Digital scrap items in the header, layouts and sidebar are by Miss Mint at or Jen Wilson at

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Woodlands Nursery Animals with OWLS, Birds & Trees SVG & EPS for Cricut & Silhouette Vinyl Cutting

Click HERE to Download FREE SVG & EPS Vinyl Cutting graphics for Cricut, Silhouette & ALL vinyl cutting machines at!

Shown: Woodland nursery animals with whimsical trees, solid & dashed line clouds, baby boy & girl owl, squirrel, cute baby deer, does, whimsical birds, finches, robin, polka dot toadstool mushrooms, acorn, wildflowers & everything to match pottery barn kids brooke bedding, crib sheets & room decor

Shown: Grow Wise Little Owl baby nursery woods & forest creature vinyl wall word art with tiny unique, hand drawn baby owl perched on branch. Scratchy, earthy hand lettering style with leaves, branch & owl accents.

FREE SVG & EPS Halloween Witch Vectors for Vinyl Cutting Machines, Cricut & Silhouette

Download FREE Halloween SVG, EPS & GSD Files HERE for your Cricut, Silhouette, Wishblade & ALL Vinyl Cutting Machines @!

Check out our new Freebie & Halloween Designs:

Shown: Welcome My Pretties witchy welcome humorous word art for Halloween front doors & entry ways or hallways with cute wicked pointed witch hat

Shown: Frankenstein "Monsters Only, No Ghouls Allowed" funny Halloween word art for making signs, gifts, October party invitations & holiday decor

Shown: Halloween Doodles with doodle black bat, candy corn, wrapped candy pieces, doodle pumpkin, doodle jack o lantern, doodle spiders & loopy witch hats for vinyl cutting machines - great for making adorable halloween window clings with vinyl printing print and cut machines!

Shown: Hand drawn doodle witch face with cute patch purple witch hat that says "A Real Witch Lives Here With Her Little Monsters". Halloween decor & sign making design for stencils, vinyl lettering, crafts, art projects, craft shows & fall festivals & carnivals

Shown: Aberzombie & Witch Halloween clothing costumes funny logo sign with crumpled old witch sorting hat graphic in EPS & SVG for Cricut, Silhouette & ALL vinyl cutting machines

Shown: Ghouls Just Wanna Have Fun with spider shape Halloween October 31 ghouls night out funny halloween sign decor for trick or treat or front door entryway hallway decorating for your costume party in SVG for Cricut vinyl cutting & EPS for ALL vinyl cutting machines

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Vinyl Cutting Fonts: Clean Cut, No Jagged Edges & Easy Weeding for Cricut, Silhouette SD & ALL Vinyl Cutting Machines

Finding well-designed, clean cutting fonts is no easy task. Even when you're paying good money for quality fonts you can run acoss some that the font designer did not take the time to "clean" which means ugly jagged edges for you. Here's Why:

A vinyl cutting machine will only cut vector graphics - even if it accepts JPGS it will convert the image into a vector using it's own auto-trace program embedded in its software. A vector image is made up of points and your machine cuts along those points. Too many points equals jagged edges. The fewer the points, the cleaner the cut is. Usually you can get away with cutting anything small-scale but as soon as you need to cut two or three foot tall graphics, clean graphics become paramount.

The WORST offenders with jagged edges are free fonts and dingbats. I'm sorry to tell you that but that's why they're free. Occasionally you'll find one or two free fonts that are clean but they're few and far between. Fonts that cost less than $10 are usually similar to free fonts in that they're not cleaned up and have too many points. Around the $15-$19 range you begin to find fonts that are crisp, clean and excellent for cutting. So what is a gal with a vinyl cutter supposed to do?

I have compiled a short list of some of my favorite clean cutting fonts with links to where you can buy them legally. You won't find any free font downloads here (remember those free fonts are choppy) but if you want to download some free SVG files for your Cricut or Silhouette you can click HERE! This is by no means all the fonts that cut well but these are fonts I have personally used or have seen cut cleanly on a vinyl cutting machine.

WARNING: Vinyl cutting machines do NOT accept Open Type fonts. You MUST buy True Type fonts if you wish to cut them on your machine! Click on "Buying Options" at to select to buy True Type fonts. Some fonts only come as Open Type or will include both True Type & Open Type. Install the True Type only.

Also: Make sure the font you are buying has a commercial license if you are going to sell any vinyl lettering. (And if you have a machine, believe me you will - even if only to friends & family!)

Cute & Crafty Fonts:

Tweedledee: Reliable cutting & weeding, even at TINY sizes

Hayseed: Cute, thick & awesome at all sizes

Sweetheart Script: Adorable scripty font that cuts clean & is great for names & monograms

Just About EVERYTHING from Ronna Penner: She's my go-to font designer for cute, crafty fonts that I know will cut well!

Just About Everything from Filmotype: Another vinyl cutting machine-friendly foundry! (Check for True Type font options first though!)

Scripty & Monogram Fonts: These fonts are all available in True Type

Corinthia: A very popular favorite

Passions Conflict: Bet you've seen it & loved it!

Lovers Quarrel: A sister font to Passions Conflict that's gorgeous, too


Inspiration: Used to exhaustion but it's always a favorite!

The NautiGal

Mea Culpa: Loopy, Extra-Fancy Capitals


Beau Rivage

Just About Everything from TypeSETit: A wonderful foundry that offers stunning, scripty fonts in both Open Type & True Type but you MUST select the correct option under "Buying Choices" when you add the font to your cart!

Click HERE to view my blog post about welding monogram letters to make interlocking, single-piece vinyl monograms that cut as one continuous sticker

But HOW do some people cut Open Type fonts on their Silhouette SD machine?

They use a second software, like photoshop, to type the text onto a blank page and save it in JPG format that their Silhouette Original or Silhouette SD software can import & auto-trace. Voila! Problem solved! (This, however, is why you should water-mark JPG images on your site. You may inadvertantly be supplying your competitors with your entire catalog of graphics!) HINT: Silhouettes cannot import colored JPGs - only black & white ones - so coloring & watermarking your example images solves this problem!

