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Friday, January 7, 2011

The LD-MTC Beginner Series: Why you need this.

So you've just been given a Cricut machine. It's something that you've wanted for a long time and you were so excited to get it. Yet when the box is opened and the machine is finally in your hands, you hesitate to use it. You feel intimidated; almost afraid of this Wonder-that-is-supposed-to-do-amazing-things-for-you. 

You gently place The Creature on the empty spot on your desk (that you had clean out just for this moment). You carefully plug the power cord into it and gently stick a cartridge into the cartridge slot. You put the cartridge overlay onto the machine and your eyes scan for the "Power On" button. You spot it and you reach out with a finger. You press the button down and the lights on the creature lit up.

"It's Alive!"

You catch your breath and hasten to remove the plastic cover on the cutting mat so that you can place a sheet of cardstock onto it. Your nostrils are overcome by the stench of new mat adhesive but you persist. Your heart starts to beat faster as you position the mat. You support the mat with one hand and press "Load" with the other. Your finger, almost trembling, moves to hover over the cartridge overlay, ready to press on a rubber square so that this mythical creature can start to perform its magic....

....and then you realize that you really don't know what to cut out after all.

Or perhaps you have owned your Cricut for over a year now. You look around your craft area and see the plethora of Cricut cartridges that you've bought since the day you got your machine. Cartridges that you had to have but barely used. Font cartridges that you have not touched after the one birthday banner you made. You had succumbed to the temptation of owning all these cartridges because, you live in fear of the day that you can't find the one image that you need to cut out. You have ran out of storage space and yet you are convinced that if you own every cartridge that is out there, you can cut anything that can possibly be cut by your Cricut. 

You turn around and see the stack of cartridges that had been sitting untouched since the day you brought them home. They are still brand new in their original blister packs. You think about all the money that you had spent on them. Money that could have been used to buy other supplies like paper and stamps or perhaps, even a new computer! 

You start to feel guilty and then shame......

I was that person who didn't know where to start playing and then I became the one who built up a cartridge library that decorated my Wall of Shame. I'm writing this post to tell you that you don't have to be that person. Whether you are a new or experienced Cricut user, I can show you how Make-the-Cut can help you expand the use of your Cricut machine. Watch how I use Lettering Delights' Graphic and SVG sets instead of cartridges. Your Cricut can cut so much more than just those fonts and images from the Cricut cartridge. If you are a new Cricut user, follow my series and you won't be afraid of your Cricut anymore. If you are the experienced Cricut user, follow my series to see why you should stop building your Wall of Shame cartridges.

Come back to this blog on Monday and we will begin our journey together. You will be amazed at what Make-the-Cut can make your Cricut do. 

With only one cartridge.


Short version: 
It is not my fault if you break your machine trying to do what I do.

Long version:
This blog uses ProvoCraft's Cricut electronic die-cutting machine with Make-the-Cut program and Lettering Delights' graphics and SVG sets. Please note that Provo Craft does not endorse the use of any 3rd party products, including 3rd party software, with their Cricut machines. Cutting or communicating to any Cricut machine with any 3rd party or non-Cricut endorsed software or device will void the warranty** of the Cricut cutting machine. As such, it might be prudent to wait until the warranty** expires on your Cricut machine before attempting to use any 3rd party products with it. 

I have been using my Cricut machine with Make-the-Cut and Lettering Delights graphics with no issues but the choice to do so is entirely yours. Follow this series of tutorials and use your Cricut with MTC and LD at your own risk. I will not be held responsible for the breakdown of any computers or Cricut machines.

** For the United States, the warranty period of the Cricut machine is 1 year from the date of purchase. For full details regarding the warranty of your Cricut machine, please see


  1. I realize that you have to put the disclaimer at the bottom. But dispite the "void the warrenty" thing from PC, has anyone EVER REALLY heard of a machine that was broken by MTC or SCAL? The problems that I've heard about have all been component related and would have happened without the Cricut being connencted to a computer at all.

    And I have that wall of shame. I keep buying. I just LOVE some of the cuts. But maybe I'll try this year and see how long I can go without buying anyting but Disney carts. Got to have my Disney carts. They are too hard to get from other sources.

  2. Definitely will be back for those tutorials. Thanks a bunch! Monday can't get here soon enough for me!!!

  3. You go Jin,

    Can't wait for the next installment, have had my Cricut, wall of shame, and even MTC and have used them since almost the beginning, with no machine or computer problems.

    But, I want to be more creative and use it for thinking "out of the box" projects. Your projects are just that and so exciting!

    So lets cut!!!!!!


  4. How exciting! I've had my Cricut for over 2 years now and I've certainly built up a collection of carts. I'm ashamed to say there are some that I've NEVER used but had to have. I can't wait to see your tutorials because I've had MTC for a few months now and I know I've not used it to it's full potential!

    Isn't it sad you need a disclaimer? I love your short version! The only reason PC doesn't endorse 3rd party software is they fear it cuts into their bottom line. I've never heard of issues with SCAL or MTC but I have heard of issues with DS! Why don't they get with the program and make software comparable to MTC? It's hard to use DS after using MTC, and I'd love to use Cricut images the way you can use LD images in MTC.

    Can't wait until Monday!!

  5. Love your site and your generosity for sharing SVG's. I've had my Cricut for 2 years...but only own 4 carts...(2 were gifts)...I use MTC for everything!
    Anxious to see the tuts on Monday!
    Thank you!!

  6. Jin,
    "Cricut Wall of Shame". LOL!! Uh, I think we're having a post show down. I'm teaching everyone about using carts and their Cricut and you're teaching them they don't need carts and how to use their Cricut. One of us is Darth Vader. Luke...I am you Father. LOL!
    You're GREAT Jin!

  7. Oh...and one more thing. If I can cut the rollers off my Cricut Expression, shove food into it, paint it purple and have it still work...MTC will never hurt it. LOL!

  8. Just so that I'm clear, I HAD to stick that disclaimer in there because some people will not believe that it is a MACHINE fault when it is so much easier to put the blame on the software. I love my MTC and it has been nothing but good to my Cricut. :-)

  9. @Joy: I'd never have a post showdown with you. :-) In fact, I was going to tell people to go to your site for your Beginners tutorial before they start with mine. Love your videos, Joy. You're AWESOME!

  10. OMG, can't wait to learn...I've had MTC for awhile and have only used it twice...I'll be back....thank you so much

  11. What a wonderful writer you are. You know just how to explain things. And yes I too have bought some carts just to let them sit on my bookshelf and have never used them. I am so excited to learn MTC!