8 Important Cricut Tips for Beginners!

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Are you just getting started with a Cricut cutting machine? Here are 8 important tips you'll want to know!

Maybe you’ve just purchased a Cricut, or maybe you’ve been using it for years – either way, there’s always something new to learn! The Cricut is the ultimate cutting machine for designing creative projects. It doesn’t matter if you’re a beginning DIYer or an expert… you can create all sorts of projects for home décor, parties/events, weddings, fashion, scrapbooking, and more.

This particular article addresses Cricut tips for beginners, but even seasoned users may find tips here they’ve never known before. Here are 8 tips for getting started with your Cricut. You’ll be so glad you read them!

Do a Test Cut

It’s important to always have a little bit of extra material (whatever you’re cutting) available to do test cuts. It’s easy to be lazy and forget to do this part, but you don’t want to complete an entire design and find out that the blade hasn’t cut all the way through. Test cuts are important.

Double Check Your Settings

You can cut the following materials with your Cricut Explore (as per the Cricut website):

  • Paper - Standard, Cardstock, Vellum, Poster Board
  • Vinyl - Standard, Premium, Dry Erase, Chalkboard
  • Iron-On - Heat-Transfer Vinyl (HTV)
  • Craft Materials - Washi Tape, Craft Foam, Glitter Paper
  • Upcycled Materials - Chipboard, Cereal Boxes, Aluminum Cans
  • Fabric - Felt, Denim, Polyester, Burlap, Canvas
  • Plastic - Stencil, Window Acetate, Silicone
  • Thick Materials - Leather, Balsa Wood, Magnet Materials

The Cricut website and Cricut Design Space list cut settings for hundreds of materials, including the blade type and cutting mat you should use. Refer to these settings regularly.

Get Free SVG Files

Tons of blogs and websites have free SVG files available. You can purchase many items in Cricut Design Space, but it’s nice to enhance your library with the many free files that you can find online.

Keep Your Machine Clean

Your cutting machine was expensive, so take good care of it! Clean working parts using non-alcohol baby wipes (look for videos online). You should also clean the blade housing regularly. You can use compressed air for this portion. Don’t forget to keep your machine shut and covered when not in use. Treat your machine with care as you would a computer – that’s basically what it is!

Care for Your Mats

Your cutting mat is the key to success with your Cricut. If you don’t take proper care of your mat, you’ll find that it will ruin quickly and you’ll end up buying a new one before you need to. So here’s what you need to do:

  • Wipe down the mat with non-alcohol baby wipes between each use

  • Only use Cricut tools (or similar) on your mat; never use a cutting knife on it!

  • Once you mat loses its stick, wash with mild soap and warm water. Then use repositionable adhesive to make your mat sticky again.

  • Store your mats in a clean, dry place with the plastic that comes with them on top.

Take Courses Online

This can be especially important for learning Cricut Design Space, which has a learning curve to navigate. Do a search for “Cricut online classes” and you’ll find a wealth of information available – ranging from basics on using the machine to completing specific projects.

Get a Cricut Access Subscription

The Cricut Access subscription has three levels available at various price points, typically around $10 a month if you pay annually. You can choose from 370+ fonts and over 30,000 images (including exclusives). Discounts on digital purchases and physical products are also available depending on the level. This subscription is well worth it if you use your machine regularly.

Practice, Practice, Practice

The only way to get more comfortable with your machine is to use it regularly! If you’re a beginner, make it a point to do something on your Cricut at least once a week. You’ve invested money into your craft, now you need to invest the time. The more you use your Cricut, the more you’ll enjoy it, and the more advanced projects you’ll be able to make!

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You'll Love the Cricut

This cutting machine will bring out the best of your creativity and you'll love designing with it - all you need to do is jump in!