Recipe for Cricut Design Studio Fun

Here's how to cook up some fun with Cricut Design Studio

The ingredients are fairly simple.  First, you will need your Personal Electronic Cutter or Expression machine, as well as all those other things you need to make it work.  Y'know, the usual - cutting mats, card stock, your favorite cartridges - all that good stuff.  Next, you will need a computer (with Windows Vista or XP).  Sorry Mac users (my guess is that your time will come soon).  Finally, you will need the Design Studio software. 

Got all those ingredients together?  Good!  Now, it's time for the recipe.

Following the directions included with the software, take a few minutes to load it into your computer.  So far, so good?

Next, take a look at the back of your die cutter machine.  Notice the USB port there.  That's how you're going to plug your Cricut into your computer.  That's right, it's just like your digital camera or your mp3 player.  Easy, eh?  Your machine should have come with a USB cable, but if you can't find it, any A/B type USB cable will work.

Now, time to cook up some fun - open up the software and start playing!

Your computer will have a picture of a cutting mat, and you can experiment on that mat as much as you want.  Trust me, you won't believe all the things you can do with the Cricut Design Studio software!  For example, remember the old days when you had to cut each individual letter to spell a word.  Not anymore!  Now you can melt the letters together to spell anything you want.  Mix in a few images too.

If you think that was fun, there's more!  For example, how about stretching, flipping or rotating your image.  Get real creative and make it go diagonal by shearing.  Like to make images shrink or grow - use compressing.  Or try kerning, which will let you squish it all together.

You can also combine fonts and images from several different cartridges.  Although Provo Craft normally recommends that you turn off your machine when changing cartridges (it's called hot swapping if you don't), they say it's ok to do when you use this software.  Of course, the best thing to do is to get yourself a Cricut Jukebox - then switching out those cartridges will no longer be a problem.

Using the software, you can search all the cartridges to find the image you want.  When new cartridges are released, your can receive free updates, which will load the new items in your Design Studio Library.  You can also play with every font and image from every cartridge - but you do need to own the cartridge to actually make the cuts with your machine. 

Well, I think I'm going to let you play now.  Make sure you let us know what you cook up... 


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