Cricut drawing projects are the most underrated project type for the Cricut explorer and maker.
There are so many things you can do with the Cricut drawing features. It’s not just for writing on envelopes although you can do that too.
I use the draw feature of my Cricut Maker for all sorts of projects from coloring sheets to cards to even jewelry making. There are a few tricking things to keep in mind with using the Cricut to draw but once you understand the basics, it opens up a whole new world of Cricut crafts.
But first, a little primer on Cricut pens and the drawing features…
How to use Cricut pens
The Cricut branded pens are super easy to use. You just simply take the cap off and pop them into the slot on the left. The hardest part for me is always remember to lock the pen in with the locking tab. If you don’t do this step, the pen will wobble around and not draw the line it is intended to draw.
Be sure to put the cap back on the pen after you’re done. It’s easy to forget to the markers out after a project and they dry out.
How to use the Cricut to draw fill in
The quick answer is you can’t native to the Cricut Design Space app. You basically have to create a template outside of Cricut Design Space that has a bunch of lines spaced close to each other. You can replicate this with really long and skinny rectangles and setting them all to draw. Even in that case, you have to use a fatter point marker.
I recommend just filling in the wider areas by hand. It’s actually quite find. It’s like an adult coloring project.
*this article contains affiliate links for your convenience, see full disclosures here
Pens that work with Cricut Maker and Explorer
I know there are lots of people who love to do a “Cricut Pen Hack” and use non Cricut branded pens and markers instead of the branded ones. The thing is, the Cricut branded pens are not that expensive. For the price point, you get some really high-quality pens. Between buying the non-Cricut branded pens and the adapters, it’s almost not worth the hassle. I have a couple of Cricut branded favorites:
- Black Pens – I used the o.4 Tip Black Fine point pen for the calligraphy in the photos. I found this is the best option if you’re going with black. I love this set of all black pens from Cricut though because it gives you a lot of variations on black depending on your font style and size.
- Metallic Markers – I used the Medium Tip 1.0 Silver ones in the photos with the black envelope. This Martha Stewart set of metallic markers is my all-time favorite and I use it a ton. You can use it with the Cricut and as the tracing marker afterward.
If you insist on using a non-Cricut branded pen or maker, you need to take out the pen adapter and replaces it with a squishy pen grip like this one to hold the non-branded pen in place. The only non-Cricut branded marker I like are Sharpies. Here is one of my favorite metallic sets. Crayola Fine Line Marker can also work with this adapter. I have a separate tutorial on how to use DIY Cricut pen adapters here.
How to draw with Cricut Machines
To designate any graphic to draw, just change the Linetype to “Draw”.
Text that is already set in writing mode will automatically have Linetype set to “Draw”. I have a separate tutorial on how to to use writing fonts here if you’re interested in more details.
Cricut pen projects that work with both the Cricut Maker and Explorer
I mentioned addressing envelopes earlier. While this is one of the more common uses for the Cricut Pen feature, I like to step it up a notch and make my own envelopes while I’m at it. Here is my full tutorial on all the different things you can do with Cricut envelop addressing.
Interested in hand lettering but have terrible handwriting because you’ve been typing most of your life? Yeah, been there. I figured out how to do faux calligraphy with my Cricut and sort of cheat my way to hand lettering.
Cricut drawing isn’t just for paper! Here, I used the the pen to draw some intricate designs on shrink film and then created earrings from it. Here is my full tutorial with free templates on how to make shrink film earrings with the Cricut Pen.
While it’s not really feasible to color with the Cricut pen using the machine, you can always do the coloring after the fact by hand. I promise it’s actually a lot of fun. Here’s my tutorial (and free mandala template) on how to use infusible ink markers to make designs for all sorts of projects. Infusible ink markers is actually the cheapest way to do sublimation.
I also like just going back to the basic. Here is an example of where I drew a simple design using the Cricut gold marker on an existing flower template and turned it into a DIY decor project.
Last but not least, you can always just write a nice note on a cardstock for any occasion. Try using one of the fancier metallic markers and it makes a world of difference.
As you know, the Cricut pen needs single path designs to work properly. In addition to all the projects highlighted above, I also have a set of single path flourish and sentiments you can use to make your own Circut Pen projects.
This set of Cricut Pen templates are all free and available in my resource library.