Who needs a Cricut machine?

Whatever happened to pure creativity? Well, I’ll tell you. Technology killed the artistic star and turned us all into homogeneous clones, destined to churn out identical scrapbooking pages time and time again, all thanks to one supposedly helpful machine – the Cricut.

This is an electronic cutting gizmo that provides people with amazing, perfect lettering, shapes, designs and motifs for their scrapbooks, journals and card-making projects, all at the simple press of a tiny little seemingly innocuous button. But, I maintain that with each press of this harmless little button, your innate creativity is ever more closely circling the drain, about to be sucked down into the sewer of the uninspired.

Think for yourself, fellow crafters! Save yourself a few hundred quid and make your own designs from scratch. Don’t throw anything away EVER, it can all be used for your various projects – old magazines, shopping bags, clothing tags…anything can be turned into a work of art with a little bit of effort and ingenuity.

To help you on your way to greatness, here’s a quick how-to on making your own scrapbooking letters. Don’t say I never give you anything…

How to: Make your own scrapbook letters.

Equipment.

– Tracing paper

– Coloured paper

– Craft knife/scissors/sharp pencil

– Cutting board

– Alphabet printed off the computer in a font of your choice

  • Trace the required letters of your chosen font – I went with Curlz MT, because it’s whimsical – onto the coloured paper
  • Slowly and with care cut the letters out (it pays to trace them backwards onto the paper so that when you cut them out, the right side doesn’t have pencil marks on it)
  • Stick them into your scrapbook with care – depending on the font and how big your typeface is, this could be quite fiddly but don’t give up!
Here are some pretty pictures of my latest letters:
 I won’t lie to you – this process is pretty painstaking and takes a lot longer to complete than pressing that magical little button, but I guarantee the artistic satisfaction you get out of the finished product will be much greater.
That said…
If you must, you must.
Sometimes you have to create genius works of art in a hurry, in which case a Cricut probably comes into its own. Here are three of the best.
1) The Cricut Create Machine – this little baby has an eight-way directional blade and lets you cut taller images, as well as mass produce cuts. Just watch those fingers.
2) The Cuttlebug – aside from its fantastic name, this machine is easy to carry and store away, with a suction cup to hold it in place while it prepares all your pretty designs for you.
3) The Cricut Cake Mini Machine – I reckon cake-making’s tougher than scrapbooking so I’ll forgive you if you want to practice your bakery skills using this rather groovy device. Just make sure you decorate your creations by hand as well.
Have you got any lettering hints and tips? I’m always on the lookout for new ideas!
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