Tay, how do YOU get the same jagged, messy font to cut so clean in the designs you sell online?

The short answer: LOTS of time! Let me explain. Anything in vector format can be edited & cleaned up if you have hours you're willing to spend doing it. Even messy fonts that have a look you like can be cleaned up. Here's a perfect example:

The "m" on the left is typed in the original font. The "m" on the right has been hand-edited by me to remove excess vector points, smooth out curves and make it much more clean cutting without losing the cute feel of the parent font. My edited m can now be cut at huge sizes whereas the flaws of the original letter form would become exaggerated & obvious if cut larger than a few inches tall. It takes 10-20 minutes per letter to correct these types of things (and then a bit longer for me to do my personal 3-step optimizing for superior vinyl cutting before I offer the graphic for sale at but to me it's worth the time investment up front to have a design that will cut cleanly for the rest of its life!

Okay Tay, HOW do you clean up dingbat shapes you use?

I don't. Dingbats are infuriating to me so I don't use them. Insead I have a digital drawing tablet and years of practice as a cartoonist & advertising designer so I draw my shapes directly into my computer and then optimize them for vinyl cutting. I know not everyone can do this but that's why I design and give so much stuff away for free!

Click here to download FREE SVG designs, shapes & Graphics for your Cricut with Sure Cuts A Lot (SCAL) vinyl cutting machine!

Click here to download FREE GSD designs, shapes & graphics for your Silhouette SD vinyl cutting machine!

* Freebies are updated every 4 weeks! Check often & grow your business for FREE!
If you don't see the freebies listed on the front page, click on the "WordArt" heading written in hot pink above and click through the designs until you find the ones marked with "FREE" in hot pink in the price section!

Can I use freebies I download to cut vinyl to sell?

Yes, please do! That's what Commercial Freebies are for! (Freebies under the Digital Die Cutting section are for personal use.) You can cut as much vinyl as you want for as long as you want and make as much money as you want using the freebie design without ever paying a thing! Just please do not sell the digital graphic file itself. :)

I love what I do and I share my talent & gratitude by giving dozens of designs away to hopefully better the vinyl cutting experiences of others! I appreciate the work of font designers and will gladly supply font names & buying links for any of the fonts I use - just e-mail me. A font designer who is paid for their work will make more new fonts for all of us to enjoy!

Saturday, July 3, 2010

FREE Vinyl Cutting EPS & SVG files for Cricut, Silhouette & All Vinyl Lettering Machines

Want to cut vinyl on your Cricut or Silhouette SD? We have FREE SVG files you can download instantly & tutorials to show you how all at Peppermint Creative!
Look what downloadable word art fonts, monograms, graphics & designs for vinyl cutting machines (including Cricut SCAL & Silhouette original & SD) are totally free at!
Get these adorable scalloped oval baby nursery monogram mats & frames TOTALLY FREE (EPS & SVG format with JPG & PNG files inlcuded) for your Cricut, Silhouette & ALL vinyl lettering machines! Click on the above picture to download 100% FREE right now! This is a limited time offer MEGA BONUS so grab them quick!

Double freebies! Get this Summery Beach Life WordArt design with it's cute hand drawn starfish shape FREE! Click the image above to download! It coordinates perfectly with our adorable surf nursery & children's room vinyl wall decal & sticker graphic design lines!
Pick up the Surfer Girl Nursery hand drawn shape & word art pack and do her whole bedroom & bath to match!
(Shown: hula girl, palm tree, pink flamingo, hibiscus stripe surfboard, skinny finger starfish, chunky star fish, island tropical beach beauty, tahiti sweetie, beach beauty & California Cutie Surf Co designs in EPS & SVG vector format for Cricut, Sure Cuts a Lot, SCAL, Silhouette, Silhouette SD, Wishblade, Inspiration, LXi and ALL vinyl lettering cutting machines & commercial 24 to 48 inch vinyl plotters)

Our beach surf board block art is PERFECT for making glass block night light decor with christmas lights & glass squares from Lowe's & Home Depot! Easy peasy home decor crafts await with our perfectly-square BlockART™ downloadable graphics for Cricut, Silhouette & ALL vinyl cutting machines!
Keep an eye out - some BlockART designs are often listed for FREE!

Our new 4-in-1 BlockART™ graphics feature a grid-style design made up of 4 individual FULL SIZE BlockART singles! Each download includes the full-size single and a full size grid design (total of 5 files in one!) The decorating & sales opportunities are endless!
Make Money (Hundreds per month!) Selling Vinyl Lettering with Your Cricut or Silhouette Craft Cutter NOW!
Our 100% FREE blog posts at walk you through the steps of getting started, setting up your business and making money! Even better, we offer FREE downloadable graphics that are updated every single month that will get you started cutting & selling INSTANTLY!
Average FIRST MONTH profit cutting vinyl with 12 inch Cricut machine: $145
Average FIRST MONTH profit cutting vinyl with 24 inch Cricut machine: $200
Average FIRST MONTH profit cutting vinyl with Silhouette or Silhouette SD machine: $140
*Profit figured after cost of vinyl & supplies is subtracted from total sales. Second & third month sales tend to double.

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Making Interlocking Monograms Using Fonts & Overlap Welding for Silhouette, Cricut & All Vinyl Cutting Machines

As a graphic designer for where I design free & downloadable EPS & SVG vector shapes, I very often get the question of how do you use fonts to make a monogram that will cut on a vinyl cutting machine all as one piece without any letter lines overlapping.

It's easy to do and nearly every vinyl cutting machine has software capable of performing a simple "weld" technique to remove those letter edge overlaps. I have a QuicKutz Silhouette machine (same Craft Robo Master software as the Silhouette SD) so this tutorial will show how it is done in that software. I've been told Sure Cuts a Lot (SCAL) for the Cricut works the exact same way. Let's begin!

