Tutorial: How to Make Vines Vinyl Monograms Using the Silhouette CAMEO

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How to create a "vines" vinyl monogram | 11 Magnolia Lane
Note: Since I wrote this post, there are literally hundreds of monogram fonts available to purse for just a few dollars; honestly, that’s probably faster than using this technique!

A few months ago, I showed you how to make round vinyl monograms on the Silhouette CAMEO using a “hack,” and today I’m back with a very similar tutorial that will help you make the traditional interlocking “vines” monograms using the same technique (plus some updated tips on how to cut them successfully).  Please note that this technique is for personal use only (if you’re going to make monograms to sell them, you still need to purchase a commercial license for the font; I like this one and it’s only a few dollars)

First step is to download a monogram app for your iPhone and create your monogram.  I’ve found that using a solid black background and white text works best.

How to create a "vines" vinyl monogram | 11 Magnolia Lane
Once you’ve created and saved your monogram,  load it onto your computer.  I usually just email it to myself.  Then, open Silhouette Studio and import the photo:

How to create a "vines" vinyl monogram | 11 Magnolia Lane

The image will then be stored in your library in the “My Own Designs” section.  Double click on it to add it to a new design.  Drag a corner to make the image larger:

How to create a "vines" vinyl monogram | 11 Magnolia Lane

Next, click on the Trace button at the top right (the black arrow is pointing to it in the below photo):

How to create a "vines" vinyl monogram | 11 Magnolia Lane

Click “Select Trace Area,” then use your mouse to drag a box around the monogram; be sure not to cut it too close and leave plenty of room around the circle.  When you release your mouse, your screen will look something like this:



Now, head over to the right side of your screen and check “Low Pass Filter,” uncheck “High Pass Filter,” and then click “Trace.”  The yellow lines will turn to red.  Here are my settings:

How to create a "vines" vinyl monogram | 11 Magnolia Lane

Now, drag your jpg (the original monogram) away to the side and delete it. It’s still in your library if you need it again in the future.  (I keep all of the monograms I’ve created in my library and if I ever need them again, I just re-create the cut file using these steps)

How to create a "vines" vinyl monogram | 11 Magnolia Lane

You’re left with the monogram with a red square around it.  Click on the monogram to select it, right mouse click to pull up the menu (as shown below), and select “Release Compound Path.”

How to create a "vines" vinyl monogram | 11 Magnolia Lane

Now you can delete all of the red lines individually.  Select the outer red square and delete it.  Then, if you’d rather have the monogram without the circle around it, select the two circles and delete them (that’s what I did for this project).

Next, drag a square around the monogram, and right mouse click again.  This time, select “Make Compound Path.”  Your monogram can now be sized as a single unit.

How to create a "vines" vinyl monogram | 11 Magnolia Lane

I made mine 2.25″ high for the little white platter I used for this project.  I found it at Goodwill, believe it or not, but I see little white bowls and platters all the time at HomeGoods, Pier 1, and Target, that are perfect for this sort of monogram.

This is the exact vinyl I used, if you like the aqua blue color (they actually call it “mint.”).  It’s from Expressions Vinyl and it’s inexpensive yet very high quality–the perfect combination, right?!  Their metallic gold vinyl is my absolute favorite (we used it on our DIY jewelry bowl project).

How to create a "vines" vinyl monogram | 11 Magnolia Lane

I’m going to show you my cut settings; they are just the default Silhouette settings for vinyl:

How to create a "vines" vinyl monogram | 11 Magnolia Lane

I’ve had a few friends lately tell me that they’re not getting a good cut with their machines.  This has happened to me in the past, so here’s a quick list of things to troubleshoot, and yes, some of them are very basic:

1.  Make sure that your blade is set to the correct number.  #2 works great for me with vinyl.

2. Check to see that the blade is correctly seated in the carriage; take it out and replace it to be sure.

3. Blades last forever; seriously, I have been using the same one for 8 months now and I cut vinyl for our Etsy shop, so mine gets a real workout.  Your blade probably isn’t worn out, but you can always change it and see what happens.

4.  The vinyl that you use is enormously important; I only use vinyl from {this} source and I can tell the difference when I use a different brand because it doesn’t weed as well.

5.  Check to be sure that both your software AND your machine are set for Cutting Mat (or no cutting mat).  If they don’t match up, you can have issues.

6.  Update to the latest Silhouette software here.

You want your vinyl to weed perfectly without any half-cut lines; that can ruin an entire project.  Hopefully those tips will help, but feel free to comment if they don’t and I’ll try to help.

How to create a "vines" vinyl monogram | 11 Magnolia Lane

Here’s the round monogram you can cut using a similar technique (and that tutorial is here):

How to create a "vines" vinyl monogram | 11 Magnolia Lane

I’m a Silhouette affiliate and they usually run a great bundle deal once a month that you need my coupon code to get (it’s MAGNOLIA, by the way), but there isn’t one going on right now, so here’s a good deal from Amazon for a Silhouette CAMEO starter bundle:

My CAMEO is 3-1/2 years old and still going strong–I love it and have made SO many gifts with it.  You can see more of those {here}.

