I have been wanting a Cricut machine for years! I just never got around to buying one because cartridges weren’t readily available here and I figured it would be pointless to have the machine if I couldn’t get the cartridges I wanted. But then, last year, Cricut came out with their latest (and most awesome) machine – the Cricut Explore and I knew I had to have it.
The Cricut Explore followed by the Cricut Explore Air are the latest machines in the cricut electronic cutting family. These are incredible models because they combine the Cricut cutting machine with the Cricut Design Space (whereas before you relied on Cricut cartridges). With the Explore series you can use the free online design software to help you make beautiful polished DIY projects.
Plus, once you sign up for Design Space you have access to hundreds of ready-to-make projects and over 50,000 images from the Cricut library that you can use in your projects. You can even upload your own images and cut those by calibrating your image and using the print-then-cut feature. And if you already own Cricut cartridges you can still use those too! It’s the perfect all-in-one machine!
This machine combined all the features I had found lacking in the prior models so there was really no more reason I shouldn’t finally own one! Yay! I bought my Explore at Hobby Lobby in Arizona (more on that haven later!) and I didn’t have to worry because it was auto-voltage so no need for a transformer. Here’s a look at the sleek cutting machine.
On the right is the “Power” button as well as the “Load”, “Cut”, and “Pause” buttons. It also has the dial which you turn to signal to the machine what type of material you are cutting. You can cut paper, vinyl, fabric, cardstock, and more.
It’s actually really quite simple to setup and understand and believe me I am usually always confused with instructional manuals. But I got the Cricut setup pretty easily, and was able to get Design Space running on my laptop.
The software already has so much installed. You’ll end up wanting to make everything! There are several pre-made projects you can purchase and load by the Cricut Design Team including greeting cards, paper crafts, party materials (who-hoo!), and more.
For my inaugural project, I decided to use the machine to cut snowflakes for Bella’s Frozen birthday party. Cutting them by hand would take way too long since I needed well over a hundred pieces in varying sizes. So I looked for an existing snowflake design on the software (there were several) and chose one. I sized it on the software, loaded up my cardstock on the machine, and press “Cut”.
It was that easy! I made several sizes of snowflakes and used them all throughout the party. One of my favorite uses was in these blue snowflake plates. They were the perfect accent to blue plastic party plates.
That was just my first try on the Cricut Explore, and I can’t wait to make more! Will try a print and cut project next and share the results. In the meantime, I think I’ll go and daydream about all the possibilities!
(I’m not sure if the Explore is currently available in stores in the Philippines, but you can get great deals on Ebay in the United States for it and of course on Amazon. If you don’t have a credit card you can use to order internationally – you can also order via Gmet Trading, which is a local business that orders items from the U.S. – I’ll write more about them very soon!)