Make A Subscription Box Tower
Make a Subscription Box Tower from the boxes that you receive each month. Are you running out of room to store your subscription boxes on your shelves? Have you run out of room to add more book cases to your crafting area? Are you re-organizing your supplies so that they take up less space, and wondering what to do with the empty boxes? If you answer to these questions is “Yes!”, then making a subscription box tower may be just the project for you!
You are not alone, if you have struggles with wondering what to do with your one-to-two year pile of monthly subscription boxes. Some have unpacked the boxes, and reorganized their contents into file folders or zipper envelopes. But then, what do you do with the empty boxes? I hate to throw away the lovely boxes that could be re-purposed to store reorganized supplies, or other crafting supplies.
Supplies Needed to Make the Subscription Box Tower
Please note: Some affiliate links may be used in this post. I am affiliated only with products that I use. When you purchase products using my affiliate links, it does not cost you any more, but I will share some commission. Thanks!
Electronic Cutter (I used Pazzles Vue) Cricut Explore or Maker or Cameo 4 or Scan N Cut with Deep Cut Blade will work.
class=”content-box-red”>Red Line Tape
SVG Cutting File from our Free Resource Library</ class=”content-box-red”>9″ Square Subscription Boxes</ class=”content-box-red”>Free SVG cutting file from the FREE Resource Library
1/4 inch Satin Ribbon – about 7″ per box<
Double Sided Foam Tape
Jumbo Paper Clips – about 4 per box. Clips should be about 2 inches long.
Refolding Subscription Boxes to Make a Subscription Box Tower
I have a stack of 19 subscription boxes so far, from Crafter’s Companion. Instead of throwing my boxes away, I decided to refold my subscription boxes and make a subscription box tower. You can do the same by following these simple step-by-step instructions. There is no need to destroy the boxes if you simply refold them. Change them from top opening boxes to front opening boxes. This allows you to stack all of the boxes without having to unstack them to access their contents.
Get Started Refolding the Boxes
First, remove the box contents.
Next, unfold the side flaps of the box. To do this you will need to lift up and out on the side flap to slip the tabs out of their slots.
Repeat with the other side flap.
Pull the front flap down.
Now, fold the side flaps back down, inserting their tabs into their original slots.
Prepare the front flap to fold to the inside of the box. Use some strong double-sided tape to hold the side flaps down. Then fold the front flap to the inside of the box.
Fold the front flap to the Inside of the box. Press down firmly on the front flap so that the tape adheres well to the bottom of the box.
The front flap can now tuck back inside of the box to close it. When you make a subscription box tower, you will now be able to open the front flap to remove its contents. You will not have to move the other boxes stacked on top of it to access its contents.
Make Drawers for the Boxes to Make a Subscription Box Tower
Cut the Drawers
You can make a drawer to hold the contents of your box. The drawer will make it easier for you to access the supplies you keep inside of it. Make a drawer for each of your subscription boxes using the free template included in the Free Resource Library. Once you make a subscription box tower with front closing panels, your supplies will be easier to access.
8.25″ Drawer Template Pieces
Pieces included in the Template to Make a Subscription Box Tower Drawer
The Template for the Drawer includes files in several formats. If you will be cutting your drawer pieces using an electronic cutter such as Cricut, Scan N Cut, Silhouette, Pazzles, or Klic N Kut, you will be able to use the included SVG file. On the other hand, if you will be hand cutting the pieces, you may use the PDF template. The drawer measures 8.25″ square by 2.75″ tall.
Each drawer has three side panels, one front panel, two bottom pieces, and two panels for reinforcing the front panel. The red lines in the template represent lines that are to be scored. Cut each side panel from a single sheet of heavy cardstock measuring 8.5″x11″. If you are using the PDF file, you will use that part of the template four times. Notice that the front panel has a slit in the center to allow you to thread a ribbon through it.
Also, there are two pieces for the drawer bottom. One is for the inside of the box, and the other is for the outside of the box. There are two panels with slits in them included to reinforce the front edge of the box. One piece goes on the inside, and one goes on the outside.
Using an Electronic Cutter to cut Drawer Pieces to Make a Subscription Box Tower
The cutting files for this project are zipped together. Download the zipped file to your computer. Double click on the file you downloaded and select Extract All to unzip it. Open your cutter software.
