Using Cricut Design Space Contour Feature To Isolate SVG Pieces Containing Score Lines

Have you ever messed up a cut or wanted to isolate a piece of an SVG file so that you can cut it out of different colored cardstock or patterned paper? Unlike other cutting programs, the “Ungroup” feature may only take you so far. This is where Cricut Design Space’s “Contour” feature comes into play.

Note: This tutorial assumes that you already know how to import files into Design Space. If you don’t know how to import the files, please check out this video (click here).

Isolating SVG Files Containing Score Lines

In this example, we’ll be removing the heart shape on the left that contains score lines. This process applies to any of our files that may have a mix of cuts with and/or without score lines.

  1. Upload the SVG file you wish to isolate into Design Space and load it onto your virtual mat. Right-Click on the file and click Ungroup.

2. Single Click on the design.

Note: Do NOT click on the score lines. Also make sure you do not move any of the elements.

3. Single Click on the Contour button.

4. Single Click on the elements you wish to hide (parts that you don’t want to cut).

Note: The elements will turn a light grey if you’ve done it successfully. Click one or more until all the elements you don’t want to cut are light grey.

5. Close the Contour window by clicking on the X in the upper right corner.

6. At this point, we have turned off the cut portion of the left heart, but the score lines remain. We’ll need to repeat this process to eliminate the score lines as well.

7. Click on the isolated portion of the score line.

Note: The line is very thin so a precise click may be required.

8. Single Click on the Contour button.

9. Click on each little score mark to turn it off (to make it not cut). The score marks maintain their place relative to the main cut portion we turned off in the previous step so make sure you are clicking the correct score marks.

10. Close the Contour window by clicking on the X in the upper right corner.

11. You’ve now successfully removed an unwanted portion of the file. We now need to group the file. Click Select All.

12. Right-Click on any portion of the cut file and click Group.

13. Congratulations! You’ve successfully removed/isolated an SVG file that contains score lines.

Note: Before cutting, you need to make sure that you “Attach” the file so that the score lines cut along with the main design portion. Click Here to learn about “Attaching”.

30 thoughts on “Using Cricut Design Space Contour Feature To Isolate SVG Pieces Containing Score Lines

  1. Cathleen Yahn says:

    Thank you for the tutorial, I did not know how to use contour. On another thought, could you make it so when we click ungroup it would have each element it’s own? For example the heart with the score line, make it its own element as a whole (heart & scoreline) sometimes I need to cut just one heart out and wouldn’t need to go through all the steps of hiding each element.

    I think it would be easier that way but it’s up to you how you make the files.

    Enjoy your day

    • Holly Hudspeth says:

      If you can select a shape that will entirely cover the design you want to isolate without touching others in the design, (a circle or square will usually work) you can place it on top of the design, then select this shape and any area in the design file. Make sure the shape is on top, then click slice. Remove the pieces of the square or circle that remain and your design underneath will be a design shape of it’s own.

    • victoria says:

      Yes, that would be great. I have seen this done on other projects. I love your files but sometimes its just so hard when you need to go thu this whole process. When doing this we can even save paper. Just a thought. Thanks Leo. Your files are the best ( just this small adjustment would be great).

  2. Louise Luna says:

    Thank you Leo!
    There is another way I was able to isolate a cut. I duplicated the items and then was able to delete what I did not need. Also I am still waiting for your video on how to upload files and properly tag or name them so you can bring them up all at once. You helped me through this process one night at length and it was such a great help. Thanks Leo (tagging or nameing them is especially important for the files that have many, many screens. More then Design Space will show you)

      • WILLIAM DALE says:

        I just found these notes on how to isolate elements like you show above. I’ve found it easy to import the SVG file I want to isolate into Sure Cuts Allot 5 and break them apart and regroup them there, save them to another file name, and then import them back into Design Space. I’m then able to move the individual elements around and/or hide them with their cut/score lines very easily at cut time to take advantage of the paper size I’m trying to work with or make just the element I need to duplicate. Sure, it means having to invest in Sure Cuts Allot, but it’s really worth the $$ in the long run.

  3. Vivian Olver says:

    I never used the contour feature much. It is the perfect solution to stray score lines. Thank you for offering this tutorial.

  4. Jo says:

    I would like to know more about the contour feature, as for only cutting one item I just click on the eye in the layers panel. When not sure I duplicate. When I first open files with score lines I always attach before I save them so I won’ t have to worry about it later. Thanks for all your great files and videos I love all the detail you put into them.

  5. Jo says:

    I really didn’t know what contour feature was for but I really could have used that earlier . I had a svg file with a a small border that I didn’t want this feature would have worked for me.

  6. jsbaq says:

    Not sure why when I follow this I just get the score lines once I hit Contour. I tried attaching and leaving ungrouped….any suggestions, still won’t work.

  7. Kathy Bammann says:

    I can’t believe it’s taken me this long to research this very topic! Game changer!! I often use 8-1/2 x 11 paper, so many of your files that have multiple elements grouped together to fit on a 12 x 12 have been a problem. Now when I have a file like this, I can contour down to individual elements and save my file in Design Space that way. Thank you Leo & team for some very beautiful projects!

  8. Caroline says:

    Any help on doing this on an iPad. I can’t seem to be able to attach the score lines after I’ve used contour. Attach is grey and if I attach before I can’t use contour. I’m a bit short of a particular paper and I need to cut some small pieces from scrap. TIA

  9. johrene says:

    ABC Flowers. The vase. I am talking about the base layer. I tried to remove score lines with the contour feature( just so that I can rearrange the the parts of the vase on 8.5 by 11 paper). The horizontal lines are easy but the vertical lines is a problem . I remove one and another comes on again. Is there a way I can convert the score lines to a solid scoreline and then remove them with the contour feature? Or group them so that I can remove with the sidebar in the contour feature. Please help.

    • johrene says:

      In the end I hide all the contour lines of the scoring lines and find them one by one and just keeping those I need. Thank you.

    • Mike Fernholz says:

      Unfortunately if you are using Design Space, Contour or Slice would be your only options to separate or to isolate elements.

      However, we do recommend people use Sure Cuts A Lot if they are wanting to edit or alter files as it gives you many more options and allows you to break apart, and or use the eraser tool with ease. This is compatible with a Cricut, you would just need to export your edited design as a Design Space Compatible SVG and upload to Design Space for cutting.

      We do have that available on our sister site and have tutorials on our site on how to isolate elements using Sure Cuts A Lot.

      Hope this helps!

  10. Lynn Lawrence says:

    wow, thank you for this tutorial, i had no idea how to use the contour button, now i can use some of my stash of smaller papers rather than using 12 x 12 all the time, you are all amazing, thank you, thank you, thank you.

  11. Gail says:

    Would the be the procedure for the Noel trees? I can’t believe I would have to Contour all those score lines! I must be missing something.

    • Leo Kowal says:

      Hi Gail, this tutorial would be used if there were multiple elements on the file that needed to be removed. Since the Noel Light up trees are only one element this tutorial would not apply. If you contact us directly with what you are trying to do, we would be more than happy to help you out. 🙂

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