Back to School Sketch Pen Tutorial


Sketch Pen Tutorial | Guiseppa Gubler for Silhouette


Welcome to Back to School Week here on the Silhouette Blog!  Guiseppa here and I have a sketch tutorial to share with you.  I have older school age  kids.  I have a son that will be a Senior and a daughter that will be a Junior.  It ‘s so hard to believe that my kids are almost out of school.  I’m getting a little sad about that because they are getting ready to face the big, bad world…I am not ready for this at all!  Well, because I have older kids, I have a hard time scrapbooking their school pictures without making them look so childish.  So, here’s a simple way to scrap those older school age kids.


Let’s make some chalkboard shapes to embellish those layouts and let’s sketch them out.  The whole point of this tutorial is to make fun embellishments and keep the layout simple for those older kids in our lives, but these can be used for any age as well.


First off, choose your shapes. I picked a few, but I will show you what I did with the Sketch Apple. Since  we are sketching out our shapes to make embellishments look like chalkboard pieces, use black cardstock and a white sketch pen.  Select the cut setting and choose the Silhouette Sketch Pens option.  Make sure your pen is in place and select Send to Silhouette.


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After you have sketched out your shape, leave your mat in the CAMEO, don’t unload your mat. We are going to cut the shape out.  Click on the Open Sketch Window and under the Basic Options choose plain.  Now, your shapes looks like a sketch is in black, not red.


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Next, click on the Offset Window and click on Offset.  It should look like this.


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Let’s get rid of all those scribbles.  Right click on the shape and select Release Compound Path. Now all the scribbles are gone.


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Click on the Open Trace Window and select the Trace Area and then highlight your shape.


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Finally, select the Trace Outer Edge option.  Now you have a red trace area around your shape.


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Now to cut out your sketched shape.  Go to the Cut Setting option and click on it.  If the Cut Edge option is not highlighted, click on it and your shape should now have a bright red trace line around it.  Select the type of media you used and adjust the blade.  Hit Send to Silhouette.


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Look how mine turned out!


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To add a little more of chalkboard look, you can fill in some of the areas of your shape.  Just have fun with it!


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To get ever more of that chalkboard look, use chalk!  Lightly brush some chalk over your shape and then using a cloth or tissue, wipe the chalk off.  It will leave some chalk behind giving it more of a chalkboard look.


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Now, you have some chalkboard looking embellishments!  I did the same process with the rest of my embellishments!


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I hope you have enjoyed this tutorial and I hope you give this a try!  What a fun and simple way to embellish layouts of those older school age kids!  Have a good week and make sure you are checking back every day this week to see all of the design team’s Back to School projects!


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8 thoughts on “Back to School Sketch Pen Tutorial

  1. Cari says:

    Guiseppa this is fabulous!! Love how you created the chalk board like embellishments!

  2. Ginger says:

    Love the look! I’m always looking for ideals for the older school age kids. Going to need to scraplift this page!! Thanks!!

  3. Martha Clyde says:

    Nice job! I love the way that the sketches turned out.

  4. Janis says:

    Love this! I went through your tutorial and everything went the way you said except I must have missed something because after tracing outer edge, everything turned red again. It cut the outline, but then wanted to cut all the sketch lines too. I’m sure it was me (user error). Thank you for this tutorial with software screen shots. That is always extremely helpful. :) Janis

  5. Susan says:

    Love the sketch designs, but every time I go to use my sketch pens, they are dried up, especially if I haven’t used them in awhile. I hate to spend the money on the sketch designs and pens only to not be able to make them because of the dried up pens.

  6. Lynette says:

    This is such a great idea! I will have to use this for cards or even journal cards. I’m a lazy scrapbooker, and just do journal cards in photo albums. :) I love this idea thanks for sharing! So much easier than dealing with print and cuts for chalkboard looks.

  7. Love your sketchy chalkboard pieces Guiseppa…and I applaud your son for his taste in music!

  8. Ilona van Soest - Stremme says:

    You always share such cool pages! Thanks a lot, your work is very inspiring.

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