Cricut: Today’s the day you OPEN THE BOX.

Cricut: Today’s the day you OPEN THE BOX.

I see you.  Yes, you. You got a Cricut for the holidays this year.  Maybe even last year.  And it’s still in the box.

This is your sign to OPEN it! Today is the day that you become the person you thought you were when you purchased your Cricut cutting machine. Congratulations! We are about to take the first step towards unleashing the crafting genius that is locked up inside of you.

We’re going to start small and manageable.

We’re going to make sure you have all the materials you need to set you up for success

and we are going to OPEN THE BOX.

This comes with absolutely no judgement, BTW. A minimum of 7 months went by between the time I purchased my first machine and the moment I actually opened the box. A friend came over and we made cupcake toppers for her son’s birthday and drank wine and that was the beginning of a very long crafting love affair that has absolutely no end in sight.

So, if you’re waiting for a sign – this is it. And I’m here to help. One thing is for sure: the first step to unlocking your Cricut potential is to open the dang box.

As you probably already know, there are a ton of different models and it gets overwhelming FAST.

The first machine I got was an Explore Air 2. Which I actually think is a great machine for beginners and definitely the biggest bang for your buck. It’s not the most robust model, it’s not the smallest model, it’s not even the latest model – I think it’s the Goldilocks model for starting on this journey and for $200, you kinda can’t go wrong.

Whichever model you got, go ahead and open the box and remove the machine, set it on a flat surface close to your laptop or desktop.  That’s it.

Next, take a peek at whatever else came with your machine.   There are ENDLESS supplies and tools you can use with your machine, but I’m going to list the stuff below that you absolutely have to have to get started (I’d say “in my opinion” but… all of this is my opinion, duh), and if your machine didn’t come with all these things, go ahead and order what you’re missing from this list.

  • Cutting mat – the newer models can work with the new “smart” materials that don’t require a mat,  but mine does so this is key.  I’d get a pack of 3 (light, standard, and heavy grip), but if you just want one to start, get a standard grip.  
  • Some adhesive vinylAdhesive vinyl is for water bottles and wine glasses and things like that.  *HTV (heat transfer vinyl) is for things you will want to put on fabric like a t-shirt or sweatpants, etc. It’s really in your best interest to price compare vinyl, I can tell you right now that the craft stores do NOT have the best deal.  That’s like – emergency only vinyl to me.  My favorite adhesive vinyl is Oracal 651– and you can get it on Amazon or a host of other online retailers.
  • Some HTV (heat transfer vinyl) – same deal as above.  I happen to like Siser brand HTV.
  • Transfer paper – to use with your adhesive vinyl to get it from the mat to your project..  This will make more sense once you start working with your machine.
  • Weeding tools – I like the hook and the straight pin thingie and I just burnish (or scrape) with my finger or a credit card but you could get a scraper and make your life easier.  This set is good and has everything you need to get started.

Basic craft stuff – card stock. construction paper, glue stick, scissors, tape, double sided tape if ya fancy, toothpicks, an iron, and a glue gun are all good to have on hand.


Plug your machine into the wall and connect it via USB to your laptop or desktop.   You can also connect via bluetooth on almost every machine, and you will walk through that during your setup and registration.

Download Cricut Design Space desktop app – that is the software you will use to design your projects and send to the Cricut for cutting.

Follow the on-screen prompts to update the software, set up your account, and register your machine.  And that’s it!

Let me know if this was helpful and feel free to drop me a line or leave in the comments anything specific you want to make or any questions you might have!

We’re in this together!

xo, LC

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