Designing Your Own Cut Files – New Video Series, Parts 1-5

It’s finally here! For months, I’ve been thinking about and planning this video series, and it’s finally here! Well…half of it at least. The second half is coming soon; but, until then, I just couldn’t wait to announce the launch of my very first video series: Designing Your Own Cut Files. Learn all the tips and tricks you need to know for bringing your crafty, creative cut file ideas to life!

Designing Your Own Cut Files

When I bought my Cricut, I was so excited to be able to create my own, custom cut files! There was just one problem—I had never designed cut files before, and I couldn’t find any instructional videos on how to do it…at all! I decided to give it a go anyway, and, through much trial and error, was able to figure it out.

Shortly after my new discovery, I decided to share my newfound knowledge with people who had been in the same boat as me. I created a simple tutorial video, and, sure enough, I wasn’t the only one trying to navigate the complex waters of SVG file design. Soon, I was flooded with questions about issues people were encountering and minute details that I hadn’t addressed. Answering people’s technical design questions without seeing their screen can be quite tricky, though. That’s when I decided that this was a topic that warranted not only one little video, but a whole series dedicated to it! And thus, Designing Your Own Cut Files was born.

IMPORTANT NOTE: In all of these videos, I’ll be using Adobe Illustrator (the premiere software for graphic design) to create my SVG files, and then bringing the designs into Cricut Design Space. You can also use SVG files in the Designer Edition of Silhouette’s software (Silhouette Studio).

I’ve broken up the material into 10 videos that work through simple cut files and gradually build up to more complex SVG design techniques. The first 5 videos are currently available for your viewing pleasure.

An Intro to Cut File Designing
Designing Your Own Cut Files: Part 1


How to Create Simple SVG Designs
Designing Your Own Cut Files: Part 2


How to Create SVG Files That Have Text
Designing Your Own Cut Files: Part 3


Setting Up Files For Drawing & Cutting
Designing Your Own Cut Files: Part 4


Setting Up Files For Scoring & Cutting
Designing Your Own Cut Files: Part 5

Now that your mind is jam-packed with cut file design information, it’s time to practice practice practice! Once you start designing SVG cut files, the rules become engrained in your mind (hopefully you hear my voice on repeat saying, “Make it into one compound path.”).

Enjoy these first 5 videos! If you have anything you’d like to learn that I haven’t covered yet, be sure to let me know, and I’ll see if I can work it into one of the next videos in my series.

Miss Mandee Signature



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15 Comments on Designing Your Own Cut Files – New Video Series, Parts 1-5

  1. Kim
    August 24, 2017 at 7:54 am (7 years ago)

    This is exactly what I need!!! I want to be able to design my own graphics to use with the new Cricut Maker BEFORE I buy one!!! Thank you so much!!

    • Mandee
      August 24, 2017 at 9:38 am (7 years ago)

      You are very welcome Kim! ^_^

  2. Katy
    August 30, 2017 at 8:24 pm (7 years ago)

    What is the significance of the compound path part? Like in video 3 with Thomas? I have not done very many, but the couple of text projects i have created, i have typed the text, changed it to outlines, uploaded to design space, attached and welded then make it. I haven’t come across issues yet, but i don’t know the reasoning behind the compound path part! Thanks so much for the videos! Ive only gotten to 3, but already so helpful! 🙂

    • Mandee
      August 31, 2017 at 9:08 am (7 years ago)

      Hi Katy,

      Good question!Making your layers into compound paths is a good practice, but is more significant for some projects than others. Design Space use to jumble up letters/shapes if you didn’t make them into compound paths beforehand. Now it doesn’t do that as much (thankfully), but it will often put your separated shapes onto different cutting mats if they are not made into a compound path. This can usually be addressed by attaching your shapes while in Design Space before cutting, but you can save yourself that step if you do it in Illustrator beforehand. So yes, it’s not always necessary anymore, but a good way to make sure your file is clean and ready to go (especially if you’re working with lots of little pieces). 🙂

      Glad you’ve liked my videos so far!!

      • Katy Felton
        September 8, 2017 at 12:20 pm (7 years ago)

        Great!! Thank you so much!

  3. Kelcie
    October 18, 2017 at 8:45 am (7 years ago)

    This tutorial is so cool. I did not even know this was possible. Thanks for the tutorial.

    • Mandee
      October 18, 2017 at 8:48 am (7 years ago)

      You’re very welcome Kelcie! Glad to hear that my videos have been useful to you. ^_^

  4. kelly
    October 30, 2017 at 2:08 pm (6 years ago)

    Hi! Just a beginner SVG’r from Logan, UT and have looked everywhere for this. Seems like a lot of people are tight lipped about this. Thank you, Thank you!! You are the best! Maybe we can meet in person some day.

    • Mandee
      October 31, 2017 at 10:48 am (6 years ago)

      Glad you found my videos helpful! It’s truly is amazing how hard it is to find this information. But I’m happy to help! Best of luck designing your own SVG files. 🙂

  5. Cindy Downes
    November 25, 2017 at 8:23 am (6 years ago)

    THESE WERE AWESOME! Thank you. Do you have a video that shows how to do offset in Illustrator? If not, please make one! cindy

    • Mandee
      November 28, 2017 at 9:33 am (6 years ago)

      Thanks Cindy! Glad you’ve found my tutorials useful!! ^_^

      I don’t currently have a tutorial about using the Offset Path tool in Illustrator, but I can definitely make one—great suggestion!

  6. Ido
    February 17, 2018 at 9:51 am (6 years ago)

    Thank you so much for your videos!! They are so helpful and you do such a good job explaining.
    Do you have a tutorial on what settings we need when we save.
    When I save, it asks for font subsetting or image embedding. Can’t find help for that online.
    I was using Adobe CEF under font type, but when I opened in Silhouette it was setting cutline around the file, not the design.
    I hope this makes sense.

    • Mandee
      February 20, 2018 at 2:56 pm (6 years ago)

      Thank you! I’m glad you are finding my videos useful! I don’t currently have a video about the precise settings I use when I save, but, for SVG file, I’ve always just used the default settings.

      As far as issues with fonts go, you’ll need to change all of your type to outlines before you save your file. Otherwise you’ll have trouble when you upload it to the cutting software.

      Regarding images, you shouldn’t be using images in SVG file designs, but I almost always recommend embedding your images when you’re working in AI (simply select the image and press the “Embed” button in the toolbar).

  7. Dru
    February 11, 2019 at 8:13 pm (5 years ago)

    YIKES!!! I have a MAC. Can you help? (say yes!)

    • Mandee
      February 13, 2019 at 12:12 pm (5 years ago)

      Hi There! I also use a Mac, so all the tips shared in my videos will be applicable to you as you follow along. 🙂


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