Posts tagged ‘wordle’

Exporting vector content to SSDE with a Mac

Silhouette Studio Designer Edition is limited in terms of the vector file formats it can read, but by making use of an online converter, we can change popular formats such as EPS and PDF to SVG. We can also use this in conjunction with the Mac’s built in PDF generation to extract vector content from many online sources. Here’s a video to demonstrate the process.

Update: The Ideogram site now generates SVGs (just click the More Options button) so you do not need this technique for that site, but these steps are still applicable for other sites with vector PDF content.

Here are the written steps for starting with a vector PDF (this also works on a Windows machine as an alternate to “print to SVG”):

-Open or generate your printable *vector* content. (see list of suggested sources in this post)

We used Ideogram’s free online template maker for the video

-Enter your dimensions and click the Create button

-Press the Save button (disk icon). The PDF will save to your Downloads folder with the name “template”

-Go to the Misc2SVG file converter site.

-Click the Choose File button and select the PDF you just saved and click Open.

-Press the Senden button.

-Click the Download link.

-Control-click (or right click) the resultant SVG and select Save As or Save Page As.

-Enter a name and location for your file and click Save.

-From Silhouette Studio, open the SVG file you just saved.

-Click to select the SVG and then on the Cut Styles Pane click Cut. If no lines turn red, click the ungroup button one or more times and try again.

-Click the Scale button and enter 80% in the custom window. Click Apply. This will return templates from Ideogram to their exact size for cutting.

Here are the written steps for vector content that can be printed, such as from Wordle.net:

-Create your Wordle and press the Print button at the bottom of the page.

-Click the PDF button, it will pull down and then you can click Save as PDF.

-Name the file, give it a location and click the Save button.

-Go to the Misc2SVG file converter site.

-Click the Choose File button and select the PDF you just saved and click Open.

-Press the Senden button.

-Click the Download link.

-Command-click (or rightclick) the resultant SVG and select Save Page As.

-Enter a name and location for your file and click Save.

-From Silhouette Studio, open the SVG file you just saved .

-Select the SVG and on the Cut Styles Pane click Cut Edge. If no lines turn red, click the ungroup button one or more times and try again.

-Remove the background and make other edits as desired. Additional ungrouping may be necessary before you can do this.

In the video, we also drag the Wordle PDF to the mat to use for extracting colors. Select all the letters you want a certain color, then click the eye dropper and the color sample. Repeat for each color.

March 10, 2013 at 3:49 pm 6 comments

Exporting custom templates to SSDE (Win only)

While working on my tracing series, I was reminded just how hard it is to autotrace templates. Wouldn’t it be nice to not have to trace them? I thought, and then it hit me. I went back to a 3 year old post here and found my answer. Here’s a video that shows the process for Windows (Mac solution and alternate Windows process here).

Update: The Ideogram site now generates SVGs (just click the More Options button) so you do not need this technique for that site, but these steps are still applicable for other sites with vector PDF content.

and here are the written steps:

-Install PDF creator (free) if you have not already. Download link here Be sure to decline any optional toolbars, etc.

-Open or generate your printable *vector* content. (see list of suggested sources in this post)

We used Ideogram’s free online template maker for the video

-Press the print button or select print from the file menu

-Choose PDF Creator from the dropdown list of printers and click Print. (don’t worry, it isn’t really going to print)

-Name the file in the top box and click the Save button at the bottom right.

-Choose a location for your for file, choose SVG from the pull down list of file types at the bottom of the window, and click Save.

-Open a new document in SSDE and choose File>Merge, set files of type to SVG or All files then navigate to the SVG file you just saved and click OK.

-If nothing is visible on the mat, click control-A to select all and look for a bounding box. Set the line color to black.

-Select all and set line width to zero (any line widths greater than zero in an SVG will double cut)

-On the Cut Styles Pane click Cut Edge. If no lines turn red, click the ungroup button one or more times and try again.

-In order to dash or separate score lines, ungroup the file and change the lines styles as desired.

This process maintains the proper size for ideogram’s templates (in PC Creator, your default ppi under Options>SVG should be set to 72) but it’s a good idea to verify size for anything that needs to be exact before you cut.
Tip:If the file is too big, try a reduction of 80% as this is another common standard.