I’m sure this goes without saying, but if you’re planning to create monograms to sell, then you should buy a licensed vines font. There are quite a few out there that are licensed for commercial use, some are just a few dollars like {this} one.

Let me know if you have any questions, and thanks for stopping by!

Disclosure:  some of the links I used are affiliate links, which means that if you make a purchase after clicking through the links, I will earn a small commission (I’ll name my yacht after you!).  You don’t pay a cent more than you would otherwise!

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  1. You can also download the free font “Monogram KK”. That’s what I use when making monograms with my Cameo and it works PERFECTLY (just be sure to weld!). Just an idea to cut out even more steps 🙂 I enjoy seeing all of your projects!

    • I love the Monogram KK font and use it for quite a few of our Etsy shop monograms, but I have to be honest that I prefer the vines font. I figured this would be a good way to have more flexibility with my monograms. Thanks for mentioning it for our readers, though!

    • Annie, I’m having trouble with that font when making a 2″x2″ monogram – any words of wisdom?

      • Hi, Danielle–
        Did you follow my six-point checklist in the post? Those are all of my suggestions–using the vinyl I recommend is the most important thing. Other vinyl brands can’t handle the detail of the smaller sizes. Hope that helps! Christy

  2. This is excellent and I am off to pin this. I love my cameo and we have a love/ hate relationship. I hope to get back in the love part and go get some vinyl and give this a try. Oh do I have so many things to monogram!

  3. adriana esparta says

    This is so beautiful and easy to make… I am certainly learning a lot with you.
    Thanks for sharing :0)

  4. Seriously, what did we do before our Silhouette machines? I had mine out this weekend for a few monograms! Will definitely have to try the vines method! Thanks for sharing! xx, b

  5. Bought the app. Not sure where it went. Have no option to download. Emailed to myself then opened app in Itunes. Am at the same place I bought it with no way to download it. Am not new to ITunes.

    • My 14 year old son said to check Settings–>General–>Usage to be sure that you have enough memory available to download the app. I always ask the experts first! 😉

      If you have issues with what I’ve covered in my tutorial once you find the app, I’m happy to help. The Monogram app folks are on Instagram @monogram_app and you might find they can help more effectively since I’m much better with a nail gun or paint sprayer than I am with technology!

  6. THANK YOU for this tutorial, love it!!!

  7. Your tutorials have been so helpful! My circle monograms are turning out great, but my vinyl keeps shredding when I try to cut a vines monogram. Any suggestions? I followed your directions and my cut setting is set at 2. Thank you!!

    • Are you using the exact expressions vinyl that I linked to in the above post? I can’t cut smaller or more details projects, like this one, with any other brand. I can’t overemphasize that! Good luck and keep me posted!

  8. This is so helpful! Do you know if the monogram app monograms are free for commercial use?

    • Hi, Tate–

      I’m afraid I don’t know that, but you can check their TOS to find out. Also, there are many similar (and inexpensive) fonts on Etsy that are approved for commercial use.

      Hope that helps–

  9. Carson Cutting says

    Hi! we followed this tutorial on how to make the monogram, but do you have any suggestions as to why the machine would not cut the vinyl at all? The blade unit was moving back and forth and everything, but when the screen said job complete then there was nothing cut on the vinyl.. Also is there anyway to weld this monogram together, couldn’t figure that out either.

    • Hi, Carson–

      Without being able to look at your machine, my best recommendation is to use the checklist at the bottom of the post. It talks about common fixes for cutting problems. As for welding, it should already be welded since you’re doing an outline and cut, but you can always highlight, right mouse click, and select “weld” as a second step.
      Hope that helps!

  10. Question…I keep cutting through the letters where they intersect. Of course you can’t see them until you iron them…what can I do to prevent overcutting?

    • Hey, Michelle–it sounds like you need to weld your letters together. Select all of them, right mouse click, then choose “weld” from the menu. That should combine all three letters into one solid piece.

  11. Wendy Wilkins says

    Great info! I’ve had my Cameo for several years and am self taught ….. still learning LOL

  12. Larry Hare says

    Just out of curiosity, why do you prefer 631 to 651?

    • I prefer 631 because it’s matte rather than shiny, and also easier to reposition. If it’s an outdoor application, I use 651. Hope that helps!

  13. Hi what app do you use to do the monograms? I see a lot of apps in the iTunes Store and have looked through your posts and can not find the name.

  14. I have the same question as Katrina. I have looked at the app store but there are several iPhone apps for monogramming. Would you mind to share which one you use? Finding one tried and true is so helpful.

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