Cricut Vinyl Cutter Tutorial
The Cricut can be used by any user who has completed the General Workshop safety Certification and the Vinyl Cutter Quiz.
Welcome to the Cricut! It is less advanced than the Silhouette and is more beginner friendly while still doing an excellent job!
Step 1: Setting up your design
Create your vinyl cutter design
You have lots of options for creating a sticker design:
Open Cricut Design Studio on one of the makerspace computers
Select "New Projects
Import / create design
If you're going to upload a design, click "Upload" on the left side of the page.
There are also hundreds of free designs under Projects>Free
Select image type
Once you uploaded your design, there are 3 different complexity options to choose from when you upload a photo Simple, Moderately Complex, and Complex. These show different levels of the program's recognition of your object. Click on each and choose the one that shows the logo you wish to cut the clearest.
Then click Next
Here you will be able to choose what the machine will cut and what will be ignored. Use the "Select and Erase" tool or the "Eraser" tool to erase areas.
Think of Select and Erase as a point eraser and the eraser as a variable sized eraser. If you click an area that needs to be a hole in your design (like the center of an O) then it will "erase" this entire area.
In the example below, after erasing the Tiger, the machine will cut his outline.
When you're done, click Continue
Image after rough erasing
Image after rough erasing-preview of cut
On the "Print and Cut or Cut" Screen, you will select the "Cut" option and then click "Upload". This image will now be found in your image database.
Our machine cannot print, so the only option is to cut.
Select your image > click "Insert Image"
When your image is ready to be cut, click "Make It" in the top right corner. This will take you to the set up page for the cutter or the "Prepare" Screen.
Select the mat you wish to use, usually 12x12" but we also have 12x24", position your image on the screen, and hit "Continue".
Next you will see a processing screen. Follow those instructions and begin to set up the vinyl cutter itself.
Step 2: Setting up the cutter
Turn the machine on using the power button
If the machine is closed, press the "Open" button
Put vinyl on your mat
Place your vinyl on the cricut cutting mat, ensuring that it is even and well secured to the mat.
Loading the mat
Line the cutting mat up with the rollers on each side of the bar with the cutting blade, ensuring it is under the guides on each side.
Press the lit up double arrows and allow the machine to feed the cutting mat a few inches under the bar. It should be lined up just above the start of your vinyl.
Step 3: Cutting your design
Set the material for cutting
Ensure that the proper material is selected on the dial on the right side of the vinyl cutter.
If your design has already been sent over to the machine, click the blinking cricut symbol (middle button on the right side) and wait for your design to be completed.
Release mat when done
Once completed, press the lit up double arrow once more for the machine to eject the cutting mat.
Step 4: Finishing your design
The complexity of finishing your sticker is dependent on the complexity of the design you chose. If you have chosen a design with lots of small components this portion of the process may take significantly longer than a simple logo. This process is called "weeding".
Start your peeling from the top left corner. This helps you keep track of if your design is being pulled up or not.
Don't be afraid of using tools to assist you. Scissors can be helpful in minimizing the amount of excess vinyl you're handling while weeding away your design. If you have a large design you may want to cut the excess vinyl off every once in a while to keep it from sticking to your design and making the process harder.
If you have a lot of little pieces and want them to stay in the proper configuration, you can transfer your vinyl to transfer tape.
Unroll the transfer tape and place it over the sticker on the cut mat in one smooth motion so as to not include any bubbles.
Cut the transfer tape along the outline of the sticker backing with an xacto knife and re-roll the transfer tape onto its roll.
Always apply your stickers to a clean, dry surface. We recommend isopropyl alcohol and water along with a microfiber towel.
Peel the backing away from the sticker and transfer tape, then apply to a clean, dry surface.
Use a credit card or squeegee over the transfer tape/sticker on the preferred surface to encourage a clean transfer.