How To Make Your Own Silhouette

Are you looking for a simple DIY project you can do with you kids? It’s always fun to find something that isn’t too challenging so it’s a win for everyone. It’s especially nice when the weather is cold and dreary.

I love a good silhouette, but my son is a little old for that. He was willing to help me make one of our cat, Mittens. This cat has a dog’s personality, which is why we love him. He found us as a stray kitten.

We decided he would make a really cute silhouette.

supplies needed to make a silhouette

  • Camera and printer
  • White paper
  • Black paper
  • Tape
  • Scissors
  • Frame (we recycled ours)

Step by step guide to making a silhouette

Kids can definitely help with this project, especially if they are good with scissors.

Step 1 – A silhouette, as the name says, is a photo where the subject is taken from the side. You can either snap a side photo, or use one that you have already. We are crazy animal people, so we had a large selection already at our disposal.

You can also snap a photo of your child turned to the side.

Side note, did you know that in the IPhone you can search your photos by a word, like cat. I had an embarrassing number.

Mittens side shot

Step 2 – Print your silhouette. You will need to give some concern to size. Before you choose a size, get your frame. Recycling an old frame is my first choice because I have lots of frames hanging around with art I can’t bear to throw away.

Test your photo inside the frame before you make the silhouette to see if the size looks right. You can always shrink or blow up the photo.

Step 3 – Tape your silhouette to a black piece of paper. If you have thick black paper, it can look better inside the frame, but if not construction paper looks almost as good. It can fade with time. We used scrap book paper from Michael’s. It’s only $0.79 per sheet.

tape silhouette to paper

Step 4 – Carefully cut around the silhouette. You can always repeat if you mess up (or little fingers cut off vital parts). You can also trim up or round off your silhouette if you think it needs a bit of adjustment.

Step 5 – Use double stick tape to tape your silhouette to your mat. This works better than glue, which can show under the finished piece.

cat with tape on it.

Step 6 (Optional) – If you want to take things to the next level you can get creative with your mat. I found this awesome sheet music wrapping paper that I’ve been hoarding. I thought that I would use it for a mat some day. That day has finally come. I taped this to the mat before attaching the silhouette.

Step 7 (Optional) – I thought he looked funny without whiskers so I cut a few wisps and taped them down. I’ve seen people do the same with hair on children. Add a wisp of hair or something that is much finer to the silhouette.

Now it’s ready to put back in the frame and hang up.

diy silhouette

Have you ever tried to make a silhouette? I would love to see yours. If you are looking for other fun ideas for spending quality time with your kids, check out this post.

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