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Saturday, February 22, 2014

Silhouette Studio Software Tutorial: Build Your Own No Soliciting Sign

Spring is just around the corner...and I don't know about your neighborhood...but ours is over-run by solicitors as soon as the good weather hits.

When they ignore my no soliciting sign, it drives me nuts. Usually, the person on the other side of the door will say, "but I'm not soliciting" followed by, "I'm announcing this new product"--which incidentally, they want you to buy,  or "I'm trying to earn points," and how do they do getting you to order magazines that you pay for later, or "let me clean your carpet in one room for free," then guilt you into getting more rooms done after you tell them what a great job they did.

This is not how I like to shop. If I want a product, I will seek it out--usually via internet in the middle of the night. I really don't want someone to interrupt my day, my dinner, my work schedule, or napping children with an unwanted intrusion. Also, these days, it is far to risky to give any stranger (representing an unknown business) a check with your bank account information on it, or a credit card...or cash with no proof of payment.

Recently, my neighbor lost money for several magazine subscriptions she bought from a door to door salesperson. I remember the group too...they were here last summer and said, "but we aren't solicitors...we are trying to earn points." Sadly, she called the number she had been given, only to find out that it is out of service.

Well...I'm tired of it.

I used to be polite. Unfortunately, after getting pestered as many as 3 times a day in the Spring and Summer months; I have learned to be short with them, because they were rude and ignored my sign. Either I don't open the door, and purposefully close my blinds and make sure they hear me lock my door (whether it was already locked or not I turn the lock to lock it again;) or I open the door a crack, let my German Shepherd stick his head out with mine, and say no thank you before they even get a chance to speak, and quickly close the door.

Out of desperation yesterday, I posted this sign that I quickly designed, laminated, and taped to my window by my door. It states excerpts from the law for Lehi, Utah where I live. I was delighted to discover, that Lehi has a law addressing solicitors. It states that they must have a permit, and must respect no soliciting signs. It also defines a solicitor; which, by the way, invalidates all those excuses of those who say they aren't soliciting. Apparently, there is also a fine of up to $1000, and/or up to 6 months in jail for violating the law.

This is what that sign looks like:
(if you are a resident of Lehi, I have considered loading it into the Silhouette store as a print and cut. Let me know if you are interested." I went for the "official" look on this one. 
So I'm going to leave this up for now, until the weather warms up a bit more. Then I plan to make a cute vinyl sign on wood. Hopefully, it will be just as effective, and possibly a little more inviting to those whom I want to have pop friends and family. ;) If a hawker decides to knock anyway...I'm considering handing out printed versions of the red sign from above. Do you think they'll get the picture?

Below, is the "fun & cute" No Soliciting sign that I designed this weekend. 
(It's been uploaded to the Silhouette Online store. I'll post a link here as soon as it is goes through the Silhouette queue.) 

I creatively designed and worded it, in hopes that it would work for my needs. The really cool thing about it, is that this cutting file has so many options. That's why the download is called: Build Your Own No Soliciting Sign

Let me show you a few of them: 
Tools needed:
Silhouette Cameo or Silhouette Portrait electronic cutting machine. Silhouette Portrait users will need to shrink the design. I recommend Portrait users turn their live cutting mat in the Silhouette Studio software landscape direction. You will only have to shrink the design to 90%. Then you can cut the phrases out in separate passes, then combine them when you apply the vinyl.

I realize that not all of you live in a neighborhood inundated by peddlers, and have to be as aggressive about them as I do. However, I suspect that some of you do. So I'll show you how to edit the sign to fit your needs. 
First off, I need to show you how to change the size of your cutting mat in the Silhouette Studio software. When you open your Silhouette Studio software, the default cutting mat size is 12 x 12. This file's default size, fits on a 12 x 24 cutting mat. You can either shrink it to fit your cutting mat, or use a larger cutting mat. If you don't know how to change the default mat to a larger size, it is just a few quick and easy steps. Let me show you how. 
Look in the control panel on the right. Look for the boxes that allow you to change width and height. This is referring to the paper size. Keep your width at 12, and increase your height to 24.
Go down the control panel until you see the area labeled "cutting Mat." 
Select the 12 x 24 cutting mat. 

Now open the file in your Silhouette Studio software. Upon opening, everything is in one group.
This is what the file will look like upon opening. 
If you don't want to cut the entire sign, here's what you will need to do. Select the cutting lines by clicking on any part of the design. Then go up to top of the program and find Object
You will see faint black boxes around each of the different groups. 
Select any of the unwanted groups and move them off of the live cutting area. Arrange your wording so that it is spaced nicely. In the example above, I also duplicated the flourish at the bottom and turned it upside-down to fill in the space below the "No Soliciting" banner. 

There are so many things you can do with this file! It's not just limited to the different phrases you can build from it, but also, the ways that you can cut it or draw it with Silhouette pens. I would love to see what you do with this file! Please share on my Facebook page here, go ahead and like my page while you are there if you already haven't. I update it frequently with new designs, promotions and other fun stuff!

Disclaimer: I realize that some solicitors are respectful people who earn an honest living. I apologize to those whom this post may offend. My situation has gotten drastic and so I've had to take drastic measures. I'm a nice person, and usually not rude...only rude when my request to privacy is ignored. 

Related Tutorials:
How to cut Vinyl Tutorial. This tutorial also shows you how to etch glass by using the vinyl as a stencil. I suppose you could even etch this sign in glass if you wanted to! That might be really cool framed.

Don't want to cut in Vinyl? No Problem. Here are some other options:
Turn the design into a print and cut. You can view a tutorial on how to do that here.
Use Silhouette pens in your cutting machine as shown here
and if you really like the look of cut paper, and don't want to do vinyl, check out this tutorial here.

Note for small crafting businesses:
If you are a small business owner interested in selling hand crafted versions of my sign (or any other project for sale using my silhouette cutting files) on Etsy or elsewhere; you must first obtain a commercial license here and display your corresponding license number in your listing. Thanks for keeping it honest. ;)


1 comment:

  1. Thank you for this tutorial. I just bought your file from the Silhouette store. Can you tell me what font you used for the word Absolutely? I would like to ads the work Whatsoever underneath the so soliciting section and want to use that same font.


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