My Tips & Tricks & Printer Settings for my printables and other printables you find online

I have received messages from some of you who are saying that you can’t get some of my printables to work for various reasons. This makes me sad and upset that some of you are having so many issues, and believe me, I have issues with my printables and Silhouette files cutting too. I don’t want you guys to suffer and I wanted to make a long and detailed post about what I have learned through trial and error with my Silhouette and other files you can find on Pinterest and the Internet. These are my tips and tricks that work for me and I hope they work for you too. I am sorry if you already know some of these things, but maybe you will learn a thing or two that you didn’t already know. 

I am going to break up the issues into their own sections, so if you just have issues with getting the Registration Marks to read on you Silhouette, just go to that part of the post. With that out of the way…here we go!

I have a story to share about my experience with Printer Network Connection Issues. In the name of research, I took my Silhouette Cameo over to my sisters house to hook it up to her PC. I hooked up my Cameo to her computer. Then I went to her Printer Settings to make sure they were set to Print the Actual Size and they were. Then went to my website and had her look for designs that she wanted. She has just the standard free Silhouette Software and I wanted to also see how my designs that I make in my Designer Edition Software would look on the Standard Software. (They looked the same by the way) 
So when we went to print, nothing happened. I felt how some of you have felt when trying to print my files, frustrated! We tried several times to print and kept getting this error. I went on to her computer in her printer settings and it said that we were hooked up to the Network and everything. But when I looked at the actual screen on her printer, there was that yellow triangle with a ! in the middle. When I pressed the button it said that there was No Network Connection. So her computer was saying the printer was on the Network, but it really wasn’t. 
It was an easy fix to just go onto the printer and go to the Network Settings, have her printer search for Networks and find her Network and put in her password. Then we printed and had no problems anymore. I printed a couple of sheets leaving the Registration Marks where I had set them when I uploaded the files online and they registered and cut on the Cameo with no problems. Then I adjusted the Registration Marks and moved them further out and then printed and still the Cameo read them with no problems.

So with that story out of the way, lets get on with the post. Grab a soda and some snacks, because this is going to be a long post!

My Computer and Designing Info:
-I use and design on a Mac. But all of the instructions are the same concept for a PC. I will try and include PC instructions where they are applicable.
-I cut all of my designs using a Silhouette Cameo. I love this cutting machine and I have no other experience with any other cutting machines. 
-I make all of my printables using the Designer Edition in the Silhouette Studio Software. I do not use Photoshop or Adobe Illustrator or any other designing software. The Cricut Software is so confusing to me because I learned on the Silhouette Software. I want to get into Photoshop and Illustrator, my issue is time! There never seems to be enough of it.
- When I make my Samplers, I always make one for the Erin Condren Life Planner (ECLP) and for The Happy Planner (THP). Those are the two planners people seem to use the most. I have read that printables for the ECLP fit very nicely in The Plum Paper Planner as well.

Printer Settings & the Printer I use:
-First of all, let me say that I think this is the major issue people are running into. If you are having problems printing and getting your Silhouette to read the Registration Marks, check your Printer Settings FIRST.
-I print on and Inkjet Cannon MX922. Each printer has its own way to set and reset the Printer Settings. I suggest you Google your printer type and how to set the Print Preference or Printer Settings. 
-When looking at your Printer Settings on your computer, make sure they are set to print the ACTUAL SIZE and not FIT TO PAGE. If you have it set to FIT TO PAGE and then print, it causes 2 major problems: First, it makes the Registration Marks at the bottom of the studio3 file disappear and the Silhouette Cutting Machine will not be able to read them and cut the file for you. Second, it makes the sizes of the files bigger than they need to be and they won’t fit as nicely in your planners. That would be an issue for me as I tend to be a little OCD sometimes!

These are two examples of how my Mac looks when I print studio3 and pdf files:

In the photo below, I am printing in my Silhouette Software. See where I have circled "Scale to fit paper size" with the arrow pointed to it? You want to make sure that box is UNCHECKED. You do not want it to scale to paper size.

In the photo below, I am printing a PDF file. See where I have "Scale 100%" with the arrow pointing to it? You want it to be Scaled at 100%. Do not select Scale to Fit or any of the selections by that option. It will mess up the proportions and your boxes won't fit correctly in your planner.

