Outdoor Garden Art Post with Cricut Permanent Vinyl
In the world of crafting, vinyl is a versatile and fun material to work with. And when it comes to outdoor vinyl projects, Cricut Premium Permanent Vinyl is an excellent choice. This durable and fade-resistant vinyl is perfect for creating one-of-a-kind garden art. By adding vinyl to ordinary white vinyl fencing, you can create unique garden art poles for your favorite gardener or for yourself. In this blog post, we'll show you how to create a beautiful vinyl garden post using Cricut Permanent Vinyl, transfer tape, and a few other materials. We'll provide tips and guidelines to ensure your vinyl project has the best chance of a long life, including how to prepare the surface, apply the vinyl, and protect your project from the elements.
If you're new to vinyl crafting, don't worry! We'll also link to some beginner-friendly resources to help you get started. With some creativity and a little bit of patience, you can create a stunning vinyl garden post that will add color and personality to any garden. So, grab your Cricut machine and let's get started!
Give your outdoor vinyl project the best chance at a long life by following these guidelines.
- Vinyl works best on a smooth, clean surface. These vinyl posts are an ideal surface for vinyl application. Just be sure to clean the surface first as directed.
- Apply each vinyl decal slowly, beginning from one side, using your hand or a scraper to get as bubble-free an application possible.
- Use gentle heat to address any issues with application and ensure 100% adhesion to the surface. Take care when applying heat from a heat gun to avoid damaging the vinyl.
- Wait 48-72 hours before exposing your outdoor project to the elements to allow the adhesion to fully bond.
- If you choose, protect your outdoor project with a few very light coats of exterior clear coat spray for plastic or vinyl surfaces. A few light coats is key. Do not use a heavy application and the spray will add additional UV and water-resistance, extending the life of your garden art.
- Vinyl post sleeve and cap
- Cricut Permanent Vinyl (I’m using the Summer Fiesta Bundle plus additional vinyl rolls in Clay and Something Blue)
- Transfer Tape
Purchase a vinyl fence post or post sleeve from your local hardware store. I am using this post sleeve from Home Depot plus the coordinating post sleeve cap for my project. The post measures 40 inches tall and 4 inches wide.
Create your cut design in Cricut Design Space. Begin by adding 4 long rectangles to your canvas. The rectangles represent the post and should be the same size as your particular pole. My post is 4x4x40 inches, so my 4 rectangles are each 4x40 inches. You won’t be cutting out these rectangles - they will just serve as your guide for sizing and placing your decorative imagery.
I am using the following decorative designs included with Cricut Access, as well as some basic shapes.
- Welcome - #M28AB6B1E
- Flower - #M41541
- Flowers - #M43822
- Flower - #M4388E
- Flower - #M26DCAB4B
- Flower - #M3270D66D
- Leaf - #MD71597
- Leaf - #M891D42A
- Leaves - #M23EA371E
- Leaves - #M26DC72C0
- Birds - #M41711
- Sun - #MB5341AE
Organize the designs on the rectangles so that they fall mostly on one side of the pole, with a just a bit of overlap to ensure continuity from one side of the pole to the other. After placing the main flower and leaf elements, create some filler shapes (circle, plus, etc.) that can be used to add some texture to the gaps between the key designs.
When you are satisfied with the design layout, hide the 4 long rectangles on the canvas and make the project. Weed to remove the excess vinyl.
To help apply the vinyl in the same layout as you’ve created in Design Space, I recommend taking some screenshots of Design Space, including the grid scaled to 1 or 2 inches. Print the screenshots to make a paper pattern. Use the grid measurements on the pattern and a yardstick to help you position vinyl designs in approximately the same place as your cut design.
Clean the post using rubbing alcohol and allow it to dry before applying the vinyl. Beginning from the bottom of the post, use the yardstick to determine the placement of flower and leaves. Transfer the cut vinyl using your hands or transfer tape, depending on the complexity of the vinyl design.
Continue working from the bottom of the post up and around the 4 sides.
Once you’ve worked your way part way up the post from the bottom, repeat the process working from the top of the post down.
Continue working until all the flowers and leaves are applied to the 4 sides of the post.
Use small circles, crosses, etc. to fill gaps between the main flower and leaf designs.
Warm the vinyl using a heat gun to ease out any air bubbles that my have formed during your application. Hold the heat gun above the surface of the post for a few seconds. Work carefully. You don't want to apply too much heat for too long or else the vinyl itself will bubble.
If necessary, use a pin to pop any large bubbles on the interior of a vinyl piece and use the heat to work it flat. Don't stress about small imperfections! Remember that this is an outdoor project that will be viewed from a distance and not close up.
Wait 48-72 hours to allow the vinyl to fully adhere on the post. Fasten the post in your garden using a couple of garden stakes. Bring the post indoors during winter months to extend its life.
Need more inspiration for permanent vinyl?
Check out projects created by the Craft-e-Corner design team for more vinyl inspiration. Happy Making!