items of a delicate nature

Okay, so it’s not what you think, but it got your attention, yes? :)

I often get questions about how to cut the more delicate shapes.

What is the trick?

And just the other day, one of my readers asked if I had tried to cut the snowflake page from the December Additions: The Pages kit on a small scale.

Would it work?

I took the challenge.

I had to see what would happen, ya know?

This was the result:

I cut this at 3″ tall!

Not bad. Not bad at all!

How cute would that be on a tag?

Here’s some helpful tips that have worked great for me through the years:

    1. Double cut your image by pressing Ctrl-C/Ctrl-F to copy and paste a second copy of the image directly on top. I’ve also seen some people say that the new Cameo cuts even better and that they no longer need to double cut their images. That sounds just lovely.
    2. I…American Crafts cardstock with my Silhouette. Cuts like butt-ah. But I will also use whatever is in my stash. I just like to use my AC cardstock when possible. It’s my fave.
    3. Make sure you’re using a newer mat on intricate shapes. Sometimes the blade can make a difference (I use mine for a long time), but I find that having a good mat makes the biggest difference.
    4. Pull the negative space from below so that you rip a layer of cardstock, it’ll be on the underside and not on top.
    5. Use a paper piercer to poke through small holes and scissors to catch any connecting spots. It’s better than trying to pull the cardstock away from it.
    6. My Silhouette settings are always at Heavy Cardstock with a speed of 10 and a thickness of 33 and I never have a problem with it cutting cardstock. I know some people will slow their speed down, but I’ve never had to do that.
    7. Make sure there isn’t any ‘guck’ in your blade cap. Unscrew it and blow through the little hole to make sure nothing has gotten caught in there over time.
I think that’s about it on the tips! If I think of any more, I’ll be sure to add them. :)

Click HERE for another post on getting cleaner cuts too!

2017-09-21T18:05:46+00:00November 1st, 2011|tips and tricks|26 Comments


  1. Rhadonda November 1, 2011 at 11:28 am

    Isn’t that amazing how well it cuts? Wow. I need to find me some AC cardstock. But i have a huge stash of other to use first. Cameo is on wish list.

  2. Danielle November 1, 2011 at 12:18 pm

    Thanks for sharing this, because I wanted to cut one that size for a baseball card sized protector and I wasn’t sure how it would work.

  3. Dolly/scrapthat November 1, 2011 at 1:08 pm

    I’m wondering how much use you get out of your mats…I bought the thick new Media mats per Nichol’s suggestion and I cut exactly three items before my paper started shifting on me GRRRRrrrr At $40 a package I am not wanting to replace mats with each use of my machine….HELP with any suggestions you may have-have any cleaning your mat tricks or such up your sleeve? I kept mine covered and in the package to avoid it wearing down quickly and that seems to have not helped.
    (and totally off subject, I left a question on your “contact me”
    here and have yet to get an answer Kerri Just so you know-maybe somethin’s not working)

    • Kerri November 1, 2011 at 1:59 pm

      Hey Dolly!
      First, I don’t think I’ve seen any emails from you. I just checked my junk email and didn’t see it there. Hmm. If you had a question other than this one, just email me directly at

      As for the mat. I know a couple years ago they had a problem with some not-so sticky mats, but I would think that wouldn’t be the issue anymore. I have the SD and use the original mats (has the yellow cover). I always have. Not exactly sure why, but I just prefer those over the ones that go with the SD. I think it’s because there were problems with the SD mats at that time that I got my SD and so I’ve always stuck with the originals. Supposedly Silhouette has a new style of mat for the Cameo though? Suppose to be better? But if all else fails, buy the mat for the original Silhouette and see how that works for ya.

      I get quite a bit of use out of my mats. I do keep them covered with it’s original “cover” that it comes with. I find that some cardstock–like black or red–leaves more fibers behind and that can make it lose its stickiness. If I’m doing some plain jane image I may use an older mat, but if I’m doing something like that snowflake image, I’ll make sure I use a newer mat. I used to number my mats too so that I’d kind of know which one to grab. And I have been known to tape the sides of my cardstock onto the mat on occasion.

