Auckland Die Cut Sticker – How to Create Outlines in Illustrator to setup a File for Die Cut stickers.

Creative Sticker design is important – but the actual artwork behind your sticker is even more important! We are going to make a file so that we can Vinyl Die Cut an Auckland Sticker to show how to do this important step.

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Adobe Illustrator is a great program for design. We receive files for printing and cutting stickers everyday in this format, but a lot of them don’t have one simple thing done – fonts converted to outlines. For the best results, we need to have all fonts converted so that we can cut or print your sticker to the highest quality. Converting the fonts to outlines also means that we don’t need to have your font on file – and means we don’t make spollang miztakez by accident…

1.- The first step to making this sticker, is to choose a font and subject. For this sticker, we will choose the word Auckland, because we live here, and the font is a great one for stickers called LHF Ballpark Script. You can find a good similar free font HERE, but you will have to create your own swoosh. Type out the word Auckland, and rotate it slightly to get the angle needed in order to replicate the classic ballpark style.

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2. – With the word selected, right click on the text, and in the drop down menu over the sticker click CREATE OUTLINES. You can also go to type/create outlines.

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3. – If you go to View/outline (cmd/y), you can see the exact cut path that the knife will take to cut this Vinyl Die Cut Sticker. All of the lines will cut – which is a problem for our sticker as we dont want the overlapped parts to cut out, just the outline of the whole word. We also want to add a nice baseball swoosh to this logo.

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4. – First we will add the swoosh. Using the LFH Baseball Swash font, that comes as part of the package, we select the swash we want. Move it to place, and then create outlines again so that the swash is an outline. Make sure that you customise this part of the sticker using the direct selection tool to make it a little wider and longer. You can also leave the outline view so that you can line up the join of the swash and the letter D perfectly.

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5 – To get rid of the overlapped lines on our sticker, select all the outlined letters, and then in the pathfinder tool click MERGE. This joins all the outlines of the letters together to make one shape. Essential for what we are going to do with this!

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6 – Click view/preview (or cmd/y), and you will see that the image looks exactly the same as if you hadn’t merged all the outlines – but now that you are smarter you know better…! All that is left is to send our sticker design to the cutter, and make sweet auckland sticker magic.

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Once the sticker is cut, (or you have it delivered), apply carefully and revel in your creative genius. Well, not really as it’s hardly an original idea now is it…..

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March 18, 2012