Picture of How to make laser-cut Holiday decorations
This Instructable shows you how to make simple laser-cut decorations for the Holidays using Ponoko. If you've never worked with a laser-cutter or have only used a vector art package once or twice before, then this guide is for you.

After my last Instructable on making a laser-cut lamp, I wanted to create a clearer step-by-step guide. As long as you've got a computer that can run a vector software package you'll be able to achieve some very cool results.

If you prefer to skip the Instructable and just get making, feel free to download the .eps files I've already created.

Let me know how you get on!
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Step 1: Stuff you'll need

Picture of Stuff you'll need
download template.jpg
You'll only need a few things for this Instructable:

A steady hand
Ribbon/String/Cord/Twine - we used elasticated ribbon
Ponoko Inkscape templates

Step 2: Finding images

Picture of Finding images
You'll need to find images that are in the style of the decoration you'd like to make. Google Images search is great for this. Just head on over and type in your favorite decoration name (I used Christmas Bell to get the results below).

Good images to look out for have simple shapes and outlines. They also have nice clean backgrounds. This will help make things easier :)

Save the image or images in a folder on your computer. You'll be using these later.

Step 3: Download and open Inkscape

Picture of Download and open Inkscape
If you haven't already got Inkscape installed, head on over to and download the latest version of Inkscape for your computer. Inkscape is great, not only is it free to use, it will work on Windows, Mac OS X, and most flavors of Linux.

Once you've downloaded the Inkscape application, follow the installation steps.

Once you've installed it, open up Inkscape so it's ready for the next step...
hueska6 years ago
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Joe4267 years ago
Ponoko is great, but they could me SOOOO Much better if they didn't charge $60 base price to ship to USA
Dogic Joe4267 years ago
Hey Joe426, I work at Ponoko ... and yes we agree with you whole heartedly! Here's what we are doing about it: 1) For people who upload their design files to get an instant price to make something, we offer free shipping every so often as a way of saying "we appreciate you want to make something but the shipping cost stands in your way, so here's a 'big thanks' for your patience while we set up our US operation to knock out the high shipping costs". 2) We are about to open our US based digital manufacturing operation - meaning all shipping to the US will be from within the US. Yippeee! We can not wait :)
Joe426 Dogic7 years ago
Dogic, Awesome, glad to hear you guys are finally expanding. I didn't know you guys had free shipping days, I wish you would have email us members? Maybe I missed it. When you get US operations going, I'm definately using you guys for projects I post on my site -
Dogic Joe4267 years ago
Cool hacks on yer site. Date to be officially announced, but Q1 2008.
Joe426 Dogic7 years ago
Thanks, glad you liked it.
Wishywash7 years ago
Ahem... Wasn't this instructable more about using Ponoko (see 'How to make a laser cut lamp)?
It is, but he's open and up-front about it. The Ponoko idea really appeals to me, but, as for Joe426 in the US, postage is a problem for me in the UK - can't wait for a Euro-branch...