April 10, 2022
*Disclaimer* There may be links in this post that earn me a commission.
Is this the fastest way? Maybe not, but it has been working for me and I am able to create fun designs in a few easy steps from scratch!
Don't get crazy at first! Start simple, I did only 3 layers for this design to show the steps from start to finish when creating an 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!
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, but the cleaner it looks on Procreate, the easier it will be to format.
I send my layers via Air Drop (I use all Mac devices), 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. 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.
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!
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.
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.
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.
You repeat this method for every layer.
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.
Once, you have simplified, lets move those layers onto each other to re-form our original drawing.
Now, we save! I have never had any problem with saving as an inkscape .svg and they give you options, you can save as a regular .svg if you feel more comfortable.
Once this is saved, you can close Inkscape and upload to design space.
If everything was followed correctly, you should see your three layers on the side by color.
You can resize and send to your mats!
Once you have all our pieces cut, we assemble!
I decided to go with all paper to make my little retro flower.
I used my Bearly Arts glue to attach and...
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 drawings to life!