A couple weeks ago, my wife and I bought the Cricut Expressions personal cutter. Basically, this is a cnc cutter used to cut paper, vinyl, and other thin materials. Scrapbookers use this machine to cut shapes and stencils when putting together scrapbook pages.
By using a program called Sure Cuts A Lot (SCAL), you can hook the Cricut up to our computer. It works just like a printer. But instead of printing, you’re cutting your own designs. SCAL can use any font (including dingbats) and can import a number of different graphic files. I use Inkscape to create my designs and import the SVG file directly into SCAL. Then I organize the layers so I can cut the appropriate papers. Then I click the Cut button and away it goes.
This is a really cool machine. It is so much fun to play with. I spent the weekend trying out different things. I’ve designed a couple cards (Valentine’s Day is coming up), cut name tags, bookmarks, some of my scroll saw patterns out of paper, and even cut some stencils so I can etch glass. I’m always getting new ideas on elements I can incorporate into my projects. This is really a neat tool to add to your crafting arsenal. I look forward to sharing some projects where I used the Cricut in future posts. Hopefully that will spark a few ideas for yourself.
We bought our Cricut on Amazon for $225. While the cartridges are ridiculous, spending the extra money on Sure Cuts A Lot pretty much frees you from spending your hard earned money on those cartridges. But if you decide you want a few anyway, I found eBay is the best place to find them at decent prices.
Note: SCAL no longer supports the Cricut Personal Cutter.
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