Instructions for use in Cricut Design Space
Cricut Design Space users will upload the SVG file and click on Save. Then select the uploaded file, and click on Insert. Next, right click, and select Ungroup. Now you need to assign the fold lines to score. There are two score lines for each of the four side pieces. Select one from the panel on the right side of the screen. At the top of the screen, change the line type from Cut to Score. The lines will now appear to be dashed on the screen to indicate that these are score lines. Finally, select the shape and score lines, right click, and select Attach. Do this for each of the four side pieces. Select a front panel and its center horizontal cut line. Then right click and Attach. Now do this for each of the front panels.
Instructions for use with other Cutter Software
Scan N Cut users should use the FCM files. Notice that there are three files. The file names indicate how many times each file should be cut for a single box drawer. Load one file at a time into Brother Canvas Workspace. Select the pair of fold lines in each piece, and assign it to be scored. Score them, then cut.
Silhouette Studio users can use the SVG files. Import them into the Designer or Business edition of Silhouette Design Studio.
The SVG files can be used by all other cutter software. Score the red lines, and cut the black lines.
Get the FREE SVG Cutting File for the Drawers for the Subscription Box Tower
To get the free SVG Cutting file for the Drawers for the Subscription Box Tower, go to the resource library and enter the password. I have included the password at the bottom of most of my newsletter emails. If you have subscribed, check your most recent email to find the password. If you have not yet subscribed, I hope you will, so that you can be informed as I add more new projects to the Free resource library! Once you are in the Free Resource library, right click on the file name of the project. Next, select Save Link As or Save Target As.
Now, save the file to your computer. Next you will need to unzip the file. To do that, double click on the file you saved to your computer to open it. Then, click on Extract All. Now, open your cutter software, and import the SVG file. Select the pieces you wish to cut. Load your paper onto the cutting mat. Do a test cut to find the best settings for you machine, and cut the pieces you need. Repeat with the pieces you want to cut from a different color paper.
Assemble the Drawers
Make valley folds on the score lines. With the wide tab on the bottom right, place red line tape on the three edges of the upper flap. Turn this piece over, and apply red line tape to three edges of the wide tab.
Also add a strip of red line tape along the long bottom edge of the side piece as shown above.
Fold the wide flap along the score line towards the lower part of the box side to form a corner. Remove the tape liner. Now check to make sure the corner is perfectly square, and press down to secure the flap the side as shown above.
Prepare all four sides of the box in the same manner as the first. Now you are ready to put the pieces together. Remove the liner from the tape on the end of the box. With the narrow flaps on top, overlap the straight edge of the next side over the corner piece and press together.
Remove the tape liner from the flaps before adding another side. Now you are ready to add another side in the same way.
Adhere the final side of the drawer to complete the shape of a square box, pressing the corners firmly. Be sure to line the corner up squarely. Now remove all tape liner from bottom edge of the box. Square the corners, then press the bottom of the box over the flaps on the outside. Then turn the box over, and press from the inside.
Now you can add the other bottom piece on the inside of the box.
Remove the tape liners from the other side pieces. Fold these pieces to the inside and press firmly.
Finish the Front Panel
There are two additional panels for the front of the box. Glue one piece to the inside of the front, and glue the other to the outside of the box front. All front pieces have a slit. Cut a piece of ribbon about 7″ long, and fold it in half. Use a needle or pokie tool to push the folded edge of the ribbon from the inside of the box front to the outside. Then pull the ribbon through the slot about half way. Separate the inside flaps of the ribbon so that one piece goes up, and the other goes down. Tape or glue into place.
Slide the drawer into the front opening of one of the refolded subscription boxes. The ribbon will help you pull the drawer back out. Now you will be able to slide the flaps of the box into their original slots to close it up.
Add contents of your choice into the box, and close the side front panel.
Add Contents and Create Labels
Now, fill your drawers with whatever you want to store in them, then label the boxes. Then make an index for the box contents so you can find what you need. Also, if the boxes have important information on the sides or bottom that will be hidden once the boxes are stacked, take photos or scan the boxes. Print these on regular printer paper, and place inside the boxes or in a binder so that you can refer to them as needed.
Stack Your Boxes into a Tower
Your tower may be a single box wide, or double box wide, as you prefer. Use jumbo paper clips in the tab slots on the underside of the adjacent boxes to keep them together. To do this, unfold the paper clips. Then refold them with a wider curve at the top. One side of the clip will fit into a tab slot on one box. And the other side will fit into the tab slot on the box next to it. If the paper clips do not slide all the way in, you can use a small craft hammer to tap them into position. Also, you can use paper clips on the top side of the boxes if you like.