First, using any True Type font, type in the letters of your monogram. I have used the font Corinthia, available for purchase from As you can see in this example image, there are two places my letters overlap:

I want my T, A, and Y to all flow seamlessly one into the other and cut as one whole, solid piece of vinyl, like a sticker, so I'll need to perform a simple letter weld in the software that came with my Silhouette craft die cutting machine. First I select the entire image - all 3 letters - and click on the Weld Shapes button in my software, located along the top command bar in my software, close to the end as shown in the inset photo below:

Clicking this causes the letters to instantly weld, giving my monogram the proper appearance. It will cut out of vinyl exactly as I am intending. Here is what the connected, interlocking monogram now looks like at this stage of the tutorial:

Since this is going on my car, I want it to look cute and plain monograms are boring. I'm going to add a whimsical loopy border, which can be downloaded here or here for personal use only. I add the whimsical frame and ensure my design is centered and none of the letter tips are touching my border. Here is how my finished design looks and it's now ready to be cut out of vinyl!

For auto vehicle windshield stickers I like to use Oracal 651 vinyl. It's got a 6 year outdoor rating meaning it will stay put for at least 6 years on your vehicle and hold up well through car washes, rain storms, scorching summers and the like. If you're planning on selling car decals, this is the vinyl I recommend you cut with so your customers are pleased and come back for more.

You can use Oracal 641, which has a 4 year outdoor rating, or Oracal 631 matte which has a 3 year rating. Both of these will show wear after a couple years and the 631 will come off if a pressure washer is used on it.

Need More Monogram Frames, Mats, Shapes & Supplies?

Click HERE to view all the specialty shapes you can download at!

Want Start-to-Finish help in learning how to cut vinyl with your Cricut, Silhouette, Wishblade, Inspiration or ANY other vinyl cutting machine and make money selling cut vinyl online?

Click HERE for the 100% FREE Peppermint Creative Blog Series that walks you through all of the beginning steps and gives you all the industry inside secrets you won't find anywhere else!
(Because really, no one with a vinyl business has TIME to write all this stuff down because they're too busy with orders!)

Download FREE SVG vector graphics for your Cricut with Sure Cuts A Lot (SCAL) HERE!

Download FREE GSD file format graphics (personal use only) for your Silhouette, Silhouette SD and Wishblade HERE!

Download FREE EPS & SVG commercial use vector graphics for your vinyl cutting machine or professional vinyl plotter HERE and sell as much cut vinyl as you want!

* Please note our freebies are updated regularly, with new ones added every single month!
If you don't see the current freebies showing on the front page, click on the pink heading titled "WordArt" and click through the pages until you find the graphic with "FREE" written in pink underneath it. Check back often for new freebies to be added - I LOOOVE giving free SVG & EPS vinyl graphics away!

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

FREE SVG files for your Cricut & Vinyl Cutting Machines

There is a TON of brand new stuff at that is perfect for a baby nuseries, monograms and there are even some brand new Halloween designs! Here's a sneak peek of what you can download NOW!

(Shown: Little hula girl hawiian beach nursery graphic in the Surfer Girl Nursery EPS & SVG commercial use vector pack for Cricut, Sure Cuts a Lot, SCAL, Silhouette, Wishblade, Craft Robo and ALL vinyl cutting machines )

(Shown: Unisex boy & girl surf boards with palm trees, hibiscus & waves for pottery barn surfer baby nurseries and children's rooms decor in the Surf Board Row BlockArt pack)

(Shown: Surf Shack surfer dude room decor for vinyl cutting machines with a jeep woody stacked high with surf boards, palm tree, hibiscus, stripe surf board & surfing text in the Surf Shack BlockArt pack)

(Shown: Halloween Witch Word Art reads Would a Bad Witch Wear Shoes This Fabulous with high heel pointed witchy kitten heel shoe )
(Shown: Hocus Pocus Halloween Witches Haunted Word Art design with magic potion spell starburst pops for vinyl cutting machines in EPS, SVG & GSD file format for Cricut, Silhouette, Wishblade, Craft Robo & ALL vinyl cutting machines)

(Shown: Spells & Potions and all sorts of Commotions witches boutique halloween shop sign design graphic with magic wand, spells, potion bottles & eerie haunted starbursts for vinyl cutting machines in EPS & SVG commercial use file formats for Cricut, Silhouette, Wishblade & ALL vinyl cutting machines)
(Shown: Funny Come in for a Spell with grungy loopy decorative scrolls Halloween Witch Sign EPS & SVG file for ALL vinyl cutting machines - cute witches boutique holiday craft wood decor!)

(Shown: One Really Catty Witch Lives Here HILARIOUS Halloween holiday decor sign graphic for Vinyl Cutting Machines, Cricut SVG, Silhouette GSD & EPS file formats for witchy home craft decorating with vinyl lettering!)
(Shown: Polka Dot Baby Nursery Monogram Frames in 6 different shapes! Perfect for children's rooms, family room monograms, play rooms & label making! EPS & SVG files for Cricut, Silhouette & ALL vinyl cutting machines!)

(Shown: Scalloped Rectangle Baby Nursery Monogram Frames IDEAL for children's room monograms & personalization of wall vinyl lettering wallies & stickies!)
(Shown: Scalloped Square & Diamond Babies Nurseries Monogram Mats & Frames for personalizing children's rooms walls! In EPS & SVG for your Cricut, SCAL, Sure Cuts a Lot, Silhouette & ALL vinyl cutting machines!)

(Shown: Scalloped Edge Circle Monogram Mats & Frames for little girl baby nurseries & children's rooms & playrooms! Just like Pottery Barn personalized wallies & vinyl lettering! In EPS & SVG format for your Cricut, SCAL, Silhouette & ALL Vinyl Cutting Machines!)

