Thursday, February 3, 2011

My Top Ten list, # 5 (long post)

I want to continue with my top 10 list; things I can't scrap without.
I'm now at number 5 and this will be a rather long post with many photos, links and information.
There is just so much to say about about...

#5 Cricut machine by Provocraft

I now own my third Cricut!?
I bought my first one in 2006, my second one in 2008 and my latest in 2010. And no, I will not buy another one next year. I'm completely happy with the one I have.
The first one I bought was what they now call "baby-bug". Just a normal Cricut. Two years later I sold that one and upgraded to a Cricut Create. It cuts 6 inch but has some of the same features as the Cricut Expression.
And last year I sold that one and did my final upgrade to the Expression.

And needless to say I just love it!
There's so much you can do with it.

Sometimes, but not too often do I use it to cut out shapes like here. The letters are also cut out with the Cricut ( the "Jubilee"-cartridge)

Mostly I use it for titles and my all time favorite letter cartridge is "Don Juan" ( The hearts are cut out with the same cartridge)

Circles are something I very often use the Cricut for. Like here. I used it for the flowers and leaves too.

For many of my flower embellishments you can use the Cricut.

 and the cardstock roses

So just for scrapbooking, I use the Cricut for titles, diecuts, shapes and flower embellishments.

But there is so much more you can use it for.

Look what my friend made for me. Isn't it pretty?
She used the Cricut to cut out templates and then fill it in with paint.
You can buy plastic templates at any craft store, but you can also use cardstock, though it won't last as long of course.

The other day I made this and I absolutely love,love,love how it turned out. I have always been intimidated to cut out in vinyl and now I wonder why. It's nothing to it!

I used another favorite cartridge called "Songbird" and it's awesome because the letters connect.
I used the provocraft vinyl, though I'm sure you can find cheaper brands. And I did not use the transfer tape. It drove me nuts.
I just eyeballed and put the letters on the wall.I messed up a few times, but the stickiness did not disappear at all.

In my daughters room I cut out another quote, but I just used pink cardstock and ran it through my xyron

If you want ideas for wall words go to

There is just so much you can do with the vinyl. Cut out your favorite bible verse or make car decals.
My hubby now wants me to make something to put in his office.
See how the whole family gains from my obsession:)

Another thing that the Cricut is perfect for are school projects. Here I used it for my daughters Science project ( she won an award for it) I cut out the title and the bananas on the bottom.

So in between scrapbooking, home decor and school projects, a Cricut is totally worth every dime!!

And lets talk about dimes and dollars.

I paid $250 + $50 shipping for my first Cricut 2006.
In 2008 I paid $ 199 for my Create
and last year I paid $189 (including 2 cartridges) for my Cricut Expression!!

Do you see the trend here? Prices are going down!!
Don't ever pay more than $100 for the little one and no more than $200 for the Expression!!

Ebay of course is a good place to find great deals. I have both good and bad experiences with Ebay.I have shopped a lot there for myself but also for the retreats we've been planning. Some of the sellers take their sweet time to ship your order. They want their money within three days so you would would think they should ship within three days too. But not always.
I would say that one  of the biggest seller on Ebay for Cricut and cartridges is "Proudparents2005". I have bought from them and not had any problems, BUT 5 (five) of my friends didn't actually get their orders. Like never!
"Proudparents2005" would not respond to emails nor pick up the phone.
They have a 99.2% positive feedback which might seem high but, those 0.8% represent A LOT of unhappy customers!
I don't mean to badmouth anyone. As I said I never had a problem with them, but I just want to raise a warning flag here.

So where should you buy your Cricut and cartridges?

I bought my last Cricut from and they have a lot of good deals.
I bought 5 cartridges there yesterday and they were $17.95 each! Don't ever pay more than $25 for a cartridge. That's a ripoff!
Diecutcentral also have awesome prices.

SO GET THIS! You will get a kick out this: "Proudparents2005", and Diecutcentral are ALL THE SAME COMPANY!!???
They are also the same company as

How do I know?
Well, when I order from one of these above, I will get the bill from another one. Isn't that weird?
I don't really care how many websites they have as long as we can get our cheap prices, right?

Another thing I bought from Cricutmachine...or was it ebay... I can't remember my CGull tote for all the cartridges. This cute thing holds up to 72 cartridges! I have a lot of empty spots left. I only own about 25 cartridges.

The last thing I want to mention about the Cricut is this:

Yes, it can get pricey with all the cartridges that you want to have, but have you heard about Make-the-cut??
It's a software you download that allows you to cut every true font that you have on your computer.

