Let’s talk about the Cricut engraving tool, how it works and what it can do. I’m making a simple cuff bracelet with a custom engraved message and sharing everything you need to know to make your own.
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What is the Cricut engraving tool
This tool allows you to add text, graphics and details to a variety of hard surfaces. By engraving on metal the design is permanent and gives texture and depth to your piece.
This tool works with the Cricut Maker only, no other machines. It comes as part of the quick swap family of tools. The Quick Swap mechanism comes with one base and allows you to swap out the tips for various tools like engraving, debossing scoring and more.
What materials can it engrave
When paired with your Cricut Maker the engraving tip is compatible with quite a few different materials.
- Aluminum – bare sheets and anodized or coated items
- Thick paper
Take a look at the full list of compatible materials for more information. When creating a project this list will appear in Cricut Design Space.
Jewelry is a great place to start with the engraving tip. I like aluminum blanks from ImpressArt like these cuff bracelets. If you are just getting started with bracelet making you can pick up a beginner kit with everything you need. It works so well with Cricut engrave tool.
How to engrave with Cricut Maker
Be sure to watch the step by step video in this post for more visuals on how to engrave your first bracelet.
Start with a strong grip mat, that’s the purple one. I am using a regular mat here for a small bracelet but the strong grip will provide the best hold.
Align the metal blank with the lines on the mat starting 1 inch down and 1 inch across. Then tape the metal down leaving the space you want to engrave open.
On the Maker, push the white star wheels to one side so the metal can easily pass through the machine. Then place the engraving tool into clamp B.
Now we can move to Cricut Design Space and create a project. On a blank canvas start by making a shape the size of your metal blank. My bracelet is 6 x .375 inches. This will help ensure the text fits perfectly on the piece.
Next, add some text or designs. I am writing the words “enjoy the little things”. I’ve also created cuff bracelets with my kids names and birthdays.
Choose a single line font that is meant for writing. With a standard text, only the outline will be engraved. You can filter fonts and find your favorite.
Once you have the font chosen and the text written, change the operation from cut to engrave to see how it will look. Then make sure the text fits within the box and click Make it.
Choose the project to be cut on a mat and your project will appear on 2 mats on the screen.
One the mat with the shape, click the 3 dots and move the box to the first mat.
Then line up the box using the grid lines so it matches your physical mat exactly. Add the text to the box where you want the engraving to happen. Then click the 3 dots again and hid the box we don’t need to cut this.
Click continue and choose your materials. These bracelet blanks work best with the aluminum sheets material settings. Then continue the operation, load the mat into the machine and start the engraving process.
Once the engraving is complete, pull the tape off the metal and remove it from the mat. The engraving can be rough or have a little debris on it. A piece of tape or lint roller can help remove any stray shavings.
Engraving on it’s own is difficult to see, so it needs to be darkened. I am using the stamp enamel that came with the ImpressArt bracelet kit, you can also use a Sharpie and rubbing alcohol like I have in this metal stamping project.
Let the stamp enamel sit for a few minutes then wipe off the excess. The words are now darkened permanently and are more visible.
Complete the cuff bracelet
To turn this metal blank into a bracelet I’m using a bending bar and bracelet bending pliars . Aluminum bends easily into the perfect shape and the pliars adds a nice round top.
If you want to get into jewelry and bracelet making, this bending bar and kit are a great buy.
The Cricut engraving tool can be used to make all kinds of jewelry pieces as well as leather tags, acetate signs and so much more.
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