About laurie nash

Laurie Nash is a retired Occupational Therapy Assistant. She is also a wife, mother, grandmother, and lover of arts, crafts, and design. She uses Inkscape and Make the Cut for designing. Her KNK Zing keeps her busy cutting, and she is now the proud owner the new KNK Force.

Flour Sack Towel with Heat Transfer Vinyl – Zing Orbit with Sure Cuts Alot

Flour Sack Towel  Heat Transfer Towel Our little town does not have much to offer visitors. So when I saw that our local fish market had expanded and started selling items highlighting our area, I asked them if they’d like me to make up a few things for them to offer. I had made this file into a shirt for my husband last year using an inkjet transfer. I decided it would do well on a flour sack towel with a few changes. This time I used Heat Transfer Vinyl.

I recently purchased a KNK Zing Orbit and am now using Sure Cuts Alot. Being accustomed to Make The Cut, there has been a small learning curve, but for basic cutting I was able to get right at it with no problems.

Materials:

  1. ThermoFlex Plus
  2. Flour sack Towel (I purchased mine at Walmart)
  3. Red-Capped Blade
  4. Iron or Heatpress

Settings on Zing Orbit with SCAL:

  1. Pressure: 50
  2. Speed: 15
  3. Overcut: 1mm
  4. Multi-cut: Off

Steps:

  1. Open or import file in SCAL
  2. Reverse design
  3. Cut design and weed
  4. Set heat press at 335 degrees and press for 17 minutes (for hand iron, refer to manufacturer’s instructions)
  5. Fold towel in half and crease mid-point using iron or heat press
  6. Lay towel flat and use crease to place center HTV
  7. Press vinyl onto towel (Use teflon sheet or towel between iron and vinyl)
  8. Remove clear backing and repeat

I am having fun getting to know my Zing Orbit. So far, one of my favorite features on the Orbit is the ability to adjust the pinch wheels. The ability to move them close enough to cut small pieces of vinyl without using a mat saves me a lot of time, and I find myself using the feature a lot.

 

Print and Cut Locket – KNK Zing Print and Cut – KNK Cutter and Jewelry – Magnetic Locket

Completed Print and Cut Locket

These little magnetic lockets are so fun and there are so many things you can do with them. I created this Print and Cut Locket using my KNK Zing and an illustration I drew. You could also use a photo, and charms can be inserted as well. I used permanent vinyl to add the word “Michigan” to the exterior glass.

Materials:

  • Magnetic Locket (Can be found at most craft stores)
  • High quality paper or printable vinyl
  • Make the Cut, or similar software
  • Red Capped Blade
  • KNK Zing (or other KNK cutter)
  • Scrap of vinyl
  • Low Adhesive Cutting Mat

Settings for KNK Zing:

  • Force – 40
  • Multicut – 1 or 2
  • Speed – 10

Steps:

Illustration for Print and Cut Locket

  • Trace your design.
  • Draw a Circle and place it on the layer below your design. Make the circle the exact size you need to fit inside the locket.
  • Size the design so that the portion you want to show fits within the circle.
  • Marquee select the two and join (ctrl j).

Create a Print and Cut Locket

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  • Keep selected and break apart (ctrl b).

Print and Cut Locket design in a circle

 

 

 

 

 

  • Drag the original design away and delete, or move to another layer and turn off/lock.
  • Duplicate if you want the same design on the front and back sides of the locket.
  • Print out your design for a print and cut. Make sure you print the registration marks. ( I used paper for mine, but a printable vinyl would work better if you want to be able to put items in the locket without scratching the design.)
  • Now you are ready to complete your print and cut. Adhere to a not-too-sticky mat and complete the cut.
  • Carefully remove the cut circles from the mat and gently push into locket.
  • If desired, cut text for outside of locket.

Print and Cut locket with Gems

Here is the other side of the locket. I actually prefer the side without the gems, but perhaps I’ll turn it if I want to wear it with a dressy outfit sometime.

