3 Back to School Silhouette DIY vinyl Projects

What could make your kids more excited to go back to school than some customized DIY school supplies in their favorite theme? Here at Craftables HQ we were eager to make our adorable nephew Oliver some back to school swag inspired by his favorite creatures- Dinosaurs!

When asked what dinosaurs we needed to incorporate into Oliver's swag, he insisted we include a stegosaurus. With that in mind, we also added t-rex, brontosaurus and triceratops. This was a fun way to get Oliver excited about school and to teach him about some new dinosaurs!

3 back to school projects

For this project, we decided to make Oliver a new backpack, notebook and baseball hat. Below are the crafts with some instructions, take note that they are listed easiest to hardest in difficulty! 

Free dinosaur SVG cut files

Field Notes Notebook

Oliver will be learning the alphabet this year so we figured he'd need a notebook to get started! This DIY back to school notebook is a quick and easy craft project.

Here is everything you'll need for this project:

  • composition notebook
  • Craftables Permanent Adhesive Vinyl- we used one whole sheet of 12"x24" in cream to cover the whole notebook plus one sheet of yellow green, dark green, grass green, and gold.
  • Squeegee
  • Weeding tool
  • Scissors
  • Transfer tape

diy notebook

How to:

  • We started by covering the entire notebook in the Craftables Beige Vinyl. Tip: if there are bubbles, don't worry! Just let the notebook sit for a while with a heavier book on top and they should flatten out.
  • Next, we cut and weeded our dinos, all in different colors.
  • We applied our dinos all over the notebook and for fun added the Oliver's Field Notes text to the front, in case he found any fossils on his way to school.
  • Lastly, we added the gold hinges. We hand cut them with scissors, easy peasy!
  • This project was so easy, it would be very cute to use this idea but for a different theme like animals, trucks, Disney characters, polka dots or whatever your little scholar is into at the moment!

applying oracal to notebook

Applying the large sheet of 651 is the first step before you add any decoration. Tip: it's easier to cover the front and back of the notebook one side at a time.

applying decal to notebook

Once the dinosaurs have been weeded and you can apply them all over with transfer tape.

weeding notebook text

Weeding the label. You can make it say anything you want which makes this project easily customizable for anyone!

back to school notebook

Applying the label with transfer tape. We recommend our Craftables Transfer Tape because (as you can see) it is clear and easy to apply!

olivers field notes

Dinosaur Backpack

A backpack is a must for back to school! Maybe because this backpack is so cute, Oliver won't forget to pack his snack in it! And because it matches his notebook, he'll never forget that either.

Here is everything you'll need for this project:

diy backpack back to school

How to:

  • First, measure larger areas on your backpack and make sure the dinosaurs (or whatever motif you're applying) will all fit where you're applying them. If you're unsure or want to make a practice composition, a great tip is to just print them, cut them out and lay them on the backpack. That way you don't have to waste any vinyl! Each of our dinos ended up being around 1.25". 
  • Next, weed and cut out your dinos so you can place them all over your backpack. Make sure your iron is heating up during all of this!
  • Now it's time to iron! Make sure your iron is set to at least 300 degrees F and you apply your iron to your design for a minimum of 8 seconds. Here's a handy chart for your heat settings reference!
  • After waiting around 20 seconds, it's time to peel up your carrier sheet! Make sure before pulling the entire sheet off that you gently lift up from some corners to make sure your HTV is 100% adhered. Boom! A super cute backpack! 

Dinosaur Hat

What is the point of going back to school if not for some new clothes? We applied this cute stegosaurus to Oliver's hat by special request.

htv backpack hat

Here is everything you'll need for this project:

Applying HTV to a hat is actually a bit of a challenge, so here are some tips to make it a bit easier:

Tips for applying HTV to a baseball hat:

  • Always make sure to measure your hat and the decal before you start
  • If you apply HTV over a seam, consider using a thicker material like flock or glitter, because the thicker material will be better at hiding the bump in the seam.
  • Roll up a towel and put it inside the hat while you use an iron to press the outside. This is a good method because the towel can add a sturdy backing for the curved hat so the iron can press evenly.
  • If you don't have a towel handy, try putting your hat on the end of an ironing board with the bill sticking up. Press the bill down to create a flat surface that you can more easily iron. This technique is easier if you have a helper handy!
  • If you don't have a towel or a helper, you can still iron on a baseball hat by just following the curve of the hat with your iron. Try putting a pot, rolled up pillow cases, or anything else non-meltable inside the hat for extra support.
  • If you're a sewer, a tailor's ham or a seam roll would be the perfect support for your baseball hat!
  • Depending on how curvy your hat is, try applying heat 5 seconds at a time instead of the whole 12 seconds at once. This will give you more control and you will end with the same result.
  • Beware that the edges of your iron may not be as hot as the center of the iron. Keep this in mind if you're using the nose of the iron to apply your decal.

Using several of these tips, we successfully applied our stegosaurus to Oliver's hat using Craftables Smooth HTV.

 back to-school diy

3 easy back to school


Looking for more fun back to school projects? Check out our posts on pencil pouches!

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