Studio3 Files and Registration Issues:
-If your Silhouette is no reading the Registrations Marks, go back to the section above this and check your Printer Settings
-You can have words and images in the gray area above the Registration Marks and it will NOT affect your machines ability to read the Registration Marks and cut the actual design. It has never been an issue. I put the title of my sticker sheet there as to not take up room where a sticker could be. If you guys think this is an issue, then I can move my Title and Copyright Words and move them. It just means you get less stickers to decorate with. 
-When I post the studio3 file on my site, I save it to the exact specifications that I use to print my files. So I suggest not even trying to adjust any of the Registration Marks on the downloads from my site. If you have your printer settings set to print Actual Size and print right from the Silhouette, you will have no issues. I have never, to my knowledge, uploaded a studio3 file to my blog that hasn’t printed or registered on my Silhouette.
-Also, when I upload the studio3 file to my blog, I have already added the cut lines for you. You do not need to select the Cut Edge in the Cut Settings. This will just add a red line around the outside of the page and confuse you. You just need to print the page, put it on your mat, load into your Silhouette, and use your preferred cut settings, and send to your Silhouette. (I have listed my preferred cutting settings in this post in the section called Cutting Tips)
-Many tips I have read and done myself when my machine will not read the Registration Marks are:

  • Shine a light in your Silhouette around the registration mark to get the machine to read it.
  • Also, close the lid on your machine to make it darker so the laser picks up the registration mark.
  • Take a Sharpie and darken the registration Square to get it to read better. Also you can try and make the square bigger with your Sharpie too.
  • Adjust your Registration Manually. Another person on Facebook gave some great instructions:  Anytime mine fails I manually register is, and then it works. And normally with manual registration I get the best cuts too. Once it fails, it will say retry manually or retry automatically. Click to do it manually. Then use the arrows on your comp screen to adjust the blade position. You want it to be centered right above the black filled square registration mark. When you have it centered, then click the send to silhouette button and it'll read the registration marks from the position you set it to rather than having to look for them itself.
  • Try loading your page with out a mat. I have never done this, but others say it works.
  • Try picking up your paper you are trying to get to register and move it up and 1/8th of an inch in the left hand corner and then try and register it again.
  • Turn your machine off and on again and start over. I have done this in the past and it has worked for me.
  • If you can, try and adjust the Registration Marks out as far as you can from any image on the paper. Sometimes when I am designing, if I have images too close to the Registration Marks, and print and go to cut, it won’t read or cut. And it mean like when the images are 1/8th of an inch away. It seems 1/4th of an inch away from the Black square does it for me. This can be super frustrating since I just wasted a whole sheet of sticker paper! I just have to go in and adjust the Registrations Marks further out from the image or move the images around and away from the Registration Marks and the red line around the page that shows the Cut Border in the Silhouette Software. (I also always design with the cut border and print border up). 
Registration Marks not showing up:

I just figured something out by complete accident! Some of you are having trouble with the bottom Registration Mark showing up when you print my studio3 files. I have always thought it was the Printer Settings issue. I had no idea that there was an easy fix for you to check first! I took some pics in my Silhouette Software and doctored the photos in PicMonkey. They are not the best, but you will hopefully understand my explanations better with pictures.

So I recently had to switch to a new profile on my Mac and all of the custom settings I had for my Silhouette Software were gone since I had to reinstall the program to my profile. So I ran into this issue you guys sometimes bring up and I was sick! Sick! Until I noticed something...

Pictures below is how my Silhouette Software Registration Marks pulled up:

I circled the things I wanted to point out. (I just placed this red circle on the page for reference for you guys.) Notice the Show Print Border is checked? That is the gray box you notice around the paper. Now notice the Registration Mark at the bottom of the drawing area? Notice how the bottom of it is below the gray box? 

Below is how my page shows how it will print when I open the file using PDF Preview:

Notice how the bottom of it shows it will not print? 

Below is what my Registration Marks are set at:

All you need to do to fix this problem is to bring the Bottom Inset of your Registration Mark Settings up above the gray box.

Pictured below is what my drawing area looked like after I brought the Bottom Inset up to .625. Now notice the bottom of the Registration Mark is above the gray line now?

