15 FAQs About the Cricut Maker : What You Need to Know
Do you still have unanswered questions about the Cricut Maker? Here’s everything you need to know as well as an easy beginner project!
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Cricut Maker FAQs
Although this post is sponsored by Cricut, any opinions given are completely my own. I was compensated in some way for writing this post. For a complete list of disclosure rules, see the disclosures page.
1. Will I use the Cricut Maker enough to justify the expense? Absolutely! I have used the Cricut weekly since the beginning. I had no idea how much easier the Cricut Maker would make my sewing and craft projects. You will be amazed at how much time and effort will be saved!
2. What materials can I cut with the Cricut Maker? In the last few months alone I have cut cotton quilting fabric, denim, leather, vinyl, exterior vinyl, window clings, craft paper and felt. However, that’s not all the Maker can do! The Cricut Maker cuts virtually any fabric. I have plans to use it to cut chipboard, cardboard, craft paper, plastic for stencils, faux suede and more!
3. Is the software easy to use? Yes, it’s very easy to use. Cricut has a really good help section on their website. Any time I’ve been stuck it’s been easy to find the answers that I need.
4. What kind of DIY projects can I make? So far, I have made t-shirts, window clings, wooden sign decals, leather appliques, denim hat and purse, bow tie, even a quilt. There are hundreds of ready-to-make projects waiting for you on the Cricut website. Once you press “Make It” the machine does the rest!
5. What types of fabric can I cut? Cotton quilting fabric, muslin, satin, crepe, wool, fleece, denim, knit jersey, felt. I am sure there are many others, however, these are the ones I have tried so far.
6. Can I use my old cartridges? Cricut Explore and Maker machines were designed to work with Design Space, rather than as stand-alone machines and cartridges. Simply link your old cartridges to your account through Cricut Design Space using your Explore machine or the Cricut Cartridge Adapter to use them. I am thankful for their adaptive tool system and expandable suite of tools.
7. Can I upload my own images? Yes, they are easy to upload into Design Space in either JPG, SVG, or PNG format.
8. Can I keep my images private? Yes, Cricut has an option to keep your files private if you wish.
9. What makes the Cricut Maker different from other machines? The Maker is the “Cadillac” of the Cricut machines. It is designed to work with multiple materials at high speed as well as having Bluetooth capabilities. If you are only planning to use your Cricut to cut one type of material, you may consider a different model. For example, the Cricut Explore works perfectly fine for basic paper crafting.
10. What add-ons do I need to use the machine and how expensive will it be? The razor sharp knife blades, mats, weeding tools, sewing tools, vinyl and craft papers are all sold separately. It is cheaper to get the standard Maker package which includes a selection of these items so that you don’t have to purchase them individually. I would also recommend trying the Access membership which gives you access to a sewing pattern library which is full of digital sewing pattern to choose from.
11. Do you have to use only Cricut vinyl? No, it is not required. However, other types of vinyl are of lower quality. I have seen people post pictures of projects made from cheap vinyl. They have trouble getting it to adhere, it doesn’t wash well and many times it doesn’t even come off the plastic backing. If you take the time to make a handmade item, the quality of the vinyl you choose is important. I would not use non-Cricut products for that reason.
12. Do you have to purchase an EasyPress? No, you can use an iron. However, I realized very quickly that a regular iron doesn’t work quite as well for a number of reasons, especially if you are making multiple HTV projects. A household iron will only heat up to 199 degrees F. The EasyPress heats up to 320 degrees F. The hotter temperature helps the vinyl adhere both better and faster.
In addition, the bottom of the iron is designed for steam, it has holes on it and is not a flat surface. The bottom of the EasyPress is completely flat with no holes. Much better for applying even pressure to the surface of your project while transferring an image. The EasyPress is also square, not pointed like an iron. The square EasyPress design covers a larger surface area for pressing graphics than the iron which is designed for ironing small curves and points. For commercial applications, I recommend starting with an EasyPress, then upgrading to a commercial quality t-shirt heat press at a later time as your business grows.
13. Can I upload my own sewing patterns? Yes! Patterns can be uploaded to Design Space just like photos and cut on the Cricut Maker. I will show you how to do this in an upcoming tutorial.
14. Can I use my Maker with my mobile device? Yes, you can use a laptop, iPad or cell phone. I love using my Ipad with my Maker as it’s very user-friendly.
15. Is the Access membership included? There are hundreds of design files that are free in Cricut Design Space. However, if you want access to THOUSANDS of files you will need to purchase a membership. Cricut Access membership is only $7.99 a month. As much as I love to design, it is far easier and faster to have someone else do the design work.
Things I Wish I Knew
I wish I had known how much a machine like the Cricut Maker would change my crafting life! The Cricut is so much fun to use and I have used it for so many things. Besides my obsession with making t-shirts for my family, it’s also great for both quilting and sewing projects. The ability to cut pattern pieces with at least 2x faster cutting on this machine is such a time saver. Cutting fabric is so easy and the machine makes such wonderful clean cuts!
Beginner Cricut Project
I found these adorable jeans at the thrift store today. I would have overlooked them before as they had rips and holes in the front. As much as other people love the tattered look, it’s just not for me. But, I knew I could patch them in a jiffy using my Cricut.
These patches are made using pre-designed shapes in Design Space. Before I owned a Cricut, I had no idea how there would be thousands of pre-made designs for me to choose from while making projects. It is such a timesaver to simply log in and just search for what I need rather than design it myself. Did I mention that Cricut has its own fabric line with Riley Blake Fabrics? I love the coordinated fabrics as it saves me time in the fabric store.
Cricut can also cut different materials. Plastic, cardboard, paper, fabric, fleece, as well as so many others. Today I experimented cutting with heat bond. This product is ironed on to the back of the fabric, then cut into patches that are ironed on to the jeans. It’s a quick and easy way to fix your favorite jeans.
Patch Supplies Needed
• A pair of jeans in need of repair
•Cricut Designer fabric sampler by Riley Blake, Blue Carolina
•fusible heat bond
•embroidery floss for decorative stitching on edges (optional)
1. Iron the heat bond to the back of the fabric while using the cotton setting of the iron. (You could also use an EasyPress). Do not remove the paper backing.
2. Smooth the backed fabric onto the fabric mat. Use a roller for the best adhesion to the mat.
3. Download the patches design from Cricut Design Space here.
4. Cut the patches on the Cricut Maker as directed.
5. Peel off the paper backing from the heat bond on the back of the patches. Iron the patches onto your jeans using your iron on the cotton setting.
6. You can also add decorative stitching with embroidery thread around the patches if desired.
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Although this is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Cricut, the opinions and text are my own.