Looking for the best die cutting tool to cut felt? There are a lot of great options available (we talk about our favorite manual die cut machine here) but today we are going to talk about electronic cutting machines. Many machines available will cut felt but only with some sort of trick such as applying stabilizer to the felt or only using stiff felt. The machine we use on regular basis is the Cricut Maker -the key to it's success is the inclusion of the rotary blade -it rolls over the felt to cut the shapes -cutting the felt seamlessly! We will talk about the pros and cons of each model but the most exciting benefit of the Cricut Maker is that you can cut absolutely ANY shape you wish! A creative couldn't wish for anything more! We'll give you a brief overview on how to get started cutting out our ivy pattern to make a your own potted plant -for more detailed instructions we suggest visiting the Cricut website.
We have also heard great things about Brother Cut n' Scan as well as the Silhouette Cameo 4 and felt -but have not personally tried them.
Cricut Maker + cutting mat
SVG pattern for Ivy
Wool blend felt in Geranium (3 9x12" sheets) + Emerald (2 9x12" sheets)
Ink in Deep Green
Wire Stems, 20 gauge
Hot Glue Gun -you'll want the detail tip in this glue gun!
Pot or vase to display your felt plant in
The Cricut Maker utilizes the cloud based program "Cricut Design Space" to set up your files. This program can be used on your phone, tablet or computer and will print wirelessly to your Cricut Maker. Benzie offers many svg files right on our blog for free! Save our ivy pattern here then upload it to the Cricut Design Place. The final step will ask you what material you are using (felt!) and allow you to select the rotary blade option -this is the key to success! When it is done printing -you can just peel off the felt shapes, toss on another piece of felt and cut again! For this potted plant we used 4 9x12" sheets of Geranium and 2 9x12" sheet of Emerald.
There are several different cutting mats you can use with the Cricut Maker -from a Light to a Standard Grip. I'm using the Fabric Grip but I usually just grab what I have available and have found they all work great! They also come in two different sizes, a 12x12" and a 12x18" size. The larger size is a perfect fit for Benzie's 12x18" sheets of felt! After a while the mats will get super fuzzy from the felt and they need to be cleaned off -I either use packaging tape to remove the fuzzies or wash the mat with soap and water.
After the Cricut Maker has done all the hard work, you can get to crafting!
1.) Stack up your leaves and ink the edges. I love how the dark ink makes the leaves come alive! 2.) Then start by folding the leaves in half around the wire stem -attaching with just a bit of glue along the base. To give more body to the plant we pinched and glued the base of some of the leaves. Leaves are spaced anywhere from 1 to 3 inches apart.
We made 3 different styled stems: 3.) This is the longest ivy tail -it just hangs of the edge of the pot. 4.) This 'w' shaped stem is the base of the plant, we made 4 total. 5.) And we finished it off with a few of these hanging guys. Bend the wires to fill in an form a realistic plant!
I used all the 'w' shaped wires to first fill in the pot.
And then added the rest to make it look like a natural flowing ivy plant! Add in a macrame hanger for the full diy experience!