Now notice in the picture below that when I pull up the file in PDF Preview that the Registration Mark is there now?

I was so relieved to figure this problem out. I hope this little tutorial helps some of you out who are having problems with the bottom Registration Mark showing up.

PDF Files:
-I always post a PDF file for those of you who do not own a cutting machine.
-When viewing PDF files on some computers, the PDF sometimes looks like it has a grid running though the pictures. When you actually print the page, those grid lines do not appear on the actual printed page.
-If you don’t have a cutting machine, one great way to utilize a PDF file that has straight cut lines is to “Kiss Cut” with an X-Acto Knife and a cutting mat. Wenda at has a tutorial HERE that is very detailed and shows you exactly what to do. (A helpful hint that I figured out is that if you accidentally press too hard and cut through the paper, put a piece of Packing Tape or Scotch Tape on the back of your page to hold it together.)

Issues with Downloading Files:
-Dropbox: I was chatting with someone that said that when she downloaded to Dropbox and printed from her phone and she had no issues with my files. So if you can use your smart device to print, it seems to do the work for you with no problems. I don't use Dropbox, so I don't have much knowledge here. Sorry.
-Google Drive: This is my preferred way to upload and download. It is the least confusing for me. If you have a gmail account, you have access to Google Drive. I have had hardly any issues with downloading and uploading to Google Drive. The only issue I have had is that some of my files were too big for Google Drive to post a Preview of, but when I downloaded the file, everything was fine and no problems at all.
-Internet Connection or Computer Issues: Sounds so silly, but I was chatting with someone who was having downloading issues. I contacted her the next day to see if I could help her out. When she tried the pdf and studio3 downloads again the next day, they worked for her. Not really sure what the issue was, but trying to download the files later helped in this situation.
-Internet Browser Issues: Make sure you are trying to download directly from my website and in your computers internet browser. What I mean by that is, if your are in Pinterest or Facebook and you click on a link and it takes you to my webpage within Pinterest or Facebook, click the button that says to open the link in Safari, or Chrome, or Internet Explorer, or whatever is your Browser of choice. And then print from my website.
-Printing from your Smart Devices: If you are downloading and printing a PDF file and have a smart phone or a tablet, I would try and print from your smart device. Several people have said that they print from their phone and have had no issues. You just have to be connected to the same Network as the printer you are using is. If the printer is set up to Air Print, it will print actual size with no issues.
-Silhouette App: They are working on a mobile app for Apple and Android that is coming out soon. It is in the Beta testing phase right now. I am not sure how this app will work and I am excited to see what it can do and how it works. I will update this post with more instructions and my findings after it releases.

Sticker Paper I print with:
-All of the sticker sheets I print with are from I have listed the name and type of sticker sheets that I use below. Click on the link and it will take you directly to the website. (I have also used sticker sheets from They are essentially the same thing.) You can also search on for good deals on bulk sticker paper. If you buy in bulk, you will save a ton of money.

-I buy the Full Sheet with No Back Slit. If you buy them with the back slits and stick them to your cutting mat, you will regret it! They are a pain in the you know what to get off! Trust me! But if you do accidentally buy sticker sheets with slits on the back, I recommend placing a strip of  Packing Tape or Scotch Tape over the slits on the back side to make them easier to remove from your cutting mat and save you the headache of the backing separating from your stickers you just cut.

Here is a picture of the suggested Silhouette Cut Settings that recommends using with their paper. If you click on the picture, it will take you to the original article and the papers on the left column of this picture are clickable links that will take you directly to where you can purchase it:

Silhouette Cut Settings that recommends using with their paper

Cutting Tips:
-Cricut Mat: I found this Pin on Pinterest HERE showing how she made a Cricut mat work for her Silhouette and I decided to try it. It works fantastic and I found that if I used Silhouette’s recommended settings, that it worked perfectly. But if I used my settings from my post HERE, that it would not cut deep enough. The Cricut mat is thicker than the Silhouette mat and that’s what makes the cut setting needs different. Confusing, I know!
-Silhouette Mat: I wrote a post HERE showing pictures and detailed instructions of how I cut with my Silhouette mat using the sticker paper linked above and using the cut setting White Sticker Paper and Clear Sticker Paper. (The settings I use for both are the same) I have never used Silhouette’s Brand of sticker paper and found that if I used their recommended settings, that the blade would just cut right through my sticker paper, even scarring my mat because it cut so deep! Then I had to get a razor blade to peel my stickers off of the mat. Not fun! 
-These are the settings that work for me, but if your settings work for you, stick with those. Everyone has their own way to do things.