100% FREE SVG Graphics FREE INSTANT DOWNLOAD for your Cricut, Sure Cuts a Lot (SCAL) & Silhouette Vinyl Cutting Machines:
For a limited time the Scalloped Oval Monogram Mats & Frames are TOTALLY FREE in EPS & SVG vector format graphic download from Perfect for baby nurseries, personalizing children's rooms, bathrooms, playrooms & making vinyl sticker labels for toys, sippy cups, wine glasses & belongings. Get the FREE SVG FILES NOW!
(Shown: Scalloped oval monogram mats & frames in EPS & SVG file format for Cricut, Silhouette & ALL vinyl cutting machines)
Have Questions About How to Get Started with Vinyl Cutting?
Check out these totally FREE blog articles on how to select a machine, import SVG graphic files, buy vinyl rolls at discount prices, where to get FREE SVG & EPS file downloads every single month and more:

Friday, June 4, 2010

Custom Hand Lettering & Hand Drawn Doodles in EPS, SVG and GSD Format for Your Vinyl Cutting Machine

Shown: pink chocolate loopy frosted birthday cupcakes with sprinkles & cherries in EPS & SVG vector format

Where is everyone getting those jungle nursery animals, doodle cupcakes , princess and nursery designs that are selling for $35 for ONE cut vinyl design online?

Shown: Jungle Safari Nursery lion, tiger, alligator,gator, crocodile. monkey, elephant & giraffe shapes in EPS, SVG & GSD vector format for vinyl cutting machines

Shown: Whimsical fairy woodland forrest animal nursery doodle trees in EPS & SVG vector format - perfect for digital printed invites, too!

Tay Silver is the designer of the "No More Monkeys Jumping On The Bed" vinyl EPS & SVG graphic with the hand-drawn monkeys and several other goodies in the Jungle Nursery Word Art pack!

Shown: Black billowing sail pirate ship silhouette with skull & crossbone flag in EPS & SVG vector format for vinyl cutting machines

Looking for Pirate Nursery designs? Our "Yo Ho Yo Ho Pirates Life for Me" Word Art with the Pirate Ship shape is exclusive to!
Shown: Cowboy hat & funny rough & rowdy ranch emblem for cowboy themed nursery or bedroom in EPS & SVG vector format for Cricut, Silhouette & all vinyl cutting machines
Need Cowboy Nursery Designs & Hilarious Cowboy Bathroom Sign shapes for your vinyl cutting machine? We have 'em!
Even better, we give away FREE commercial-use Vector shapes (EPS & SVG files) every single month for your Cricut, Silhouette, Wishblade, Inspiration and commercial 24", 36" or 48" inch vinyl cutting machine! Check out our current Freebies HERE!

Monday, May 31, 2010

Easiest & Best Vinyl Cutting Machine: Craft Cutters (Cricut & Silhouette)

"What is the BEST vinyl cutting machine a gal can buy that's still affordable yet cuts vinyl cleanly enough to sell?" I get that question a LOT, mostly because I design vector (EPS & SVG) graphics for vinyl cutting machines and have one myself. I'm partial to my QuicKutz Silhouette and chose it after my own research but I'll compare & contrast the two most popular options you're probably considering: the Cricut and the Silhouette.

The Cricut comes in a 24 inch model and handles vinyl beautifully. If you have the space (like an entire office desk) to accomodate the machine and you'd like to start an at-home vinyl business, this machine will enable you to take orders for cuts up to 24 inches tall, including arched designs. The downside is that after you purchase the expensive machine and a couple hundred in supplies you'll STILL need to buy add-on software called Sure Cuts A Lot (abbreviated SCAL) that will run an additional $75 to "unlock" your machine so you can cut any font on your machine and import professionally designed vector graphics that are so popular in the vinyl industry.

If you're looking at buying a smaller Cricut, you might want to more seriously consider the Silhouette. I've had several friends with 6 and 12 inch Cricuts sell their machines to buy a Silhouette.

The Silhouette cuts vinyl extremely well and in addition to being able to cut all the True Type fonts on your machine, it can import JPG images to cut. There's no aditional software required and nothing else to purchase besides the machine - it comes right out of the box ready to cut anything you want! (Peppermint Creative has awesome vinyl designs for Silhouette machines, too! Even in GSD format which works with the File>Open command and is instantly ready to cut!) The 8 inch maximum width is the only limitation, meaning you can't cut arched vinyl to go over doorways since arches usually require 24-36 inch machines. However you will soon discover that even if you do sell vinyl, most orders are small and easily fit within the Silhouette's size limitations.

Want to know about how to start a vinyl lettering / vinyl cutting business?

Click here to read the 9-part blog series I wrote for the site that walks you through all the steps involved!

*Please note that all 9 parts were written before the first post was published but are being posted in order over several weeks.

You won't find a vinyl cutting business giving away all it's secret tips & tricks but I don't sell cut vinyl, just graphics for craft & vinyl cutting machines, so I'll pass on all my knowledge! I've been cutting on my machine for a couple years now and have compiled TONS of helpful information for anyone starting out. You won't have to fumble around for weeks like I did, trying to figure out a new machine and being confused by the vast array of interior & exterior vinyl supplies. There is help!

Need more details on EVERY aspect of vinyl cutting?

Read my blog post on Vinyl Cutting Machines: Everything You Wanted to Know

And even MORE info is on the sister posts Vinyl Cutting: More of What You Wanted to Know & Vinyl Cutting Machines: Best Info & Advice Compiled Here

Quick & Helpful Things to Know:

• Vinyl lettering is also called "cut vinyl", "wall lettering", "interior vinyl", "craft vinyl" and "wall vinyl" - be sure to use these keywords so customers can find you!

• Oracal 631 (matte) is THE MOST POPULAR interior wall and craft vinyl and the one I very, very strongly recommend you use. It is top of the line and looks GORGEOUS on the wall, like the letters were hand-painted on. You can buy cheaper breands of vinyl but they are glossy and not as professional looking. I would recommend finding a vinyl supplier that offers bulk discounts on vinyl rolls, such as buy 5 get one free, and order in quantity to get the cheaper, lower pricing per roll to save yourself money that way.

