Tuesday, July 27, 2010
This week's CraftShare topic is a new favorite for me, Die Cut Crafts. I'd always assumed cutting machines were just for scrapbooking, but there is so much more you can do with them - decor, frames, cards, signs, boxes, bags, invitations, school projects and the list goes on. So I figured it would be worth it to get one. When I was trying to figure out what to try the big question was what kind would be best?
Manual vs. Electronic Cutting Machines
When I finally decided to take the plunge into a machine I got a Cuttlebug manual cutter & a bunch of die cuts & embossers for it. It's pretty reasonable in price and if you just want to do small scale stuff like cards & scrapbooking, it's ideal. The downside is that you're limited in size to whatever the die sizes & shapes are. It was a good starting point, but I wanted to expand a bit.
Since I do a lot of crafting, have a small business & we homeschool, I then upgraded to a Cricut Expression and LOVE it. I was really psyched about all the size & design options it provided, but wasn't sure how I'd be able to avoid spending a small fortune on cartridges. So after some online researching, my fabulous husband found the ideal solution: Sure Cuts A Lot.
This amazing software works with your Cricut machine so that you can cut out your own designs, use inexpensive svg files or free artwork/fonts online without having to shell out for a bunch of pricey cartridges you may not use very often. I couldn't believe it until I bought it myself & tried it out. It was AWESOME. The possibilities are just endless.
I've been using it for a while now and it really is as easy & fun as it sounds, so I've decided to become a Sure Cuts A Lot affiliate by adding a button to make it easy for my readers to head over & check it out for themselves. Today's project was made using this software & my Cricut. Here's the 411 on how:
Making A Star Wars Gift Bag:
I made this bag to hold my nephew's birthday present. He's really into Star Wars right now, so I wanted to make it fit the party theme without buying some overpriced wrap or gift bag. I found the silhouette image of Darth Vader & the Star Wars font for free online and using the Sure Cuts A Lot software, I sized them for my bag and used some small cardstock scraps to cut them out on the Cricut:
To make the bag itself I bought this really cool set of gift box svg files from SVGcuts.com. I used its gift bag files with Sure Cuts A Lot to make the bag pieces and then folded & taped them together with double sided tape. It included the tags, so I didn't have to make an extra card to go with it. This was my first homemade gift bag and it was a success with the birthday boy. I'm really looking forward to making some more of these with some pretty printed papers and more cute cutouts.
Custom gift bags that are fun to make + easy on the budget = BIG WIN!
Sharing this with my fave link parties too so check them out here!