These boxes have paper clips on top and bottom to join the two boxes together.
You may apply adhesive to the box bottoms to keep them together. I have found that with the contents in the boxes, and having two clipped together side by side, the tower is stable.
>> HOW TO ENTER THE FREE RESOURCE LIBRARY <<
This resource library is open to everyone for free. All you need is the password to get in, which you can get by filling out the form below.
If you already have your password, enter the resource library here.
Pazzles Inspiration Vue Cutter Review
Pazzles Inspiration Vue may be the electronic cutter you need. It ranks among the top electronic cutters. The Vue is a powerful, but simple to use machine. You can cut many different types of materials with it. And with optional accessories, you can also use the Pazzles Inspiration Vue to cut, draw, engrave, emboss, pierce, and distress many media types. The Pazzles Inspiration Vue is the choice of beginner and well as professional crafters. This article reviews the features of this amazing machine to help you decide if this is a good choice for your crafting needs.
Note: I may have used some affiliate links in this review. I am affiliated only with products that I use. When you purchase products using my affiliate links, it does not cost you any more, and the tiny commission that I get contributes towards the costs for maintaining my blog. Thanks for your support!
What Do You Want to Cut?
Cutting Vinyl with the Pazzles Inspiration Vue
The Pazzles Inspiration Vue cuts vinyl of all types, whether the vinyl is repositionable wall vinyl, permanent outdoor vinyl, heat transfer vinyl, vinyl window cling, Stencil Vinyl, Glitter or Flocked vinyl or other types. It is recommended that you cut your vinyl on either the 12″ mat or the 24″ mat. Reserving a standard cutting blade for cutting vinyl ensures that you will always get smooth cuts with for your vinyl projects.
You can make wonderful gift items such as the customized tile above using your Pazzles Inspiration Vue electronic cutter. The design for the shirt below was a special request from my husband. The Pazzles InVue software that ships with the machine, allowed me to create the cutting design from an actual photo of my husband fishing.
Cutting Heavy Cardstock with the Pazzles Inspiration Vue
Entry level cutters do not have sufficient cutting pressure to allow users to cut heavy media. The Pazzles Inspiration Vue boasts of up to 1000 grams of down pressure, making it rank among the top home crafting cutters. It can cut media that is up to 2mm thick. So it can cut even tough chipboard. If you love to cut 3D projects from heavier media, you will need a more powerful machine. This machine boasts of three times the cutting pressure of the legacy Cricut machines as well as the Cricut Explore models. And it has about 4 times the cutting pressure of Silhouette and Craft Robo machines. The print and cut embellishments used on this card were all created using the Pazzles Inspiration Vue and its InVue software.
3D boxes such as the Trailer Gift Box below are much more stable when cut from heavy cardstock.
Here is another project that required heavy cardstock. If you love making sturdy 3D projects, you will be happy if you have a cutter that can handle cutting the required heavy media.
Projects like this Snow Globe Box Card last a lot longer on display when its pieces are cut from heavier cardstock. Pazzles Inspiration Vue cuts these so efficiently! The intricate snowflake detail cut beautifully on this machine.
Engraving Metal with the Pazzles Inspiration Vue
You can use Pazzles optional Diamond Tip engraving tool to engrave on metal. I recently engraved on a dog tag for our puppy. The tallest letter was .057″ and the smallest letter was .06″ tall. The entire tag was only 1.5″ wide. I was able to fit four rows of text on the back of the tag with our puppy’s name, address and phone number. Here is the front of the tag. (I blurred the phone number.) You can cut thin aluminum metal with the blade.
Cutting and Piercing Delicate Designs in Vellum with the Pazzles Inspiration Vue
You can also cut very fine and delicate media such as vellum. I used Pazzles optional Piercing and Embossing tools on vellum to create this popup butterfly anniversary card.
Cutting Fabric with the Pazzles Inspiration Vue
Cutting fabric with this machine is great. I was amazed at how nicely my Vue cut the doily and the flowers out of fabric for this Easter Bonnet. It is good to reserve a blade dedicated to cutting fabric, since paper can dull blades quite quickly.
