I may not be on my blog, but I'm on Instagram!

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Tutorial: Heart Wreath

I received a request last night from a messageboard member asking "How hard is it to create a heart wreath?" After discussing details via PM she wanted it as large as it could be on a 12x12 mat and she liked the skinny heart on George. I really do try to follow the guideline of : Give a man a fish he eats for a day. Teach a man to fish he eats for a lifetime. So, with that in mind, instead of just giving you the .cut file I will show you how I made it.

Now, that being said I need to give Susan credit for helping me make this tutorial. She had posted a wonderful tutorial on her blog last July on how to make a scallop circle. Her steps work perfectly here too!! Thanks Susan! You are awesome! love smileys

Ok... so step one requires some math. Sorry. Artsy people don't usually like math but sometimes it is required. Looking at the size of the wreath I was going to create I figured I could easily get 20 hearts around the circle. (Get ready, here comes the math part) ... There are 360 degrees in a circle so I took 360 and divided it by 20 and got 18. So that is how far each guiding line will be positioned around the circle.

Bring on the creativity!!

Knowing that the 12x12 mat is really limited to 11 1/2" (give or take a 1/10") I made my center "line" in DS 1/2" (0.5) wide and 10" tall, to leave room for the hearts. Feel free to use the Shape Properties box to do this. It is faster and easier than using the arrow/handles.

I placed the "line" in the center of the mat putting the "+" mark in the center of the shape on the 6" across and 6" down markings on the mat. (Or you can use more math and divide the 1/2" in half (to find the middle), then subtract that from 6 which gives you 5.75. Using the Shape Properties box again move the "line" to x= 5.75 and y = 1 scared smileys)

Remember that first math problem we solved (360/9=18) ?? This is where it comes into play. Copy and paste your first "line"

Got to the Rotate box in the Shape Properties box and type 18 in the box and hit enter. Voila! Your 2nd line is not on an 18 degree angle.

You're not done with math, but luckily it's all addition for the next several steps. If you're not great at adding by 18s in your head you might want to grab a calculator, open a calculator on your desk top (Windows XP users: Start>Programs>Accessories> Calculator), or create a quick spreadsheet to use:

(Yes, it's true.... You love me. *wink*)

Copy and paste your 2nd "line." Go to the Rotate box, add 18 to the number in the box (18) and 3rd "line" will be at 36.

Copy and paste your 3rd "line." Go to the Rotate box, add 18 to the number in the box (36) and your 4th line will be at 54.

Repeat these steps until you get a full circle (your last "line" will be at Rotate: 162)

Woohoo! You've completed your guidelines. unhappy smileys

Ok... Now for the hearts!! To figure out the size of the heart to use, I placed a heart on my wreath design and played with the size until I liked what I saw. I liked the 2 1/2" size heart so I set my default to 2 1/2".

{ NOTE: Will you want to put layers on your hearts so you can still see a shadow layer peaking out? You will want to select the Shadow function button also. Then when it comes time to created the top layer you will already know that the standard 2 1/2" heart will fit perfectly on the hearts you created your wreath with. }

Ok... Let's make a wreath! Click on the heart and center the bottom point within the first "line". Make sure the top arches of the heart are inside the cut zone on the mat. Make sure your heart's Weld box is checked.

Copy and paste the heart. Remember all that math we did when we made the guidelines? Guess what, we need it again. (That's why the handy spreadsheet comes in handy. You don't have to do the math again.) Your second line is Rotate:18. Make the 2nd heart also Rotate: 18. Position the bottom point of your 2nd heart in the center of the 2nd "line" and adjust the it's position so as to create a circular shape.

Copy and paste the 2nd heart. Make the rotation of the 3rd heart the same as the 3rd "line"... Do you see where I'm going with this???

Before long, you will have half your wreath finished...

NOW WHAT!!?? My spreadsheet stops at 180! {ACK! animated smileys } What to do?

No worries. Stick with me....

Copy and paste the heart at the 180 degree position and then go in reverse UP the spreadsheet for your next rotation number. One key thing to remember, you are on the opposite side of the circle and need to put a "-" (negative, minus) sign in front of the rotate number. So your next heart will actually be at -162.

Your next heart will be at Rotate: -144. Does that makes sense??
Before long, you will have a wreath of hearts! :o) YAY!

Now, it's time to delete all of those guidlines. We don't need them any more. Select each one and Delete it.

Now preview it.... Ta-dah!! scuba diving pictures

I hope this tutorial is helpful to you. If I lost you somewhere along the way send up a flare and I'll do my best to rescue you.
Have a great day!!


  1. Hi Jen,
    Great tutorail! I gave you a blog award cuz you are just that cool! stop by by blog to snag it!

  2. OMG!
    How do you do that. Please move to Michigan.

    Thank you


  3. Oh excellent tutorial i was so glad that i was able to help you and thanks for the kind comments in your posting

  4. Jen, this ROCKS!!! Thank you for taking the time to post the tutorial! Great stuff!

  5. Thank you so much for taking the time to prepare this tutorial TraceyUK

  6. Does this mean that we can't ask for the cut file even if we beg???

    Lynn in MI

  7. Well put together tutorial, Jen. You are talking my language, math! I am following, thanks!

  8. Jen I hope you are feeling better.. I think I got what you had... will try to figure out your tutorial later. Thanks for the lesson, I really want to learn how to use DS (especially since you have SCAL :-)

  9. This is a great lesson! I am going to stick with the easier things for a while, The wreath is just beautiful but it will be a while before I will work up to it! One day though!


  10. Thanks for the tutorial. I know I'll be able to use it.

    Kind regards and happy new year!

    Karen Hilaire




  12. oo this is great, now I can learn to work with DS myself, I don't understand mutch about computers.


    Hug Linda

  13. Jen YOU ROCK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    I do not have DS yet but on it's way. Love the tut on the heart wreath. Will sure try this when it arrives. Hopefully I don't have any problems installing it.
    TFS There sure is a lot of love in this wreath

  14. This is a great tutorial Jen!! I am so happy you are here to help us learn how to use DS.

  15. Fabulous tutorial! Thanks for teaching me how to catch the fish! I feel so guilty eating all the fish you fry! ;) LOL


  16. Thanks for the lesson!! I am going to try making a wreath as you made it so easy to understand. Your the best!!

  17. Great tut!! I HATE math...but I also LOVE my cricut...so...I am going to put my feelings aside and attempt this...I feel you have opened so many doors for us!! Thanks you again!

  18. Wonderful tutorial! My mind is spiraling from the possibilities. Thank you for sharing.


Thank you for taking the time to comment. I really appreciate it!!