Creative Cutters: Sparkle & Shine
September 2017

It’s a fun week for sure when it includes an evening spent with the Creative Cutters group! This was only our second meeting and over half the group was there for the first time – once again a good mix of new Silhouette owners, those who’ve owned their machine for a while, and a few who don’t own a machine but wanted to see what it’s all about. And, as promised, there was “bling” involved!

A couple of the ladies brought Show & Tell items – a real encouragement for everyone in the group.  I love seeing what others are doing with their machines and I hope we’ll have even more people sharing as the months go by.

Our focus for the month was on rhinestones, which we used to add some sparkle and shine to this cute little bag:

As part of the program I did an overview of the different levels of Silhouette Studio software, with an emphasis on how the rhinestone capabilities vary among each of them. Continue reading →

Using the Silhouette PixScan Mat to Cut Laminated Images

In my last post, I showed you how to make inserts for a fun Muffin Tin Toss Game. As promised, I’m back to share with you the secret for cutting the laminated inserts while keeping the edges heat-sealed.

For durability, I laminate almost everything I create for the classroom. Over the years, I’ve used self-adhesive sheets as well as laminator machines of both the cold and hot variety. I get the best results when I cut all my items, run them through a hot laminator, and then cut again. When cutting the laminated items, two problems I often encounter are (a) trimming too close to the edge and thus breaking the heat seal and (b) ugly, irregular margins that come from trimming the lamination by hand. Using my Silhouette solves both of these issues – the “secret” is PixScan technology!

To best explain what PixScan technology is and what it does, here’s a direct quote from the Silhouette America website.

PixScan™ technology is a feature of the Silhouette cutting system that provides crafters and makers the ability to capture an image using a scanner or camera (including smartphones and tablets) and then import images directly into the Silhouette Studio® software in order to cut precisely around any printed design.

This technology works in conjunction with the PixScan mat, a specialty cutting mat which includes pre-printed registration marks and is available for the Portrait, Cameo, and Curio. Continue reading →

Silhouette in the Classroom: Muffin Tin Toss Game
A Print & Cut project for the Cameo or Portrait. Includes free printables and cut file!

I’ve created many things with my Silhouette over the years, but one of its main uses has been for classroom projects. In fact, my role as a Bible class teacher is what led me to purchase my first Cameo. Like most teachers, I’m always on the lookout for ways to make learning enjoyable and one of the most fun and versatile ways I’ve found so far is this easy Muffin Tin Toss Game.

Note: This is Part 1 of a two-part series and includes instructions on how to create circle inserts for a Muffin Tin Toss Game. Part 2 will be posted next week and will include instructions on how to accurately cut the circles after they’ve been laminated.

The concept of the Muffin Tin Toss Game is simple. Each cup of the tin contains a piece of paper with a question written on it. The student tosses a lightweight ball (or beanbag) into the muffin tin and then tries to answer the question the ball lands on. The game can be easily adapted to whatever subject you’re working on. Instead of questions you could review vocabulary words, practice math problems, play silly games – anything you might imagine!

In Bible class, we’ve used this game several times to review our Bible lessons. Kids of all ages love to play (as well as challenge themselves to see how high the ball can bounce, but that’s another story…) and it’s a great reinforcement activity.

Continue reading →