Design Space: What’s a Project?

A project is all the information needed to cut out the shapes to make something, whether it’s a card, a vinyl transfer or decal, a home dec project, or whatever it is that you’re making. Projects are completely customizable, meaning if you want a larger center design, a different word, or rearrange the placement of the elements in the design, you’re able to do so.

The Process of Selecting A Project: From the Project screen (A: Top is from the browser, bottom from an Android phone) to the Details screen (B) to the Canvas screen (C).

Cricut Projects

Cricut provides a number of projects that you can choose from. You find these on the Projects screen. There’s a photograph that shows the finished product. More information is shown when you click on it. From there, you can choose to customize it or make it. The Canvas screen shows the items that need to be cut to complete the project, and this is the screen where you can make any changes you’d like to the project. The instructions for completing it are available in the Project Details screen.

Some projects are free, many are not. If you have a Cricut Access subscription, many more projects are available for no extra fees, but some still have a fee associated with it. It will warn you before you incur charges to make it; do ensure that you read screens carefully to make sure you don’t run up charges!

My Projects

You can also make your own projects. There are two ways to do this:

  1. Save a Cricut project (with or without customization) 
  2. Create a new project from scratch

One reason to save a Cricut project as your own is that it makes it easy to find. It will come up when you select My Projects as well as giving you the opportunity to rename it (Mom’s Floral Birthday Card instead of Floral Scalloped Card). 

A second reason to save the project as your own is if you make any modifications to it. You may want to keep those changes to make it again.

(Note: by “saving it as your own” in this context means that it will show up in the My Projects category. It does NOT mean that you own the rights to it if you want to sell items made from the design!)

You can choose to make your own projects, too. Cricut gives you the ability to use various fonts, shapes, and images from their library (both free and for a fee) or upload your own images that you find on the Internet or that you create using other graphic design software (Adobe Photoshop or Illustrator, Inkscape, Windows Paint, etc.).

When you save your own project, you can add pictures and a description to help you remember what you made and what it looks like. You can’t, however, add instructions to the details page.

Community Projects

Community projects are projects that people in the community have shared. You can make a project and share it if you like. The major caveat is that all Community projects must be made from Cricut fonts, shapes, and images. You also must own all the elements used in the project to make it. The details page shows you what’s in it and how much it costs. The person who made the project already owns these elements and is sharing their design for free (there is no mechanism for anyone to profit from sharing projects this way).

Community projects also do not have instructions or a list of materials needed, like Cricut projects do. It’s assumed that you simply want the pieces to cut and you’ll know what to do with them. Some are beginner-friendly, while others, like a beautiful quilt I saw, require some serious skills beyond  assembling cardstock or ironing on vinyl.