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- Cuts a variety of materials including: cardstock, fabric, heat transfer material, transparencies, paper, vellum, adhesive vinyland magnet paper
- Free Mac and PC compatible software included
- 10 dollars download card included
- 50 exclusive digital designs
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The Silhouette Portrait is a smaller, lighter version of the popular Silhouette CAMEO electronic cutting tool. Like the CAMEO, the Portrait connects to your computer, allowing you the freedom to cut all your fonts, download thousands of designs from the Silhouette Online Store, or design shapes of your own with the included software.
The Silhouette Portrait is an electronic cutting tool for personal use. Like a home printer, it plugs into your PC or Mac with a simple USB cable. However, instead of printing it uses a small blade to cut paper, cardstock, vinyl, fabric and more, up to 8 inches wide and 10 feet long. The machine also has the ability to register and cut printed materials.
Use the included design software to cut any font on your computer, download shapes from the Silhouette Online Store, or draw your own designs.
- Maximum Cutting Area: 8" x 12" (20.3 x 30.5 cm) with a cutting mat, and 8" x 10' (20.3 cm x 3 m) with a lined media
- Maximum Media Thickness: 31.5 mils (0.8 mm)
- Maximum Cutting Force: 210 gf
- Compatible Media Types: Vinyl, heat transfer material, cardstock, photo paper, copy paper, rhinestone template material, fabric, and more
- Interface: USB 2.0 high-speed
- Unit Dimensions: 16.25" x 5.6" x 4.5" (41.3 x 14.2 x 11.4 cm)
- Unit Weight: 3.5 lbs (1.6 kg)
- Shipping Dimensions: 18" x 10" x 10" (46 x 25 x 25 cm)
- Shipping Weight: 8 lbs (2.6 kg)
- Warranty: 1 year parts and labor
- Silhouette Electronic Cutting Tool with Adjustable Blade: Blade with ratchet cap
- Power Cable: 100-240 volts AC adapter (Power cables are available for US/Canada,Europe, South Africa, Australia, and other regions)
- USB Cable: High-speed 2.0
- 8-Inch Cutting Mat: 8.9" x 13.5" (22.6 x 34.3 cm)
- Digital Cutting Files: 50 exclusive cutting designs
- Download Card: $10 gift card for more digital designs from the Silhouette Online Store
- Software CD: Silhouette Studio design software for Windows XP and newer and Mac
- Basic Instruction Guide
Top Customer Reviews
When I saw that the Silhouette had come out with a smaller, cheaper version that did the same things as the Cameo, I knew I wanted it. It arrived very quickly and the install was easy. I was pleased to see a simple machine that sat perfectly on top of my desktop computer (it's so petite!). I plugged it in and got started with what I had on hand. The software is very user-friendly and reminds me of working in Microsoft Publisher.
I found it interesting that the Portrait sounds like an old fax machine as it works. It's not loud, but not necessarily quiet. Either way, it quickly did its job and I was satisfied with my first successful attempt at an intricate design.
I can't wait to try the sketching feature and cutting out fabric (for cute hair bows!). I love that you can completely make your own designs, but that Silhouette provides a bunch of great ones as well. They have free designs that are actually useful and a bunch of great videos online.
All in all, I think that this machine is perfect for the random crafter who makes things on a smaller scale. The software is much easier to use and navigate than what I had originally heard, so I am very pleased about that. Again, I also love that the actual machine is very compact and unobtrusive. I highly recommend this to anyone wondering if they should take the dive or not.
My first project: FAIL! I'd tried to simply type my son's name in the hope of making a little sign for his room (using normal scrapbooking paper). The paper curled and ripped, the mat was WAY too sticky. Second, just as bad (having buyer's remorse for sure). By the third, piece of cake, a very intricate 3d mini lantern, pillow boxes and a mini-stationary set came out PERFECTLY, every minuscule detail PERFECT!! Unfortunately, I'd already cut my mat to shreds-clean through in some areas.
1) Although the instructions very clearly show you how to create a design, load the media, set the blade, and cut, it was only once I started "futzing" with the media thickness setting AND using the "test cut" (it will cut a little triangle in the upper far corner of your selected media to see if it cuts properly-duh?) going from cutting through my mat to not cutting at all in areas that I understood how to compensate for the different media instead of thinking I was stuck only choosing between "printer paper", "cardstock", "heavy cardstock" (hint: I shredded my mat using the "cardstock" setting, which is what the paper is labelled as, instead of choosing that setting, but lowering the media thickness-once I figured out how to adjust this, do a test cut-it was a breeze-just too bad it wasn't BEFORE I'd shredded the mat!!).
2) **Evidently EVERY mat is 'too sticky' the first use/requires some 'breaking in' (not just this brand). I've read many tips about sticking a t-shirt to the surface at first to let the fibers reduce some of the "stickiness" before using paper, (particularly THIN, regular scrapbooking paper as I had for my first few projects). OR, use a MUCH thicker cardstock for the first few projects.