      And I’m not sure where you are buying from, but the Silhouette site has them for $24 for a 2-pack. Are you in Canada?

      Does that help at all? :)
      Let me know if you have more questions.

  4. Sandra K. November 1, 2011 at 1:49 pm

    So pretty. And your speed at 10!!! I have got to try that.
    thank for telling us this delicate problem. ;)


  5. {dawn} November 1, 2011 at 2:44 pm

    What a stunning cut, Kerri! When my Silhouette cuts something so small and so intricate (or what was your word – “delicate”) I am so amazed! And you cut at a speed of 10 – wow, are you brave!

    One tip I have found, usually after cutting something very intensive: unscrew the cap from the blade and make sure there are no shreddings caught in there.

  6. Lain November 1, 2011 at 6:05 pm

    Hey Kerri!
    I just got my Cameo today, and I’m cutting white A/C cardstock and my problem is stuff ripping b/c it sticks to the mat too much. Any suggestions on that for more intricate cuts? I am using a spatula (one that came with my Slice) but I’m having the same issue.
    Great tip on keeping the mat covers. Will dig mine out of the trash right now!
    Thanks so much,

  7. Rhadonda November 1, 2011 at 8:17 pm

    I am not Kerri but maybe i can help Lain. I remember seeing a video by someone from Cricut who said when you first get a new mat to take a clean t-shirt and kind of dab all over the mat a few times which helps with the initial too sticky problem. i would think that would apply to any kind of sticky mat. Also i will tell you i cheat and actually use a cricut mat that i cut to size and taped off one edge to use in my Silhouette. I have been using the same mat for over a year. I occasionally wash it off with warm soapy water and let it dry and amazingly the stickiness returns. I think i read too many forums ( :

    • Kerri November 2, 2011 at 7:29 am

      Thanks for helping Rhadonda! That’s what I would suggest too. Or you can just dab it on your pants as well.
      And thanks for the extra tip too! :)

      And Dawn, I blow out the caps too on occasion. I need to add that to the list. :)
      Thanks for the reminder!

  8. Eveline van Heijst November 2, 2011 at 1:43 am

    There is not one store in the whole of The Netherlands that sells AC cardstock. I bought mine in the UK. But it does cut great. I used SU cardstock this week and it stuck to my mat, ugh. I had to scrape it off.
    I love the intricate design and I will try speed 10 too.

  9. {dawn} November 2, 2011 at 7:45 am

    A note to Rhadonda – I, too, use Cricut mats since Sil mats are not readily available on the east coast (and when you need a mat you NEED a mat)! I buy the larger ones and cut three mats from each Cricut mat. I tape off the edges just like you mentioned. The stickiness is just right, and when I need a bit more stick, I wash them off in soapy water, air dry, and am good to go. (PS I once mentioned this on a Sil “purist” forum and was totally “dissed”! LOL!)

    • Kerri November 2, 2011 at 7:58 am

      We accept all kinds here Dawn. You are always welcome here. ;)
      I don’t understand why people would “diss” anyone over a suggestion. I say, ‘If it works, why not?’

  10. Anissa November 2, 2011 at 9:40 am

    Hi Kerri-

    Is there any difference between using the “Double Cut” check box on your cut setting screen and your suggestion to copy and paste a second image over the first? I’m so forgetful ;-( so it is easier to just leave that little box checked…rather than to try to remember to do the cut and paste method.

    Just ordered my Cameo last night…sold my Silhouette SD on e-bay and actually got a few dollars more for it than I paid. I think they are pretty hot because they are being discontinued.

    Thanks for all the GREAT tips…love love them!

