How to Iron-On Wood with your Cricut
Today I am going to show you how to make this adorable wood door sign using your Cricut and Heat Transfer Vinyl (also known as iron-on vinyl). This Cricut project is great for beginners wanting to learn how to iron-on wood!
I LOVE how this Home Sweet Home sign turned out! It was such a fun project to make and I can’t believe how easy it is to use iron-on vinyl on wood!
Iron-on vinyl is my preferred material when applying a design to wood.
Heat transfer vinyl is able to adhere to wood surfaces even if they aren’t completely smooth where just regular adhesive vinyl has a very hard time sticking to anything that isn’t completely smooth.
So whenever possible I will use iron-on vinyl on wood.
You can grab this Home Sweet Home SVG cut file at the bottom of the page so you can make your very own wood sign!
I created a quick video showing you how to do this or you can scroll down a bit more to grab the written instructions. I also have a list of the supplies I recommend for this project below.
Don’t forget to grab the Home Sweet Home SVG cut files at the bottom of the page so you can make this sign with me!
SUPPLIES NEEDED TO MAKE THIS WOOD SIGN WITH YOUR CRICUT
- Round wood blank
- Wood stain
- White paint
- Painters tape
- Black iron on vinyl
- White iron on vinyl
- Buffalo plaid bow
- Buffalo plaid ribbon for hanging
- Eucalyptus greenery
- Cricut cutting machine
- Standard grip cutting mat
- Weeding tool
- Brayer tool (optional)
- Cricut EasyPress Mini
- Cricut EasyPress Mat
- Hot Glue Gun and Glue Sticks
HOW TO IRON ON WOOD WITH YOUR CRICUT
How to Iron-On Wood with your Cricut
Today I am going to show you how to make this adorable wood door sign using your Cricut and Heat Transfer Vinyl (also known as iron-on vinyl). Iron-on vinyl is my preferred material when applying a design to wood because it is able to adhere to wood surfaces even if they aren't completely smooth.
Step 1: Measure the wood circle
The first thing we are going to do is double-check the size of our wood blank. These are advertised as 12 x 12 circles, but as you can see they are a little shy of 12 inches.
So measuring the sign will help us make sure our design will fit the way we expect it to. Make note of the dimensions so you have them later when we set up the design in design space.
Step 2: Optionally cut lines into the wood circle
Now we are going to prepare our wood blank. The first thing I did was use my Cricut true control knife to cut lines in the wood.
I made a line every 3 inches. This made the sign look more like a pallet-style sign. I saw Country Chic Cottage do this in one of her videos and thought it was super cool.
I will note that for this specific project I actually would not do this. This made it a little challenging for me to paint a clean white line in the center of the design.
It also isn't really visible at all once you have the painted line and decorations on the top of the sign.
So this technique is really neat, but I would save it for when you make a sign that doesn't have a painted white line across it.
Step 3: Stain the wood
After I made my lines, I went ahead and stained the wood. I found these wood finishing cloths that are pre-soaked with stain.
They made this process super easy and I liked not having an open container of stain right next to me.
Fun fact about wood stain, did you know that it can actually trip your smoke detectors? It's super fun when it trips them at 1 in the morning too...ask me how I know.
So when you are using stain please make sure you are in a well-ventilated area possibly one that doesn't have a smoke detector in it like maybe a garage or outside.
Then make sure you don't leave the stain wipe sitting out overnight. Lesson painfully learned.
I am not going to use a sealer on this wood after I stain it. You cannot use iron-on vinyl on top of a sealer so if you want to seal it you will want to do that after you have applied the iron-on vinyl.
The only reason this might need to be sealed is if you are planning to have it outside exposed to the elements.
I'm planning to have this sign hang inside on my front door, but if you want to have it outdoors, you can add a thin layer of polycrylic protective finish after you have ironed on the vinyl.
Step 4: Paint a line on the wood
These stain wipes only require an hour of drying time. So once the stain was dry, I taped off the section I wanted to paint white.
I painted a 3-inch stripe that started 3 inches up from the bottom of the wood circle up to the 6-inch mark. I did two coats of chalk paint for this part but you can use whatever kind of white paint you prefer.
I like the chalk paint because it leaves a matte finish and since I only did two coats you can see a bit of the stain in some parts of the line making it look a bit more country chic which is perfect for this design.
Make sure to remove the painter's tape before the paint is dry to avoid the tap peeling up parts of the white paint.
I also went back with a smaller paintbrush to touch up some of the rough edges that occurred because I cut the lines in the wood. Like I mentioned before, next time I make a sign with a painted line I will not cut the lines in it.
Once the paint is dry, we are ready to get our design prepared for cutting.