 

Fish Ruler – Vinyl Decal Fish Ruler – Handy Fish Ruler – Fishing Measure – Easy Fish Measure – Decal Ruler for Boat

Vinyl Decal Fish Ruler

My husband and I love to fish. But when it comes time to haul in the big one, we seem to always be fumbling around for something to measure him with. So, a permanent  fish ruler attached to the interior of the boat is just what we need.

Materials:

  1. Outdoor permanent vinyl
  2. Clear Transfer Tape
  3. Red Capped Blade

Settings for KNK Zing:

  1. Force – 18
  2. Speed – 10
  3. Multicut – 1 Vinyl Decal Fish Ruler

Steps:

  1. Design the fish ruler in MTC or other software. (If you import or copy and paste into your cutting software, MAKE SURE the dimensions stay correct. I learned this the hard way.)
  2. Cut and weed.
  3. Apply transfer tape.
  4. Clean area where fish ruler will be applied to boat, and let dry.
  5. Apply decal.
  6. Get the boat out of the garage and go fishing! Vinyl Decal Fish Ruler

Tips for Weeding GlitterFlex Ultra – Weeding Intricate Designs in GlitterFlex Ultra

I love glitter heat transfer vinyl, such as GlitterFlex Ultra. It cuts great and looks beautiful on garments. And, it weeds great …as long as you are not cutting and weeding small pieces.

However, I often use GlitterFlex Ultra on baby bodysuits, (or even doll shirts… talk about teeny tiny pieces) which sometimes requires weeding very small areas. And, this is when I don’t love it quite so much!

GlitterFlex Ultra on Doll Shirt

It is difficult to see the cut lines on this vinyl. Additionally, it can be a bit “stretchy” when I am weeding around tiny pieces and sometimes pieces get stretched out of shape or accidentally broken off.

I love GlitterFlex Ultra too much to quit using it. But I’d also like to keep my sanity. So, I’ve done a little research and a lot of practice to figure out some tricks to make weeding easier. It’s not perfection, but certainly has made things less frustrating.

  • I like to check my file to see if it needs any node editing, welding, etc. (I am not too fond of Make The Cut’s node editing feature, so I do most of that in Inkscape. However I do re-check and make final adjustments in MTC if needed.) Typically, I change the number and/or position of nodes before cutting, especially when working with fonts.
  • Below is an example of something that can be easily adjusted. The “c” almost touches the “h”, but not quite. It will be easier to weed if they are welded. I could slightly shadow this and that would probably take care of it. Or, letters could be moved horizontally. But, since the other letters are already touching, I’d prefer to simply use the “handle” of the node to take the “end” of the “c” and stretch it into the “h” before welding the letters together.
  • I have learned to take time to add weed lines. If I have an intricate design or text, I like to make a box or rectangle around it first. It works well to make the lines on or just outside of the bounding box.
  • Next, I add more weed lines closer in. That way, if I’m having trouble seeing where lines are, at least I can weed out the outer portion, just inside the bounding box weed lines first. That gets me close to my design without having to worry about accidentally weeding out something that I didn’t intend to. Then I can really take my time and weed carefully as I work closer to the design. (I use an Xacto knife for weeding so I can always use that to make a few more weed lines manually while I’m actually doing the weeding.)
  • It’s important to make sure settings are correct. Don’t give in to the temptation of giving too much blade exposure. GlitterFlex Ultra seems thicker than regular ThermoFlex Plus, for example. But I find that I can keep my exposure the same or very slightly increased. Too much blade has a tendency to lift tiny pieces on fonts. The font in the illustration above has a slight little curl on the top of the “C”, and it will lift up if the blade is out too much. Actually, that is usually my first clue that my blade exposure is excessive.

