What Is Your Experience With The Cricut Or Silhouette?

Decorating By Dreme Updated 15 May 2011 , 1:43am by sweeteypie1118

Dreme Posted 12 May 2011 , 9:03pm
post #1 of 28

I have a client that would like to have a damask print for her cake. I can not use the stencil method to do this to save my life. Tried plenty times in the past just for practice on a dummy cake, and never got the hang of it. I have been dreading this technique, and knew one day someone would ask for it. I would dare not try this with black and white on someone's wedding cake. Plus I don't think it's as clean as the cut pattern.

Soooo.....my only choice is the get something that can cut the pattern out with. This cake would warrant getting a machine, so I'm not as worried about investing in one. I have been wanting one for some time and think it would be great for replacing some of the hand cutting I have been doing for cakes, cupcake, and cookies.

I know a little bit about the Cricut but im just hearing about the Silhouette. Those who have used either machine:

1. About how much did you spend total for the system? What does it come with?

2. Is it hard to get the hang of?

3. Do I have to use only gumpaste with the machine or can I use fondant.

4. Does the fondant/gumpaste have to be paper thin to use the machine? Can it cut through thicker paste?

5. Any tricks or other things you have learned that makes using the machine easier.

27 replies
tiggy2 Posted 12 May 2011 , 9:23pm
post #2 of 28

I prefer the silhouette so I can use MTC software. I got the package from Linda McClure as it comes with a special blade for fondant/gumpaste. You can use fondant with tylose added but you have to let it sit and dry a bit before cutting. Yes, it has to be very thin or you wont get smooth cuts. You can check LInda's site for the price. Her package also comes with a DVD and I believe she also includes a CD of patterns. If you get the cricut I doubt you will find a cartridge with the damask pattern.

warchild Posted 12 May 2011 , 9:25pm
post #3 of 28

I don't have either but do know from reading threads on here and other boards, that provocraft/cricut has been suing the pants of any other company thats been making cartridges that're compatible with the cricut. You might want to check all that out first.

Look here.. Just a couple of many.

http://cakecentral.com/cake-decorating-ftopict-713324-.html&sid=a41e017e104c80c32f2507578bb1fd2e

http://www.scrapbookupdate.com/2011/03/11/make-the-cut-settles-cricut-software-lawsuit-with-provo-craft/

tiggy2 Posted 12 May 2011 , 9:37pm
post #4 of 28

They are suing software companies, not cartridges.

kaat Posted 12 May 2011 , 10:27pm
post #5 of 28

After reading the posts here I bought the Sihlouette. I cannot for the life of me get it to work with fondant. I haven't tried the cricut so there is a chance I wouldn't be able to make that work either! lol!
I didn't know about the special blade I'll have to check that out. Thanks.

warchild Posted 12 May 2011 , 10:28pm
post #6 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by tiggy2

They are suing software companies, not cartridges.




Exactly what I said. They are suing companies. Cartridge was an error on my part from what I'd been reading. Quite minor when it comes down to it.

tiggy2 Posted 12 May 2011 , 10:32pm
post #7 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by warchild

Quote:
Originally Posted by tiggy2

They are suing software companies, not cartridges.



Exactly what I said. They are suing companies. Cartridge was an error on my part from what I'd been reading. Quite minor when it comes down to it.



Not exactly what you said, but whatever. I was just trying to let the op know my experience since I have both machines and Make The Cut Software.

tiggy2 Posted 12 May 2011 , 10:34pm
post #8 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by kaat

After reading the posts here I bought the Sihlouette. I cannot for the life of me get it to work with fondant. I haven't tried the so there is a chance I wouldn't be able to make that work either! lol!
I didn't know about the special blade I'll have to check that out. Thanks.



The blades that come with the silhouette "Will Not Work" with fondant or gumpaste unless you got the package from Linda.

kaat Posted 12 May 2011 , 11:17pm
post #9 of 28

ahhhhh, that I did not know - you just made me feel a whole lot better thanks! Do you have a link to her site?

tiggy2 Posted 12 May 2011 , 11:38pm
post #10 of 28

If I post it here it will get deleted. Just google Linda McClure

kaat Posted 13 May 2011 , 12:04am
post #11 of 28

Thanks!

tiggy2 Posted 13 May 2011 , 12:21am
post #12 of 28

No problem!

Anne1017 Posted 13 May 2011 , 12:52am
post #13 of 28

Hi! I don't know much about the Silhouette and MTC but from a Cricut point of view there is a program called Sure cuts a lot that I assume would be similar. I have the Cricut and SCAL and I love it. It's not always easy to cut gumpaste with it but there are no limits on what I can do. I can also create my own vector images with a free program called inkscape and then cut out on the Cricut. If you want more info you are welcome to pm me I can tell you all about it.

tiggy2 Posted 13 May 2011 , 12:55am
post #14 of 28

Sure Cuts a Lot is also being sued and it's only a matter time before it can longer be used with the cricut. As lojng as you never update your SCAL software or the firmware on the cricut it will continue to work, but once ypu update either one you're done.

Anne1017 Posted 13 May 2011 , 12:56am
post #15 of 28

Oh and I forgot you need to use the deep cut blade with the gumpaste on the cricut but you can usually find them anywhere (and use a coupon).

Anne1017 Posted 13 May 2011 , 1:01am
post #16 of 28

Ooookay thanks for the info Tiggy2 so are you saying that the MTC software is the only program that will work then?

tiggy2 Posted 13 May 2011 , 1:03am
post #17 of 28

MTC will no longer work the crict either as they were the first to be sued. One by one the software companies are being sued.