Step 5: Upload the design to Cricut Design Space
First, we are going to open up a new project in Cricut Design Space and upload our design.
The Design I am using for this project is available for free and you can download it at the bottom of the page.
If you need help uploading the SVG to Cricut Design Space, you can check out my video on how to do that here.
Step 6: Resize the design
Once you have the design open, we are going to make a circle in Cricut Design Space the same size as our wood sign.
This is a great way to visualize how the design will look and make sure we get it sized correctly before cutting.
I'm going to just change the color of the circle really quick to a color closer to the stain I am using.
Now we can move the design over to the circle. If the design is behind the circle, just click arrange and then move forward.
Because I am putting a bow and some greenery on the top of this sign, I am going to line up my design a bit lower on the sign. I'm also going to make it a bit smaller so it fits a bit better on the sign.
Now that the design is the size we want, we are ready to group our design to prepare it for cutting. First, let's delete the circle, and then we will ungroup the design. Just select the entire design and click ungroup.
Step 8: Ungroup and Attach parts of the design
Now I am going to ungroup the Home Sweet Home part of the design. This will separate all of the letters so I can attach the specific words. Just select the words and click ungroup.
For this sign, I want to group each word individually. So I am going to select the top home letters and click attach.
Then I will do the same for the bottom home letters.
Lastly, I will select the sweet letters and click attach.
Since I am painting a white stripe on my wood blank to go behind the "sweet" part of the design I will leave the Sweet letters black.
The Home letters are going on the stained part of the wood so I am going to change those to white.
Step 9: Arrange mats for cutting
Now we can click Make it to arrange our mats for cutting.
You can see each color is showing its own mat. You could absolutely cut the design this way if you wanted to. You would just cut each color one at a time.
What I like to do to save time is actually load up all of the design onto one mat so that I can cut all of the colors at once.
To do that, you will go to the mat you want to move, click on the design, and click the three little dots on the top of the design.
Then you will select move object and pick the mat you want to move it to.
Once it's on the new mat, move it over so that none of the cuts will overlap.
When I move the next color over, I like to bring the word or image down to the next whole number on the mat. This makes it super easy for me to line up my vinyl later on the mat to make sure I don't accidentally cut outside of the material.
Then move the remaining colors until you have one mat with the entire design.
Step 10: Mirror the design
Since we are using Heat transfer vinyl we need to make sure to also mirror our design.
If you decide to cut the vinyl on individual mats instead of moving everything over to one mat like I just showed you, then you will need to select mirror for each mat.
Since I moved everything over to one mat I can just click mirror option for that mat.
Step 11: Place iron-on vinyl shiny side down on your standard grip mat
Next, I am going to place the heat transfer vinyl on my standard grip mat.
Use the measurements on the mat in Cricut design space to determine what size you need to cut each color of HTV down to before placing it on the mat.
We are going to place the HTV on the mat shiny side down. Starting at the top we will place the white HTV on the mat and then the black.
Then we can put the yellow vinyl down and lastly the green. Make sure that you are placing the vinyl in the same spots on the mat as we set up in design space.
Before I make any cuts, I like to use a brayer tool to make sure that the vinyl is really stuck down on the mat.
Step 12: Select your material type
Back in design space, click continue and select the material type you are using.
If you are using Cricut brand Heat Transfer Vinyl then be sure to select the specific kind as your material type.
I am using a non-Cricut brand HTV so I am going to set my material to Heat Transfer Vinyl (non-Cricut).
If you are using an Explore machine, you will want to set the dial to Iron-On.
Step 13: Load the mat and cut the design
Now you are ready to load the mat into your Cricut.
The arrow button should be blinking after you set your material type then you can place your mat in the machine and click the arrow button to load the mat.
Once the mat is loaded the Cricut button will start blinking and you are ready to start cutting.
Step 14: Remove the vinyl from the mat
When the machine is done cutting, the arrow button will start blinking again and you can unload the mat.
To take the HTV off of the mat, you will want to flip over the mat and gently peel the mat back from the HTV.
Peeling materials right off of the mat can cause it to curl which is not what we want.
Step 15: Weed the design
Before I start weeding a design, I check to see if any large parts of vinyl don't have cuts that can be trimmed off and used for other smaller projects in the future. I really dislike wasting vinyl so I try to do that anytime I cut a design.
Now we are going to start weeding the design. I'm using a Cricut weeding tool for this part and I highly recommend you do as well. I've linked all of the materials I recommend for this project above.
When I am weeding, the first thing I do is get the bulk of the excess vinyl peeled off. Take your time with this part so you don't accidentally tear or weed the wrong parts of the design.