• Vinyl comes in 15, 24, 36 and 48 inch widths. If you use a craft or digital die cutting machine, like the Silhouette, Cricut, Craft Robo, Inspiration or Wishblade, you'll need to cut the vinyl down to a width that will fit your machine. It's a bit of extra work but worth the effort considering a vinyl plotter (professional floor-standing vinyl cutting machine) is often a thousand dollars or more.

• BE CAREFUL when purchasing vector CD's from your vinyl supplier! Almost all of these CDs have EPS files ONLY which your Cricut (SCAL) and Silhouette CANNOT accept! Moreso, these CDs are full of crappy, sub-par graphics with overlapping lines and jagged edges that make for extremely unprofessional cuts. (My graphics are profesionally designed and are optimized for fast, smooth, clean cutting.)

Try out one of my freebies here! It's 100% free and can be used to cut vinyl to sell forever! Just please protect your market edge and do not sell or give away the graphic file itself.

• If you have a Cricut and the Sure Cuts A Lot (SCAL) software, you'll need to buy vector graphics in SVG format for your software to cut. Both my Commercial and Personal Use vector graphic packs feature SVG files to cut vinyl on your Cricut craf machine!

• Word Art (or WordArt) is a special term for a combination of fonts and shapes that have been combined to create a unique piece of art. Mine are intended for vinyl cutting machines and always come unwelded (unlocked) so you can move the pieces around and so you can cut the design in several different colors. You get everything you would have if you paid a graphic designer to make something custom for you with the same flexibility you'd have as if you designed the item yourself and controlled the placement of all the pieces. It's one of the many ways I try to help other at-home moms with small businesses succeed!

• FREE VINYL and free Oracal vinyl color charts can be obtained from by setting up an account and requesting free samples. The samples are 8x11 in size and are excellent for performing test cuts to determine how your machine will handle different product types. Here is a quick run-down:

Oracal 631 (matte): Interior wall applications

Oracal 641 & 651: Exterior vinyl - GLOSSY
*651 is best for vehicle windshield decals - it will last for 6+ years (twice as long) compared to 641's 3 year lifespan and is only a few dollars more per roll. Both can be used on interior walls if your client wants glossy vinyl.

Oracal 751: High Performance Cast Vinyl
* Top-of-the-line vehicle decal vinyl with 7+ years lifespan and comes in nearly 80 colors. Most often used for commercial vehicle lettering. Oracal 651 is suitable for smaller decorative graphics to go on family vehicles.
This is a CAST vinyl and CANNOT be used on interior walls! It has a permanent polyacrylate adhesive that will rip the plaster off the drywall if you try to remove it!

Oracal 8100: Translucent (allows light to pass through & causes it to glow)
*This is becoming a popular option for Glass Block crafts that are illuminated by christmas lights inside the block. Oracal 631 may also be used for this craft purpose but it is opaque and will not glow. This is a calendered vinyl but has a permanent polyacrylate adhesive and CANNOT be used on interior drywall!

Oracal 8810: Frosted Glass Look (Textured & Glitter-embedded) Vinyl
* Gives the appearance of sand-blasted glass etching or frosting when placed on glass & mirrors. Often requested for weddings.
This is a CAST vinyl. Do not place it or any cast vinyl on interior painted walls!

Oracal 8510: Translucent Etched Glass Vinyl (Calendered - safe for interior drywall)
*Gives a much more subtle effect of glass etching and allows more light to pass through it. Is subtle and much less noticeable than Oracal 8810 Frosted Glass Cast Vinyl.
This does not have glitter in it and is often requested for glass shower doors. Oracal 631 (matte) Transparent vinyl will have a smiliar, but even more subtle effect and is a much less expensive substitute if desired.

• 90% of your vinyl orders will be for decorative (home decor) interior wall vinyl and the other will be for vehicle decals/stickers and specialty items. Don't order etched glass vinyl until you need it unless you wish to offer it and cater to wedding orders.

• Top-of-the-line, luxuriously thick Chalkboard Vinyl can be ordered from (tell them Tay Silver's blog sent you!) This is a WILDLY POPULAR new vinyl trend, especially since chalkboard vinyl can be applied anywhere and cut into any gorgeous shape! In fact, we have several EPS & SVG Vinyl Vector Shape Sets designed specifically for cutting & selling STUNNING chalkboard vinyl products!

* Consider filling up extra space with small, label-size chalkboard vinyl cut outs using Basic Label, Fancy Label & Bracket Mat shape sets and including them as freebies with every paid order. Include simple directions on how to label glass jars, metal buckets & plastic bins with the chalk board vinyl label sample and I promise your clients will be coming back for more chalkboard vinyl! (They're GREAT for dressing up catch-all bins and organizing kid's rooms!)

Want to Get a Leg Up on the Competition?

Consider offering unique shapes in chalkboard and dry earase whiteboard vinyl:

Formal Plaques Vector Shape Set: Beatifully ornate and perfect hung vertically or horizontally. Stunning in entryways, formal dining rooms & home offices.

Address Plaques Vector Shape Set: Clean lines and classically elegant. Most popular for kitchens, chalkboard "menus" & family message boards.

Kitchen Gadgets Vector Shape Set: Coffee cup, spoon & rolling pin make especially alluring chalkboard shapes for the kitchen & breakfast nook!

Wine Cellar Vector Shape Set: The always-requested wine bottle & wine glass shapes become even more popular when cut jumbo-sized in chalkboard vinyl for a clever touch that is both sophisticated and playful.

Bracket Mats 1 & Bracket Mats 2: These trendy shapes are here to stay and are popular for every room in the house, especially home offices, playrooms and children's or teen bedrooms. Beautiful when cut with a monogram in Oracal 631 vinyl for nurseries.

