How to use an SVG file with the Brother Scan N Cut

You have a Brother Scan N Cut electronic cutting machine.

You have SVG files for cutting the appliqué shapes for your favorite Meaning of Life Designs or Sarah Vedeler Designs design collection.

How do you use those SVG files?

This tutorial will take you step by step through the process of converting an SVG file into something that can be used with your Brother Scan N Cut. Click on any image to view a larger version of it.

Step 1

If you don’t already have the CanvasWorkspace for PC software, go to Scroll down until you see the following:

CanvasWorkspace-01*** If you work on a Mac, use the online version of the CanvasWorkspace software ***


Click on the link for your Brother Scan N Cut product:

CanvasWorkspace-02Select the operating system running on your PC and then click Search:

CanvasWorkspace-03Read the EULA and then click Agree to the EULA and Download:

CanvasWorkspace-04Follow the instructions for installing the software.


CanvasWorkspace deals with 3 file formats:

  • SVG files
  • FCM files (this is what you need to create to send to the cutting machine)
  • CWPRJ files (these files include editing information used by CanvasWorkspace and they can’t be sent to the cutting machine)

Step 2

On launching the CanvasWorkspace software, you will need to log in.

If you don’t have an account, click Create New Account and follow the instructions.

If you do already have an account, enter your Login ID and Password and click Sign in.

CanvasWorkspace-05You will be sent to an empty workspace.

CanvasWorkspace-06Step 3

Click File -> Import SVG/FCM File…

You can also click the SVG icon on the left side of the CanvasWorkspace window.

CanvasWorkspace-07Locate the SVG file that you want to use and click Open.

I am using the file This is the day SVG 1.SVG from the Rejoice! Collection.
According to the cutting instructions, the piece of fabric to be cut should measure 12″ x 8 1/4″.

The usable size of the cutting mat is 11 2/3″ x 11 3/4″.

When you open an SVG file containing a design that is bigger than the usable size of the cutting mat in either dimension, you will receive an error message:


The imported SVG was resized automatically to fit within the red
dashed line on the art board

Click on OK to dismiss the warning message.


You need to resize the design to ensure that your appliqué shapes are the correct size after cutting.

Click Edit -> Select All OR Ctrl+A


On the right hand side of the CanvasWorkspace window, click  the Edit button.

Set X = 0″
Set Y = 0″
Make sure Maintain Aspect Ratio is checked
Set Height = the size it needs to be, in this case 12″


Now that the design has been resized (remember you had everything selected BEFORE you edited the size) you can remove the black bounding box. Click on the black box to select it and hit delete.


NOTE: SVG cutting files from other sources may not have a bounding box. A bounding box is included in nearly all SVG files from Meaning of Life Designs and Sarah Vedeler Designs to assist with placement of fabric on the mat – and to make it easy to ensure that your shapes are cut at the correct size.

Step 4

The shapes that you wish to cut have now been revealed.

CanvasWorkspace-12Ctrl+A to Select All.

Click the Properties button on the right hand side of the CanvasWorkspace window.

Set Operation = Cut.

Click the black box by Fill.

CanvasWorkspace-13Select Transparent (in the top left corner of the color grid).

Click OK.

CanvasWorkspace-14You can now see the outlines that need to be cut.

CanvasWorkspace-15Step 5

To generate an FCM file that can be used in your Brother Scan N Cut machine via a USB stick:

Select File -> Export FCM File…

CanvasWorkspace-16To generate an FCM file that can be transferred directly to your Brother Scan N Cut machine:

Select File -> Transfer FCM File…


Your machine needs to be a wireless model that has been registered on CanvasWorkspace for Web to use this option.

CanvasWorkspace-18Now you’re ready to go cut all your appliqué shapes!


  1. I was having that problem until a friend said to use heat n bond lite for my fusible and left the paper on the back of the fabric. Placed it on the mat, fabric side UP, a new blade which I marked fabric only. I have cut all my “Rejoice” letters out with no problems. Hope this helps you.

  2. Hi Sarah, I have this machine and rejoice combo, Been having difficulty with my machine, only used it about 3 times and fabric gets cut up or doesn’t stick right. I will keep trying. Thanks for this information and all your help. Cathy.

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