3) USES YOUR OWN INSTALLED FONTS/GRAPHICS!! Plus, you can purchase individual designs at their online store which literally has something like 38,000+ designs-very searchable, and they give away a free design every week. I've seen some of the $50+ cartridges for Cricut, and while there may be 4 or 5 fonts/designs I'd actually REALLY want and use ($4 or $5 worth?) the other $45 could easily be used buying more paper and consumables. This machine allows for that. Plus, it seems to be an "open source" type of library system where individuals can constantly create and upload new designs of their own.
What I particularly liked about this is the "3D projects". I downloaded a fairly intricate 4-sided mini-lantern design. With the included "studio", which came out perfectly and was very easy to put together. I can easily break apart this design (keeping the foundation shape/perforations and cuts) and continue to customize it however I chose!!
4) Has "print & cut" functionality. You can create a design with a printed pattern. Send it to your normal printer, which will add in registration marks to the design, so that you can properly place and cut out the design on the Silhouette! To me, that kind of removes the whole concept of additional "sketch pen" functionality....??
5). One HUGE shocker was that the replacement mat for this is almost double what the Cricut is!? I think the idea was to gain revenue, BUT, I see this FAR surpassing Cricut and other brands both for the versatility AND being more cost effective to own-gaining money on uploaded/contributed designs of their library. The replacement mat (I almost immediately needed) is like $9 for one, and they're VERY "flimsy" compared to the Cricut, of which you can buy two new mini-mats for around $11. With some research, I've discovered that you can use the slightly larger (1/2" overall) Cricut mat, you simply need to apply tape over the outer 1/4" adhesive on each edge so that the Silhouette's rollers don't get sticky (place it over the top of your Silhouette mat with the green protective sheet in place for proper application). You also need to adjust for a slightly thicker media, since the mats are thicker (thus less likely for "cut-through"). I've also seen many "mat refurbishing kits" that consist of adhesive remover (nail polish remover/acetone) and spray cans of repositionable adhesive. You mask off the non-sticky area of your 'naked' mat so that the adhesive only gets applied to the right area.
6) I didn't purchase the additional tool kit. Have used an old credit card as a squeegee, have tweezers, pins, etc. and have been able to utilize other objects. I'm a bit disappointed the tool kit (or even a cheap version) isn't included since it would definitely help, particularly when trying to create projects using normal printer and scrapbooking paper due to the amount of curl.
Overall, I am constantly seeing new possibilities for developing another new "hobby/craft" and this machine makes it so much easier and more affordable!!
2. Mat was way too tacky and manual doesn't say to remove tack by rubbing it on a low lint pillow or something. My first cut was good but the white residue left over by CS was a mess. Plus the blade setting was set according to the instructions but it gouged through the mat right off the bat.
3. Loading the mat was complete guess work, why no instructions on how to align? If I place it such that my 8x11 mat sits between the two white rollers, it seems to work. There are 3-4 guide lines on the machine front left but no markings on them, not sure what they are for!
4. There are markings for letter size and A4 size material placement on the mat. Align your top left and right corners of paper on the mat using them, they are hard to see but there. This will ensure perfect placement of paper on the mat.
5. Software installation is very easy and using it is intuitive. I haven't played with print/cut or other advanced features yet but will soon.
6. Free 50 designs will come through after software installation and you click on recent downloads (or is it import to library? sorry, can't remember).
7. I cut intricate vines/leaves on Coordinations textured cardstock, it came out very well but for one of the smaller sizes. I put several sizes on one 8x11 CS to avoid wasting CS.
8. Tried a Moroccan lattice background (very detailed) on regular patterned scrapbook paper. The setting was at 3 and it didn't cut anything. I set it to 4 and then it did a beautiful job. So their blade setting recommendation is not an exact science, it's trial and error.
9. Machine is light and portable, make sure you have room on the table for the mat to go back and forth, without it being obstructed by your laptop or wall etc.
10. Silhouette should post some basic videos on their site to show people basic placement of material on the mat, mat loading, blade installation etc. They are seriously lacking in that especially for new comers to die cutting world.
11. I just found out that I don't need designer edition to be able to cut .svg files. You can convert .svg to .studio easily with free software called inkscape. I tried and it worked.
11. Print and cut is a great feature. My first attempt was success (by fluke). Placement of paper where your image is printed and will be cut...is a tricky affair. I had to place it half an inch below the top line. It worked beautifully but the same did not work the next time. Very frustrating!
12. I left a voicemail for silhouette on the print/cut issue but don't know if/when they will call back. I had heard of great cs from them but I for one am yet to experience that. They are open only mon-fri and they are always busy and force you to leave a msg or email them! Not once did I get a person on the phone so far.
13. I am already ordering a spare blade/mat just in case. However, there are two sizes mentioned for portrait which is odd. My original mat is 8x12 but now they also sell a 8.5x12. Why? The 8x12 I saw was a low tack one but I want regular tack 8x12. Again, hoping to ask silhouette customer svc if/when they call me back. Thank God for so many generous folks sharing their tutorials/videos on how to...otherwise I would be sitting around waiting to talk to silhouette.