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Cricut Tips and Tricks for Easier and Better Crafting
Working with a Cricut is an amazing experience and anyone who owns a Cricut needs to find Cricut hacks that will help them work more effectively and efficiently. Over the years, we find out simple ways to make our crafting so much easier by finding better ways to use vinyl, paper, or even fabric.
The Cricut tips and tricks you need to know are often extremely difficult to find all in one place. Yes, you can ready a dozen or more blogs, find YouTube videos that explain some of them but you will not find many all in one place. Cricut hacks remind me of getting around the rules but in reality this is not the case. Whether you call them Cricut tips and tricks or Cricut hacks, the result will always be the same. They will be a better way to use your Cricut and its resources to make you crafting experience far more enjoyable!
Just the other day one of my students was talking about not being able to see the small cuts in one of her projects and therefore did not bother to "weed" the small pieces out and ironed on the design with those pieces intact.
I can imagine that she is not the only one that has had this issue.
If you look at Cricut hack # 3, you will find a simple solution to this issue. When you put this one into action, you will wonder why you had not thought about this one yourself!
In the article below you will find my top 10 hacks and if you want to know more, you can get my FREE Cricut tips and Tricks books by signing up for my newsletter.
Cricut Hack #1 - Touch That Dial
If you have an Explore Air 2 there is a dial where you can select your material. This can often be confusing as many of the material choices do not show on that dial. If you change the dial to Custom then Design Space will show a list of possible materials and give you the chance to pick the perfect material. From that point forward, you will have more control over how the Explore Air 2 cuts your project.
Cricut Hack #2 - Keep Everything Sharp
So many crafters never think of sharpening their blades and end up buying new blades! Most of us even buy trimmer blades more often than we need to. A simple Cricut tip will save you tons of time and money!
Roll up a tight ball of tin foil, make sure you pack it very tight. Depress the lever on your blade so it just sticks out but does not fall out. Stab the tin foil ball 50 plus times. This will remove any debris and also sharpen your blade. You can do this for your trimmer blade as well.
My blades have lasted longer than a year using this Cricut Tip.
Cricut Hack #3 Making Weeding Oh So Simple
Weeding is always a love or hate relationship. I know of several people that absolutely love weeding and go for all the complicated designs they can find. I am not in that category but I do not mind weeding, just don't over do it!
Some of the small pieces are really difficult to see and they often get missed! There is a Cricut Tip you can use to help you see everything that needs to be weeded.
Sprinkle talcum powder over your design after it has been cut and wipe off the excess. What is left behind will go in the cracks so they become visible. For an example, watch this YouTube video I made to show you this technique.
Cricut Hack #4 Save Time With One Mat
Even if you want to have you project cut in different colors you can place them all on the same mat (the material you are cutting should be the same, you cannot mix iron-on with kraft board etc.). You can change the colors on the Canvas so they land on the same mat or you can move objects to other mats after you have clicked on Make It.
Cricut Hack #5 Print and Cut
Don't get frustrated over print and cut projects, stay within the guidelines for the sizing on the Canvas. Always use an ink jet printer as they do not use heat to print on the paper. Laser printers fuse the ink to the paper with heat making it next to impossible for your Circuit read the registration lines that have been printed.
To make this even easier, print the registration box on white paper and they you can print the entire project on any color paper you wish. Cut out the center of the paper with the registration marks and tape it in place. The goal is to have your Cricut recognize the registration marks and then cut the design on the colored paper.
Cricut Tips & Shortcuts
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Cricut Hack #6 Weld My Text
It is one thing to add text, adjust it, line it up the way you want then group and attach it. If you plan on adjusting the text again, then this is the perfect thing to do. If you will not be adjusting it again, I suggest that you make a copy of the text (just in case you want to go back) and hide the original. Use the copy, select it and weld the text together. This will make it one object for cut or draw - depending on your design. This one object is less of a burden on your computer memory and the way Cricut Design Space handles your text.
Cricut Hack #7 Deepen The Score
When I use my Explore Air 2 I often find that the score line is not seep enough to really make folding easy. I often have to fight with the fold to get it exactly the way I want it. An easy Cricut Tip here is the make multiple score lines on top of each other so that the scoring tool passes over the same spot several times. I find that 4 passes works the best for me when I am making cards and the folding is crucial to having my card look more professional. You can do this with almost any project or as a bonus, you can use it to deboss for an even better look.
Cricut Hack #8 Keep The Ink Flowing
I have dozens of Cricut pens and I really like it when they work each and every time (unless they are out of ink). Simply store the pens upside down so the ink flows much better.
Nothing is worse than wanting to use a specific color and finding that the ink in not near the nib!
BTW load the pen in at a 45 degree angle - this really makes a difference in how the ink flows.
Cricut Hack #9 Draw The Cut
Iron-on projects sometimes have a weeding problem and a matching problem when it comes to making sure the design pieces all fit together. If you cannot see the cut lines and do not want to add talcum powder on top (it will destroy the seal of the iron-on because it is like lint on a project), set a new set of cut lines, change them to draw and draw the same lines over the top of the cut - makes it so much easier to see when adjusting and weeding. Make sure you use a pen that will not mark your design when ironed on.
Cricut Hack #10 Seal The Deal
Stenciling is something we all love to do (at least for me anyway) and making sure the paint does not seep through you can try a couple of options. If you are using wood, you should seal the wood first - I use Mod Podge then apply the vinyl stencil to the wood. Even though the vinyl sticks to the wood it will leak unless the surface below is sealed. Just paint over top of the sealed (and dried surface) and it should not leak through. The result will be a stunning professional looking piece!