Cutting Wood with the Pazzles Inspiration Vue
Yes! This machine cuts thin balsa wood or basswood up to 2mm thick. Here is a Captain’s Wheel design that I cut. Covering the back of the piece of wood with blue painter’s tape before cutting keeps the thin wood from splitting during the cut and while lifting from a very sticky mat.
Making 3D Flowers with the Pazzles Inspiration Vue
If you love making 3D paper flowers as I do, you will be happy to know that this machine cuts lots of different types of paper petals for making beautiful flowers. This bouquet includes some vellum flowers, some made from printed scrapbook paper, some from medium weight cardstock, and some from heavy cardstock.
Cutting Rubber Stamps
You can create your own custom rubber stamp designs using the Pazzles InVue software that ships with the Pazzles inspiration Vue. Then you can cut the rubber using the Pazzles Inspiration Vue. I had an idea for a musical stamp, so I created the design, and let my Pazzles Inspiration Vue machine cut it out for me.
Cutting Clay, Fondant, Gum Paste and Frosting Papers using the Pazzles Inspiration Vue
You can use Pazzles optional Cake Accessories Kit for cutting clay, fondant, gum paste, and frosting papers. Here is a project I made using thinly rolled Sculpey clay.
Cutting Scrapbook Page Overlays
Scrapbook pages are fun to make using the Pazzles InVue software and cutting with Pazzles Inspiration Vue. This machine will cut a full 12″ wide border or scrapbook page. It is not limited to an 11.5″ cutting width as some cutters are. Here is a scrapbook calendar page that I created. Notice the detail of the embellishments.
Designing templates for use with rhinestone designs can be done using the Pazzles InVue software that ships with the Pazzles Inspiration Vue cutter. You can turn any design or test into a rhinestone template design. Then you can cut your template out of rubber designed for cutting rhinestone templates using your Vue. Here is my first rhinestone project.
Cutting Around Printed Images
Before I received my Pazzles Inspiration Vue, I was never happy with the cutting around printed images with my other machines. You will love how the Pazzles Inspiration Vue automatically finds the registration marks, and cuts perfectly around printed images that are up to 8.5″ wide. This project would have been extremely difficult to cut and assemble if I had cut each tiny element separately. Instead, I chose a number of appropriate designs from the generous Image library available in the Pazzles Craft Room, and printed the shapes. Then I had my Vue cut around the printed images. It did a great job!
You can see more of my Pazzles creations here .
What is your Cutting Skill Level?
If you are a novice cutter user, you will appreciate how easy the Pazzles Inspiration Vue cutter is to learn to use. With the great support offered by Pazzles to its customers through the Pazzles Craft Room, you can learn to start using your Vue to make amazing projects right away. The Pazzles Craft Room has hundreds of projects like the above, ready for you to download, cut, and assemble. The downloaded projects are yours to keep, even after your membership expires. And their Angel policy allows you to use the designs commercially. You can get almost all of the above projects for free as a member of the Pazzles Craft Room.
Ease of Use
The click style blade holder in the Pazzles Inspiration Vue makes setting blade depths easy. The software tells you where to set the blade for the media type that you have selected to cut. The blade holder and blade are the same ones that the Deep Cut blade holder and blades that legacy Cricut machines used. The blades are easy to insert and remove.
The machine automatically loads your mat. The optical reader sets the starting point at the same place every time. The optical reader also makes cutting around printed images so much easier!
More Advanced Users
You will love the flexibility you have in using the Pazzles InVue software. It has all of the basic functions with which you are familiar from other cutting software. But it also has lots of advanced design and editing functions. Some of these advanced features are not available even in the most expensive professional design software programs. Pazzles developed their InVue software with all the advanced design features that its staff and professional users were familiar with, and used to using.
The amazing thing about this software is that it is provided for FREE with the purchase the the Pazzles Inspiration Vue. And it is available for a VERY low price for those who wish to purchase it separately and use as third party software with other cutters. This software, combined with the advanced cutting technology in the machines, means that you most likely will not outgrow its functioning for your crafting purposes.
What is your Price Point?
Some people like to start their cutting adventure with a very inexpensive machine. Then they start saving their money, and plan to purchase a better machine when they outgrow the features of that machine. Others prefer to get the best machine they can get, so that they won’t be outgrowing its features any time soon. Pazzles Inspiration Vue is one of those machines that meets your growing cutting needs, without a need to upgrade to bigger and better machines later on.
