Creating Engraved or Embedded Text in Sketchup

Featured Image_Creating Engraved or Embedded Text in Sketchup

Simple details like text can add some dimension and depth to your Sketchup models. In this tutorial, we’ll go over how to make engraved or embedded text in Sketchup. We’ll use the 3D text tool to add a name and date to a headstone that we modeled in Sketchup. You can follow along, or add text to one of your own models!

Open Large Toolset Toolbar. Before you get started you want to make sure you have the correct toolbar open. Right-click in an open area on the left side of the screen and make sure that you have “large toolset” checked. It may open in a separate window, but you can just click and drag it to the left side of the screen to dock it with the rest of the toolbars.

Edit 3D Text. In the “large toolset” toolbar, navigate to the “A” icon that says “3D text” when you mouse over it. Click on the icon to open the “3D Text” window. From here, you can select the font, size, and alignment. We chose “alégre sans” for the font, “center” for the alignment, 10 inches for the height, and “filled” for the form. A filled form just means that SketchUp will try to create geometries from the text instead of just giving you edges. Type the words that you want in the space. Click “place.”

edit 3D embedded text window

Place. Drag the text and place it on the face of the object where you want it to be. Make sure it is directly on the face of the object you are trying to apply it to! You will not be able to create embedded text if it is not placed directly on the object’s surface.

place embedded text on headstone

Ctrl + A > Reverse Faces. If the face of the letters appears blue, you will have to reverse the face so that you are looking at the front side. To do this, press “Ctrl + A” to select all. Then right click on the face and select “reverse faces” from the dropdown menu. Now the text should appear white like the rest of your model.

Explode. Once you place the text box, you can’t go back and edit it, you just have to make a new one. We like the way our font is right now so we’re going to make it a part of the other geometry to edit it further. To do this, you first need to explode it. Right click on the text, then select “explode” from the dropdown menu.

Fill in the Gaps. Depending on the font you use, you may have to fill in the voids between closed off letters. Use the line tool to close off any voids between the letters.

fill in embedded text gaps

Create Embedded Text Depth

Add Depth. Next, to make the letters dimensional, you will use the extrusion tool. Select the “push/pull” tool and then click on the letter you want to push in. Type the distance you want the letter to be pushed in by and hit enter. For the rest of the letters, you can just double click with the push/pull tool enabled so that each one is pushed in by the same amount.

push in embedded text

Once you’re finished, you can add details like texture and shadow to really make your words pop. As you can see, the embedded text is simple to make but it adds a bit of dimension to your model. What do you use 3D text for in your models? Let us know in the comments!

Be sure to head to our tutorials page to check out the rest of our Sketchup tips!

Happy Hacking!


  1. allstarcarpetandtiles June 24, 2019 at 10:31 am #

    Great tips. I’m bookmarking this page. Its a great resource to keep. Thanks for sharing.

  2. hamzakhan17826 May 19, 2019 at 7:16 am #

    Ok sure, I will follow your steps before going to do exams. I hope your article will help me more.

  3. karlmistos May 14, 2019 at 10:41 pm #

    Thanks for sharing this. I’ll definitely share this with my classmates at de la salle zobel.

  4. classboat01 October 17, 2018 at 7:37 am #

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  5. mikemoreno September 5, 2018 at 3:48 am #

    thank you very much, verry helpfull…

  6. jogesh12345 August 14, 2018 at 1:55 am #

    Very effective and informative article.Thanks for sharing such an important tutorial.

  7. FLMIMA August 11, 2018 at 9:20 pm #

    Really helpful website

  8. Rumi July 15, 2018 at 7:16 am #

    I feel very grateful that I read this. It is very helpful and very informative and I really learned a lot from it.

  9. RJennings April 28, 2018 at 6:12 pm #

    Thank you for this website. The practice questions are helpful.

  10. Scott March 22, 2018 at 1:50 pm #

    Taking this test on Saturday. Last 4.0 exam to complete for the trio, then on to 5.0. This site is my go-to place when organizing what materials I’ll be studying

  11. shozab January 30, 2018 at 2:22 pm #

    Hi , very good article.

    thanks for sharing, keep up the good work

  12. dyba January 27, 2018 at 1:08 am #

    Good advice. Best of luck to all!

  13. KendraShirley January 16, 2018 at 4:04 pm #

    This is my favorite site for practicing for my tests! Great advise and super helpful.

  14. reximagetrim January 16, 2018 at 10:37 am #

    Nice post to read. A complete guide that can help all of us.

  15. tylerstockholm December 17, 2017 at 9:37 pm #

    Nice one… very helpful! Thanks!!!

  16. Aartiwalvekar November 21, 2017 at 8:56 am #

    Nice post

  17. Aartiwalvekar October 9, 2017 at 9:45 pm #

    Great post!

  18. Tony August 30, 2017 at 7:07 am #

    In the NCARB ARE 5.0 handbook they reference Fundamentals of Building Construction: Materials and Methods in both of their example questions for cost estimating. Unfortunately there isn’t a specific chapter on cost estimating, it’s woven throughout the content.

  19. Spencer August 30, 2017 at 1:15 am #

    What is the best reference for cost estimating for PDD.

  20. Amy July 26, 2017 at 3:24 pm #

    Thanks! Great advice

  21. Tony June 29, 2017 at 7:23 am #

    Deciduous trees should only be used for shade (especially in temperate climates). Deciduous trees lose their leaves in the fall and will have little protection against wind in the winter when it is most needed. Likewise, the leafless trees allow solar heat gain in the winter when it is desired, and shade in the summer.

    Coniferous trees are only to be used to block wind and views. Since they don’t lose their needles, they work great for these two items year-round.

  22. Shahid Logan June 28, 2017 at 4:50 pm #

    Hello. My name is Shahid. This comment is for anyone who would like to reply. On the Siteplanning test. To block the wind, can you use a Deciduous tree or must you use a Coniferous tree?

  23. Mike January 4, 2017 at 11:04 am #

    Hi Tony,

    I need to take 5.0 PPD & PDD. Do you plan on posting notes such as “Caroline’s Notes” that you had posted for the various 4.0 exams for either of those sections? I found those notes to be some of the best resources in studying for the 4.0 sections. If so any idea when? Thanks

  24. Stephen October 17, 2016 at 9:30 pm #

    Hi Tony,
    Any updates on the SS exam ? If there’s an expected release date ? Thanks

  25. DesignerHacks October 4, 2016 at 12:11 pm #


    We are releasing practice exams for the SS exam later this fall.


  26. Paige October 4, 2016 at 11:34 am #

    Will you have SS questions on here at some point?

  27. Daniel September 9, 2016 at 8:47 am #

    Great post, very helpful with the lists of suggested materials, I just passed CDs in July and am taking PPP in November so I definitely needed the list.

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