Bird Silhouettes Vector Shape Set: Whimsical and completely unexpected, chalkboards are going to the birds! Thrills both the quirkiest and pickiest of customers alike!

• All these above vector shape sets can be used to cut beautiful dry erase (or whiteboard) vinyl as well.

Ready to get started with your vinyl business or read up on more tips? Check out the Blog series of vinyl articles!

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Vinyl Lettering: How to Begin Cutting & Selling

Over a year ago I wrote a blog post titled Vinyl Cutting: Everything You Wanted to Know about how to use your Cricut, Silhouette, Wishblade or other vinyl cutting machine to cut vinyl lettering. To this day that post still shows up at the top of search engines and gets between ten and twenty hits per day. It's a lot of reading but it's one of the few places online where you can find detailed information about how to begin vinyl cutting.

I am a graphic designer for Peppermint Creative, creating hand drawn shapes and word art specifically designed for vinyl cutting machines. I absolutely love what I do, not only because I get to draw all day but because my work also helps others. The work I do from home helps other women and mothers like me stay at home and enjoy the benefits of at-home businesses. It is incredibly fulfilling and I very much wish to share my knowledge and know-how with others looking to begin their own vinyl businesses.

To accomplish this I have written a series of blog articles giving start-to-finish help for anyone looking to break in to the vinyl industry. I have seen what sells and what does not in the vinyl world and what makes one business succeed while another fails.

Hint: Vinyl shops that use graphics designed by professionals specifically intended for the vinyl industry, that are more unique than their competitor's typed text designs, enjoy more frequent and higher-dollar sales. This is because their product line is fresh, constantly added to and they can invest their time in creating more eye-catching example images. And as you know, your example images are everything and make or break your sales. This is what makes one vinyl business more successful than others: Investment in beautiful graphics and creating stunning product example images that generate a feeling of desire to buy the vinyl in the customers who view them.

Click HERE to read the Peppermint Creative Blog Vinyl Series
*Please note this is an already-written 9 part series so if you don't see all the posts, they will be posted shortly.

Want to try out our graphics? Grab our Freebie and put it to work for you! We offer a new freebie and brand new designs monthly so check back often.

If you have a vinyl business and are looking to increase your sales immediately, check out our entire line of WordArt, craft-friendly BlockArt and Hand Drawn Shapes. (Hand drawn means our shapes are exclusive to our site - they're not dingbats and you won't find them anywhere else! Yet they're smoother and cleaner cutting than fonts because of our own 3-step optimization process.)

All our commercial vector graphics come with a commercial license so you can cut and sell as much vinyl as you want. Our freebies are commercial use, too, so you can try our graphics and grow your sales without any expense! Each graphic pack contains unwelded, repositionable elements, in addition to regular welded designs, that allow you to mix and match embellishment pieces and word art phrases to create your shop's own unique product offerings. You can even use the pieces to make brand new vinyl designs that only your shop cuts and sells! It's everything you'd get from hiring a professional graphic designer without investing hundreds in each design.
File formats we sell: EPS, SVG, GSD (personal use packs only) with JPG and PNG files included in each download so you can quickly add your new graphics to your existing catalogs.
Have more questions? Leave a comment! Peppermint Creative does not sell cut vinyl and we're always interested in helping your business succeed!

How to find New Customers & Sell More Vinyl for your Online or Local Vinyl Cutting Business

Finding customers is easy if you know where to look but sometimes the easiest tasks can be elusive. I have compiled a list of ways to drum up quick and easy business to get your cut vinyl lettering sales up!

This is part of the vinyl cutting business informational series I wrote for the blog. It's not an e-book and it's totally free & unlike any other compilation of help you'll find online for learning how to start a vinyl business. (That's because vinyl businesses are so profitable, owners don't have TIME to go back and write how they started because they're busy cutting, weeding and making money!) Plus there are additional tips for keeping your ideas fresh and innovative so customers keep coming back for more of your vinyl lettering designs!

How much can I make per month selling cut vinyl lettering with my Cricut (with Sure-Cuts-A-Lot SCAL software), Silhouette SD, Wishblade, Inspiration, Gazelle, Craft Robo or other vinyl cutting machine?

A "tiny" mom-run business that sells vinyl by placing photos, prices and a contact e-mail for placing orders on a free blog site with part-time work of 10 or less hours per week makes around $200 per month. This jumps to $300-$400 if selling on eBay, and/or is added. $500 or more per month in sales is easily attainable with the tips & advice on how to increase local vinyl sales and repeat vinyl orders that is found on the Blog Vinyl Cutting Series of articles.

Vinyl selling makes so much money because even large, blank walls can be filled for under $50 and the vinyl is customizeable, comes in dozens of different colors to match every decor and is easily affordable for every budget. In fact, cut vinyl designs for baby nurseries and children's rooms is THE NUMBER ONE MOST POPULAR REQUEST and the thing MOST SOLD ONLINE because babies continue to be born and nurseries continue to be converted to "big kid" rooms and moms want those blank walls decorated, even in a down economy.

Click HERE to view our huge selection of Nursery designs!
Including: monkey, jungle, safari, princess, pirate ship, rodeo cowboy, garden bug, butterfly & ladybug, woodland trees, owls, giraffes, elephants, alligators, lions, tigers, moon & stars, surfboard & palm tree surf shack, surfer girl, beach, seashell & starfish and TONS of other desins including the always-popular whimsical MONOGRAM MATS & Bracket Mats & Boutique Borders for creating stunning vinyl wall monograms that moms can't help but fall in love with!


Click HERE to read simple ways you can attract new customers without paying for advertising!

Find ways to sell more vinyl locally and online and turn your cricut, silhouette SD, wishblade, inspiration, gazelle, craft robo or vinyl cutting machine into an at home small business where you can EASILY make several hundred and up to several thousands of extra income every month!

Why is all this help free?

