I’ve been scrapbooking and crafting for over a decade, but almost everything has been done with a pair of scissors. I’ve dreamt of owning a Cricut cutting machine and last week a surprise delivery had me dancing with joy. The Cricut Joy arrived! You see what I did there? I’ve since been putting the pint size crafting cutter through its paces. Seeing as so many of you have asked for the Cricut Joy review, let’s find out if it really is your DIY best friend.
WHAT IS THE CRICUT JOY?
Cricut Joy is the smallest cutting machine available from popular crafting brand Cricut. Cutting isn’t its only function which explains all the excitement around the soon to be released Cricut Joy. The tiny powerhouse can also draw and write, and is incredibly easy to use. The Cricut Joy comes with a small blade that cuts paper, vinyl and Infusible Ink materials, taking creativity to the next level. The blade can be easily swapped out with a Cricut Joy pen.
Your Joy is used with free Cricut Design Space software on your computer, tablet or phone. It will also work with Design Space for Desktop on Bluetooth-enabled computers. Design Space is also available as an app and installed on your device when you set up your new machine. Design space subscription costs R99 should you wish to go with that option, it already has 50 ready-to-make projects for the Joy. You’ll see that most of the available designs require very little customisation.
LET’S get started
The thing about buying electronic equipment is that setting up can be extremely daunting, but not in the case of the Cricut Joy. Setting up the Joy is as simple as opening the box and following these easy steps :-
- Remove the packaging including the styrofoam protector from the blade
- Connect the power cable
- Download the Cricut app
- Turn your Bluetooth on and follow the prompts
- I highly recommend you do a test draw as well as a test cut before commencing. Design Space will prompt you.
- Now get creating
The Joy has a super sleek design with no external buttons, knobs or switches. It is super small, compact and weighs 1.75kg, but don’t let that fool you as it’s incredibly sturdy. This adorable yet impressive cutting and drawing machine is ideal for Cricut beginners and professionals.
Getting creative with the Cricut Joy
- Get labelling and organise everything in your home
- Cut vinyl decals for mugs, glasses, phone covers and even your car
- Personalise cards, banners and party decorations
- Cut iron-on vinyl decals for simple t-shirts and even your face masks (but you would need a heat press to finalise your project)
- Banners, borders and wall decals
- Cricut Joy machine
- Housing for the blade and pen
- A fine point pen with black ink
- Standard Grip Mat
- Power adapter certified for South Africa
- Materials for practice cuts
- Instructions and warranty
What You Really Need to get Started
I will be sharing a detailed post on Cricut Joy materials and supplies early next week, but you will however need to stock up on materials to get your crafting on. Here’s what I would recommend as a starting point:-
- Starter Tool Set – You most definitely need a weeder, spatula and scraper to work with your materials. There is a 3 piece as well as a 5 piece but I’s suggest getting the 3 piece.
- Smart Vinyl – You can use any type of vinyl with your Cricut Joy, but Smart Vinyl is better because you can cut without the mat. Cricut has a fab range of colours, textures and patterns.
- Transfer tape – was specifically designed to make transferring vinyl designs to project surfaces super easy. The clear film with grid makes it simple to position your design right where you want it. Do note that it can be used with most vinyl types, especially those with a smooth, non-textured finish.
- Card Mat – The card mat is one of my favorite tools for the Cricut Joy.
- Cricut Joy Pens – Card making means you will need a variety of coloured pens, Check out the glitter pens which are my fav.
Pros and Cons of the Cricut Joy
Every machine has pros and cons, but if you are reading a review with only pros I highly recommend you do a double take. If you know Fit Like Mummy then you know we always keep it real, because we genuinely want you to make the right decision when purchasing the correct Cricut machine to suit your crafting needs. So let’s get to it :-
Pros of getting a Cricut Joy
- The Joy is incredibly compact and super light
- Absolutely no assembly required
- Bluetooth capability makes it incredibly easy to set-up
- Good entry level machine and the cheapest in the Cricut machine range
- Perfect for beginners to professionals
- The only cutting machine that can cut without a mat thanks to Smart Vinyl
- Cuts single creations just over 1m long
- The card mat is fantastic for ensuring quick and easy card making
- Highly portable and easy to transport
Cons of the Cricut Joy
- Limited uses compared to other Cricut machines like the Cricut Explore Air 2 & Cricut Maker
- Machine-specific tools and accessories for the Joy
- Price point is close to the Cricut Explore Air 2 machine but it all depends on the niche you focus on. So do your research as Cricut has a comprehensive range of crafting machines to choose from.
my final take – The Cricut Joy Review
While the Cricut Joy may have a few cons, I feel that it is the ideal machine for beginners as it is incredibly easy to use. The fact that the machine doesn’t break the bank makes it a good starting point for your journey with Cricut. I absolutely love that the Joy is compact enough to be taken along when we vacay or when I visit my crafting buddies.
The Joy like any other Cricut machine will require that you invest in materials and supplies. Therefore deciding if the Cricut Joy is your DIY best friend will come down to two things … your budget and your crafting niche. If you’re into all things vinyl, cardmaking, scrapbooking, obsessed with iron-on merch and are the king or queen of organisation then Cricut Joy is definitely for you.
where CAN YOU BUY YOUR CRICUT MACHINES AND SUPPLIES?
Now that Cricut is in South Africa, there are several fantastic suppliers that you can reach out to not only purchase your Cricut machine, but to get advice and support. Hit the link here for the full list of suppliers. The Cricut Joy is expected to arrive in South Africa late June or early July 2021. I strongly recommend that you buy locally as the Cricut machines will be certified for use in South Africa. In addition, buying locally will also keep your warranty intact. These should also be considered if you ever think about buying second hand.
Taking all of this into account, I love the Cricut Joy and find it to be a great starting point, especially for someone like me who has been crafting manually for over a decade. The Joy’s ease of use meets my current needs of vinyl and card making creations for the online store. I sincerely hope you found The Cricut Joy Review useful and I hope it helps you when shopping for a Cricut Joy. Make sure to join the Cricut South Africa Facebook Community for the all the support and crafting inspiration.
Disclaimer : I am a Cricut Brand Ambassador but the opinions shared are my honest and unbiased review of the Cricut Joy.
Stay safe & happy crafting