    • Kerri November 3, 2011 at 8:06 am

      There isn’t any difference between the two. I think it’s just old habits die hard. That, and they didn’t use to have the double-cut check box, so I’m just always used to saying the Copy/Paste thing. Also, because if you’re using a thinner weight paper or vinyl, you probably won’t need the double cut. But I would be smart to check the box on account-a I seldom use anything but cardstock….but probably never will check the darn thing. lol Have fun with your new toy!

      i always cut my cardstock texture side up and it works fine. :)

  11. Dolly/scrapthat November 2, 2011 at 11:39 am

    thanks Kerri! Dropped you an email. :D Thanks for the 411!

  12. Dolly/scrapthat November 2, 2011 at 11:53 am

    Thanks to Rhadonda too!

  13. Deirdre Coleman November 2, 2011 at 1:38 pm

    Can I ask a question? So your American Crafts paper. I have some. I can see in your sample that it is textured, like mine. Do you cut this texture side up or down? I finally found a great source for it (Amazon – who knew?!) and was wondering about the best way to cut it, so your post comes at an excellent time! Thanks!

  14. Karen W November 3, 2011 at 12:16 pm

    Wonderful cut Kerri! I love those snowflakes and was wondering how they would do in a smaller size. Thanks for showing us.


  15. Jessa February 7, 2012 at 4:17 pm

    Thank you for this! I was wondering what I could do when I was having a difficult time getting my cardstock cut properly on my last project. I think it’s time for new blades, but I didn’t consider double cutting.

  16. shaunnaRooskie March 28, 2012 at 1:27 am

    thank you for sharing this! i really needed some good tips on using my Silhouette – your information was helpful and i enjoyed reading this post ;)

  17. Theresa Leyerle July 2, 2012 at 9:35 pm

    I have taken two of the Silhouette classes, including the Designer Edition. Unfortunately, before buying the Silhouette, I bought the Cricut…and about 100 cartridges. Is there any way to transfer the Cricut designs to the Silhouette? I would not buy the cricut again…..I love the Silhouette! Can you give me any help in this area?

    • Kerri July 2, 2012 at 10:28 pm

      Hey Theresa!
      I think that question is one that plagues many-a Cricut users. Sadly, there’s not really a way to do that. That’s what makes Cricut a Cricut…cartridges. Now, I’m not familiar with the Cricut Craft Room, but if you were able to bring an image in there and color it so that it’s not an outline? You could take a screen shot (Prnt Scrn on PC and Cmd-Shift_F4 on a Mac) and maybe bring in a copy and use Trace in Silhouette. But that’s just a guess–and it most definitely wouldn’t be easy for 100 cartridges. :)

      Not quite the answer you probably want. :)

  18. Tanis March 11, 2015 at 9:03 am

    I would like to buy the Cameo and use my own designs off my Windows computer. Would I be able to drag them in? Also my designs are within a 1 3/4″ circle and obviously that means small and intricate. I’d like to sent you a design so you could tell me if the Cameo might work for me, and thanks for info on using my own designs.

    • Kerri March 12, 2015 at 7:06 am

      It is possible to use your own designs. If they are PNG/JPG, you can use the Trace feature. It’s pretty good at working with images. If you have software to make SVG or DXF files (like Adobe Illustrator), those will import/open as well. You can use those immediately without tracing. Hope that helps. :)

      • Tanis March 12, 2015 at 9:16 am

        My images are JPG but do you think the SVG or DXF gives a more sharper image? Wish I could send my smallest logo but if not can you tell me if the Cameo can cut down to 1/16″? Thank you Kerri. Because of you, the world is more creative!

        • Kerri March 12, 2015 at 11:06 am

          They can cut pretty delicate items, but 1/16″ is really teeny. Vinyl sometimes can handle that delicate of an item. The best thing to do as far as testing how Studio will trace your JPG image is to download the Silhouette software. You can get it from their website and it’s free. SVG/DXF is always best, in my opinion, but their Trace feature does work pretty darn well.

Leave A Comment