Learn how to cut fabric with your Silhouette Cameo 4 and the new rotary blade! It’s easy to get precise fabric cuts with the new powerful Cameo 4 rotary blade, and I will walk you through all the steps of cutting fabric with your rotary blade in this video tutorial. A big thank you to Silhouette for partnering with me on this post, which contains affiliate links that help to support this site at no extra cost to you.
Hi friends! I hope you are all doing well and staying safe. Today I am sharing a beginner’s guide to cutting fabric with the Silhouette Cameo 4 and the new rotary blade.
The rotary blade and the ability to cut fabric was the feature I was most excited for with the Cameo 4 machine, and since I was getting ready to sew a whole stack of masks a recently, I decided it was a good time to really give it a try! I’m guessing I’m not the only person out here sewing masks, so I thought it would be useful to share a beginner’s tutorial for cutting fabric with the Silhouette Cameo 4 rotary blade for anyone else who is starting to cut fabric with their Cameo 4.
You can cut fabric with earlier versions of the Cameo using interfacing; however, the new rotary blade allows you to get precise cuts of fabric without using interfacing. Because the rotary blade requires extra pressure, it will only work in the second carriage of the Cameo 4, which has a new, more powerful motor.
Ready to get cutting?
How to Cut Fabric with the Silhouette Cameo 4 Rotary Blade
I have put together a little video tutorial for cutting fabric with your Silhouette Cameo 4 because sometimes it’s just easier to see these things in action. If you are a reader (like I am) or just for more detailed information as well as links to all of the products I’m using, keep on scrolling.
(If you do not see the video below, it may be because of an ad blocker.)
In order to cut fabric with your Silhouette Cameo 4 and the rotary blade, you will need a few specific supplies. Here’s what you need to round up.
Supplies For Cutting Fabric with the Cameo 4
- Silhouette Cameo 4
- Rotary Blade (The new Rotary Blade only works with the Cameo 4 and Cameo 4 Plus.)
- Strong Tack Cutting Mat
- Brayer (Optional, but useful. A rolling pin might also work for this.)
- Craft Knife or Scissors
How to Cut Fabric with your Cameo 4
Step One. Prepare Rotary Blade.
The first thing you will need to do when you open up your new rotary blade is to twist down the safety cap or collar that covers the blade. The blade is packaged with the safety cap twisted up to protect you from getting cut when opening it. To get your blade ready to cut fabric (not fingers!), twist the safety cap all the way down so it is flush with the plastic body and so the rotary blade is fully exposed.
Next, insert your rotary blade into the #2 carriage of your Cameo 4. The rotary blade conveniently has a “2” embossed on the front of it to remind you into which tool holder you should place it. 🙂
Push in the tab to lock the rotary blade in place.
Step Two. Put Fabric on Cutting Mat.
Next, it’s time to place your fabric on your cutting mat. For cutting fabric, I recommend using a strong tack cutting mat. I was able to cut some lightweight cotton fabric with a regular cutting mat successfully as well, but the strong tack mat helps to keep your fabric down while the Cameo cuts.
Take a minute to really smooth your fabric onto your mat. Wrinkles, stray threads, and other bumps can cause the blade to catch and drag the fabric, ruining your cut. I recommend using a brayer to really rub that fabric down.
Step Three. Adjust Cut Settings.
Next, once you have your design ready in the Silhouette Studio software, open up the Send menu. Your design will most likely be outlined with red lines because it has defaulted to cutting with Tool 1. You can collapse the Tool 1 menu by clicking on the arrow next to “Tool 1” and then click on the arrow next to “Tool 2” to open up the Tool 2 cut settings.
Next, make sure your design is selected, and then click on Rotary Cut. Your design’s cut lines will turn to blue to indicate that they will be cut by Tool 2. The software will also create extra little lines and loops around your design (see the image below). These extra cuts will allow the rotary blade to turn properly to give you a precise cut. Make sure that all of the blue cut lines are within the cuttable area.
Next, select the fabric you are cutting from the material menu and select rotary blade from the tool menu.
Step Four. Send to Machine to Cut!
I recommend trying out a small cut first with your fabric to test your cut settings before sending a big design just to make sure everything is cutting smoothly. You can adjust the force and speed settings in the software to help you get the perfect cut.
When you are happy with your test cut, simply click on Send and let your Cameo 4 and rotary work their magic!
After the machine is done cutting, pull off the excess fabric to reveal your cut fabric pieces. I was able to cut enough fabric pieces to make 20 masks in about an hour thanks to my Cameo 4! And no hand cramps from gripping my scissors! (I used Hey Let’s Make Stuff’s Fitted Mask cut file and Sweet Red Poppy’s tutorial to make my masks. Silhouette also has a free mask cut file and tutorial on their site.)
The rotary blade can cut canvas, felt, and all kinds of fabric. I was really happy with the little felt letters I cut out, and I see many cute cute felt project in my future.
I hope this tutorial was helpful for you and that you will be cutting out all kinds of fabric projects soon!
Until next time, Happy Making!
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