Anne1017 Posted 13 May 2011 , 1:08am
post #18 of 28

Ah interesting cause you didn't say anything about that in the earlier post so I guess I got confused then. But I do love my SCAL and inkscape so thanks for the heads up on not updating. thumbs_up.gif

Lelka Posted 13 May 2011 , 3:03am
post #19 of 28

I love my cricut and although it took some time to find the right settings and consistency, I cant live without it! Majority of my cakes would have a font or a detail on it that would take a long time to cut by x-knife. I use SCAL and can trace and cut pretty much anything I want. Try different settings and different fondant consistency (dry, frozen, wet, fresh, aged) and one of them will work !

tiggy2 Posted 13 May 2011 , 3:41pm
post #20 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Anne1017

Ah interesting cause you didn't say anything about that in the earlier post so I guess I got confused then. But I do love my SCAL and inkscape so thanks for the heads up on not updating. thumbs_up.gif


I did say I use the silhouette so I could use MTC icon_smile.gif If anyone has MTC and hasn't updated it or the firmware on their cricut since 3/16/11 it should still work.

Dreme Posted 14 May 2011 , 2:42pm
post #21 of 28

I went and looked at both machines. I think i'm leaning more towards the Silhouette. Looks like you don't have to buy cartridges and as an added bonus, it prints too! Awesome because that's something I have on my wish list as well.

The only thing i'm not clear on is:

1. What is the difference between MTC and SCAL? Is MTC just a program to run with the machine and SCAL just for cutting fonts?

2. I use Photoshop and Illustrator quite frequently. Can I use one of these with the Silhouette?

3. With the Silhouette I see that I use it with my computer (Very big selling point for me. No cartridges.),will I be able to for example:

- Sketch an image and scan it in to Photoshop to edit and save the file.
- Open the file from either Photoshop to use with the machine or another program.
- Have the machine either just cut the image or print the image (as well as cut it)

4. Does it really print directly on gumpaste?

5. Do the print heads/nozzles get clogged?

6. Do I have to use SCAL to cut and print fonts? If not can I use whatever fonts are in my system?

Dreme Posted 14 May 2011 , 3:33pm
post #22 of 28

Just learned that it doesn't print. It cuts printed images.

Marla84 Posted 14 May 2011 , 4:13pm
post #23 of 28

I have the Cricut and MTC (like Tiggy said, I can no longer install updates as the new versions will not be compatible) I like the option of being able to use cartridges sometimes, but also the freedom that MTC provides when the cartridges don't meet my needs. The cartridges are definitely a time saver (sort of like buying molds vs. making your own) and they do have a lot of really nice options. (They just came out with one called Damask Decor) Since I don't have a laptop, when I am using MTC I have to bring my fondant into the living room where the computer is....it's not a huge issue, but I like that when I'm using cartridges everything can stay in the kitchen.

With all that being said, I think Provo Craft is a sleazy company. I'm not sure that I would have bought the Cricut if I knew then what I know now....definitely some mixed feelings

linedancer Posted 14 May 2011 , 6:54pm
post #24 of 28

Dreme, you probably can continue to design in photoshop and/or illustrator, I have been using pse9 and the new silhouette software, studio, likes those files just fine. so you should be able to sketch a image, scan it, edit it in photoshop and cut it with the silhouette. also take a good look at studio, you may find some features in it that can replace some of your photoshop editing??

I doubt you can cut a file directly from photoshop, but you might find a way, I am not very adept at photoshop.

As you have discovered the sil does not print, it is a cutter, but will cut a printed image. When you print the images the print will come out with registration marks on it. The sil reads the marks, so it knows where to cut. After you have printed an image, you can not edit the image until after you cut it, if you move it, the sil reads the old registration marks and cuts where it was.

I have never printed on gumpaste because I do not want to run gumpaste through my edible image printer. But I do print icing sheets and cut them on the sil. If you want to cut gumpaste, you do need the modified housing that linda mcclure sells. The housing that comes with the sil does not work. if that statement is a repeat, sorry.

Since it doesn't print, there are no nozzles or print heads on it. Sorry to write a book, if you have any questions do not hesitate to pm me.

tiggy2 Posted 14 May 2011 , 8:37pm
post #25 of 28

MTC and SCAL are basically the same and are both programs used to transfer images/patterns to the silhouette. You will need one of those programs to transfer whatever you create from photoshop or any other program. Gumpaste actually prints very well in and EI printer if you follow Linda's instruction.

linedancer Posted 15 May 2011 , 1:26am
post #26 of 28

Hi tiggy, Just want to clear up one thing, studio, which is the new silhouette software, accepts pse (PhotoShop Elements) files without having to use MTC or SCAL, I do not own either program. I design in either pse or printshop 23. Studio will also accept a jpeg or png file. The old Robo Master software that came with the silhouette was not as accommodating. If you haven't upgraded to studio, I would highly recommend it, it is a nice piece of software.

tiggy2 Posted 15 May 2011 , 1:38am
post #27 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by linedancer

Hi tiggy, Just want to clear up one thing, studio, which is the new silhouette software, accepts pse (PhotoShop Elements) files without having to use MTC or SCAL, I do not own either program. I design in either pse or printshop 23. Studio will also accept a jpeg or png file. The old Robo Master software that came with the silhouette was not as accommodating. If you haven't upgraded to studio, I would highly recommend it, it is a nice piece of software.


Thanks for the info. I have updated but I haven't used it yet, I'll have to check it out. I don't use PSE or printshop but I have other programs that might be compatable.

sweeteypie1118 Posted 15 May 2011 , 1:43am
post #28 of 28

I just got my cricut today from HSN. I got as far as opening the box icon_wink.gif I can't wait to use it, but I hate reading directions!! I would rather have to put something together, than read a book of directions on how to use it!

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