Silhouette Owners:
-Did you know that if you have the Designer Edition Software, you can upload ANY PDF file to your Silhouette Software and make cutlines for it? If you print many pdf designs from the internet and other websites and have to cut them by hand, this upgrade to the Designer Edition is so worth your money! I bought my Designer Edition from Miss Kate Cuttables. What is awesome about buying the software from their website, is that right now they are giving a $10 dollar download credit to their site when you activate the 16 digit serial code they email you, and they have some really cute stuff! Can’t go wrong with Download Credits!
-If you don’t want to upgrade to the Designer Edition, but still want to print other PDFs, you can buy a Pixscan Mat. Essentially, this is a mat that has the Registration Marks on the mat itself. You can put any picture you print on it, take a picture of it, and upload the picture to your Silhouette Software. Then you can make your own cutlines and run it through the machine and it will cut the images for you. You can search Youtube for videos of more detailed tutorials of how to use the Pixscan. This video HERE is the one that I watched to learn how to use mine. He does a fantastic job showing you step by step instructions on how to set it up on your software and everything.

Crucit Owners:
-The actual photos I upload to my posts is a JPG. So if you are wanting to use my printables for your Cricut Software, download that picture to your computer and upload it to the Cricut Software. I am unfamiliar with the Cricut Software, but I am trying to get more familiar with it. (Cricut’s software and Silhouette’s software are sooooooo different!)

I hope some of these tips and tricks are helpful for those of you who are experiencing problems. Feel free to refer back to this post for any issues you might have. And if you have any tips or tricks that weren’t mentioned in this post, please comment below so that others might benefit from your experience and knowledge and maybe I can update this post with your tips and tricks too. Thanks for sticking with me and reading to the end!
  • No affiliate links were used in this post! I just wanted to be as open and honest as much as I can with you guys so that you didn’t have to go searching and scouring the internet when I already had the links to the specific stuff I use and used.


  1. Hey Jessica!
    First let me say thank you for responding to my comment last weekend on one of your post regarding it not printing due to the registrations marks. You replied quickly and set about searching and trying to get my printer to work based on your suggestions. I looked all over and went all through my computer/printer settings trying to "fix" the problem. As hard as I tried nothing I did would allow those darn registration marks to print! So what is a girl to do when she wants to print your beautiful layout? Off to the store I went and purchased a new printer...a more updated printer that would allow me to make selections to print your files! Today I visited your blog and find this post. You are AMAZING! Thank you for your wonderful layouts and taking the time to make post like this to assist us all so we can print and enjoy your work. I'm off to print and cut some of your work...a great day to spend this rainy Saturday here in Texas :)

    1. Did the more updated printer end up working out for you?

  2. Thank you Thank you Thank you! Shining a light on the registration marks worked! I love your sticker sheets. They are beautiful and I really wanted to use them.

    1. Oh that's awesome! I hope you continue to come back each week to check out what's new. I post on Wednesday and Friday every week.

  3. Thank you so much for sharing these wonderful files! I am new to silhouette and have a portrait. I did notice when I added the file to my screen that it appeared to be over the print lines and the registration marks where partially in the design. I'm sure it's something I'm doing wrong - newbie that I am.

  4. Thanks for the mention, great post :)

  5. Jessica I love that you have you tube channel on how to use the Silhouette Software for making our own designs. Even Silhouette doesn't really have a lot of videos on how to use their machine. I love your designs but I also like to make my own and your how to videos have been so helpful. thank you patty

  6. Thank you so much for all the wonderful tips and freebies you do. I'm still having a problem getting the Fairytale Sampler to register on my Silhouette. I don't know how to view my studio 3 files in PDF to be able to see the print lines to adjust them. Could you tell me how to do that? Thank you! I so would appreciate it!


    1. I only know how to view a studio3 in PDF on a Mac. Do you have a Mac?