There are several shopping options, making your purchase of the Pazzles Inspiration Vue cutter affordable. You can check out those options here. If you wish to purchase the machine outright, you will get the best price by first joining the Pazzles Craft Room for one month. While a member, you will receive a 15% discount on all Pazzles purchases. So you can get a 15% discount on your machine, and all the optional accessories you need. I save on shipping by purchasing all that I think I might need for a year. I like to keep three good mats and three extra blades on hand at all times.
With your outright purchase, you will receive several months of free membership in the Pazzles Craft Room. Be sure to take advantage of that time to view all of the training videos in the video library. These will help you get a great start in using your new machine. Also, be sure to download all of the cutting files and projects that you can get while you are a member. You can download up to 400 files per month, if you are diligent to download 40 files every 70 hours. These are yours to keep. While you are a Pazzles Craft Room Member, all downloads are FREE!
If you find that you love all the new projects that are regularly posted, you may decide that you want to maintain your Pazzles Craft Room membership. I really like all of the wonderful projects that they offer so much that I decided to keep my membership going. The best price for me turned out to be purchasing a machine for $99 with a two year commitment to the Pazzles Craft Room. Another similar option is to purchase a machine for $199 with a one year commitment to the Pazzles Craft Room.
Pazzles Inspiration Vue works on both Windows 7, 8, and 10, and on Mac: OS X 10.9.X & 10.10.X.. It needs a USB2 connection directly to your computer. The InVue software also works on these machines. You will need software to cut to the Vue. You can use Pazzles InVue software or you may use Sure Cuts A Lot. If you have Pazzles Inspiration Studio Pro 1014, you can use it to cut to the Vue. However, that software is no longer available for sale.
You do Not need high speed internet in order to use your Pazzles Inspiration Vue. Connect to the Internet to update your firmware and software one time after receiving your Vue. You can disconnect your Vue from your computer after making a cut. Then you can repeat that exact same cut with the same settings as many times as you like by pressing the Repeat button on the machine. When you need to make a lot of the same project, this is a real handy feature to have.
Pazzles Inspiration Vue Specifications
This cutter ships with the machine, USB cable, power cord, and converter box, blade, blade holder, and a print and cut mat. The machine will cut up to 1000 grams of pressure using settings of 1-50. You have 5 speeds from which to choose. The click blade holder has 11 different blade depth settings. Maximum cutting width is 12″. Cutting length is 12″ with the standard mat, and 24″ with the 24″ mat. The machine weighs 11.2 pounds, is 22″ wide x 6.5″ tall x 11″ deep. Its roller bar has two permanent pressure rollers, and four more rollers that are removable when cutting thicker media.
There is an accessory tray on top of the machine as well as three slots for additional tools. A support tray for the mat is built in to the front of the machine. You slide it out when using the machine. Then push it in when done.
Pazzles InVue Software Overvue
The InVue software ships without additional cost to you with your purchase of the machine. It has many outstanding features. For that reason, we will touch only on the highlights. The software has special features not only for cutting, but also for drawing, piercing, embossing, engraving, distressing, and converting to rhinestone designs. My favorite tools are the replace with a line, and replace with an arc.
The software will import and export SVG files. It will also import and export WPC files. The image gallery connects to your online account with Pazzles. This allows you to download all new files easily. The software automatically stores these downloaded files in the correct topical file folders on your computer. Downloading files from the online library requires an Internet connection. But once they are saved to your computer, no internet connection is necessary for using them.
There are a variety of welding options in the software. One that is unusual to see is the WYSIWYG weld function. This allows you to arrange design pieces as you wish to see them. Then you use WYSIWYG Weld to get rid of all overlapping lines instantly. It has a nice inline/outline feature. It also has a nice Duplicate feature that lets you fill your page with the selected images.
The software will also convert images to cutting lines. There is a nice Fit text to path feature, which allows you to select any path for the text to follow. I love the Vertical/Horizontal tool, and the corner rounder features as well.
The software will access any fonts installed in your computer’s system fonts folder. It will also access single stroke fonts that you have installed. The software has a very nice text preview window. This allows you to type in text and preview how it looks with any of your installed fonts. I love being able to see the text in different fonts in a large size before I select one. Once you have added your text to the layout, you have many options for spacing and kerning. Thickening fonts is easy in this software. Creating mats for text is also easy. So you can make some lovely word art quickly and easily with this software.
