18 Responses

  1. Emily
    Emily at | | Reply

    Can this machine cut images you design yourself? Or only things available in it’s library of images?

    Looks like you are going to have a lot of fun with it!

  2. Rachel | 52 Weeks Project
    Rachel | 52 Weeks Project at | | Reply

    This post makes me this machine more than ever! How fun!

  3. Emily
    Emily at | | Reply

    Thanks! I have wanted one of these for a long time, but wanted to be able to cut out my own images.

  4. AROUND THE WEB: More Reviews, Classes, and a Project | I Love My Cricut Explore™

    […] from Heidi at Hands Occupied. We loved hearing that it’s quiet, for those late night crafting […]

  5. GINA
    GINA at | | Reply


  6. Marianne
    Marianne at | | Reply

    I’ve had my Explore for about a month now. I also have the Cricut Expression 2 and a Silhouette Portrait. I am going to sell my Expression 2 because the Explore definitely out does it. However, there are pros and cons to the Explore and the Silhouette to make me keep both machines.

    I love the Cricut Design Space because it operates on “the cloud”, so your work is always available to through your Design Space account….but you are not limited to which computer you use to access it. The Silhouette also uses software which is resident on your hard drive. I have had my computer crash at which time I had to get a “rescue download” for the Silhouette software and all the images I purchased over the last two years. You only get 3 total rescue downloads. So for this Cricut is better.

    Silhouette software is much easier to learn if you use any of the Microsoft Office products, particularly PowerPoint. I use it at work all the time, so, there wasn’t any familiarization with Silhouette’s software for me…I was off and running once the download was complete. However, if you don’t use Office products, the Silhouette software is complicated. That said, I think the Cricut Explore Design Space software is HARDER to learn. I personally hate scrolling through the “how to” on the website and would much prefer to be able to print out some kind of user manual…Perhaps you can and I just haven’t found that yet.

    Print and cut is hands down a winner. HOWEVER, creating your own print and cut can be challenging. Once you figure it out, you’re good to go. There is one video online which shows the manipulation of a Cricut image from a cartridge that had some printing on one of the layers. For those, the Explore automatically sets up one mat to do both print and cut. Starting from scratch is much harder. One would think “group” and “ungroup” would be the commands you’d use to create a print and cut image…the command is “attach”. It was very frustrating trying to figure this out!

    Cricut Explore automatically sets up the mats for you. I hated having to hunt through the cartridges to find different layers on the Expression…Explore solves that. The pieces are organized by layer, and the pieces are colored so you know what color of paper to put on the mat, provided you want the image to be just like that pictured on the image.

    I may be doing something wrong, but I cannot use all the fonts embedded on my computer to “write”…all of my fonts show up, but I cannot select write unless I have purchased the font either with a cartridge or from the design space. Oh, and loading your cartridges is simple. The licensed images are NOT on the Design Space, but you can load those cartridges, which I did for Disney and Hello Kitty. The HSN package came with 3 months of total access to the Design Space and all it’s images (aka cartridges)…for the most part the images are now what’s out on cartridges.

    I still have a lot to learn about this machine. This weekend I want to try to import my own files and see how it handles them. At first I was not amused with only being able to save my files to the cloud…but, in all honesty, they’re safer there.

    The problems I have had with Cricut not cutting so well seem to have been corrected with the Explore blade, which I read was made with German technology. I have not been able to find blade replacements…I am not sure if I could use the replacement blades I used with the Expression, but I figure those cut poorly sometimes, so why would I want to use them. I did purchase the deep blade housing and blade for Explore, but I haven’t seen replacements for the regular blades anywhere.

    All in all I have been bragging about the Cricut Explore to friends. While I will still keep my Silhouette, there are at least 3 things Cricut Explore does that Silhouette does not: 1. Cut and write or emboss and write; 2. Create the mats by color; 3. Operate on the cloud…which means I do not have to worry about the computer I want to use.

    Cricut Explore is well worth the retail of $299 IHO.

  7. Paul
    Paul at | | Reply

    This is my first experience with Cricut. I purchased the Explore over the Expressions 2 because of the features and “ease of use” in the Cricut promos. As is so much the case today, new technology does not come with a written tutorial (remember the thick book with each computer 10 years ago). On line help replaced that which was written. Now Cricut takes it one step further by not including it in their software. It took me 6 hours and watching several “how to” videos to get some idea of the process involved in cutting vinyl letters. The Thank You note from Cricut made it seem so simple. Overall the machine is well made with quality and with features that I think will provide interesting projects once I figure out just how to do it. User friendliness for the Explore is not a number 1.

  8. Leslie J
    Leslie J at | | Reply

    Can anyone help me with a blade issue? I just bough the Cricut Explore, I’ve never had any other machine for cutting so this is new to me. I have had it for 4 days and the blade isn’t working anymore. Started tearing up my paper and card stock last night. I have not done a whole lot of projects but have done some. About 10 cards in 3 days. Should this be happening? I need help. Also, my mats are so sticky it tends to tear my paper when I attempt to lift it. Any help is welcomed. TIA

  9. Sam
    Sam at | | Reply

    Hi I’m really hoping you can help me. I bought my Cricut Explore and have cut one of the preset projects on it. I have not had a cricut before, I have upgraded from a big shot. I can’t seem to find out if my mat is supposed to get cut marks in or is the blade pressing too hard? I just want to make sure this is ok before I ruin my new mat :/ xxx

  10. Dawn
    Dawn at | | Reply

    I just got the Cricut Explore, my very first Cricut. I’m trying to cut vinyl. But I think I’m doing something wrong, the computer what’s to print the image first from my regular printer, is this suppose to happen? I don’t remember them doing that on the HSN, when they showed the machine. I did get the image to come up on the computer once to the point to cut, but then it says the cricut can’t find the sensor marks. Please help, I have so many project ideas with the vinyl. And I really don’t want to send it back, I really want this to work. Thank You

    1. Tammy
      Tammy at | | Reply

      Dawn or Heidi…I am having the same problem on the vinyl – it cant read the sensor marks…..what am I doing wrong or what do I need to do to fix this?? Help!

  11. Dawn
    Dawn at | | Reply

    I got the Cricut Explore, I’m using Design Space.

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