Posts tagged ‘Lettering Delights’
I’ve got an easy technique to share with you for when you want a Versamark™ look but have a digital image instead of a rubber stamp. In case you aren’t familiar, Versamark™ itself is a rubber stamping ink designed to mimic the watermarks found on fine stationery. (These days we think of watermark more in terms of protecting our digital photographs which is why I don’t just call this faux watermarking.)
For this technique you will need an inkjet printer, some medium to light colored (not white) paper or card stock and everyday software. The first thing to do is open a document in your graphics, desktop publishing or even word processing program and place a few sample elements. Squares or letters work fine or you can use images from your eventual design as I’ve done here. Pick a color you think will match your paper for one element and then choose shades lighter and darker for the others until you have a spectrum as shown in the screen capture below right. Print the document on a scrap piece of the paper you want to use, in my case kraft paper (see results below left).
Pick the shade you like from the printout and note the corresponding color in your digital document – “next to last brown swatch,” for instance. In my case, I picked the color of the volleyball (RGB code 214-185-146 if I want to use with other software). Now all that’s left to do is color your design with the watermark color you’ve determined. The pictures really don’t do this justice. It is a nice, subtle look and it really does look rubber stamped and not just printed.
My background was created from characters in the adorable Doodlebat font DB Beach Doodles. The beach chair (also from DB Beach Doodles) and sentiment (LD Handwriting font) were drawn with a Sharpie marker and cut on my Silhouette SD. The sketch-look border was created using the new Sketch feature in Silhouette Studio Designer Edition.
Versamark™ is a trademark of Tsukineko, Inc. which has no affiliation with this blog.
You all have figured out that I am more of an idea person than a real crafter who finishes projects. And as an engineer, I am always on the lookout for a formula that works. Card sketches take care of layout issues, but still left me to struggle with colors. Well, I found an easy solution at the site that you will recognize as my favorite for fonts, Lettering Delights. Between playing with the Cricut Imagine and visiting the very talented Jin’s Under A Cherry Tree blog it occurred to me that the Lettering Delights graphics sets that have matching background papers can make me look talented, too. Check out three of the cards I’ve made with the same template and 3 different Lettering Delights themes.
I used my Cricut and/or Nestabilities, but you could hand cut these just as easily. I also discovered an unsung cardmaking hero on my Mac, iWork Pages, that I’ll be talking a lot more about in the future. I’m sharing the iWork template to make this drag and drop easy.
Disclaimer: I have been a happy customer of Lettering Delights for a long time. In fact, we go back so far that I have some of their floppy disks! I am now an affiliate and partner who gains benefit from this company, and from your purchases when you use the links from here. You can, as always, trust me for unbiased opinions of these and any other products you see mentioned on this blog.
Update: MTC 3 is out of beta. Download MTC 3.2 to take advantage of these and many more features.
I played around with the beta version of Make-The-Cut 3 last night and I am amazed at the results. 2 issues have been standing in the way for reliable print and cut on the Cricut. One is being able to print at a specific size and position on the page and the other is the inaccuracy of the Cricut, especially its tendency to get further off course as you move away from the starting point. Somehow Andy (MTC’s developer) has magically overcome both of these problems to create a simple, flexible and accurate print and cut process using any printer and a Cricut machine.
Here’s a quick video
And here’s the step by step because I go really fast.
1) Open MTC and click on the Pixel Trace button and navigate to where your graphic is stored and click open. (I recommend you start with a simple graphic with a well-defined outline for your first try). I picked one from Lettering Delights, of course.
2) Set the threshold to 254. You want to be sure you capture the entire outer edge of the graphic.
3) Check the “Set Image as Texture” checkbox and click Import.
4) Click on the imported graphic to select it and click on the Blackout button.
5) Uncheck “outline shapes” at the bottom of the Visual Mat tab.
6) Choose File>Print and print to the printer of your choice. I used the default settings on both a Brother and an Epson printer, but you want to be sure anything that would change the size of the print (such as shrink to fit, etc.) is deselected. You also do not want it set to borderless printing.
7) Place the printed paper on the Cricut mat carefully aligned along the outlines in the upper left hand corner (as shown in photo above).
8 )Select Cut with Provocraft Cricut and cut using settings appropriate for your type of paper.
That’s it you’re done!
Note: If you don’t get satisfactory results using the simple process above you may need to make adjustments to your printer or cutter. I’ve put together a step by step process for finding and fixing problems here.
In my earlier post I gave ten Doodlebats I think are great for beginners. Here are ten more that I would call advanced beginner, because only some characters are ready to cut, there is detail such that you will need to cut in larger sizes or or you will want to use your software’s break apart function to separate layers for different colors on these:
DB Hello Cupcake (same images as Sweet Treats Cricut Cartridge)
Every time the wonderful Dollar Days at Lettering Delights rolls around I see lots of questions popping up about which fonts are good for diecutting. So I put together a list of 10 popular Doodlebats that work great with SCAL or MTC and a Cricut. These are images that can be cut as is, without cleanup or separating the pieces, so they are great for beginners. What they have in common is that they are more of less silhouettes with clean lines and not too much detail. Have a look at these and you’ll be better able to evaluate other Doodlebats and/or artwork from other sources.
- DB Jack-0-Patterns and DB Jack-o-Patterns 2
- DB Boo Ya
- DB Good Company
- DB Fruity Expressions
- DB Little What Nots
- DB Nativity
- DB Geo Deco Solid
- DB Animal Occasion
tip: to get rid of the phrases choose the lower case version
- DB Floragraphy
- DB Cameo Busts
You may also want to look at the Lettering Delights Clip Art sets as many of them have line art (black and white) versions that are just as easy to trace and use as coloring book images.
Update: Jin over at Under a Cherry tree just posted a great guide to picking Lettering Delights products. You will want to spend some time at the blog looking at her projects. She really know how to make these Lettering Delights files sing.
Here’s the video I should have done first, showing how to tame the Inkscape paint bucket tool. Also included in this video is an example of how to use this technique to convert graphics from Lettering Delights.