Subscription options and which plan to design plan to pick.

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So here's the low down on the pros and cons of the Silhouette Store Subscription monthly plan.
Before you jump on the monthly obligation bandwagon, there are a few things to consider, too!

To give you a general overview of what the Silhouette CAMEO Design Store Subscription is, the name is pretty descriptive. Silhouette America offers the option to pay a monthly fee in exchange for a specific amount of monthly credits. For example, the Basic Silhouette Design Store plan is $9.99/month. In exchange, you receive $25.00 monthly credit to spend on Silhouette designs from the store.


Of course, there are various plans to look at and consider, so let's go ahead and examine the PROS first:

1. Cost Savings

If you already purchase designs from the Silhouette Design Store, you know that a standard design costs $0.99. Unless of course the design is on sale or you want the commercial use license with it. When you sign up for a monthly subscription, there is built-in cost savings to each level.

Let's look at the Basic subscription level plan first. It costs at $9.99. Without a subscription, $9.99 would get you 10 designs at regular price from the Silhouette Design Store. With a subscription, you now receive 25 designs at regular price, which equates to 15 free designs.

As the monthly price increases, so does the cost savings. For the Premium level Silhouette Design Store Subscription, the monthly fee is $19.99, but the store credit increases to $150.

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2. Catch a Sale

Silhouette America runs sales on both subscription services and designs, so take advantage of both for the most savings. Historically speaking, about twice a year, you can sign up for a subscription service for 20% off the normal price. In addition, the Silhouette Design Store regularly has designs on sale for 25-50% off.  By taking advantage of these types of sales, you can really get the most bang for your buck!

3. Quick & Easy

Of course, one of the most obvious pros to buying designs from the Silhouette Design Store is it's quick and easy, saving you a ton of time and effort.

4. Commercial Licenses

That's right, you can actually use your Silhouette Design Store credit for purchasing commercial licenses for your favorite designs. Keep in mind - not all designs are eligible for commercial licenses, but for the ones that are, you can deduct the license amount from your store credit and proceed to sell items that you make with these awesome Silhouette designs. I don't know about you, but I'm more willing to spend store credit over my hard earned moolah!

So if I have $150 in store credit that only cost me $19.99 a month, I might be willing to splurge on a commercial design from time to time. This also means I don't have to stress about finding royalty-free clipart to trace, I can purchase a commercial licensed shape instead and rest assured that I am within my selling rights for my designs.

5. Rollover Credit

If you go a month without using all your credit, your Silhouette Design Store credit rolls over for 60 days.

6. Peace of Mind and Budgeting

One thing to think about is the peace of mind of knowing that you can purchase designs when you need them and not have to pay out of pocket. By having one monthly fee, I know to go ahead and deduct it from my checkbook, then I can download to my heart's content. This was really great as a beginner, because I didn't have to stress over purchasing the exact design I needed, I could download several to choose from and play with them in Silhouette Studio.

7. Ownership

While ownership of these designs is a relative term, as the designers are the true owners, you are the owner of the license that you purchase for the design. What this means is that once a purchase is made through the Silhouette Design Store, it's more or less yours forever. This is also great because if you ever experience a computer failure, all of your purchased files are saved in your Silhouette account and available for restoration to your computer (individually or in mass).

When the cloud upgrade is fully functional, all designs purchased through the Silhouette Store will be stored in the cloud and accessible from multiple devices. You can read more about the cloud software update here.  


As with most things in crafting, you have to take the good with the bad. So, while we don't want to discourage you or scare you away from using the Silhouette Subscription service, there are a few CONS to consider before you jump ahead of yourself.

1. Commitment

Signing up for the subscription service is a commitment. Fortunately, there are several commitment levels, but the price increases for terms shorter than 12-months.

If you do decide to cancel before your subscription term is up, fees can be associated and billed to the credit card on file.

You are also committed for a minimum amount. During my subscription term, I can upgrade at any time, but I cannot downgrade. So if I sign up for the Basic subscription and decide that $25 credit is not enough, I can upgrade without any problems, complications, or further commitments. But if I decide that I don't need $25, I cannot change the plan until my current subscription term is due for renewal.