Features that I miss in the Pazzles InVue software are freehand draw, fit object to path, and blackout shape. I miss the scissors cuts we had in Inspiration Studio Pro 2010, and the Create a Font option. This software is missing the word envelopes, simplify paths, and smooth small angle tools.
I go back to Make The Cut to use its better tracing options, its Conical Warp, and Texture Snapshot features. The MTC measuring tool and Lattice functions are some tools that I miss as well. Thin paths, Fuse and Weld and the Tiler functions are also features that I still go back to Make The Cut to use.
I go to Sure Cuts A Lot to make instant Knockout Text. We can do this using InVue software, but it takes a few more steps. Viewing and using alternate glyphs in the private use area of fonts is another feature of Sure Cuts A Lot that I use on occasion. I go to CorelDraw to use the envelope for fitting text to a shape and for creating True Type fonts. CorelDraw and Illustrator have useful batch conversion utilities that come in handy from time to time. Sure Cuts A Lot does a batch convert for Brother FCM files. Pazzles InVue software does not have any batch conversion features.
The nice thing about the Pazzles InVue software is that even if you go to other software to use certain features, you simply export the files as SVG, import into InVue, and you are ready to cut. You get the best of all of the software choices this way.
Now you have an idea of some of the great things that the Pazzles Inspiration Vue can do for you. You need to figure out what your specific needs are. I have 14 different cutters in my collection. Each one has its own special purpose. I select the one that will work the best for the project on which I am working . You need to determine if the Pazzles Inspiration Vue or another machine meets those needs better. Study your options. What do you like to do the most? Get the best machine that you are able to afford that will work the best for your purposes. So the most important thing is for you to use what you have until you can get something better. You won’t really know exactly what you need until you start using what you have!
Free Thankful For You Tag SVG Cutting File
I have created a new cutting file for you using my Pazzles InVue Software, and I cut it on my Pazzles Inspiration Vue cutter. But you can use the FREE SVG cutting file with your own software and cutter. You can get the FREE Thankful For You Tag SVG cutting file in my FREE Resource Library. See the link at the bottom of the page.
>> HOW TO ENTER THE FREE RESOURCE LIBRARY <<
This resource library is open to everyone for free. All you need is the password to get in, which you can get by filling out the form below.
If you already have your password, enter the resource library here.
Get Your Cutter Out of the Box
You were so excited to purchase a new electronic cutter so you could start creating fabulous projects. Is that Cricut, Cameo, Scan N Cut, Pazzles, Klic N Kut, Silver Bullet, or other fine cutter still sitting in its unopened box? It is time to get your cutter out of the box! Don’t let the warranty expire on your machine before you even have a chance to use it! Do you need some help getting started using your cutter? Do you want to make some of those lovely projects you have been admiring for so long? I have helped many crafters get their cutters out of the box, set up, and started using them. If you live near me in the Pacific Northwest, you might want to come for a visit. Or perhaps you can attend a class that I am teaching in your area. Alternatively, the following tips can help you get started. You can begin to create some of the projects you envisioned when you invested in your cutting machine.
I was frightened to take my cutter out of the box when I first received it, about 13 years ago. It took me 4 months to actually start using it! Some private help from the company who sold me the cutter gave me courage to get my cutter out of the box. Perhaps you don’t have the advantage of hands-on help where you are. If not, I hope I can help you a bit here to get you started. Here are some steps to help motivate you get your cutter out of the box, and set up. Then you can get started using it for some creative and fun crafting!
Prepare a Space for your Cutter .
While you are waiting for your new cutter to arrive, decide where you will be putting it once it arrives. This is a great time to prepare a space for your cutter. You need a space as wide as your cutter, and about 36 inches deep. Your machine can sit on a desk, or under a shelf on your desk. Leave some room behind and in front of it to allow the cutting mat to move in and out of the machine smoothly without interference. If you don’t have room on your desk, you can set up a sturdy table, stand, or rolling cart behind or beside your desk. Cutters equipped with bluetooth may be used further from your desk after you get it set up. You will find it much easier to get bits of crafting done if you don’t have to worry about taking care of these details each and every time you want to create something. You will use your cutter more if it is within arm’s reach of your computer work space, plugged in, and ready to use.
