So the fine folks at Provo Craft and Today's Mama hooked me up with a shiny new Cricut Expression electronic die cutting system. After all these years in the scrapbook industry, would you believe I'd never even seen one in action? That I truly had no real understanding of what it even did? Well brothers and sisters: BELIEVE.
When the box arrived, I pulled it all out, and with minimal effort, set everything up and then just sat and stared at it. Now what?
I decided to start out super simple. Because let's be honest: what the heck am I going to make with this? I mean, I'm a simple scrapbooker, remember?
Being a fan of type, I plugged in the Plantin Schoolbook cartridge and set out to make my first project—a layout about my recent summer vacation. I designed a simple gathering of photos, grabbed a sheet of Hambly Little Circles paper and loaded it into the machine.
The Cricut takes very little time to figure out, even for a die-cutting newbie like me. And when you hit the Cut button, it's pretty much magical. HOW DOES IS KNOW TO DO THIS? That's pretty much my standard reaction to any new technology in my world.
And so, I created my first page, courtesy of the Cricut (click on the page to see it larger):
Then it hit me: with a set size of die cuts, you have one size to work with, but with the Cricut, you have whatever size you want. I love that you can use multiple sizes of the type as seen in the title here, and the "09." That is super cool. I also loaded up the Accent Essentials cartridge to add in a few shapes—the curvy arrow and the journaling card—to complete the look.
With my new-found confidence, it was time to branch out with a new cartridge and a new project. The cartridge? From My Kitchen. The project? A new idea for a recipe card design. As you may recall, I love me some well designed recipe cards. And it turned out, if I may be so bold, ADORABLE:
Seriously? For cute, right? I love the idea of combining a cool, streamlined design, and then adding a few die cuts.
Hello tiny salt & pepper. Aren't you just adorable? Well yes you are!
Now that I was feeling superior and fearless, it was time to conquer another crafting rite of passage: the greeting card. I had recently seen a usage of the Cricut on a set of bookmarks and tags and I absolutely loved the minimalism of it, which inspired me to create these cards using the Winter Woodland cartridge:
Okay, seriously? If you are on my Christmas list this year, and if I commit to sending cards, the kraft card with the reindeer will be showing up on your doorstep. Seriously. How simple and elegant is that?
In the end, I have officially branched out in my creative crafting. Die cuts are my friend. Thank you, Cricut.
Oh yeah, and it makes the cutest little chirping noise you've ever heard.