Saturday, 28 February 2015

Star Birthday Card

This card was made with my Cricut Explorer with Hunkydory papers. I love how this turned out, great for males and females birthday cards. I'm really loving the drawing function and added in a faux stitch by using a lot of hypens and rotating them for the two sides. 

Wednesday, 18 February 2015

Adoption Card

My husbads Mum and Step-Dad have fostered a boy for a few years now and today the adoption has gone through so I made this card. It's really hard to find a verse for this type of occasion so I ended up making one myself while drying my hair yesterday. 

I used a free SVG from Sure Cuts A Lot for the puzzle, it was 3 x 3 but it wouldn't fit so I rearranged it to make 3 x 2. I used coredinations card stock for the puzzle. The text was written using the Cricut Explore.

This Years Valentines Card

Here is this years valentines card which I made for my husband. I cut a card blank using my Cricut Explore and used the writing feature to add the text at the same time. I then cut out a heart and covered it in red buttons (I've got a huge bag full!)

The card is quite heavy so has to be opened quite a lot to make it stand up.

Update the review for the Cricut Explore

I've now had my Cricut Explore for 2 months nearly and have had a chance to use a number of functions so I thought I'd post an updated review, especially given the fact Cricut have now announced a new Cricut Explore (although from what I've seen it just makes it wireless without needed a wireless adaptor, so not much difference.)

Firstly I have actually used this Cricut more than I used my Cricut Mini as the cuts are far superior. Even though it's bigger, I like the fact I can make it wireless so I've got more space on my desk when cutting.

I had a few issues when I first got it due to the mat being bent but having contacted Provocraft they kindly sent me out a replacement (actually 2 new mats!) after I gave them proof of purchase and my machine serial number. Brilliant customer service! 

I also ordered the heavy duty and lighter mats along with a scoring tool from a shop on eBay but after waiting 2 weeks it never turned up so they kindly sent out a replacement but had no more scoring tools (these seem to be hard to get hold of) but I managed to get one via Amazon.

I've not really read any guides or instructions for the Cricut Explore and here are a few things I have learnt while using it:

- When cutting Crafters Companion Centura Pearl card it won't cut cleanly on the cardstock or cardstock+ setting however on the glitter cardstock setting it does it perfectly as it does a double cut (ie it cuts once then goes over again)

- For print and cut items there is a maximum size for cutting depending on the web browser you're using. I found this out as I printed Donald Ducks boat out for a card so it was around A5 size, it printed fine, I put it in the Cricut and it scanned the lines then said it was finished and didn't cut anything out! On searching I found this

- When adding text there is a filter to show only 'handwriting' styles of text so that when using a pen in your Cricut it won't just do an outline. There is a little triangle at the top of the text box and you can choose 'has a writing style' and then all the fonts which have an option to just do a line style font will show (this blog has a great section on it

I'm still learning new things while using the Cricut and managed to cut a cardblank, add in text on the front and back, then I crafted as normal and it gave a brilliant result. 

I also used the writing font to address an envelope and it looked so cool although I found that it didn't finish off an 'O' and instead left it like a 'C' which was odd so I had to write it in myself.

Talking of the pens, I have tried a few pens out now as I didn't particularly like the Cricut pen which came with the machine as you could see where the pen started and finished each letter. I also tried Crayola fine line pens which worked a bit better than the Cricut pen (and were only £2.50 for 10) 

However the best pens I've used so far have been Pilot V5 Needlepoint Liquid Ink Rollerball Pens. I brought 3 for £4.50 on Amazon and they fit perfectly and write lovely (see the heart card earlier in this post for an example). Although colours are limited in these I don't find a need for any other colours. It might be nice to have a white, silver or gold maybe to write on black card, but not necessary really. I used the pens on Centura Pearl and was wary that the ink may be wet, but it dried almost instantly (I would say instantly actually but I didn't touch it until it came out the machine)

I'm looking forward to cutting some fabric at some point in it and will post the results on here. I'm so glad I brought this, you certainly get what you pay for! I've got rid of my Big Shot and all my dies now as this does an amazing job and with the Cricut subscription I have access to so many images and cuts PLUS I can add in my own images to cut, the possibilities are endless. 

Thursday, 12 February 2015

Vinyl Phone Case Decoration

Both my sister and I have Griffin Survivor iPhone cases as we always drop them (on the floor or in water) but they look boring and we wanted to jazz them up a bit. I used the silver vinyl from the Cricut Explore starter set and chose a Little Mermaid text design for mine from a Cricut cartridge, and my sister had a Tinkerbell silhouette I uploaded myself. 

The designs stuck well for the first day but then started moving and letters started coming off mine, and the wand on Laura's Tinkerbell moved too. I think it's due to the material used for the phone case as it's not got a completely smooth surface. I think a stronger vinyl may work better or if I used the vinyl as a stencil and then painted through it. Vinyl sticks fine to other phone cases, I just think our cases that have a problem with the vinyl.