When I began designing graphics for Peppermint Creative I wanted to help other stay-at-home moms like myself earn enough extra income that they could STAY at home! Family is very important to me and I believe that a strong family is the foundation for a moral society; which I feel we are beginning to lack in this day and age. Drawing is what I love and if doing what I love can help others stay at home too, I want to do it even more!

When I realized the lack of good, reliable information was the only thing holding most women back from turning their vinyl cutting hobby into a profitable business I began writing articles on my blog and complied a series for the Peppermint Creative blog. This isn't an e-book. We don't profit from the information on the blog. All of it is intended to help you realize how truly EASY it is to begin selling cut vinyl and completed vinyl home decor. Give it a try - we even have 100% FREE Commercial-Use Graphic Freebies in EPS, SVG and GSD with JPG & PNG image files you can download, cut and sell just to try it out, without ever spending a dime. The vinyl industry is so lucrative, you'll make money your first month and when business is so good you don't have time to create your own designs, I'd love to help! In the meantime I'm going to keep you well-stocked with fresh, always-rotating freebies to help get your business off the ground. :)

Read the info, download the freebies and give it a try! We'll keep you updated on new freebies and newsletter members get additional discounts and even coupon codes for more FREE commercial graphic downloads! If you have any more questions, feel free to contact me directly at TaySilverGraphics[at]!

Creative New Uses for Wall Vinyl Lettering

In any business it's a wise idea to keep your product looking fresh and innovation begins with coming up with creative new ideas for how to use cut vinyl lettering. Whether you've just bought a Cricut, Silhouette, Wishblade, Craft Robo, Gazelle, Inspiration or other craft cutter machine or you're a seasoned vinyl cutting pro, we've got the tips you need to get the vinyl off the wall and get you thinking out of the box!

The creative team has GOBS of ideas photographed and posted in the Peppermint Creative Gallery and DOZENS of helpful tips and tricks for starting a vinyl cutting business, finding and importing vector shapes, coupon codes & FREE EPS, SVG & GSD format vector files and directions for making vinyl crafts are on the Blog. Check them out and generate some fresh, new vinyl application ideas today!

Some Quick Ideas for Chalkboard Vinyl:

When an order is placed for chalkboard vinyl you end up cutting one huge shape and inevitably have extra space that is just wasted. DON'T WASTE IT! Here's a suggestion of what you can do to double your business sales using vinyl scraps:

1. Fill the extra chalk board vinyl space with small 2 to 4 inch label shapes that are unique in appearance. (I recommend these basic labels, fancy organizer labels and bracket labels!)

2. Weed & tape the extra labels, STAMP THE BACKING PAPER WITH YOUR COMPANY INFO (see this blog post about free advertising tips) and place them with your shipping supplies.

3. Type up a small, quick direction sheet that tells customers how to apply and use chalkboard vinyl and gives application tips on what to do with the labels.

Hint: chalkboard vinyl eraseable labels work GREAT on metal buckets, glass jars, kitchen canisters, children's room toy storage buckets & bins, nursery storage bins and they can even be placed on top of "junk mail" free magnets to turn the magnet into a chalkboard magnet for the fridge!)

Tip: Suggest that customers blunt their chalk by scribbling on a sheet of paper before writing on the vinyl because cheap 99¢ chalk can sometimes have sharp edges that may scratch or indent the blackboard vinyl if the user is not careful.

4. Print your small direction sheet and include one direction sheet and TWO free chalkboard vinyl labels with every paid order you ship. Not only will customers be THRILLED to find a freebie in their order, they'll be excited to use the labels and will know just who to contact for more.

Keep in mind the more visibility your vinyl gets, the better and using your scraps to create vinyl freebies doubles your exposure and greatly increases the opportunity for word-of-mouth advertising when friends ask about your vinyl! Dry erase and chalk board vinyl labels are an excellent way to boost interest and business without spending an extra cent!

If you're looking for the best quality chalkboard vinyl, sells this premium quality material that is smooth cutting, luxuriously thick and provides the silkiest writing surface with the easiest, cleanest erasing! It's even rated to last 2 years in FULL ELEMENT EXPOSURE outdoor weather! (Much longer lasting if applied on a covered porch or patio where it is partially protected from the elements.)

Want more specialty EPS, SVG, GSD custom vector graphics for cutting unique shapes in dry erase, chalk board or black board vinyl? Check out these commercial-use graphic downloads:

Address Plaques
Fancy Formal Chalkboard Plaques (EPS & SVG vector format files)
Bird Silhouette Chalkboards
Spoon, fork & Kitchen Gadget Utensil Shapes
Wine Bottles, Corks & Olive Oil Bottle Vector Shapes
Princess Crown Chalkboard Vector Shapes (EPS & SVG format files)
Bracket mats

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Vinyl Cutting Machines: Best Info & Advice Compiled Here

I still get LOTS of questions about vinyl cutting machines & digital die cutting machines (like the Cricut, Silhouette and Wishblade) that can also cut vinyl.

If you are JUST starting out, researching what machine to buy or want to know what type of vinyl & supplies you'll need, please see this post with ALL the information you'll need:

If you still have questions, check out my "More of What You Wanted to Know" post here:

This post will answer some of the more random, detailed questions I have been getting.

• What is chalkboard vinyl and where do I get it?

Chalkboard vinyl is a special black (or other colored) vinyl that allows you to write on it with chalk. You can purchase it from You can also use Oracal 631 matte black vinyl like chalkboard vinyl for small projects, like putting chalkboard labels on buckets, glass jars, etc. Simply cut the label shape from black matte vinyl (my favorite label shapes are Miss Mint's Labels for Vinyl Cutting Machines) and stick the label on your bucket.
IMPORTANT: Before writing on ANY type of vinyl, but especially 631 black matte vinyl, use a paper towel to smooth the writing end of your piece of chalk until it is domed and soft with no sharp or rough edges. This way the chalk won't scratch, mar or indent your vinyl label and you can erase & re-write it as many times as you'd like. Just ALWAYS smooth your chalk in this way! Use a lightly damp rag to erase.

