Buying vinyl decals to decorate your home, office, or car could be quite expensive. You can get good rates if you buy in bulk, but if you are only buying a few pieces, things could add up—especially when you figure in shipping fees.
Some people have decided to take the matter into their own hands by making their own vinyl decals. If you have the right tools and supplies, you can generate some great-looking decals and save a lot of money in the long run.
To make your own vinyl decals, you will need the following tools:
- A design with colors but not much detail
- A sharp cutting utensil such as an X-ACTO knife
- A cutting surface
- Scotch tape
- Colored vinyl with adhesive backing
- Needle-nosed tweezers with very sharp points
- A pair of scissors
- Transfer tape
Start your vinyl decal production by coming up with a design. You can use Photoshop or copy artwork from a magazine. Copy your design onto paper, and cut it out, leaving a half-inch margin.
Choose the color of vinyl you want, then cut it about half an inch bigger than your chosen design. Superimpose your paper copy of the art over the vinyl and start cutting. If the paper design moves, you can secure it by taping it at anchor points.
Now comes the most difficult part. Using your cutting tool, slowly cut out the design from your vinyl sheet. Cut as many copies of the design as you want, slowly and meticulously. Take breaks anytime you feel your fingers and hand cramping. Smaller decals are harder to cut than big ones.
Cut the border of the design into sections to remove it easily from the large sheet. Pick up a piece with your tweezers and begin trimming the edges. Put the piece on a flat and clean surface and apply the transfer tape. Make sure that the design is straight to avoid distortion.
Place the cutout on a clean vinyl surface. Once it is in the proper spot, slowly remove the backing and put it down with a rolling motion to minimize the formation of bubbles. Press it firmly on the decal to ensure that it sticks properly. Take the tape off and press over the design to remove any air bubbles that may have formed. Voila. Your hand-made vinyl decal is now ready.