Vinyl Cutters


In this module the students will be utilizing desktop knife cutters to cut out vinyl stickers. The Silhouette Portrait knife cutter is a USB/Bluetooth enabled technology that quickly turns vectors into toolpaths and toolpaths into physical parts. Students should consider their level of interest in order to determine which project they select below.


The first project requires little to no preparation from the student as each student will utilize the Silhouette Portrait software in the Lab to develop a sticker of their individual name. The RI MML Team will assist students in the Lab with this process


The second project requires students to find a two-color JPEG & convert the image to linework via a free, URL-based software. The process will likely require refinement, as there are a number of variables that impact the outcome. Please refer to the instructions & guidelines below.

Project 1: Cutting a vinyl sticker of your name

  • Come prepared to identify a font type & vinyl color that best represents your personality.

    • Note: Font types & vinyl colors are limited to the selection on the lab.


Project 2: Converting a Simple Image to a Toolpath

  • Identify a 2-color image you would like to translate to a sticker

    • Note: Simple images, like clip-art, are most easily converted to vectors (lines)

    • The image maybe unique (created by you) or available via an internet search

      • If you select an image from the internet please follow these steps:

        • Right click on the image

        • Select “Open Image in New Tab”

        • Ensure the image is a JPEG (JPG)

        • Select the URL, right click & copy the URL

  • Upon selecting an image convert it to vectors via

    • Once you arrive at import your image via one of the following:

      • Upload a file (which is saved to your computer)

      • Or enter a URL (which is accessible via the internet)

    • Under “Select output format” drop-down menu

      • Select “DXF format (without splines)”

    • Under “Number of colors” drop-down menu

      • Select “2”

    • Assuming the “Preview” image meets your approval

      • Click on the “Download result:” link.DXF


*Note: If your image is more than two colors, the process noted above will reduce the resolution to two tones, background & foreground. If the “Preview” image is not the desired outcome, please select an alternate image.

  • Please upload your DXF file to the Google folder & place it in the “Knife Cutter” subfolder

    • Files should be named: student last name_file name.DXF


Please Consider These Guidelines:

  • Pictures that work well are clipart, silhouettes, logos

  • Two-color images are easier to convert

  • JPEGs are the optimal starting file type

  • Please save a copy of your image or URL in a convenient, accessible spot which we can access when you visit the RI MML


Check out the Silhouette Portrait

3D Printers

CNC Routers

Embroidery Machines

Vinyl Cutters

Laser Cutters

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