• What is whiteboard dry erase vinyl and where do I get it?

Buy it at I haven't used it myself but I do know you need to use specialty dry-erase markers with it and even dry erase marker cannot be left on for longer than a week without it staining the vinyl. (Chalkboard vinyl is more popular than whiteboard vinyl if you are looking to invest in only one.)

• Can vinyl go in the dishwasher?

NO! The same vinyl you use on your interior walls cannot go in your dishwasher! The washing & heat dissolve the vinyl adhesive and the letters fall limply from your plates & cups.

• Can any of my holiday decor with vinyl lettering on it go in the attic?

NO! Attic storage where temperatures exceed 75° at ANY time of year has the same effect on your vinyl lettering as a hair dryer does: it will cause the vinyl to "shrink" and curl up from your project, ruining the decor piece. Wrap your vinyl decor to protect the face of the vinyl from scratches and store it indoors. (This is expecially important where I live in the southern US where March his hot enough to ruin vinyl in the attic and August is hot enough to ruin vinyl sitting within 5 feet of the front door!)

• How do you measure & cut wood and vinyl for your BlockART designs?

See an example of finished BlockART here and here!

Select and cut your wood first, then cut vinyl to fit your wood once you have checked the actual wood block measurements. When you purchase wood boards keep in mind that their width is 1/2 inch off their actual size. So if you purchase a 1x4 the wood is actually 1/2 inch x 3.5 inches, not truly 1x4 inches. I use a chop saw to cut my 1x4 and 2x6 wood boards into square blocks. They measure 3.5 x 3.5 inches (from 1x4 boards) and 5.5 x 5.5 inches (from 2x6 boards) when cut down this way. I cut my vinyl in 3 inch or 5 inch square sizes respectively, sizing the LONGEST edge at 3 or 5 inches and allowing at least 1/4 of an inch (0.25) room from the edge of the vinyl to the edge of the wood. So a 3.5 wood square would accept a 3 inch square cut of vinyl with a 1/4 inch border, giving the appearance of a perfect fit!

• Can I cut and sell any design I find online? How do I know if that is legal?

My commercial designs are intended for just that - cutting and selling! The price includes a commercial license which never expires, meaning you can use it forever to cut as much vinyl as you would like. Same with my commercial use freebies. They are meant to grow your business while trying out our new designs. Plus the graphics are unwelded, which means you can use individual elements, like a heart shape for example, independently and cut it as many times as you want simply because it came in a pack with other commercial designs.

With any graphic you intend to use, you must check on licensing before using it to ensure you are not infringing on any copyright or useage terms. If you know the graphics are suitable for this type of commercial use (meaning they were sold to you with the intent for vinyl cutting, such as a Vector Graphic CD from your vinyl supplier) then you are within the graphic product's legal terms of use. While fonts and dingbats can be cut on just about any machine, you need to make sure you are using a legal copy of the font and that the font type you have purchased is approved for commercial use. A few dollars to support a font designer means they will continue making new fonts which you can use in the future to continue to expand your business!

• Can I cut vinyl on my Cricut, Silhouette or Wishblade to sell?

Yes, you can! It's a great way to recoup the cost of buying your machine and supplies, even if you only sell vinyl locally to friends, neighbors and on local community websites. Many church and neighborhood groups have ladies craft days and they often need someone local to supply the vinyl if a craft calls for it. (See info about selling complete craft kits below.) Local craft fairs are also a great way to sell pre-cut designs directly to the public without having to bring your machine up and cut on-site. In my experience people either want finished vinyl crafts or 'everyday' vinyl that is ready to be put up on their walls and can stay up year-round.

Keep in mind that your digital die cutting machine is a hobby machine and will limit you on the size you can cut which also means some designs simply will not cut at certain sizes. Keep this in mind and do some test cuts before accepting orders from clients.

• What are vinyl craft kits and how do I get into selling them?

Vinyl craft kits are premade kits that contain all the elements needed to sit down and complete one craft project. They typically include cut vinyl, a wood block or glass block (depending on the project) and a direction sheet. The kit purchaser is responsible for buying craft paint, paint brushes, ribbon and other embellishments desired to complete the craft to match her personal decor. These kits are purchased both by individuals, small groups of friends for girls craft nights and in bulk for church and neighborhood craft activities. In a world where everyone wants to get a little crafty but most people lack the power tools and knowhow, they are extremely popular. Calculate ALL your expenses and figure a good per-hour labor cost then price your crafts wisely and resist the temptation to accept more orders than you can reasonably fill. You WILL get more orders than you can fill! Do not use any material or item, such as glass blocks, that you cannot get readily at a moment's notice. Set up wholesale accounts with local or online suppliers if you must to guarantee access to the materials promised to your clients.

You will need a nearby Postage & Shipping store or company that can help you package and ship heavy boxes filled with wood blocks more easily than taking them to the post office and waiting in line. The best craft kits have each kit wrapped in plastic cellophane with an individual instruction sheet but this is not necessary. Just be sure none of the pieces are damaged during shipment and that there are enough instruction sheets to go around. One or two extra vinyl cuts are always appreciated because mistakes do happen and crafts do get ruined and the best craft kit suppliers are used over and over again.

You can sell craft kits on eBay,, your own website or any number of other websites, including a blog. You'll need to provide your potential clients with pictures of the completed project, the cost of the kit, materials you will not be supplying (like paint) and an e-mail where they can contact you to place their group order. If you require a minimum purchase state it clearly on your site. Most craft kit suppliers find they do not get burned out if they rotate the kits they offer, switching them out every so often and retiring any craft kits that are more stress than they're worth. This will keep clients coming back for more!

Most of my customers buy my BlockART designs for this very purpose since they are easy to cut for craft kits and make adorable finished projects! We always have a FREE graphic you can download and occasionally it's one of our new BlockART designs so be sure to grab the current freebie and try it out for yourself!