Quick & Easy Sewing with the Cricut Maker: A Review

This post is sponsored by Cricut. The opinions expressed in this post are my own. Affiliate links are included.

If you remember back to last summer, Cricut partnered with several sewing bloggers to initiate a #SewCricut collaboration. I was one of the fortunate few that were asked to try the Cricut Air Explore 2 and blog about a sewing project I created with the help from the Cricut machine. You can read my post and see photos of what I made here.

Well, lucky me…again! This time they sent the new Cricut Maker machine and asked that I share a review of the newest cutting machine in their lineup. I played around with the new Maker for about a month to get comfortable enough to share my thoughts. I’ll be back again in March to show you a sewing project I created with the Cricut Maker’s help so stay tuned for that follow up post!

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First, let’s talk about the details of the Cricut Maker and what sets it apart from the other cutting machines.

  • Most notably: Easily and quickly cuts through hundreds of fabric types without stabilizers needed using a rotary blade.
  • Compatible with hundreds of digital sewing patterns available in Cricut Design Space, including patterns from Simplicity and Riley Blake.
  • Easily and quickly marks seam allowances on fabric with the Washable Fabric pen.
  • Double Tool Holder means you can go from marking to cutting the fabric without having to change a thing!
  • New Adaptive Tool System™ with 10x the cutting force.
  • Can cut through many more materials such as leather, mat board, vinyl, paper, etc.
  • Thoughtful storage compartments on the top and in front flap.
  • Tablet or phone dock as well as a usb port to charge devices.

Here’s how the Cricut Maker can help you to complete sewing projects quickly and easily:

The fabric no longer needs to be bonded to something like stabilizer in order for the machine to cut it. The Cricut Maker has a rotary blade tool that works just like your handheld rotary blade. It’s super precise and can cut curves, tight corners, etc. without a snag! This means you can put your fabric directly on the mat and with a press of a button your pattern pieces can be cut out with precision and speed!

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The machine also can mark seam allowances and stitching lines with the Washable Fabric pen. When sewing small projects like doll clothes, accessories and such, having a clear seam allowance guide is super helpful. Since the pen and rotary blade can be in the tool system at the same time, you don’t have to change out anything in between tasks.

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The patterns in Design Space have step-by-step directions including size of fabric cuts, extra materials that may be needed, what to load on each mat, how to assemble (including full color photos), tips and also approximate time needed to complete the project. There is also the option to upload your own patterns, but I have yet to try this feature.

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For those sewing small projects like doll clothing, wallets and purses, hair accessories, small quilts, stuffed animals, baby shoes, etc. the Cricut Maker can cut out most if not all of your fabric pieces saving you tons time and energy! Also, Cricut has a super handy sewing kit that comes with the essential tools needed while sewing with the Cricut Maker.

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Here are a few photos to show you my first attempt at using the Cricut Maker for a sewing project. The Vintage Fabric Bunting Banner project is available in Design Space here.


Now to my thoughts on the Cricut Maker:

I really appreciate the extra storage, usb charging port and the increased cutting speed. Sometimes it’s the little things that totally win me over!

I am excited to utilize the rotary blade and sewing patterns to continue to help my 8 year old become an independent sewist. One area that tends to give me the most worry is having her cut out the projects as she is still developing her scissor cutting skills and isn’t quite mature enough to use a handheld rotary cutter. Having that step done safely and quickly with the Cricut Maker will allow us to spend more time working on her sewing skills and keeping her little fingers safe.

The larger fabric cutting mat (12″ x 24″) really opens up the possibilities in terms of sewing project size. No need to be constrained to tiny projects!

Cricut Design Space seems to be so intuitive for me to use and I love that the machine comes with a starter project. As soon as you plug your Cricut in and connect to a device, it literally walks you through a step by step project (materials included) to get you comfortable with the main features of the machine. The Cricut Maker came with a really great card with a small fabric feature. In completing the project, I learned how to install the pen to the tool dock, use multiple mats specific to the type of material used, install the rotary blade to cut fabric, and assemble a multi-layered project. In 5 minutes, I had a really great overview of how I can use the Cricut Maker to create amazing projects.

The Cricut Maker isn’t only for fabric- I’ve used mine so many times in the last month for all sorts of projects. I linked to the projects in Design Space so you can easily re-create them too!

Last minute Valentine’s Cards for my kids (last minute as in 10 pm on February 13th with a 10:35 pm bedtime!) with Natalie Malan’s paper.

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Personalized map artwork for my master bedroom with vinyl.

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100th Day of School tees for my kids (with their help!) using Iron On.

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A new front door mat using a stencil made from cardstock.

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I hope you found this review helpful and inspirational! Please let me know if you have further questions about the Maker and I will do my best to address them in the follow up post coming at the beginning of March. I’d love to hear your thoughts on this new cutting machine! Tell me your favorite feature or what you hope to sew using the Cricut Maker in the comments below!