- Prepare a place for your cutting supplies near your cutter. Having a shelf above the cutter could be a workable solution. Do you have some space under or near the table, stand or rolling cart where you can keep your cutting supplies? You will need a place for your mats, blades, and frequently used tools. Mats need to be stored flat. I keep my covered mats stacked neatly on top of my drawer cubes. Get the free list of Five Must-Have Cutter Crafting Tools in the Free Library.
- Learn while waiting for delivery day. You can watch some unboxing YouTube videos . Find the company’s support page, join some cutter support groups, and learn about your new purchase. Unboxing videos will help you to warm up to the idea of getting your cutter out of the box, and become friendly with the possibilities waiting for you with this new tool.
- Delivery Day! Think about why you purchased this machine in the first place as you head toward that box. Place the box on a large table with room for all of its contents.
Unpack the Box
. You can use scissors, a box cutter or knife to cut through the packing tape and open the box. There is another box inside of the shipping box, so you don’t have to worry about damaging the machine when you are opening this outer box. You may see a packing list which you can check as you unpack the contents of the box.
- Remove the inner box from the shipping carton. You may need help pulling it out. It may be easier for you to get the inner box out by turning the carton on its side or upside down to pull the outer box off.
- Open the inner box. The cutting mat is often wrapped loosely around the body of the machine. Take it out and allow it to lie flat while you unpack the remainder of the box contents.
- Remove packaging. The machine is wrapped in plastic foam or bag to protect it from moisture during transit. Remove this wrap and other packing material used to stabilize the machine during shipment. Save all packing materials. If you ever need to ship your machine for service or repairs, etc., it will be much easier to ship if you have the original packing materials.
- Look for the “Quick Setup” instructions that are most likely near the top of the box. This will guide you through each step of setting up your new machine. Continue unpacking the contents of your box, to make sure everything is present that you will need. Your Quick Start Guide will list everything that should be in the box.
- Power Cord and Converter Box. The converter box may look like many others that you have around the house. However, this one is unique to this cutter. Do not use other power supplies intended for other cutters or devices, as not all electronic devices have the same input and output power ratings. Use some tape to label these cords with the cutter name to avoid confusion in the future.
One end of the black cord plugs into a surge protector strip, and the other end plugs into the black box. You should invest in a surge protector power strip if you don’t already have one, in order to protect your machine from sudden surges of power that could destroy your machine.
- USB Cable If your cutter connects to a computer via USB, it probably shipped with an A toB USB cable, similar to one that a printer uses. One end of the cable plugs into the cutter, while the other plugs into a USB port on your computer. Plan to use a primary USB port on the back of the computer, rather than an auxiliary port or hub. If a hub becomes necessary, use only a self-powered hub. Even if your machine is equipped with blue tooth wireless technology, you may still need a USB cable when first setting up your machine. Check your instructions and follow the recommendations for setting up the machine and software used to run it.
Software – If your cutter purchase included software, there may be a software CD in the box. Some companies provide software downloads in lieu of an installation CD. Software frequently requires updates, so even if you do have an installation CD, you will need to install software updates once your machine is set up. If there is a registration number in or on the CD packaging, be sure to put that number in a safe place. Be sure to register your machine and software with the company. This software has the License Key number on the back of the CD envelope.
- Don’t let your warranty run out without doing some test cuts on your new machine. There should be a warranty document included in your box. Take a look at that to see if you have any warranty time left, if you delayed in opening your box. Most electronic cutters come with a one-year warranty. If that time is drawing short, you should plan to dive right in to using your cutter as soon as possible! There is likely a warranty registration card. You should definitely register your machine right away, either by sending in the card, or registering its serial number online with the company.
Find and record the Serial number on your machine. You will need this number to register your cutter. It is usually found on the bottom of the machine.
- Remove packaging Tape. Moving parts of your cutter may have been taped down for protection during shipping. Your quick setup instructions should direct you to locate the positions of the tape or other packing materials, so that you can remove it before starting to use your craft cutter.
- Insert the cutting blade into the blade holder, and insert the blade holder properly into the carriage on the cutting head. The blade should barely be peeking out from the end of the blade holder for most cutting purposes.
Be sure to position the blade holder in the carriage so that the depth setting is visible from the front of the machine. This will make it easier to make adjustments to blade depth without having to remove the blade holder from the carriage.
