My friend Diana called me up last night so excited she was about to burst at the seams, she just purchased the Cricut Explore Air 2 online and it would be delivered next week.
Her question to me, “What Cricut accessories do I need to get started on my first project?”
This is the same exact question I had when my daughters bought me my Cricut Explore Air 2 for Mother’s Day. Of course, I had been part of several Cricut Groups on Facebook so I did have an idea as to what I needed but since it was my daughters who bought it for me they didn’t know what accessories were needed in order for me to really dive in.
When her Cricut comes in I’ll be heading over to her house to help her set it up but the following accessories are the ones I wish I had when I started on my first project and I think every Cricut Beginner really needs to get started.
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# 1 Cricut Accessory would have to be the Cricut Mats (a 12 x 12 Standard Grip mat, the green one, should have come with your machine)
These mats are what your vinyl, paper, HTV and other material would be placed on in order for the Cricut machine to cut. There are many videos that actually show you how to use your Cricut without a mat but for me, I like the sense of security and knowing my material is stuck on and not going anywhere.
Green Mat (Standard Grip) – Used for projects using patterned paper, vinyl, iron-on, and cardstock
Blue Mat (Light Grip) – Used for projects using printer paper, light cardstock, vellum and more
Purple Mat (Strong Grip) – Used for projects using chipboard, stiff fabric, glitter and specialty cardstock, glitter cardstock and more
# 2 Cricut Accessory that every single Beginner needs are the Tools Basic Set
These are tools that you’ll need in order to weed your vinyl and HTV (Heat Transfer Vinyl) projects plus the scraper is what allows you to ensure your vinyl is sticking to the transfer paper as well as the project/craft you’re working on. This basic set includes: Scissors with protective blade cover; Tweezers; Weeder; Scraper; and Spatula
# 3 Cricut Accessory for those that plan on doing a lot of projects with cards, cardstock, thank you cards etc. Scoring Stylus
This is one of those tools that I did not have starting out and I went to do a project that needed this tool and was so bummed that I didn’t have it. I don’t want you to get stuck like I was so I definitely recommend having this little gem on hand.
This tool allows you to score fold lines for cards, boxes, 3D projects and more.
The following are not accessories but supplies you are going to NEED to do any vinyl projects, t-shirt’s, stencils or stickers of any kind.
Cricut Supplies you’ll need for Vinyl Projects
VINYL – When it comes to Vinyl the BEST vinyl out there is Oracle Vinyl. It’s been the industry standard for high-performance decals and has been the number 1 suggested vinyl in the world of cutting machines like Cricut and Silhouette.
The two most popular kinds are the 631 and 651. The Oracal 631 has a matte finish on it – meaning it does not have the glossy sheen to it, it also has a lighter adhesive so it is best used indoors and can be removed fairly easily. If you have the Oracal 631 it will only last about 3 years if on something outside.
The Oracal 651 is a more permanent adhesive and is what you want to use on signs and things that will be outdoors or you want to last a long time. This vinyl is also shiny unless you order it specifically in matte. The outdoor life of 651 is about 6 years.
The cheapest and best place I have found this Oracal Vinyl is at Speedy Vinyl. You can check them out here: https://www.speedyvinylshop.com/
TRANSFER TAPE – Transfer tape is the application tape you will be using for all of your vinyl projects like signs, stickers, and decals for the wall or car. They have different amounts of tackiness on the different transfer tapes so you want to be careful on which transfer tape you use tape you use on each project.
For example, you’ll want to use this transfer tape for most of your vinyl projects. It is a medium tack transfer paper that is so much easier to transfer your vinyl to whatever material you’re trying to.