Cricut Explore One Summer Sun Coasters

I've mentioned 17 times this week that we just moved to Kentucky from Washington State. Even though I wasn't 100% excited about the move I was 150% excited that for the first time EVER we were going to have a pool! Visions of weekend get togethers and hanging out with a tall glass of sweet tea (do not get me started!) were the inspiration for today's project.  When I saw this super cute ombre coaster set at Hobby Lobby I knew exactly what I wanted to do!


Materials:
Cricut Explore One Machine
Cricut Design Space software
Cricut Standard Grip mat
Cricut Tools Basic Set
Cricut Linen Vinyl
Cricut Transfer Tape
Set of tile coasters
Scissors
Clear varnish and brush (optional)

Instructions:
Measure the surface of your coasters. Each one of these images is 3.75" across - if your coasters are smaller select the Customize button to resize before cutting, otherwise select the Make It Now button.

Find the Summer Sun Coasters project in Cricut Design Space. Follow the instructions to cut the images from the Linen vinyl on your 12x12 mat. If you are wanting to use "scraps" of vinyl an 8x8 piece will work just fine.  Remember to set your SmartSet Dial to vinyl!

For easiest assembly, peel the entire vinyl sheet from the mat and trim loosely around each sun image. Use the weeder from the Tools Set to weed the negative space from each image.

Cut a piece of transfer tape that is a little bit bigger than each image.  Peel off the gridded side (paper) and place the sticky side of the tape on top of the image, using the scraper from the Tools Set to smooth.

One at a time, peel each sun/tape from the vinyl backing.  If vinyl is not sticking to the tape use the scraper to burnish until vinyl comes away from backing easily.
Center sun image on coaster and use scraper to smooth transfer tape and help the vinyl attach to the coaster.  Slowly peel away the transfer tape.  Repeat for each coaster.

Apply clear varnish to each coaster if you'd like them to be water resistant.

These are perfect for your summertime get togethers - or grab a piece of raffia or leather cord, tie them in a little bundle and give them as a hostess or thank you gift! So fun!

One of the things that helped me put together this project so quickly is how EASY it was to find the images in Design Space.  For those of us who are long time Cricut users - remember when you had to get out the little booklets for your cartridges and look through them to find the image you wanted? Then remember when you could only make the images a certain size?  THEN remember how you had to "guess" about the depth and speed of the blade when you were cutting with something other than standard cardstock? Oy!

All I had to do was go in to the Design Space canvas, select insert images, and type in the word sun in the search bar on the top right.  I got over 200 images to choose from with just the click of a button! How easy is that?

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The SmartSet Dial?  People. This dial. Want to cut vinyl?  Just turn the dial. Want to cut fabric? Just turn the dial.  Want to cut LEATHER? Just turn the dial!

Yesterday I said my #1 tip to crafters is that you never have to do what you're told.  However - if you are someone who is new to Cricut (or who is a long time Cricut user but don't have an Explore) my #1 tip to you is get on in there and TRY THIS SOFTWARE!   Cricut Design Space is one of the few things in life you can actually try before you buy. You can scroll through images and projects, insert images on to the canvas and edit them, see for yourself what the Design Space is capable of and how easy it is to use and you will be hooked!

There are three Cricut Explore machines available - one that is perfect for every crafter.  My fabulous friend Amber of Damask Love gave us a fantastic (and funny) breakdown of the three different machines here on her blog - I created this project (and every other project this week) using the new Explore One. The One is already available on cricut.com, but if you'd like to see it in action I will be on HSN next Monday (May 11th) with the One for the very first time!  Yahoo!  I'll share times and updates and such on my Facebook page starting on Sunday - it is another great way to see for yourself what these amazing machines can do!

As I mentioned in the video I was incredibly lucky to be born in to a crafty family (shout out to my Mom - or as we call her here on the blog - Crafty Sharron) and we want to know when YOU knew you were creative!  When you were a child?  As an adult?  Was it a specific project?  Tell us all about it on Cricut's Facebook entry form because we're giving away an iPAD mini today! Yup - you read that right! iPAD minis are the perfect partner for your Cricut Explore - ESPECIALLY this time of year - so you can be creative on the go!

For more information on the contest you can head to Cricut's Facebook Page or click HERE for the official rules.  Please note - you DO have to be a US resident to enter. Have I mentioned that every time you enter a #cricuteverywhere contest you are automatically entered to win a $10,000 dream vacation??  Oh yes you are!  GET YOURSELVES ENTERED MY FRIENDS!!!!

I'll be back tomorrow with a project that has been FIVE YEARS in the making (and spawned its own hashtag), and our final #cricuteverywhere giveaway of the week - the BIGGEST ONE YET!  See you then!