DIY felt reindeer Christmas cards

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Felt-reindeer-cardsRemember these felt Christmas cards we made last year? Well, we made them again this year, but this time with the help of Brother’s ScanNCut. Now there’s no going back for Sweet Living editor Jane Wrigglesworth.

We were lucky enough to be provided with a Brother ScanNCut to play with, so I put it to good use making this year’s Christmas cards. I remember when we made these felt cards last year the reindeers’ antlers were really fiddly to cut out by hand. But I really like the reindeer. Enter the amazing Brother ScanNCut.

Felt on cutting mat, ready for ScanNCut to cut

Felt on cutting mat, ready for ScanNCut to cut

This fabulous machine cuts all sorts of materials, including paper, felt, fabric and leather. Though I should point out that, at this stage, I have only trialled it with felt. You do need to have a backing on the felt for it to cut properly (iron-on appliqué contact sheet) so it may not be suitable for all projects. However, for this project, it was ideal.

You can scan your own images into the machine and use them for cutting outlines, or you can use the images that come with the machine (there’s a great selection to choose from). But for my cards, I already had a JPG file I wanted to use. Now, the only file type the ScanNCut recognises is FCM, so my JPG file needed to be converted to an FCM file first. For this, Brother has provided ScanNCutCanvas, a free cloud-based web application. You can convert JPG, GIF, PNG or BMP files.

Cut out felt reindeer

Cut out felt reindeer

I imported my JPG file onto ScanNCutCanvas, traced the outline (this is a cinch – it’s done automatically with a click of a button), then downloaded the new FCM file to a USB stick, where I transferred it directly to the ScanNCut machine.

It was then just a matter of laying the felt (with the appliqué contact sheet ironed on) onto the cutting board, feeding it through the machine, and pressing the button to cut.

It literally took just seconds!

Here, I’ve cut just the one reindeer, but you can set it up so that you can cut several from the one piece of felt. Or you could cut a reindeer, a snowflake, or Santa Claus from the same felt. Whatever your needs.

I love it. But I’ve still got lots more playing to do.

In the meantime, here’s the template for the reindeer (download it here), if you want to make your own, either by hand or by ScanNCut (scan it into the machine), and here’s how to make the felt cards (click here). Have fun!

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