Here are 5 simple tips for getting started with the Cricut Explore electronic cutter!
Take Your Time
Confession time. When I get a new toy (usually some sort of crafting tool or supply) I get SO EXCITED THAT I DON’T EVEN READ THE DIRECTIONS AND I USUALLY MESS SOMETHING UP AND HAVE TO GO BACK AND READ THEM ANYWAY! (Whew!) Well, I was guilty of this on my first run with the Cricut Explore. The machine IS very intuitive and easy to use, but there are a few things you need to do before getting started. Insert your blade, make sure you’re using the correct mat and the correct settings for your material. Which leads me to step 2…
Test your materials
This goes right along with taking your time. That super-amazing little settings knob is so easy to set that I actually forgot to do it and had a huge #craftfail when I tried to cut felt for these masks: So my tip is to ALWAYS test your material before starting a new project until you get a feel for how each material cuts. I’m so glad I only ruined this small scrap of felt instead of the whole mask!
For tips on cutting different materials, check out this AMAZING resource by our friend Rebecca at Crafted Sparrow:
Try Something New
Speaking of materials, did you know you can cut WAY more than what’s shown on the setting dial? (I totally didn’t!) When you are in Cricut Design Space, just make sure you select the correct material in the drop-down menu shown below. You can also customize the exact amount of pressure and times the material is cut, too! Holly explains how to do that here.
Use your own designs
This might seem like a no-brainer, but it’s a huge feature of the Cricut Explore – you can cut any design you want! Whether you combine shapes you’ve purchased and text using your favorite fonts, or convert a design to an SVG file, the options for custom, original projects are endless! Holly created this beautiful sign (inspired by the popular phrase from Cinderella) by using her own fonts and creating the design in Cricut Design Space. Get the tutorial by clicking here!
Just Say NO to Curls
I wish I would have had this tip years ago when I got my first electronic cutter! The fabulous Mandy from Vintage Revivals shared this tip with us. If you’ve ever peeled off some newly cut cardstock from your sticky mat and been left with a curly mess, listen up! All you have to do is bend the mat instead of the material. In other words, keep the material flat and let the mat take all the curling! It’s an easy tip but it’s soooo helpful!
I hope these 5 tips help you be successful and have fun creating with your Cricut Expolore! You can find the Cricut Explore and all the accessories at JoAnn Fabric & Craft.
Good luck! You can comment here or email us if you have any questions!