First I just want to say winter bugs suck! We've been passing illness around since Christmas week. I now carry around a tool belt loaded with Lysol, disinfecting wipes, tissue, ibuprofen, children's tylenol, and a thermometer. I'm going for rubber gloves and a face mask if we don't get healthy soon. I feel like some post-apocalyptic cowgirl.
Okay, now on to the reason for this post. This one is for those of you with a cricut machine. If you don't already know there's a few programs that allow you to design on your computer and use you cricut to cut it out. Cricut Design Studio (CDS) and the Gypsy are provocraft. Sure Cuts a Lot (SCAL) and Make the Cut (MTC) are from CraftEdge. As a seasoned user, I recommend having one from each company. The Gypsy from PC and I like SCAL from CE. If you already have SCAL, there's an upgrade 2.038. Those buying SCAL2 will get the most recent version.
So the two new features I'm most excited about are the ability to print and cut and rhinestones. Let's start with rhinestones. You can make your design, hit the rhinestone button, and have your design made into a template for placing rhinestones on your projects. Cut or print out the template, add stones, and voila, easy peasy bling!
Now let's talk about the print and cut. Are we all familiar with the Cricut Imagine? A printer and cutter all in one machine? Fantastic, right? With a fantastical price tag. After watching a few youtube videos demonstrating it I decided that some day I would have to have it. Well, no longer. With SCAL we can now place an image onto our mat, add a cut design over it, print with your home printer, and cut with your cricut. There's tutorials on youtube on how to do this and the CraftEdge forum is a great place to pick up tips and tricks. I can use my printer, which is a Kodak so the cost of ink is alot less. I love that I'm not limited to the images on a cartridge. Any jpg or png can be used. You can even take digi stamps and graphic, print them and cut them out perfectly. Think of all the money you can save! Happy dance!
Bottom line: SCAL is good and so worth the money. If your a new cricut owner, I suggest waiting for the warranty to expire before using third party software. It voids your warranty. But after the warranty expires...let the games begin! Until then, check out cricutmachine.com for deals on cartridges and accessories.