Question by Anon Speaker: Questions Regarding Cricut?
I love to scrapbook my vacations and other life events, and I’ve been doing it in my spare time for years. Lately, I have been considering purchasing a Cricut machine. I have some questions because I did not find Cricut’s website very helpful at all; to me, it seemed more focused on pushing all of the cartridges and extra products rather than explaining the various machines or explaining how the whole system “works.” (So please don’t give me a link to Cricut’s website unless you provide the link to a specific page that is helpful.)
1. Is the Cricut Expression 2 the newest machine? (If not, which one is the newest?) Which one (Expression 2 or any) is the best, in your opinion, and why?
2. What else must I buy if I buy the Cricut Expression 2 (or any other machine)? I know there are a million cartridges for sale, and I know I’ll need paper and albums and clear sleeves and all of that. However, I am asking more about things like replacement blades, tools, cutting mats, something called a “spatula tool,” etc.
Answer by pjmisso
This is all my personal opinion – so take it as you will.
I have the following Cricut items – Cricut personal cutter (the original little one), Cricut Expression, Design Center Software, and I’m beta testing the web based CraftRoom. I have owned each of these items since they were released by Provocraft, and I use them frequently and even persuaded my school to get an Expression for all of us teachers to use.
The “helpfulness” of the Cricut website should give you insight to how responsive Provocraft is to it’s public.
If I were looking for my first electronic cutter now, I would NOT buy a Cricut. But that is a whole ‘nother post!
The Imagine and Expression 2 are the newest in the paper-crafting line. The Imagine does not work with the Design Center software, and the inks are expensive to use. The Expression 2 works with Imagine and Cricut Cartridges, and does not print. If you do not want to use a computer to design – then this is moot – but I like the freedom allowed to blend images;sizes, etc., when using Design center. If they ever get Craftroom working and out of Beta, then, other than the fact you have to be connected to the web to use it, it will also be useful (Imagine and E2 will eventually work with Craftroom.
If you do decide on a Cricut – E2 or Imagine – you will want to get an extra set of blades (they do usually last a long time – my first one lasted almost a year…but the blades produced now do not last as long.) You will want a set of 12×12 mats and 12×24 mats (there are ways to recondition used mats, and you should prep new mats by placing a clean t-shirt on them and peeling it off a couple of times so your paper won’t rip when being removed). A set of off-set tweezers and a spatula are also very useful. A spatula helps to loosen your finished cuts, and the tweezers are great for tiny bits. The next thing you will need is patience – just practice! Also try the message boards at www.Cricut.com – Cricut users are a helpful group.
What do you think? Answer below!