The Cricut personal die-cutting machine, manufactured by Provo Craft, offers crafters a wide variety of possibilities for creating custom embellishments, home decor and more without using a computer. The Cricut’s themed cartridges, which include hundreds of fully customizable images and fonts, allow you cut paper, fabric, vinyl chipboard and other materials into shapes and letters.
Scrapbookers and paper crafters can use the Cricut to create custom titles and embellishments for scrapbook layouts and cards. Depending on the model of Cricut machine you have, you can cut letters as small as ½ inch up to 24 inches high. Using the die-cut letters, you can spell out words for a title, photo captions or embellishments. You can also cut shapes, photo mats and borders to enhance your pages. For example, if you are creating a page about a beach vacation, the “Life Is A Beach” cartridge contains beach- and ocean-themed images that you can cut and add to the page.
With the deep-housing blade, sold as an accessory to the Cricut, you can cut fabric with the machine. Use the die-cut images as appliques on sewing projects, or adhere them to your paper crafts to add texture. For example, create a custom holiday kitchen towel or placemat set by cutting holiday-themed appliques from fabric using the “Winter Wonderland” or “Gingerbread” cartridges, or add a whimsical touch to baby pajamas with images cut from a baby- or animal-themed cartridge.
Vinyl wall decor is a growing trend in home decorating, and you can create your own custom designs with a Cricut machine and sheets of vinyl. You can cut images to decorate your walls, or cut a favorite word or quotation in your favorite font. Cricut vinyl is removable, so you can create wall decor to decorate for a holiday or special event or redecorate whenever you wish. For more permanent home decor, cut stencils with the Cricut using thin sheets of acetate or Cricut stencil paper and paint on walls, furniture or other items, just as you would with a store-bought stencil.
Several Cricut cartridges offer designs for creating three-dimensional objects, such as boxes, gift bags, cupcake wrappers, party hats and more. The “Once Upon a Princess” cartridge, for example, includes images and instructions to create a custom princess palace, royal wand and crown. You can also cut custom-sized envelopes, gift cardholders or shaped cards using features available on most Cricut cartridges.
An adjunct instructor at Central Maine Community College, Kristen Hamlin is also a freelance writer on topics including lifestyle, education, and business. She is the author of Graduate! Everything You Need to Succeed After College (Capital Books), and her work has appeared in Lewiston Auburn Magazine, Young Money, USA Today and a variety of online outlets. She has a B.A. in Communication from Stonehill College, and a Master of Liberal Studies in Creative Writing from the University of Denver.