Using Color Fonts in Silhouette Studio

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Like many Silhouette users, I LOVE fonts! I have quite a collection and yet I’m always looking for more – my current obsession being COLOR FONTS!!! Have you heard of them?

Color fonts are the latest thing in typography, but not actually as “new” as you might think. In fact, if you’ve got a smartphone or have ever clicked “Like” on a Facebook post, you’ve already been using them!

Although they’ve been around for some time, color fonts are just now gaining popularity as more and more computer applications and operating systems support their use, including Silhouette Studio (Version 4.2 and above) . But what exactly are they?

Color Fonts, Silhouette Studio

What are Color Fonts?

In a nutshell, color fonts are a special type of font that have embedded information that adds characteristics to the font such as color, texture, transparency, etc. Emojis are the most common example of a color font.

While it’s always been possible to change font fill color and line color in Studio, the advent of color fonts not only eliminates some of the work involved to colorize a font but also provides a way to add unique interest to printed projects. Color fonts may be multicolored, shadowed, or have a 3-D appearance. Because any image can be made into a font, the sky’s the limit as far as font creation goes. I can think of so many applications for them – cards, stickers, invitations, posters, school projects, printable vinyl, inkjet and sublimation transfers, etc…you get the idea!


First of all, be sure of what you are getting when you download a “color font”. You want a true font, not an image. The current industry standard for color fonts is Open Type – SVG, (indicating an Open Type Font with added SVG data*) thus the file name extension will most often be .OTF.

Let me show you an example:

A quick Google search for “color alphabet fonts” will bring up several results, including this one:

Color Fonts, Silhouette Studio

Once you click on the link, there is no option to download an .OTF file. Therefore, this is NOT a font file, but rather an vector-based graphic that will import as an image to Silhouette Studio.

Color Fonts, Silhouette Studio

On the other hand, let’s look at this one. The description for ColorTube clearly states that it is an OTF font, and once it is downloaded and unzipped, you’ll see that the filename has an .OTF extension and is indeed a font file.

Color Fonts, Silhouette Studio

Using Color Fonts

After a color font is downloaded and installed, it can be used just as any other font in Silhouette Studio.  Open the Text Style Panel, enter the font name in the font selection box, click back on the design page, and type your text using the Text Tool. Character spacing and line spacing can be adjusted in the Text Style Panel as desired. (You can also use color fonts in applications that do not support color fonts, but the text will appear in black rather than color.)


If you’d like to experiment with color fonts on your own, here are a few that I’ve found on the web that work well in Silhouette Studio. Clicking on the image will take you to the download link for each font. (As of this writing, all are free for personal use only unless otherwise specified. Be sure to read the terms of use for any that you choose to download. Remember – only download fonts from sites that you trust!)

Abelone by Maria Grønlund
Licensed for both personal and commercial use.
Bixa, color fonts
Bixa by Novo Type
This one was especially fun because I got to choose my own colors!
Bluesky, color fonts
Bluesky by Blankids Studio
Commercial license available here.
Bungee, color fonts
Bungee by David Jonathan Ross
Completely free and open-source font.
Once you click on the link, you will have to scroll all the way to the right to find the download button.
Colortube, color fonts
Colortube by Neogrey Creative
Licensed for both personal and commercial use.
Multicolore, color fonts
Multicolore by Neogrey Creative
Licensed for both personal and commercial use.
Be sure to type in all caps to get all color characters.
Playbox, color fonts
Playbox by Matt Lyon
Licensed for both personal and commercial use.

Silhouette Design Store

You can also find color fonts in the Silhouette Design Store with more being added regularly. Search for “color fonts” and you’ll find a ton of possibilities! Here’s a sample:

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Color fonts are a lot of fun to work with and I’m sure they will become even more popular with time. If you give them a try, leave me a comment below and let me know what you think. Also, feel free to share links for any other great color fonts that you find – I’m always looking to add to my collection!

Until next time,

*For more information on file types, see Understanding File Type Extensions in Silhouette Studio.

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  1. Are color fonts only used with the pens then, not the cutting tool? You have to put this on a printable paper? I’m new. lol

    1. Hi Erica! Welcome to the world of Silhouette! Color fonts can be used with your cutting machine. If you cut them from vinyl, they will just be a shape – like a regular font. However, you can use them in printed projects –
      With or without a cutter – to get the full benefit of a color font. If you try to use them with the sketch pens, you’ll only get an outline (no color). I hope that makes sense!

  2. Thanks once again for such an inforamtional post. This is a game changer for me. I am so glad I found you and am on your subscriber list.
    Just want to say, Thank You!

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