Disclosure: I received the Cricut Explore Air 2 in exchange for my honest review. My opinion is based on my first-hand experience. Some links below may be affiliate links.
A long time ago in a galaxy far far away, I owned a Cricut Expression and LOVED it. I even demonstrated them for the company! They were cartridge-based and SO easy to use if you didn’t really want to use your computer. But as time evolved, the Cricut machines became more soft-ware based, and I fell out of love. Recently I was offered the chance to try the newest Cricut machine- the Explore Air 2- and see the Cricut machines with new eyes. How could I refuse?
One of the first things I did was to do an unboxing on Periscope- which I’ve edited down for you here. (Run time 9 minutes.)
My key takeaways from the unboxing:
- You get everything you need to complete your first project- a card- in the box.
- You the design of the Cricut Explore Air 2 is great- they’ve made excellent use of storage in the front flap and on top.
- You can still use cartridges if you have them, or prefer to buy them this way.
- The price point is so much better than the “old” new machines- this one has an MSRP of $299- that’s a full one-hundres bucks less than my Expression was back in the day!
- Spoiler alert- it’s on sale at Cricut.com for $249!
So after breaking it out of it’s box, I was eager to set it up. As it happens, my new studio space is SUPER small- and I don’t really have room to set up the Explore Air 2 in there. What makes this machine so awesome is that I can use my phone OR my iPad and, through the magic of BlueTooth, I can set up the machine on the table downstairs and design anywhere in my apartment! I have to admit, I really like the mobile interface- it’s very easy to use.
Check out my set-up video- and I show the first TWO projects I made! (Run Time 10 minutes.)
My key takeaways from my first project:
- Set up is MUCH easier than I remember. There is no software to download- it’s all cloud-based now.
- The Cricut Design Space is easy to use- and they take out the guess work in setting blade depths/speeds/pressures! It’s really just as easy as setting the dial. That’s a brilliant advancement.
- You can use Cricut Access to download individual images, and they are so much more reasonable! I bought the image for my iron-on through the (Apple) App store- no credit card required when I used my iPad. And if you choose a monthly or yearly subscription, you don’t even have to worry about that. (Side note- wouldn’t that subscription make a lovely holiday gift? What a no-brainer!)
- The iron-on material was easy to use once I figured out which way was up! (LOL- I’m a Craft Test DUMMY, remember??) The kiss-cut was perfect, and the foil is a show-stopper. Can’t wait to play with more materials!
- I only used the pre-loaded design and a uploaded one… but there are so many more options to explore. I’ll be diving into more complicated materials and projects in the new year.
I’ve really enjoyed getting reacquainted with the Cricut brand. And I’m excited to dig in further!
Do you have a Cricut machine? Which one? I’d love to hear YOUR thoughts and experiences!
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