While the jigsaw allows you to easily cut acrylic, you’d also need to find the best metal cutting blade to make the cuts seamlessly.
As a result, most people are often looking for alternative materials and tools for cutting acrylic sheets, especially for use in jewelry creation. And one of the things that are recommended for use when it comes to cutting and making acrylic earrings is Cricut.
Cricut, a powerful and very versatile electronic-cutting machine that can create unique designs, is also effective in cutting through different types of materials, and for most people getting into jewelry creation, especially the creation of jewelry using acrylic, Cricut is one of the most effective tools used.
But you need to know what to do with this piece of equipment, how to use it, and how to change the settings for ease of use with different jewelry-making materials.
Its versatility and the different kinds of things that are made using the Cricut are all top reasons for the popularity of this piece of equipment.
In this article, we’ll show you how to make acrylic earrings using the Cricut. But first, a look at how the Cricut works.
How does the Cricut Machine work?
The first thing you need to know about the Cricut machine is that it’s easy to use and set up and connect with your home network, thanks to the fact that it connects wirelessly with other devices through Bluetooth.
It also allows for the easy creation of designs, and you can download your designs to your computer easily before sending them to the Cricut for cutting.
All these are made possible by the fact that the Cricut features software known as the Design Space, and this software application is also available for Windows, Mac, and IOS, as well as the Android smartphones.
The software allows for easy and seamless creation of the needed jewelry designs, which you can then import with or to your machine for cutting. In addition to the designs from Design Space, you could also upload your own designs to the Design Space for use.
The cutting process is made possible by the fact that the Cricut houses a very tiny blade – sometimes, there is a scoring tool, a rotary cutter, or a rotary pen for crafting, drawing intricate patterns and designs, or writing sentiment.
The scoring tool allows you to draw intricate designs and to create the best quality scoring lines for the 3D projects or just the card blanks. Once the design is ready for cutting (in Design Space), you’d have to fasten the acrylic material or any other desired material onto the 12-inch wide cutting mat.
The Cricut features a small blade that moves around/ through the material you are cutting following the lines created or downloaded for the designs, and cutting follows this outline.
From there, you will send the jewelry design to the computer, wirelessly, load the material onto the machine, and the cutting starts when you press a button. The material to be cut is held in place using a sticky mat that prevents the blade from moving around, hence perfectly clean cuts.
So, how do you create acrylic earrings using the Cricut?
How to make acrylic earrings with Cricut
First, find the ideal Cricut machine for your projects. There are many types of Cricut machines, but something like the Cricut Explore Air 2 or Explore 3 would be suitable for you because these machines boast a very high level of versatility and cut at least 300 types of materials, including leather, fabrics, and thin pieces of wood.
That said, not all types of Cricuts work well with acrylics because there are different types of acrylic, and also the effectiveness of the machine will vary depending on the thickness of the acrylic that needs cutting.
In most cases, Cricut works well with the .007 Acrylic and the .020 Acrylic, with the latter being one of the thickest versions of acrylic that the machine can cut through.
The .007 acrylic sheet is a super-thin acrylic sheet made into 12×12 sizes and allows for cutting and design creation through acetate setting, and it features the fine point blade.
The acetate setting gives you two passes though we recommend going for 3 passes for cleaner cuts – after the machine stops, press on the Green C button for that one extra pass.
The .020 acrylic sheets, on the other hand, are thicker acrylic sheets. To cut through the sheets, you need the knife blade for cutting under the basswood setting, which gives you up to 14 passes for super clean and accurate cuts. That said, don’t forget to tape down the acrylic sheets.
Other acrylic sheet thickness and ideal cutting settings
If the acrylic sheet you wish to use is 1mm thick or thicker than this, you may want to use the knife blade under different settings like the Chipwood or Basswood for a max of 25 passes, but even with these settings, the cuts will not be the cleanest.
So, Cricut is not the best for thick pieces of acrylics. And the good news is that you don’t need such thick pieces of acrylics for the acrylic earrings.
So, how do you cut the acrylic earrings using Cricut?
Besides having the right Cricut machine, you also need to prepare the acrylic sheets for cutting. And the thickness of the acrylic sheet is what will determine how you will attach the acrylic to the cutting mat.
Since you probably need the .007 acrylic for earrings, you will be happy to know that you will only need to green or the purple cutting mat for the best results.
But if the acrylic is thicker, you will need to use the purple mat plus some masking tape going all around the edges to prevent the acrylic sheets from moving around as you cut through it.
Note that most of the sheets of acrylic will come with a protective coating on both sides, and you want to keep this coating on to protect the actual acrylic part from any scratches. So, you’d only have to peel the coating off after cutting, and this will leave you with perfectly cut pieces of earrings.
You also need the following materials;
- Shrink Film – this is important, and you have to take into account the amount of shrinkage you can allow
- Permanent markers for when you’re coloring the shrink film by hand
- Alcohol Ink – to color the shrink film
- The earrings kit – this comes with the rest of the tools needed when making the acrylic earrings, from the jump rings to other metal rings and materials needed.
Other steps to follow:
- After selecting the materials, you’d like to use, select the earrings design from your SCG cut file in the Resource Library. After choosing the design template, upload it on Cricut Design Shape, then choose the shrink film to use.
- Color the shrink film. You could also use a permanent marker to ensure that the color adheres to the acrylic plastic.
- You could also try using alcohol ink to spread the ink and to blend the colors well.
- Next, bake the shrink film; and let the pieces cool off before attaching the clasps and hooks.
Acrylic earrings can be cut using the Cricut, and the steps above will ensure that you create nice earring designs for yourself.
Tiger is a fashion&jewelry lover. He is also a fashion jewelry manufacturer that help thousands of small business to grow and also do business with some big fashion jewelry brands. He is a truly metal expert and he will share some information you are looking for.