Turn You Child’s Artwork Into Home Decor with Heat Transfer Vinyl

HTV family pillow

I consider myself a semi-minimalist. I like to stay organized, and I don’t keep a lot of “stuff” around my house. With kids, that makes it a little tricky when they come home from school with loads of papers and art projects. So what’s one way you can showcase your child’s artwork while staying neat and tidy? Make the artwork into a home decor piece!

Now that Christmas is over and all the decorations are put away, things can feel a little bare, so this is the perfect time for a project like this.

I love this cute drawing my son made of our family. I wanted to see it every day without it filling up my magnet board with all the other papers, so I made his drawing into a throw pillow! With just a few extra steps, you can place almost anything onto a more permanent surface with heat transfer vinyl.



Heat transfer vinyl (ImPRESSED Vinyl™ Silver)
-Blank pillow cover
-Pillow form
-Kid’s drawing
Cutting machine (I used a Silhouette Cameo)
-Weeding hook or craft tweezers



Step One: Upload drawing into software

Take your child’s drawing and scan it onto your computer. You can save it as a JPG, PNG, or PDF.

Once you have your image scanned, (b&w works best) open your software (I used Silhouette Studio) and go to File>Open.

Find your scanned image and open it into Silhouette Studio.

I can’t get over how cute this picture is, with our large ears and the fact that my husband is drawn to be shorter than me 🙂

Now go to the Image Effects window and change the brightness, so you have more of a contrast.

Next, we are going to trace the image, so it creates a cut file. Go to your Trace window and select the entire image. Make sure all the parts of the drawing are covered in yellow, then select trace. Now you have cut lines!

Here is where I like to add my fill color so I can see the image better.

If needed, edit the image. I decided to erase the lower “Our Family” since it was already written on top.

Now select all the parts of the drawing, right click and Group.

Since I am putting this drawing onto a pillow cover, I drew a square the size of my cover. Now I can drag the image onto the square and size it accordingly.

Once the image is sized, it’s about time to cut!



Step Two: Cut design out of heat transfer vinyl

Right-click the drawing and select Flip Horizontally. Because the machine cuts on the back side of the HTV, we have to mirror our designs.

Now go to the cut settings menu and select the material we will be cutting. For ImPRESSED Vinyl™, the Heat Transfer, Smooth preset works great!

Place your silver HTV onto the cutting mat with shiny side DOWN.

Load the cutting mat into the machine and let it get to work!

Step Three: Weed HTV design

After our cute picture has been cut out of the heat transfer material, it’s time to weed! Being by peeling off one corner of the vinyl, leaving the design.

Use a weeding hook or a pair of craft tweezers to weed out the little insides of the design.

Continue until the whole drawing has been weeded.

Step Four: Press design onto the pillow cover

After the drawing has been weeded, it’s time to press it onto our pillow! Begin by heating your iron to cotton settings with no steam. Iron the pillow cover, so it’s smooth with no wrinkles.

Place your weeded design onto the cover where you’d like. You can move it around as much as you want until heat is applied.

Place the Teflon sheet over the design and press for 15-20 in each area.

Allow design to cool for 1 minute and then gently peel off the clear carrier sheet. If any part of the vinyl starts to peel up, place the carrier sheet and Teflon sheet back down and press for a little longer.

Stuff the cover with your pillow form and let everyone enjoy your child’s artwork without cluttering up all your papers and files!

I love this technique of scanning an image and tracing it into my software. Just think of all the possibilities: a grandmother’s handwriting onto a tea towel, a journal entry onto a bag…anything goes!

Happy Crafting!

Additional Reading:


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Add address

United States (US)