February 14, 2013 at 3:39 pm 14 comments

New online tool has lots to offer diecutters

I stumbled across a new online tool (or rather suite of tools) today called Rapid Resizer that has a lot to offer the digital diecutting community, although we do not seem to be its market. Here are a few of the things I discovered I could accomplish online there for free (at least for now):

Free Online Raster to Vector Converter

All of our cutting programs can do their own autotraces now (wouldn’t it have been nice to have this when they didn’t!?) but Rapid Resizer offers a few tricks that your cutting software may not. Taking a .jpg input from your hard drive (.png did not work for me) it can return PDF, SVG. DXF, EPS or AI output. The really cool thing, though, is the option to centerline trace. This will be especially useful to those who do not have MTC with its stellar “font thinning” function. For example, Silhouette Studio users can input a line drawing or text and get a single stroke DXF file in return that will be be much easier to work with for drawing with pens or for rhinestone work. For example, Doodling Debbie over at Paper Pulse converted one of her favorite fonts, which she shares.

Wordle lovers can instantly turn their screen captures into a vector PDF with this, but they will lose the colors as this only returns black and white vectors.

Photo to Pattern Converter

This tool will be helpful for converting photos to cutting files for vinyl cutting, etching and stencils. Input your photo and choose manual, then adjust the slider to get the contrast you like. Then right click to save the new image or try the options under “save to any size”>preview to see if that gives you a better and/or larger image. You will most likely still need to smooth and remove some detail to make good cutfiles, but this may give you a good start, especially if you aren’t handy with Photoshop. Update: For this application, also see Stencilizer.

My Stampmaker friends will find this especially useful because after the photo is converted to black and white, a click of the invert button makes it ready to import into your stamp layout.

Other tools at this site include Free Online Stencil Maker , an online text layout tool with adjustable arching,

Print Patterns to Any Size, Convert PDF to Image (not working for me yet) and Save Ink Printing PDFs. The tools can be used together or separately.

There are also premium features on the site, and developer Patrick Roberts has generously offered my readers a free week if you’d like to explore those. Your free week will start as soon as you click here.

As for me, I still do most of my designing/converting in Inkscape with a little help from Photoshop but I love scouting new web apps. Will be interesting to see how this one evolves.

June 2, 2012 at 5:29 pm 7 comments

How to save a wordle in high resolution on a PC

Over on the Wordle Yahoo Group folks are always asking how they can save a wordle to print at a large size so I wanted to make a short video to show how. The video demonstrates the “print to PDF” technique using a virtual print driver (CutePDF Writer in this case). Printing to PDF is handy for lots of things besides saving wordles so don’t be put off by the fact that you will need to install a piece of downloaded software.

You can get CutePDF Writer at http://www.cutepdf.com

If you want to see the CutePDF install process for your operating system, check out these videos (not by me)

For Windows XP

For Vista

For Win 7

Note to Mac users
There’s nothing to install! PDF printing is built in. Just click the PDF button at the bottom of any print dialog window and choose “Save as PDF…”

October 30, 2011 at 5:19 pm 30 comments

How to become a Wordle power user

Learn how to use Wordle Advanced with a spreadsheet to make Wordle more powerful and flexible.

Here are the links that go with the video:

June 4, 2010 at 9:36 pm 31 comments

Some tools for Wordle lovers

Mike Parrott of the WordleUsers Yahoo group has been teaching the rest of us how to do all sorts of things with Wordle using the advanced input screen. He gave instructions for manipulating the data in a spreadsheet, which I turned into online templates that anyone can use. Hope you enjoy them!

Spreadsheet for more flexible Wordles

Spreadsheet for single word (or phrase) Wordles

February 26, 2010 at 4:13 pm 6 comments

Wordle font chart

I am a big fan of Wordle.net and I made myself a cheat sheet so I could see what the fonts look like. It’s not pretty but it gets the job done and I’m sharing. View/download the PDF version here Enjoy!

Click image to enlarge

January 25, 2010 at 1:26 pm 12 comments

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