It's $ 58.36 and you would never need to buy another  cartridge again.

The latest I heard was that Provocraft had sued the owners to Make The Cut. I can see why, but also not.
I don't think Provocraft needs to worry and I'm sure they make enough money.

So the deal with Make-the-cut is that you connect your computer to the Cricut and they you can cut ANY font you have. And you know there's 1000's of free fonts to get:
are just a few.

I really should use my Make-the-cut more often. I have used it only once or twice.
This title here is the true font "Beach"

Can you see that the letters are welded together? That's what I like the most.

I know you can do the same thing with the Designstudio.I  have it too, but haven't even opened it. Hubby gave it to me two years ago for my birthday and he is not so happy...

The designstudio and Make-the-cut are two different things. With the Make-the-cut you only need ONE cartridge to have plugged in your machine and then you never have to buy another cartridge again.
With the Designstudio you work with the cartridges you have.

If I had a bigger scrap desk -or less stuff on it-I would always have my computer plugged in to the Cricut and I know I would use Make-the-Cut so much more.


I think I covered everything I know about the Cricut machines. I'm far from an expert so if you want to correct me or add something, please feel free.

I didn't mention anything about Cricut Imagine or the Cake Cricut, simply beacuse I have never worked with them.

Oh, one last thing.
So my hubby wants me to cut out something for his office wall and he asks if I can cut out the Battalion logo? And I'm thinking...Sure, if you have the logo on the computer then I can cut it out with Make-the-cut. How awesome isn't that?

With Make-the-cut there really is no limits for what you can do with your Cricut!
Pin It!


mommaidwf said...

Thank you for the websites! I can see myself spending a ton :). And thanks for the review on the ebay store too. I actually had that one saved and tried to win some cartridges from them. I think I'll be rethinking that.

DWD said...

Thanks also from me on these websites. I bought the baby bug back in 2006. I hardly ever use it. I only have 10 cartridges. I also have the Gypsy and I think if I could figure out how to use it, I would use my Cricut more. I will check out the prices on these sites.

OH!!! I read somewhere, could have been at Provo or another blog, that if you use Make The Cut or SCAL with your Cricut(s), it voids the warrenty. I wonder how we can find that out???

María Castillo said...

Wow, so interesting! I only have the Big shot and I love it. Hope to have my own cricut some day! Hugs, María

mustangkayla said...

I have yet to think about getting one! I think its the price tag that has me scared! haha! Thanks for all the great info!

Sandra said...

thank you so much for the fabulous post and yummy websites - I adore my cricut, everytime I use it, I'm blown away with how good it is.

Наташа said...

Hi! Could you tell me, what the density of paper cuts this machine? cardboard or only scrap paper?

Beverly said...

Thank you thank you thank you!!! I'm in the market for the expression and was totally disappointed when one of the bundles at was sold out. I know that also sells the expression for $199.99 with free shipping. Actually you can get free shipping with a $25.00 purchase. I really appreciate the website suggestions you listed and really loved hearing about Makes the cut. Didn't know anything about it but sounds promising!

Lisa K said...


Regarding ebay and proudparents2005 diecutscentral....momshomemadecrafts on ebay is also part of that bunch of companies. I purchases a catridge from momshomemadecrafts and it took 6 months and lots of fighting to get it.

♥Silvana♥ said...

Wow I just found your blog......amazing!!!!!! thanks for those great tutorials ( I. making my own glimmer mist for sure soon) great blog

Elle said...

Hi Helen! Long time reader, first time poster...
just want to thank you for the post and the PICS! I too LOVE my cricut and everything I can do with it. and it's even helped me to stay home and earn an income!

Keep Exploring with Make the's pretty endless the things you can do with it!
Hadn't heard of the companies you mentioned but will keep me eye out for them. I always shop from HallmarkScrapbook DOT com. (no trying to spam, I don't own them or an affiliate of them! ^_^) They have AWESOME prices in clearance all the time!

(Sorry for the longgg comment!)
Thanks again! ^_^

Amy said...

I just awarded you the Stylish Blog Award! Check out my blog and get the details.

Sabrina Mix said...

Hi, Helen!

Do you know the SCAL (Sure Cuts A Lot) software? Is it better than the Make The Cut?


Alison Richardson said...

I hope to get my own cricut someday, right now i don't have the space for one or the money. I have friends all over the globe & the same name keeps coming up time & time again for good prices on cartridges I keep hearing their name everywhere even in my LSS here in the UK.