2. Use it or Lose it

Although the subscription amount does roll over for 60 days, at the end of that time, the credit expires. Any credit not used within 60 days is forfeited and cannot be used.

3. Automatic Billing

I completely understand while they do it, but I absolutely hate automatic billing. Just make sure you have a current card on file and that you check back periodically. If your card expires or you have any other changes, you'll need to come into your Silhouette America account to update.

4. Expense

While we don't have any complaints about our lost credit, because we still get our money's worth each month, Silhouette users who don't use their monthly credit and continually lose it month after month will now be obligated for an additional and unnecessary monthly expense. You can cancel early or payoff the subscription, but it can still be costly if you jump into a subscription that you won't actually use.

5. The Fine Print - Terms of Service

As with most sites and services, Silhouette America covers some of the finer details of their subscription service in their Terms of Service agreement. While none of it is surprising or unexpected, it is something to look over and stay up to date on, in case there are any changes.  


If you've decided that a Silhouette Design Store Subscription is right up your alley, then log in to your Silhouette America account (can be done in Silhouette Studio through the "Show Design Store" button on the left side toolbar). Look for the Subscribe and Save buttons to click on for more information.

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!

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  1. Thanks for this post :)
    Last time the subscription was on sale, I made the plunge but paid for the year upfront. Now I get the fun of new credit appearing each month without the financial pain (I live in Australia, so our dodgy exchange rate makes Silhouette crafting expensive enough as it is!)

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  3. One "pro" you didn't mention is that after a certain number of years, you will also receive a 10% discount per year you have had a subscription. I don't know the exact time frame, so check with sil support for more info...

    1. I too was thinking this was a great pro.
      Being a subscriber for several years the discounted amount it super nice

  4. Hi Becky! Great breakdown of the subscription process. I signed up almost a year ago during one of the sale periods and was nervous about it so I only did a Level 1 for the $5 a month, and paid it in full for the year. I knew I could upgrade if the $10 credit per month wasn't enough for my needs. Turns out it is just perfect. I roll over some months hoping for a good sale when I don't have an immediate need for images, and I keep a big wishlist to make it easy to shop when there is a sale. And, when I know I need to use up some credit I just pick some favs from the wishlist if there isn't something I else I need.

  5. Thank you Becky for the excellent article regarding pro's and con's. I'm quite happy with the subscription service.

  6. Don't forget that you get extra cloud storage space if you have a subscription! You can do a custom subscription for add little as $5, and even less during the subscription sale

  7. Don't forget that you get extra cloud storage space if you have a subscription! You can do a custom subscription for add little as $5, and even less during the subscription sale

  8. Another con I didn't realize the first time I had a subscription is that credits disappear as soon as your subscription runs out. So, if you subscribe for a year and don't renew at the end of the year your credits are gone. They don't stay in your account for 60 days.

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  10. I do the smallest.. $4.99 and I purchased it at 20% off so it cost $4.20 per month. That gives me $10 in credits ..which is more than I typically use. But I feel I have the freedom to pull a design when I need to do a craft/card without it going to cost me. Also, Through the free Tuesday give away, and then at Christmas Time they give a good amount away, and buy one get one free... I have received a big bang for my buck with the subcription. I have had the subscription for 2 say $96 dollars appx..yet I have over 500 items in my cloud.

  11. I recently got the Cameo and I've been using the free software but I'm having problems with the program opening sometimes. Will it make a difference if a purchase the software ?

    1. Hi, upgrading the software won't make it perform any differently. Sometimes updating the software to a different version V4.2 vs V4.1 will fix the issue and other times the performance of the software has to do with the computer it's being run on.

  12. I have enjoyed having a basic subscription for many years. I never had a problem with credits expiring, lol. I did get an annual discount until my monthly cost went down to $5.00 per month. I have also used Credit Boosts during sales when my monthly credits were used up. One big advantage I find is when I need a specific design for a project my credit card won’t be charged $.99 or less, which might raise a red flag with the card company!


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