Wednesday, 15 February 2017

What is a Cricut?

In short it's a cutting machine. A friend of mine brought one just after Christmas and is using hers to create the most fabulous dresses for fashion dolls. 
I'm mostly into 1/6 scale fashion dolls (Barbie, Fashion Royalty) but it would be easy enough to make designs bigger.
I love to make dioramas for my dolls, that's my 'thing' although I have been known to try other doll related projects. Most of the time though I'm happy to find an expert in what ever I want and let them make it.
So back to the Cricut machine. From what I can find there are three main types of Cricut.

Cricut Explore One
Precise cutting, writing, and scoring technology
Cuts 100+ materials
Easily design your project on PC, tablet, or smartphone
60,000+ project and design ideas to kick-start any project

Cricut Explore Air

As above plus
Double tool holder for one-click cutting and writing
Works wirelessly via Bluetooth

Cricut Explore Air 2 

As above but Cut and write up to 2x faster.

Now these machines are not cheap Explore One is about £160 ($199) the Air and Air 2 £260 in UK while in US the Air is $249 and Air 2 $299? 

Look out for deals in store or on line that come with free bundles.

Once you have purchased your chosen machine there is a Cricut website that has so far been pretty helpful.

Not sure what the links are for other countries but I'm sure they have them?

Check out the webpages for loads of 'how too' videos. Also Youtube and once you have your machine look on Pintrest  for a ton of interesting ideas. If you are good at art the world is your Lobster as you can design on your computer or ipad and the machine will make it for you. BUT if you are like me a design it yourself challenged then you can find lots of pre-designed items to make (many are free) on the Cricut webpage or google it.

Now so far all I have done with my machine is get it out of the box and check it works. I then made a couple of the free designs shown on the webpage.

There is a step by step video that shows you how all this stuff works and well... I did manage to use it without blowing up the machine or my home so that all positive!

So ready to set things up I first need to remove my 'assistant' 

Once she has taken a hike I'm ready to roll

On the left is a button that opens up the machine, a little oblong shaped 'lid' that I will go into later and a section for keeping your pens in.
On the right are the 'workings' At the top the on/off button
In the middle the dial...this determines the cut depending on what you are cutting.
At the front from left to right...The arrow button for feeding the cutting mat in and out.
Centre is a C for cut.
On the right the II for pause.

I brought my machine with a 'bundle' and this is what I received...

A 12x12 cutting mat (medium) a scrapper and spatula 

A box with a mini books plug in thing (more on this later) 
A roll of iron on silver glitter 
A roll of chalk board vinyl
A silver pen and a pack of pens  

Plus, some basic instructions a website details.

Now it was evident that I would need some more basic items

A pack of three cutting mats Light, Medium and Heavy 
A heavy duty cutting tool

A scoring stylus 

I then decided as I was most likely going to be making items longer than 12" that I would need a large cutting mat
So that's the basics now to start using the thing!

1 comment:

  1. I have thought about getting one of these several times before. But I never knew you could put a doll pattern in it and cut cloth. That is so cool. I would love to be able to do that.