Avery label on cardboard?

I’ve just started using my glowforge and I’m curious if anyone has tried putting an avery label on (like 1/8" or 1/16") cardboard and then cutting it. I’m worried the label stock is going to get burnt, but I’d prefer doing it that way than doing a kiss-cut on the label stock and affixing it to the cut cardboard.

You can be the first to try and report back.


the paper-based and polyester-based avery labels will cut just fine.

previously, with an instructables link: Fake die cut sticker tutorial


Is the use case that you’re printing a design on the label and want to trace it?

I’m not sure why this is better than a “kiss cut”


Are you wanting to cut card stock and thinking of protecting it with a label?

No need. There are many of us who’ve done card stock without any masking. Just start with low power and “sneak up” on the settings (for either etching or cutting) to get what works. I don’t have my notes in front of me, but i think I used about 30-40 power and full speed and had no sign of burning on my cuts–but that will vary based on the stock you’re using. I did a little extra cutting besides just a business card, but there are others who’ve done very detailed paper cutting work…

But pin it down well–never enough magnets (I often set it up, let it get scanned and move the magnets as needed to ensure have the best pinning and out of any cutting/etching paths. And do keep an eye on it, in case of flare ups. And if you’re doing etching and cutting, always etch first, in case a cut out piece blows over the top of the sheet & covers areas being etched, or causes your entire piece to shift… been there, done that.

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Thanks! But I’m more curious if I print something on the label, stick it to the cardboard and then cut it — like game pieces. I’m worried the label will burn because of the extra power needed to cut through the cardboard beneath the label.

Thanks! This is all such great advice!! But I’m hoping to cut something thicker than card stock. More like cardboard (like 2x as thick as a cereal box) but I want to print a label and stick it to the cardboard first. I’m just worried the label will start on fire because of the extra power needed to get through the cardboard. Any suggestions?

If the label is stuck down really well you should not have a problem. It’s the air gap between layered materials that are not adhered well, that increases the fire risk. In any case, when you do your testing, you should be standing by with a damp rag in hand, ready to throw it on any flames that threaten to get out of hand.


Got it. Likely more risk is of the cardboard–but it’s really very slight, even with that. I recently made a “stencil” using a piece of cardboard/stock like you’re thinking of, but mainly because of the artwork, I ended up etching it multiple times until it completely went through the board (it was a one-time thing, and didn’t want to take the time to figure out how to redo the artwork for vector cut lines).

So option is setting up for multiple passes at lower power to avoid scorching, which is more common/higher risk the slower the speed the head is.

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You mention cereal box. It sounds like what you’re looking for is chipboard. Should be able to cut it just fine with a label, and no fire.


I’ve done this quite a bit with cardboard and thick chipboard as the underlayer. The label just needs to be put down as smoothly as possible; use a pin to pop bubbles if necessary.


Thanks! This is exactly what I’m trying to do. Thanks for the tip about the pin!

Thanks everyone! I tried and the edges of the label stock got a little brown but not as much as I expected. I ended up doing 2 passes due to the thickness of my chipboard and I’m sure I will figure out the perfect setting eventually. I also took @jbpa’s advice and used a pin to remove any bubbles and burnished the label down really well. No flames so I’m happy!