My New Toy – The Cricut Joy

Cricut is an American brand of cutting plotters, or computer-controlled cutting machines, designed for home crafters. The machines are used for cutting paper, felt, vinyl, fabric, and other materials such as leather, matboard, and wood.

First Time Experience with the Cricut

In 2020, I bought a Cricut to open an Etsy store and I returned it after 5 days. Without paying for the membership account to use certain images and designs, I found the Cricut limiting. My final stray was trying to make cards on the Cricut where the card was getting stuck, and I could not get the end result after a box of wasted cards.

The images below are cards I tried to make. I had worked with all the images on the photoshop application and they did not work. At the time, I thought working with JPGs on the Cricut was okay and now I know it is better to use Illustrator for the Cricut.

If at first you do not succeed, try again

In 2021, I bought the Cricut Joy again and this time, I am actually using it. I have so many SVG files that actually work nicely on the Joy. What truly helped me this time around was researching the Cricut a little more on YouTube. I saw more things I could do with it and this time I had a plan.

The Cricut Joy might be small, but it’s not super cheap. Neither are the materials you’ll be told you need to make your projects. There’s a big advantage to the small size. It absolutely makes it worth it if it fits your wants and needs. Here are 4 Things that might make you consider one:

  1. It’s less than half the price of the Maker ($178 versus $350+), making it a great option for people wanting to get their feet wet with smart cutting machines without investing a large amount of money.
  2. It’s super portable, so you can craft anywhere. Even if you already have one of Cricut’s larger machines, the Joy would be great for craft shows and events where you need to create small, custom pieces fast.
  3. Trying to perfectly place material on a mat is my least favorite part of the Cricut process, but the Joy accepts smart vinyl, meaning it’s already on a paper backing that’s thick enough to run through the machine without a mat. Total time-saver.
  4. The Joy can cut material up to 20 feet in length, meaning you could make wallpaper borders, banners and other large-scale decor without having to babysit your machine to swap mats and then piece together the final result. You could also use it to make bulk labels or stickers.