Plugging in your Cutter
- Take a look on the machine to find the power port. The USB port will be located near the power port. Plug in the power cord to the converter box. Plug the other end of the power cord into the machine, and plug in to a power source. Don’t turn the power on until you are directed to do so by the instructions that came with your machine.
- You may find some extras in your box such as sample materials to cut, depending on the machine package that you purchased.
- Install the software that will be used to drive your machine as directed by the manufacturer’s instructions. Some cutters use online software, while others come with stand-alone software that you will install on your computer. Some also have apps for your mobile devices. Go ahead and get the software loaded on your computer and/or your mobile device.
- Once you get your cutter power plugged in and get it to connect with your computer or mobile device, you may be directed to do some firmware updates. Most cutter manufacturers provide updates for the machines they produce. You may need to access the most recent Firmware updates for your machine online. Firmware is the programming that is built in to the machine. The update process is usually simple, and often it runs automatically. During the software installation process, the drivers necessary for your computer to communicate with your cutter will be installed as well.
Get Support if Needed
- Don’t let this process get in the way of setting up your machine. You can always contact the company from which you purchased the machine for direct help in setting it up. Don’t be afraid to call them, email them, fill out a support ticket on their web site, or post your questions in online forums. Even if your machine is now out of warranty, most companies are willing to provide the help you need to get your machine and software up and running.
You now have your cutter out of the box, set up and ready to use! Don’t forget to grab your free list of Five Must-Have Cutter Crafting Tools from the Free Library, and get them in their new home near your cutter. Then you are ready to move on to making some test cuts and get started on making some of those great projects you have envisioned!
Would you like to have the free list of Five Must-Have Cutter Crafting Tools as well as some FREE SVG cutting files for a variety of projects?
Get the password for the Free Library with free SVG files by filling out this form:
Make a Special Cupcake Gift Box
My latest Pazzles Design Team project post will help you to make a special floral cupcake gift box for someone special. The 3D lilacs on top of the box add a special touch for your female recipients. Do you need a gift for a special graduate, or for birthday celebration? This project is easy to make with the cutting files posted with it here: https://www.pazzles.net/wordpress/2018/04/18/beautiful-cupcake-box
This cupcake gift box could work as a Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, Anniversary, or gift for other special occasions. You can make this box with or without the acetate window on the front. You may use the 3D lilac flowers on top, or leave them off.
The handles on top make it easy to carry the box, and the tray inside of the box has a tab to help you pull the cupcake out of the box.
You may leave the box plain for masculine recipients. They will be surprised by its contents when they open the box. The cupcake is not likely going to last long!
Would you like to have some FREE SVG cutting files for a variety of projects?
Get the password for the Free Library with free SVG files by filling out this form:
You can make a Lovely Floral Gift Box
Would you like to make a lovely Floral Gift Box for someone special in your life? That someone is sure to be wowed by a lovely handmade creation such as this. After making this floral gift box, topped with this special heart flower, I filled it with chocolate bon-bon candies, and gave it to my Step-Mother as a birthday-Valentine’s gift. She absolutely loved not only the chocolates, but she also appreciated the handmade heart flower that I used instead of a bow to decorate the top of the box, as well as the lovely box that she can now use to hold jewelry or other small household items.
Two part gift box with decorative 3D Heart Flower ornament
The floral gift box has a magnetic closure to keep it closed. You might want to decorate your floral gift box with more masculine papers for male recipients. The flower may be used to decorate other DIY projects such as cards, frames, scrapbooks and more. You could even make an entire bouquet of these flowers and place in a vase for some lovely home decor.
You can make this box out of ordinary cardstock, which cuts nicely on electronic cutters such as Pazzles Vue or Inspiration, Cricut, Silhouette Cameo, Scan N Cut, KNK Zing, Zing Orbit, or Force, Silver Bullet, or other cutters that have software that can use SVG, AI, or WPC file formats. The heart flower ornament can be cut out of cardstock or from lighter weight paper. I used some lovely iridescent text weight paper for mine.
Illustrated, printable, step-by-step assembly instructions accompany the cutting file, to make the assembly process quick and easy. It amazes me that we can make such gorgeous gifts out of something as mundane as paper! Do you need a box for a gift for a special occasion coming up soon? The box measures about 3.5 inches square, and it is 1.5 inches high, making it a perfect size for a watch, jewelry, a special sweet treat, as well as a gift card. I hope you will give it a try for an upcoming occasion.