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This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Cricut. The opinions and text are all mine.

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{Cricut Blog Tour] Sewing for Vacay Tutorial & Giveaway!

This post is sponsored by Cricut. The opinions expressed in this post are my own. Affiliate links are included.

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Hey all!!! I hope you are enjoying your summer- soaking up the sun and warm air, getting to explore the great outdoors and spending lots of quality time with loved ones. If you’re anything like me, you’re planning out a great summer vacation and may be in need of some festive and fun new gear! Today I’ll be sharing a quick and easy tutorial using the new Cricut Explore Air 2 machine, some exciting new iron-on vinyl sheets and the Cricut Design Space. Be sure to read all the way to the bottom to see the entire Sewing with Cricut Blog Tour lineup and enter to win a Cricut Explore Air 2 for you!

My family and I were heading out for a road trip around Southern California so in my clever and creative mind, I planned out this super fun new vacation tote to showcase my Cricut vinyl design.

Before I could start my Cricut project, I quickly sewed up this awesome new tote bag from Art Gallery Fabrics Yuma Lemons Mist in Canvas using this tutorial.

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If you’re new to using a Cricut machine or just want to see what it’s all about, read on to see how quick and easy it is to create a super fun, personalized iron-on decal. If you plan on shopping for some new Cricut gear, use coupon code “ChristmasInJuly” Free shipping for US orders!!!


Creating an Iron-On Decal with Cricut

Supplies (affiliate links):

Before you start designing your decal, first measure the space available for your intended layout. I like to do this first so that I can plan my design from the start using the final dimensions. Sometimes projects look great on screen but when transferred to the size and layout of the space you actually have available, it just doesn’t jive. Once you have your measurements for your decal canvas, it’s time to get the party started!

If you want to customize your decal read on or you can just download my design and get to cutting!

Let’s start by opening up the Cricut Design Space and creating the decal design. The Design Space is super user friendly, really intuitive and basically will walk you through step by step how to go from design to finished cut.

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After I designed the decal, I color coded each vinyl layer in the design so that it would populate all the same layer letters onto one cutting mat. Click “Make It” and the Design Space quickly and easily formats your cutting mat template for you. 

Be sure to click to mirror the design so when it is transferred onto the tote it will read left to right.

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I don’t like to waste any vinyl so I look at the cutting mat layout in Design Space and cut the vinyl to the same dimensions, with just a tiny bit of wiggle room on each side. Transfer the vinyl onto the cutting mat, with the colored side down. Do not peel off the liner at this time.

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You’re ready to load into the Cricut machine! Follow the prompts in Design Space to cut your first vinyl layer. Again, be sure you’ve toggled the “mirror design” switch!!!! Side note- how gorgeous is that mint colored machine?!?!! LOVE!

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Unload the mat and get ready to weed the cut design. I start by peeling off the negative space from the liner (the clear plastic), leaving the design on the cutting mat. I use the handy Cricut Weeding Tool to carefully weed out the rest of the unwanted vinyl. Repeat until you have all the layers of your design cut and weeded.

Next, you’ll lay out the bottom-most layer of your design onto your project. I used these great little Cricut Scissors to cut my design into sections to transfer onto the tote.

Transferring the vinyl from the liner to the tote bag takes care and control to ensure your finished product is straight, well pressed but not melted, and looks incredible. Place the decal on the tote with the vinyl facing up and reading from left to right. I layer my vinyl layers before I start ironing to ensure everything will look the way I want it to once I put all the layers together. If everything is good to go, grab your iron and let’s finish this project up!

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Using an iron on the cotton/linen setting with the steam setting OFF and a pressing cloth, apply heat to the design for about 15-30 seconds. You’ll want to add a light pressure and be sure to pick up your iron and move to the next section rather than swiping across the pressing cloth (NOTE: Use a pressing cloth that is either white or from the same fabric as your project. I used a dark strip of fabric just so it would show up more in the tutorial photos.) After your bottom layer of vinyl is adhered to your tote, you’ll turn the tote inside out and press again from the inside for 15-20 seconds.

Let the area cool and then peel off the liner and admire that gorgeous decal!!! You’ll repeat the transferring steps until all the layers of your design have been adhered. Don’t rush things- not waiting for the layer to cool before applying another layer may result in melted vinyl or bubbling.

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Pack your new tote with a towel, your sunnies and a good book and head to the pool! Before you head out, be sure to hop down this post and enter to win a Cricut Explore Air 2 of your own!


Enter to Win a Cricut Explore Air 2 HERE

Week One: July 19th

Week Two: July 26th

I was invited to participate in the Cricut Party Blogger Program Kickoff.  

This experience is based strictly on my opinion.  Others may have a different opinion or experience with the product listed above.  I was provided the sample free of charge by the company or PR agency and I have given my honest opinion.

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Cricut. The opinions and text are all mine.

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