Sunday, August 28, 2016

Fussy cutting Digital Stamps with your Cricut Explore

Hi everyone,

I used one of my favorite stamps I purchased at "From the Heart Stamps", Pigwit Cold Suds.   I used the Hinge Method (explained below) to fussy cut him and the mug of beer for a more 3 dimensional look.  You can't tell by the photo, but I isolated the mug of beer and cut that individually.  I did have the white too large so I had to fussy cut anyway.

If anyone has done this with a Silouhette Cameo and Pixscan, I would love to know how easy it is.  Looking at videos, it seems like all you have to do is take a picture of your image and it creates a shape for you, but I don't have a Cameo to test it.  I simply can't justify purchasing one now, just to fussy cut my stamps.   Maybe if there are some new and amazing features with the Silhouette Cameo 3, I might add the machine to my collection.

The "Hinge Method"  is a great technique shared by Kay on her blog "Clever Someday".  She has complete instructions and  a video showing exactly how to accomplish this.  Be sure to stop by her blog,  she has some great tips and videos on doing all sorts of things with your Cricut Explore.

First things first, we need an electronic die cut to match your stamp image.  I used Scal4 to create mine, using the  trace image feature.  There are a few steps to this procedure, here is just one video that may help.  The Effects, shadow layer feature allows you to create, just what it says, shadow layers.  Here are the layers in my svg file when I am finished, the default for a shadow layer is .10, which can be adjusted, or you can make as many layers as you want.

Once you have created your die cut with the stamped image,  upload it to Design Space,  you will have the 3 layers as shown above.  Now the tricky part, you need to figure out exactly what size your stamped image is.  I started with the Design Space file first,  I sized my grouped image to fit my card.  Then I ungrouped it and measured the stamped image (top layer) to get exact dimensions.

With this measurement I opened my high quality png into Pages (my choice for printing stamps).  I inserted an unfilled rectangle and made it the exact measurements of the image in DS.  I made the stamp image fit within this rectangle. Here is what it looks like, the blue line around the image is the actual size of the stamped image, so using this to measure will make the image too small, that's why the rectangle must be used.

If your shadow layer isn't too small, a tenth of an inch probably won't cause a problem.  So now when I print my image and color it, and use the hinge method to cut it out, it looks like I had a die to go with the stamp.  I know the instructions are confusing, but it takes quite a few steps to make it work.  If I ever come up with a simpler method I will be happy to share it.

Maybe I will ask Kay over at "Clever Someday" to give this a try and see if she can figure out a simpler way to do this.

Please post any questions if you would like more information.

I {heart} sketches #161

Till next time,

Happy Craftin!


  1. This is amazing! I have an older Cameo (2 years) and the Pixscan and I haven't very happy with the results. I am not by any means a expert, but when I cut multiple images they progressively got more off kilter. I am also fortunate to have a Scan and Cut and have been thrilled with it's ability to cut around a solid image. Anyway...Thanks so much for joining us at From the Heart Sketch Challenge!

  2. Great card, and a useful and helpful post. However, I have to grab my scissors to fussy cut, as I don't have any machine to help me, well, not yet anyway ;)
    Thank you for joining in with us at FTHS
    Jo xx

  3. Wonderful card! Thanks for entering I {heart} card sketches with a tWist - hope to see you again next time!

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