I have a new toy, and I LOVE it. I’ve been the proud owner of a Cricut Explore Air for about a month, and it’s been a total game changer.
I stumbled on the Cricut by accident. I have this dirty little secret- I am a planner addict. I keep an obsessively organized schedule, in the prettiest planner I could find, complete with cute, colorful stickers. I hang out in a Facebook group with thousands of other planner addicts, and they all talk about making their own stickers. I asked Cricut if they would be willing to let me test drive one of these machines, and what do you know, a week later, I had two massive boxes on my front porch.
I opened up the boxes, and about had a heart attack. There was SO much in them! There is vinyl, paper, sticker paper, dry erase paper, felt, and fancy markers and so much more. To be honest, I had no idea what to do with any of it. I just wanted to make some stickers!
Luckily, when you start the machine up for the first time, a paper card project is all ready to go. It walks you through the process to teach you how to use the design space, and ultimately, make super cool crafts.
Some helpful tools to get you started:
So how does it work?
I have to confess that I’ve had this machine a month, and I am still learning. It’s not that it’s overly complicated, it’s just that there are so many things that it CAN do…. and I have no idea where to even start. I’ve made a few things so far this month, cards, cute wall decor for thanksgiving, a vinyl sign for the front door, and of course, tons of stickers. I’ve also made a fair amount of new-user mistakes… putting materials on the cutting mat upside down, using the wrong cut setting, printing at the wrong quality setting… but a learning curve is to be expected!
For the purposes of this review, I want to show you how to use the “print then cut” feature of the machine, because I sell/giveaway printables, and by golly, this makes life so much easier!
To make planner stickers, I designed the elements I wanted in photoshop, and saved them as a .png file. I made sure to leave a transparent background, so the images are nice and clean.
Then, you upload them into Cricut design space, where you can clean up any elements you want cut out, and save the image as a “Print then Cut” image.
Finally, you insert that image into the design space, size it and line it up the way you want it, and then GO! You’ll want to google what the maximum image size for your machine and browser is when you do this step to be sure you aren’t making it too large for the machine to handle. The machine needs to be able to make calibration marks on the sheet, so be aware of this when you are placing and sizing your elements.
The software makes everything really easy. This screen walks you though the cutting process. Print it with your home computer, and then place it into the machine to be cut. “Kiss cutting” (cutting the sticker but not the backing) is easy with the machine, because there is a setting for everything!
I am going to save SO much money using this machine instead of buying stickers on Etsy. I’m daydreaming about all the ways it can save me time on all the printables I make as well! Cutting those bad boys out takes FOREVER! Not any more!
I loved making these tiny flag stickers for my Erin Condren planner (save $10 here) with the Cricut! You can get the downloadable file in our shop, and if you have a machine of your own, make some payday stickers for you. These are tiny, and fit just perfect in the corner of the daily boxes. Technically, you could print and cut on your own if you didn’t have a machine…. but the machine makes it so much easier! All you need to do is upload the PNG as an image, and then go ahead and Print and Cut that bad boy!
Looking for a planner? Look no more.
Please remember that our printables are all copyright protected. You may use these for personal use, but you may not host the file anywhere, email it to friends, upload it to Facebook groups, or print and sell these stickers in any way. Help the friendly neighborhood blogger out, and send your friends here to grab their own.