New to vinyl? No problem! I am going to break down how to apply Oracal vinyl sticker into 3 easy steps, and after we're done, you're going to be able to add "applies vinyl like a boss" to your crafting resume. ;)
Before we get started, here's what you're going to need :
- Oracal Vinyl 651 Sticker : The type that will work that has a paper backing. You don't want to accidentally use heat transfer vinyl (HTV).
- Cutting machine: Now you can use scissors, die cutter or an Xacto knife to manually cut the vinyl, but man oh man, having a cutting machine like the Silhouette Cameo (my personal fave) will make this a far more enjoyable experience!
- Weeding Tool : I use/recommend either a Siser Weeder or a pair of super-fine tipped tweezers.
- Transfer Tape: NOT ALL TAPES ARE CREATED EQUAL! Our transfer tape are amazing to use and so easy to stick!
- Something to put your vinyl on: This is the best part about vinyl, the world is your oyster! If it is smooth and solid, it is begging to be customized. I personally am a big fan of blank coffee mugs.
#1 Cut Your Vinyl
Ok, ok, I know that this seems a little obvious, but it can actually be the step that keeps people from moving forward! When cutting adhesive vinyl, the goal is to not cut all the way through the paper backing. You only want to cut the vinyl. Buuuut, you don't want your blade to cut to shallow either, or you will have weeding problem!
Typically most electronic cutting machines on the market today have vinyl presets, and about 90% of the time they work great...the other 10% of the time it can be VERY frustrating. So to save yourself the headache, ALWAYS DO A TEST CUT!
With adhesive vinyl Oracal Sticker, you want to load your vinyl paper-side down .
Weeding is a term you will hear often when working with vinyl. And just like you weed a garden to remove the unwanted plants, weeding vinyl is simply removing the unwanted pieces around your design. Easy Peasy.
#3 Use Transfer Tape and Apply Vinyl
Transfer tape will become your very best friend. Like I stated earlier, they are not all the same, and some work better than others. Ideally, you want it to be tacky enough to pull the vinyl from the paper backing but still able to release onto your desired surface. For this to work, the vinyl has to have a stronger adhesive than the tape...plus, you don't want the transfer tape leaving any residue behind on the vinyl that you then have to go back and clean. Ain't nobody got time for that! ;
Once the transfer tape is applied over the vinyl, use an application tool to adhere it to the vinyl and remove any air bubbles!