After I get the bulk of the excess vinyl off of the design I go back and get all of the smaller pieces in the letters and the rest of the design.
Make sure you look over your design a few times to double-check that there aren't any little pieces you missed when weeding.
Step 16: Set your heat press temperature and time
Now I am going to pull up Cricut's heat guide so I can figure out what temperature I need to set my Cricut EasyPress Mini to. I will link that above as well.
For this project, I am selecting the EasyPress mini, then selecting Cricut Everyday Iron-on for the material because that is close enough to the type of HTV I am using.
Then I select what type of material I am applying the HTV to in this case, wood.
The heat guide recommends using the medium temperature setting for the easy press mini. It says to use firm pressure and constant movement for 40 seconds.
I do not recommend using a larger heat press for this type of project, the mini does a much better job at getting the iron-on vinyl evenly heated especially on a rougher surface like wood.
Step 17: Line up the first part of the design on the wood and apply heat
Once the easy press mini reaches the right temperature, we can place the first part of the design.
To get the word centered, I am using a ruler so I can see where the center of the wood is.
Then I gently fold the home part of the design over and make a small crease at the top and the bottom of the plastic sheet. Make sure you don't fold over the design on the sticky side because it can very easily stick together.
Now you can use the lines in the plastic sheet to see where the center is and place it on the sign. Make sure you place the wood on a heat-resistant mat before heating.
I totally forgot to do this for the first few parts of the design and now I have a lovely bow in my self-healing mat that I have on my desk. I'm hoping that it will flatten back down over time.
So make sure you use an EasyPress mat under the wood!
Continually move the heat press mini over the design making sure to get all of the heat transfer vinyl.
I did each part of the design for about 40 seconds each with continuous movement.
Step 18: Remove the plastic sheet
The type of HTV I am using is a warm peel meaning you have to peel the plastic sheet away from the design while it is warm.
The type of vinyl you purchase will specify if it is a warm peel or cool peel heat transfer vinyl.
Once you start to peel the plastic sheet away, if you notice any parts of the design not adhering to the wood, just place the plastic sheet back down and go over that spot with the EasyPress mini again until it sticks.
Step 19: Place and heat the remaining parts of the design
Next, we can place the sweet onto the wood. To get the "sweet" in the right spot, I referred back to the design on my tablet. The T on "sweet" goes in between the M and E on "home" so I used that for my guide to place that part of the design.
Then I placed the yellow part of the lemon as well. You will heat the lemon separately from the stem, but I placed the stem on top of the plastic sheet for the lemon to make sure that the entire lemon would be in the correct place once it was all heated.
Then lift the green stem back off and set it to the side.
Now we can heat this part of the design. Be sure not to go over the Home part of the design with the EasyPress again because it is no longer protected by the plastic sheet.
Peel up the plastic sheet and place the stem on the top of the lemon. It shouldn't overlap the yellow part of the lemon at all.
Once the stem is down, you need to place the plastic sheet back over the lemon.
When you heat the stem you will go over part of the lemon with the EasyPress and you don't want to heat uncovered iron-on vinyl.
You can also place the plastic sheet back over the sweet part of the design if you are worried about going over it with the easy press while you heat the stem.
Now we can place the bottom part of the design. We will do this the same way we did the top.
Peel the plastic sheet away and we are ready to add all of the extra goodies at the top of the sign.
Step 20: Glue on bow and greenery
I like to line everything up before I hot glue it all down just to make sure I know exactly where I want to put everything.
Once you know where you want to put everything, add some hot glue to the bow and press it down onto the wood.
Then do the same with the greenery.
Step 21: Add ribbon to hang the sign
The last step is to add a piece of ribbon to the back to hang the sign.
Just flip it over and glue the ribbon on each side of the bow to keep it centered.
And there you have it! How cute is this sign?
I absolutely love how it turned out and it was so much fun to make! I hope you get a chance to give it a try too!
Don't forget to grab this free design below so you can make your own Home Sweet Home sign!
To download the free Home Sweet Home SVG cut file just fill out the form below and click “GET IT NOW!”
DOWNLOAD THE FREE HOME SWEET HOME SVG CUT FILE
HOW TO USE THESE CUT FILES:
You can use these files on your Cricut Maker, Cricut Explore, Cricut Joy, Silhouette Cameo, or other brands of electronic cutting machines that use these file types.
If you need help downloading the files and uploading them to Cricut Design Space, I have a quick tutorial on how to do that here: How to Download SVG Files and Upload them to Cricut Design Space
Please review the licensing information for these files by clicking the link below.
* Crafting A Lovely Life SVG File License Information
Don’t forget to save this project on Pinterest for later! Happy crafting!