Convert a Procreate Drawing to SVG (with Layers)

Created on:

April 4, 2022

Updated on:

February 20, 2024

Written by Kelsey Sergi

Do you want to sell SVG files from your drawings or just be able to make your own designs? Let's convert our Procreate drawings to layered vector SVG designs so we can cut it on a Cricut or other cutting machine.

how to change a drawing in procreate to an svg vector file for cricut projects

I drew a flower on the Procreate app - how can my Cricut or other cutting machine cut this?

It's a few steps but it is possible! Today we are going to use Procreate for iPad and Inkscape on Mac.

Is this the fastest way to make a cut image? Maybe not, but it has been working for me and I am able to create fun designs in a few easy steps from scratch!

A flower drawn on procreate that will be turned into an SVG file for cutting machines

To start let's talk about what a SVG is and why we need it for our cutting machines. SVG is an acronym for scalable vector graphics which means that the cut file can be scaled to different sizes without losing any of its resolution or image quality. You can create these files in design programs like Affinity Designer, Adobe Illustrator, Silhouette Studio (Designer or Business edition), or my go to Inkscape (which is a free design software). ​

As of 2024 - your Procreate designs cannot be directly downloaded as an SVG, it does offer different file formats such as PNG and JPG so hopefully in the future they will add this feature on.

Step One: Draw

Let's start with something simple. I drew a three layered flower.

Don't get crazy at the first step! Start simple, I did only 3 layers for this design to show the steps from start to finish when creating an SVG. When people make Procreate art then tend to add on shading and beautiful textures but when working with the end result being an SVG cut file in mind, you need to keep it simple in terms of colors and lines.

Drawing the first layer of flower on procreate for a layered SVG.

The key is to draw each color on a new layer like you would want it to be on Cricut Design Space. Think of each layer as a color mat - you want your pieces to be easily layered so we don't have to break apart, by creating layers, you are saving yourself in the long run!

The first layer of flower on procreate, showing how to add a layer on top.

Try to keep your lines as clean as possible as when you convert, every bump and small imperfection are going to show! We will be able to clean up our SVG in Inkscape or you can use Silhouette studio, etc, but the cleaner it looks on Procreate, the easier it will be to format.

Three layers on Procreate that will be turned into a layered SVG file for cutting machines like a Cricut.

Step Two: Export to your Computer

Once you have your layers drawn we need to export to our computer - I am using a MacBook Air.

How to send files from Procreate over to your computer to change the file to an SVG format.

I send my layers via Air Drop (I use all Mac devices), but you can also email. You want to go to the wrench on Procreate. Click on share - then at the bottom it says share layers! You want to make sure you share layers and not images. I use PNG files, Inkscape picks these up well but you can use any of the Procreate file options that might work with your software. Share layers, PNG files - send however is easiest for you.

Note: If you have a lot of layers, you will have a lot to send - each layer will be sent as an individual PNG file.

Step Three: Open PNG files in Inkscape

Inkscape tutorial how to make an svg vector from a procreate rawing.

I have added all three layers into one Inkscape file - you can see them each here. I never change any of the settings when I import the PNG. I literally drag the PNG files over to the Inkscape window and a pop up appears. I hit OK for each one and it adds all the files!

Step Four: Trace Bitmap (Convert from PNG to SVG Vector)

Once you have opened all your layers, we need a basic trace. To get your trace option up you will go to Path - Trace Bitmap. This is going to convert your layers into SVG format with nodes. Make sure you click on the image you want to trace. You will need to do each layer individually. There is also a trace feature in the Silhouette software (inkscape and Silhouette studio are extremely similar and I personal feel like Silhouette is worth the on time fee).

You can preview the vector by hitting update. You will find that if the color is very light you may need to up the brightness threshold to .99. Just keep in mind that this may skew the nodes and we will need it clean it later.

Once you can see the object - it will be black, hit Apply.

Using the trace feature in Inkscape to convert a PNG from Procreate to an SVG file.

Now that you have your first layer traced, I always use my eyedropper to color match - then I delete the original PNG. You can also change the colors with the color bar at the bottom.

Color matching and checking nodes in inkscape after converting a PNG to an SVG file.

You repeat this method for your own layers. ​
This is why its best to start simple for your first go, try out something with only a few colors as the process of converting each layer may be confusing.

Step Five: Clean your Nodes - Simplify

Simplifying nodes on inkscape to make a clean SVG file for use on a cutting machine.

Before you save, I always simplify my nodes regardless of how they look (I try to eliminate as many as I can without distorting the picture.)

You have to make sure under settings that your simplification is turned down ALL THE WAY to 0.0001! If you skip this step, your lines are going to turn into jello.

How to modify the simplification of nodes in inkscape.

Before you save, I always simplify my nodes regardless of how they look (I try to eliminate as many as I can without distorting the picture.)

You have to make sure under settings that your simplification is turned down ALL THE WAY to 0.0001! If you skip this step, your lines are going to turn into jello.

The, Click on the SVG layer - Path - Simplify.

How to simplify on inkscape for cleaning paths.

Step Six: Align, Size & Save

Once, you have simplified, lets move those layers onto each other to re-form our original drawing. Then check your file size at the top and resize if needed. Sometimes you don't realize how big your file as become.

A final form of the SVG file created from a Procreate drawing. Ready to be used on a cutting machine.

Now, we save! I have never had any problem with saving as an inkscape .svg, this creates a vector format, and they give you options, you can save as a regular .svg if you feel more comfortable.

Step Seven: Upload to Cricut Design Space

The next step once it is save is to close Inkscape and upload to design space.

The unique SVG file made from a Procreate drawing now uploaded into Cricut Design Space.

If everything was followed correctly, you should see your three layers on the side by color.

You can resize again here in Cricut Design Space and send to your mats!

Viewing layers of an SVG in Cricut Design Space, sorted by mat color.

Once you have all our pieces cut, we assemble!

Step Eight: Assemble Your Craft

I decided to go with all paper to make my little retro flower.

Pieces of our SVG file that we drew on Procreate, cut out on paper.

I used my Bearly Arts glue to attach and...

A flower drawing made on the Procreate app converted into a layered SVG file and cut out on a Cricut to make a craft project.

My drawing is now a physical item!

This takes a few tries, don't be wary of beginner error. Soon you will be bringing all of your Procreate drawings to life!

Stay Crafty!

Kelsey Sergi - the owner and crafter at Dinosaur Mama.

Hi crafters! I'm Kelsey and I am here to bring you new original craft projects and free SVG files for your cutting machines every week!

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