Cricut - How Do I? Lots Of Q's

Decorating By jewels710 Updated 9 Dec 2010 , 5:46pm by jewels710

jewels710 Posted 7 Dec 2010 , 6:01pm
post #1 of 17

My mom just bought me a cricut to add to my cake tools (so sweet isn't she?It's not for Christmas, just a surprise)!

Anyhow...I have read threads about the hows, settings, thicknesses, etc...but...I have absolutely NO IDEA where to start. Mom says, just jump in, turn it on and try it. LOL I am more skeptical just from reading how some folks hate it. But I am really excited to try it.
So I have learned that in order to save TONS of money that I can buy one of two

1. Which program is better? SCAL or MTC? In your opinion.
2. I am going to assume that I have to plug my cricut into my computer in order to do this...but how? It didnt come with a plug for the computer.
3. What else should I know about these programs?


16 replies
cupadeecakes Posted 7 Dec 2010 , 7:32pm
post #2 of 17

First of all, congratulations! I assume you mean Cricut Cake, right?

Be ready to fight with it a little, but it's more about learning which of your fondants / gumastes work best, and at what thickness.

I have only used SCAL, and I like it. I have heard that MTC is easier to use, but I haven't tried it. I use SCAL almost exclusively - I only have the 2 cartridges that came with the Cricut.

You will plug the Cricut into your computer/laptop. It uses a standard USB printer cable, just like you would use on any HP or Canon USB printer.

What else? I have found that anything you cut will cut better after spending 5-10 minutes in the fridge. Modeling choc cuts like a dream. For fondant, I prefer cutting with Fondex or Fondarific, but Satin Ice and Wilton will cut well also. Thinner is usually better. Again, you'll very quickly get a feel for what's too thick / too thin.

Get it out and play with it!! Good Luck!!

Edited to add: SCAL will allow you to import graphics from the web into it and it will create a cut file from that. Sometimes you have to manipulate the graphics a little first though. If you look in my pictures I have a Reese's Cup cake and I created the logos using SCAL from a graphic I got off Google images. I think you can get a 15 day trial of SCAL on their site.

sheilabelle Posted 8 Dec 2010 , 2:53am
post #3 of 17

I too just bought Cricut Cake Mini and Make The Cut. I am having issues with the top of my fondant / gumpaste drying out while resting for the 10 mins. and then when I cut the edges are rough. I then try (yes, try) to remove it from the mat and it tears. Very frustrating, but I am not giving up.

cupadeecakes Posted 8 Dec 2010 , 3:05am
post #4 of 17

Are you resting the fondant in he refrigerator for 10 mins? If it's still skinning up on you, try covering it with plastic wrap while in the fridge. If that doesn't help try rolling your material a little thinner. Sometimes I will put it on the mat (coated with crisco) and then roll it some more. Once you get cuts you are happy with, if they still stick to the mat, pop the mat in the freezer for 5/10 minutes and then remove your cut pieces using a small offset spatula. Best of luck to you both - HTH!!

sheilabelle Posted 8 Dec 2010 , 3:09am
post #5 of 17

Thanks so much for the tips. I will try the fridge. It seems to dry very fast while I am cutting. What recipe do you use for gumpaste or fondant? I like to use MFF for fondant and for my gumpaste I add tylose to my fondant. I would like to use decorations that taste good as well as look good.

tiggy2 Posted 8 Dec 2010 , 3:10am
post #6 of 17

I use make the cut because you can cut anything you download or scan with having to manipulate it. It's very easy to use. You will need at lease one cartridge as there has to be a cartridge in the cricut whe using make the cut. If you're having problems with your fondant/gumpaste tearing or having jagged edges it isn't thin enough or dry enough. It has to be almost paper thin so you can see the lines of the mat through it. I use a pasta machine and roll it to # 5 or 6 and placed it on a greased mat for a minimum of 30 minutes. Linda McClures gumpaste works best but I've also had good luck adding tylose powder to wilton fondant. Straight fondant has not worked for me (it's too soft). I've never been able to get it thin enough with a rolling pin.

cupadeecakes Posted 8 Dec 2010 , 3:16am
post #7 of 17
Originally Posted by sheilabelle

Thanks so much for the tips. I will try the fridge. It seems to dry very fast while I am cutting. What recipe do you use for gumpaste or fondant? I like to use MFF for fondant and for my gumpaste I add tylose to my fondant. I would like to use decorations that taste good as well as look good.

My favorite medium to cut is modeling chocolate. As far as fondant, I think Fondx and Fondarific cut the best, but I get good results out of Satin Ice and even Wilton. I roll my fondant thin, but no where near being thin enough to see through.

madgeowens Posted 8 Dec 2010 , 3:43am
post #8 of 17

when I ordered my sure cuts a lot they also had a usb cord/plug you could order and so I did icon_smile.gif I use it and love it I have some pics with some of what I have done with my cricut in my pics

tiggy2 Posted 8 Dec 2010 , 12:07pm
post #9 of 17

The lettering, border, bee wings and stripes as well as the little black designs on top of the cake were done with the cricut cake using wilton fondant with tylose added and rolled thin with a pasta roller I let the fondant dry on a greased mat for about 30 minutes before cutting and there was no tearing or jagged edges. Some people have good luck putting it in the freezer but I personally haven't. The smaller and more intricate the design is the longer the fondant/gumpaste needs to dry. If you ever get a chance to take Linda McClure's class it's well worth the money.

sheilabelle Posted 8 Dec 2010 , 7:23pm
post #10 of 17

When you let the gumpaste dry before cutting it, won't it crack when you go to apply it to a cake? I have problems even getting it off the mat without it cracking.

tiggy2 Posted 8 Dec 2010 , 8:11pm
post #11 of 17

I don't let it get hard, just dry a little bit so it isn't so soft it tears. What gumpaste are you using?

sheilabelle Posted 8 Dec 2010 , 8:35pm
post #12 of 17

Rosemary Watson's Gumpaste recipe. I see that it is similar to Linda McClure's recipe. Rosemary's has gum trag in it instead of tylose. I did use the gum trag. Is this what is causing the problems?

tiggy2 Posted 8 Dec 2010 , 8:42pm
post #13 of 17

I have no idea, I use LInda's recipe. I don't know what gum trag is but if it's drying out that fast it can't be the same as Linda's. What I use peels right off the mat after it's cut. I assume you are greasing your mats.

sheilabelle Posted 9 Dec 2010 , 12:08am
post #14 of 17

Yes, greasing the mat. I will try Linda's recipe with the tylose.

jewels710 Posted 9 Dec 2010 , 3:50pm
post #15 of 17

Thanks for the input.

I guess I need to ask now, between the two programs...I am gathering that cricut does not use .jpeg or .gif files...then what extensions does it use?
What about the two programs...MTC and SCAL?

Do these programs then convert the files also?
Like...if I get a clipart file from online, does one (or both) of these programs have the ability to convert the file to whatever format cricut uses?

I'm lost when it comes to how these programs work.
Please help. Thanks!

tiggy2 Posted 9 Dec 2010 , 4:27pm
post #16 of 17

Make the cut can use any format. I believe that sure cuts a lot has to convert everthing to a svg file and I think you need inkscape to do that but I don't use it so I can't say for sure. When I orignally look at SCL you had to convert everything to a svg file and I didn't want to mess with that so I went with make the cut. You cand download a trial version of MTC and play with it and see if you like it. You can use any images you get from the internet or scan to your computer.

jewels710 Posted 9 Dec 2010 , 5:46pm
post #17 of 17

I will deffinately download a trial and see where that takes me.
Thanks for the info.

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