Using SVG Files with Cricut Design Space -

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This video was created to test and demonstrate how to import SVG files (from into Cricut's new Design Space software for the Cricut Explore machine. As of this writing (Wednesday, February 19th, 2014), we've not yet actually cut our files with the Cricut Explore (we should have one very soon) so we're not sure of the final output, but we will be posting our findings as soon it arrives.



Keep in mind that this article/video is specifically about the Cricut Design Space's ability to import SVG files. There are dozens of other features that I didn't cover, nor did I compare these features to other options on the market. We'll do this in the official review of the Cricut Explore once it arrives at our headquarters.

The Cons

  • I didn't think I would say it, but the Cricut Design Space is actually ingenious, but for more SVG aficionados to be attracted to the Cricut Explore, they'll need to beef up the way users organize their personal SVG file collections. Some of our fans own over 300 of our kits and collections. That could get messy if you try to store them all in their "cloud".  They'll also need to make sure that when SVG files open, they open at their native sizes. These are VERY minor setbacks that could easily be fixed by adjusting some code.
  • I've read that many of you don't like the fact that the new software is cloud based and requires an internet connection. And while I do agree with you to some level, I've realized that it's almost impossible to go anywhere these days without having some form of broadband available. I do agree that it would be nice to have an offline mode of some sort, but if you go to a crop or take your machine somewhere you don't have internet but have a smartphone with data capability, you can enable your hotspot and connect! Again, it's not ideal, but for most people it's not a deal breaker. When Mary and I take our yearly fall vacation, we tend to get very remote, but our hotspot allows us to keep up on SVGCuts no matter where we are. In other words, there are work-arounds.
  • As I mentioned in the video, the Cricut Design Space is a new program and isn't as robust as the current versions of Sure Cuts A Lot, Make The Cut and Silhouette Studio. I would compare it to Sure Cuts A Lot 1 as far as the SVG compatibility and feature set goes, but it's ahead of the game as far as the workflow goes. That's not to say it doesn't have the key features you may be interested in because it DOES have the ability to import and convert JPEG, GIF, PNG and BMP files (this is a free feature, no subscription required), and it does have the ability to let you cut your system fonts (also free). But it doesn't have Union (different than weld) tools, features to exclude elements from other elements (Exclude), shadow and blackout features, drawing and node editing tools. If you rely on and use these sorts of features regularly, you'll likely want look at other cutters and softwares, although it is possible that these types of features can be added to the Design Space in the future. After all, it is software.

The Pros

  • The Cricut Design Space is FREE (doesn't require a subscription) if you want to cut SVG files, import JPEG, PNG, GIF or BMP files and cut your system fonts. Subscription fees come into play if you want access to Cricut's library of content.
  • It's the first Cricut machine to natively work with SVG files.
  • It's the only machine on the market that can cut and score at the same time. Based on what we've seen in the Design Space software, it will also work cut and score our SVG files. As we mentioned, the eclips has a scoring feature, but it doesn't use a score tool, the blade is used to score (it does a gentle cut for score lines without penetrating the paper). I'm also aware that other machines on the market can score, but you need to swap the blade for a score tool and run the cut through the machine again.
  • You can import all of the files for a particular project onto one Canvas and store them in the cloud for future use.
  • Design space is smart enough to prepare the mats for you. You don't have to align anything.
  • You can specify how many of each projects you'd like to cut and Design Space will figure out how many mats you'll need.
  • Files uploaded to Design Space are automatically labeled based on the name of the SVG file as it appears on your computer.


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37 Responses to “Using SVG Files with Cricut Design Space -”

  1. Allie February 19, 2014 at 5:18 pm #

    Looks very MAC friendly, very utilitarian, and I’m super excited to see how it cuts and scores your amazing kits.

  2. Sonia February 19, 2014 at 6:13 pm #

    Great review, Leo. Thanks!

  3. Lisa Justice February 19, 2014 at 7:16 pm #

    But what about the files you upload? Aren’t you worried about the integrity? In the past some places have added some lawyer-ed up verbiage that makes anything you upload “their” property. Kinda of like working for a marketing firm (I used to), anything you create while “on the job” becomes the property of the company. Not sure I’m making myself clear, hope you understand what I’m saying.

