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Printable Vinyl 101 – Learn how to print on vinyl to make your own awesome vinyl decals at home! Custom printed vinyl labels are perfect for labeling and decorating all your items. Once you see how easy it is to make your own vinyl decals, you’ll be labeling everything! Many thanks to Expressions Vinyl for sponsoring this post, which also includes affiliate links to help support this site at no additional cost.
How To Make My Own Vinyl Stickers
Psst – If you’re new to vinyl, check out Vinyl 101 – my beginner’s guide to vinyl right HERE.
How Do You Make Stickers? The Essential Guide To Homemade Quality Stickers!
I’m really excited to share today’s tutorial with you! As much as I love working with vinyl, I know it can be really intimidating if you’ve never worked with it before!
Today we’re starting a complete guide to working with printed adhesive vinyl! I love printed vinyl because it’s such an easy way to create beautiful multi-colored designs. Plus, it’s easy to use even if you don’t have a Silhouette or other cutting machine. Today I’m going to focus specifically on printed adhesive vinyl, but don’t worry, I’m working on a post on printed heat transfer vinyl.
The printable adhesive vinyl can be used to easily create your own decals and stickers in any design you like! These stickers are durable, water and weather resistant and have a permanent adhesive. They can be attached to any hard and smooth surface indoors or outdoors. I put my stickers on some notebooks and water bottles, but they can be used in so many ways! (I’ve also used printed vinyl before to make my own laptop sleeve)
Okay, are you ready to make your own awesome vinyl stickers? Here’s everything you need to work with printed vinyl.
Save (and Make!) Money With Custom Vinyl Stickers
>>Click HERE to pin for later!<< Vinyl Printing Guide: How to Print on Vinyl
UPDATE: I just uploaded a new video on working with printed vinyl, which you can watch below. Plus, you can see how my stains have been used for months now!
Printed adhesive vinyl works great with an electronic cutter, but I just want to make it clear that you really don’t need a fancy cutter to make your own vinyl decals. You can easily work with printed vinyl with just scissors. or a craft knife.
However, if you are cutting a complex design, lots of dots, or just want a really nice and precise cut, then I would recommend a cutting machine like Silhouette or Cricut. basic steps for working with this machine, but the basic steps will work when you cut with a Cricut or by hand.
Life Size Wall Stickers
If you cut your stickers by hand, just use photo editing software (or Word will work too) to place your designs on an 8.5×11 page and print them out with your printer. That is all!
If you are working with Silhouette, you must set up your document in the Studio software before printing. In the Page Setup tab, start by setting the page size to 8.5 x 11 (or whatever size vinyl sheet you’re using – remember to use a size your printer can handle ). Next, make sure you have the license plates turned on. You need to unlock the machine’s license plates to cut out the spots!
Then open your designs in the software and arrange them on the page. I used these cute patterns that come with the Unicorny font as a bonus for my stickers. As you place your designs, you can rotate them to fit as much as possible on your page. Don’t miss any of the vinyl! Just make sure you avoid the hatched areas and that all the dashed lines are inside the red line.
After laying out all of your designs, it’s time to create a cut line around the edges of each of your designs. To do this, open the trace window and click select trace area. Then drag to create a rectangle around all of your designs. Then adjust the tube setting until the design is completely yellow. Finally, click “Trace Outer Edge” to create cut lines around the edge of each shape. A red line should appear around the edge of each of your designs where Silhouette will cut.
How To Make Stickers With Cricut Plus A Free Sticker Sheet!
Now it’s time to print! Insert the vinyl sheet into the printer so that the image is printed on the matte side. Click File > Print to send the page to the printer. Remember, this vinyl is designed to work with inkjet printers. After printing it should look something like this:
At this point you can easily cut and install your decals, but if you want them to be extra durable (and especially if you want them to be washable), you should apply a vinyl laminate finish first. The inkjet vinyl itself is certified to last a year outside, but when you add a laminate coating it lasts 4-5 years. I took the laptop down a year and a half ago and it still looks great and I think that’s why the laminate has held up so well. You can choose from a glossy or matte finish. I used a glossy finish for these places.
Start by cutting the laminate to 8.5 x 11. Place the strip of laminate from the back and carefully line up the edge of the page. Using an application tool (or an old credit card will work well), gently smooth the laminate onto the vinyl while backing it.
Now that your designs are printed on the vinyl and the laminate is applied, you’re ready to cut! If you are cutting by hand, simply use a pair of sharp scissors or a craft knife and a cutting edge to carefully cut along your designs. If you are cutting with a Silhouette, place the vinyl on the cutting mat and load it into the machine. Adjust crop settings. For printed vinyl with a laminate finish, I recommend the following settings: Blade: 2, Thickness/Depth: 33, and Speed: 5.
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Submit the file for cutting and the machine will apply the cutting registration marks right next to your design. Lots of fun!
At this point, all that’s left to do is separate the stickers from the back and place them wherever you want! I’ve used mine to decorate a few new notebooks and to personalize my kids’ water bottles.
Printed vinyl is the perfect way to create cute labels for all your kids’ things, don’t you think? Since the printed vinyl stickers have a permanent adhesive, they stand up well to washing. However, hand washing is recommended to keep the decals looking their best.
And now you know how to print on vinyl! What do you think? Have you used printed vinyl before? What DIY vinyl stickers will you make? Tell me all about it in the comments and let me know if you have any questions. 🙂
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