Speak Kind Words | Vinyl Roll Feeder Tutorial – Silhouette America Blog

Speak Kind Words | Vinyl Roll Feeder Tutorial

Speak Kind Words vinyl display by Kelly Wayment

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Who loves cutting vinyl with your Silhouette machine? Me too! Today I’m sharing a tutorial that demonstrates using the vinyl roll feeder for a large vinyl project. I love how it keeps my roll of vinyl running smoothly through my CAMEO without my vinyl roll scooting around and/or falling off my desk.

 

Here are the materials and tools you’ll need for this project:

 

 

Materials for vinyl display

 

 

ROLL FEEDER SET UP

 

The first thing we need to do is attach the roll feeder to the Silhouette machine. The instructions show how to do this, and the holes are identified on the feeder itself. If you are using it with the CAMEO, you’ll line up these two widely-spaced rectangular holes with the feet of the CAMEO and just slide the feet into the holes. This ensures the roll feeder is properly positioned against the machine.

 

 

Roll feeder feet guides

 

 

You can cut 9-inch or 12-inch vinyl rolls with the vinyl feeder. Simply slide the right-hand guide of the feeder into either position and set the roll of vinyl in place.

 

TIP: I have found the feeder works best with rolls that have a hard inner tube, as opposed to just a roll of vinyl with no cardboard tube inside.

 

Make sure to adjust the white rollers on your CAMEO, as well. Pull down the adjustment lever, adjust the right-hand roller to the 12” position (one notch in), then push the adjustment lever straight up again.

 

 

Adjust CAMEO rollers

 

 

Before loading the vinyl, be sure to trim the leading edge of the vinyl so it is straight and is perpendicular to its side edge. You can use the cutter that’s included with the roll feeder or your favorite straight-edge trimmer.

 

TIP: I also like to bend up the leading edge for the ease of feeding it through the roll feeder and the CAMEO. Coming from a roll it tends to bend down, so just curl it a little in the opposite direction.

 

To load the vinyl with the roll feeder, position the roll so its leading edge goes over the top of the roll towards the machine, then feed it under the front white opening (see image below).

 

 

Feed vinyl through roll feeder

 

 

Finally, load the vinyl into the CAMEO. Your vinyl should be fully touching the machine’s rollers on both sides and the roller adjustment lever should be in the up position. Hold the vinyl against the rollers while selecting “Load Media” (not load cut mat).

 

 

Load vinyl into CAMEO

 

 

The vinyl should feed into the machine smoothly, and your leading edge should be perfectly straight against the machine’s cutting strip (you should be able to see about 1/8 in. of the cutting strip above the vinyl’s leading edge). If it isn’t straight, unload and load again. With a 12-inch roll of vinyl it should look something like this:

 

 

Vinyl loaded with roll feeder

 

 

CUT YOUR VINYL

 

The next step is to cut your vinyl. Because my canvas panel was 16 in. x 20 in., I used nearly the full 12 in. width of vinyl available to me. I resized my design to 11.5 in. wide to give a little room for the rollers along the edges. You can see how I set up my workspace and Design Page Settings in Silhouette Studio®.

  • Sample rectangle to represent my canvas of 16 in. x 20 in. (placed outside of the cutting area)
  • Design sized to 11.5 in. wide (placed over the rectangle to get an idea of how it will look)
  • Duplicate of design to cut placed on cutting area of workspace
  • Page Size = 12 in. x 20 in. (the width matters, but not necessarily the length since we are cutting from a roll)
  • Cutting Mat = none
  • Check “Show Cut Border”

 

You can see these settings in the image below.

 

 

ss Page Settings for Vinyl with Roll Feeder

 

 

Then I cut my vinyl with my pre-tested settings (Blade 2, Speed 9, Thickness 8) so it would cut all the way through the vinyl but not through the backing.

 

After the design has been cut, simply unload it from the machine and cut it off from the roll. My design was only about 15 in. long, but with the roll feeder you can easily cut nearly the entire length of the roll.

 

WEED YOUR VINYL

 

Next, weed your vinyl with the hook tool by picking out and disposing of all the excess vinyl around and throughout your design.

 

 

Weed vinyl

 

 

TRANSFER YOUR DESIGN TO YOUR PREPARED SURFACE

 

Now it’s time to apply the vinyl to the prepared surface. Because I used 12-inch vinyl, I also used 12-inch transfer paper.

 

Cut the transfer paper to match the weeded vinyl design.

 

My trick for applying transfer paper to a large design is to bend down about an inch or so of the backing on the top edge of the transfer paper, then carefully line up and press down that top inch of transfer paper to the vinyl design’s top edge of backing. Once that’s secure, you can peel away the transfer paper’s backing from underneath while smoothing the transfer paper along the vinyl design.

 

 

Transfer tape - cover weeded vinyl

 

 

Once the transfer paper is covering the vinyl design, use the scraper tool to press and rub the full design for good adhesion.

 

Now position the transfer paper and design on to the prepared surface. Use a ruler and painter’s tape to help get it straight.

 

 

Transfer tape - position on prepared surface

 

 

Once you’re sure of the position, use painter’s tape at the top (add more if necessary) to act like a hinge so you can start peeling away the vinyl’s backing from the top and work your way down. Press the vinyl design (on the transfer paper) against the surface as you peel away the backing from underneath.

 

 

Transfer tape - remove backing

 

 

Use the scraper again to press the vinyl design against the canvas panel, then carefully peel away the transfer paper as the vinyl design stays in place.

 

 

Speak Kind Words vinyl detail

 

 

Now you’re ready to make large vinyl décor like a pro!

 

 

Speak Kind Words vinyl display by Kelly Wayment_hi res

Kelly Wayment

Hi! I'm Kelly Wayment and am thrilled to continue on with Silhouette America's design team for a fourth term. I live in Utah with my husband of 17+ years and our four kids ranging from first-grader to teen. I work part-time as an auditor in an accounting firm, but I would always prefer to be crafting. I started scrapbooking and cardmaking in 1999, and that has spread into other crafts over the years. The Silhouette machine has literally changed the course of my life as it has turned my simple hobbies into ways to push the boundaries with my creativity, along with innumerable opportunities to teach and share that joy with others.

Designs Used:

Products Used:

New Silhouette CAMEO®

Blade

hook

scraper

12-inch glossy adhesive vinyl

Roll Feeder

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7 comments

  1. This is awesome!! Thank you so much

    1. So glad you like it, Melanie! Thanks for saying so. 🙂

  2. I love this. So pretty, and I really like the quote.

  3. Have you ever had trouble with the vinyl sticking to the canvas? Just curious because I tried this one time and it didn’t stick very well

    1. If your vinyl is not sticking, you can also try Heat Transfer Material and iron it on! If my vinyl doesn’t stick, I usually coat it with a layer of Mod Podge and that does the trick!

    2. Yes, what Karley said. Heat transfer material works well, too.

      I was able to get vinyl to stick straight to a blank (unpainted) canvas panel a little better than this painted one. It was not as easy to apply to this as to a smooth surface, but I just went slowly, and the vinyl seems to be staying on just great.

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