These are the settings that work best with my KNK Zing:

  1. Force – 50 – 60 (The manual says 30 – 40, but I found the higher force to be helpful. You will have to find what works best for you.)
  2. Speed – 10
  3. Multicut – 2
  4. Blade Height – About the same as used for regular vinyl, or very slightly more exposure. The manual suggests a height of 25 Post-It notes as a starting point.
  5. Blade – I use the blue blade. The manual suggests the red blade.
  • Some have suggested rubbing baby powder over the cut lines to make them show up better. I didn’t have any baby powder so I tried corn starch, which did help a little bit.
  • Another suggestion is to put the vinyl in the freezer for a bit after cutting. The cold causes the vinyl to shrink slightly, thereby making the cut lines more visible. This does help, but the trouble is that the vinyl warms back up very, very quickly. Especially so if there is a lamp illuminating the work area.
  • Which brings me to…. by all means, if you don’t have good lighting and a magnifying glass, you must invest in both of those. Here is my set-up:

After trying all of these suggestions… and more. Here is what I found works for me.

  • I put my vinyl in the freezer after cutting. How long? I think a half hour is about right. I actually left it for a couple of hours while we went to dinner. It was VERY stiff… too stiff. But, it was just fine in a few minutes anyway.
  • Next, I use corn starch on it. It seems to help a little, especially after the vinyl has shrunk a bit in the freezer. It can be kind of messy. I sprinkle a little on a piece of paper and then dip my finger in it and rub it on the vinyl.
  • The final piece of the puzzle that seems to make everything work is keeping the surface below the vinyl cold so that it doesn’t warm up too quickly. You can see in the photo above that I have a square piece of quartz countertop that I use as a surface when weeding. (It’s a sample from a cabinet shop.) I found if I put this in the refrigerator or freezer, it stays cold and keeps the vinyl cool while weeding. If I let it get super cold, it sweats as it warms up. But I didn’t find it to be a problem. I just wiped it off a couple of times. I believe a ceramic tile would work in place of the quartz.

With all of these steps in place, I must say that GlitterFlex Ultra still does not weed as easily as regular HTV, such as ThermoFlex Plus. But, it has made some of my projects go from being nearly impossible, to manageable. And since a couple of these are projects I do over and over, it has certainly made the experience much more enjoyable!

 

Etch a Ceramic Jar with Armour Etch – Color it with Gilders Wax

I have done etching on glass a few times, but wanted to see how it would work on ceramic. A few of these cute little ceramic jars have been sitting in my craft room since I found them on clearance a few years ago. The nice smooth surface provided just the canvas I needed to try out this project.

Material:

  1. Ceramic Jar
  2. Armour Etch Cream
  3. Gilders Paste Wax
  4. Vinyl for Stencil
  5. Transfer Tape
  6. Paint Brush
  7. Protective clothing, such as rubber gloves, goggles, apron
  8. Red Capped Blade

Setting for KNK Zing:

  1. Force – 18
  2. Speed – 10
  3. Multicut – 1

Steps:

  1. Open or download design in cutter software.
  2. Load vinyl and cut stencil.
  3. Weed vinyl stencil.
  4. Apply transfer tape to vinyl, remove backing, and apply stencil to ceramic surface.
  5. Remove transfer tape.
  6. Use paint brush to apply etching cream liberally, being careful not to extend the cream beyond the edge of your stencil.
  7. Leave the cream on a few minutes. I left mine on about 3 minutes.
  8. Clean off thoroughly under running water.
  9. Peel off stencil and dry completely.the
  10. Use a rag to apply Gilders Wax to etched surface. Continue rubbing to remove from non-etched area. (The wax sets quickly, so I had best luck by removing excess wax as soon as possible. It can be removed later, but takes a lot more effort.)

    I left the stencil in place while applying some of the wax, but it is not necessary.

I realized after I started the project that it was not a good idea to plan a two-color project where the two colors were directly adjacent to each other. It was very difficult to apply the end of the “green” stem within the red cherry portion of the design,

I also attempted this on a ceramic tile. It worked, but I wasn’t happy with the end result. The entire tile apparently was a little porous as I was not able to completely remove the excess wax from the surface of the tile. This might be remedied by leaving the stencil in place while applying the Gilders Wax. I may have to give it another try.