    And if uploaded will “Cricut” have access to those files? Call me silly Leo but I trust you and Mary whole heartedly, Cricut on the other hand not as far as I could throw them. Their reputation is greedy and underhandedness.

    I won’t go as far as to say I’ve boycotted them, I still have my Cuttlebug (thanks Mary for that addiction! :p) and I still buy their folders but I think I’ll hold out for the Bluetooth eClips this summer (which I’ll be buying from you guys!). I’m really happy with the machine and the way it performs and they really seem to have a great sense of what customer service should be. No one comes close to you guys but they do pretty darn good.

    • SVGCuts February 19, 2014 at 7:23 pm #

      Lisa, I spoke with someone at Cricut and they ensured me that our files are our files and they don’t claim ownership if something of ours is uploaded to the Design Space. I appreciate your concern though!!

      • Lisa Justice February 19, 2014 at 7:44 pm #

        Hey I’m like a momma hen! Not sure you guys are aware but I adopted you two (you both are about the same age as my daughter)! So I’m watching out for ya! If they get past momma Kowal or momma Rudakas then they have to deal with momma Justice!

        Seriously though the first thing that hit my brain was making sure that your files remained your files. Good to know that you had thought of that too! I worry, it’s a momma thang! :)

        • SVGCuts February 19, 2014 at 7:45 pm #

          We appreciate it, Lisa!! <3 ya!

    • Jasen February 19, 2014 at 7:45 pm #

      Agreed. Many places say once you put something on their site they can do what they want with it. You may think it’s “yours”, but legally you gave it to them by putting it on their server. Some of that is for legal CYA reasons, but still disturbing.

      It will be interesting to see how Cricut plays that. I haven’t seen anything in the EULA about them owning your stuff.

  4. Jasen February 19, 2014 at 7:36 pm #

    Thanks for the great overview. I actually like that Design Space has weak editing tools. IMHO, serious editing should be done in a serious drawing program like Inkscape. I would like to see some better layout tools, though – like alignment & distribution.

    I think the target audience for Design Space includes a LOT of people who are barely technically adept enough to use cartridges. PC needs to keep DS simple and clean for the folks at that end of the spectrum. Those who want to get in to node editing and the like can learn to use one of the many drawing programs available – even SCAL or MTC – based on how deep they want to go.

  5. scrapper69 February 19, 2014 at 9:48 pm #

    Thanks Leo for the Video! I hadn’t had a chance to actually see what the software could do…. And now that I know… I’m glad I didn’t purchase the Circuit Explore! It’s certainly not worth it to me… But as a previous Commenter stated… it’s for those who are tech. challenged! LOL I’m by noooo means a tech wizard…. but it looks like it needs a LOT of upgrades before I become interested in it…. The fact that the SVG files don’t come up to the size that it was created bothers me… and the organization of the files isn’t impressive either…. I’ll stick with my Silhouette and enjoy your files as they are!

    THANKS for Sharing! :o)

  6. DIANA L. February 19, 2014 at 11:13 pm #

    Great video Leo– Thanks for the info- Have a great rest of the week and weekend.
    DIANA L.

  7. erica February 20, 2014 at 5:25 pm #

    sounds neat, but i hate the idea of always needing the internet!!! if traveling (in vehicle) i like to mess on the laptop while dh drives. that way we both are awake…
    or if at others house or even my own, i don’t want to be on-line all the time! what if some one else wants to watch netflix or play on the web? that takes away from them having a smooth flow and from me…
    the one thing that might keep me from getting it, the internet need… we’ll see.

  8. Barbara February 21, 2014 at 7:39 pm #

    So Leo, what your saying is – Sure Cuts A Lot – will not work with the Circut but we can upload your files to their software? Just want to make sure I understand the process.

    • SVGCuts February 22, 2014 at 9:49 pm #

      If you have Sure Cuts a Lot 2 and a Cricut Expression, Original or Create, you can continue to use our SVG files. If you don’t have SCAL 2 with one of the machines I mentioned, you can use our SVG files with the new Cricut Explore and the Design Space software.

      • Bridget Willis June 10, 2014 at 4:49 am #

        I recently e-mailed your company about the fact that I have the Cricut Expression and the ECraft machine and wanted to know if I could use either one of them with your SVG files. I was told that I COULD NOT use either machine to cut out SVG files. No other option was offered to me.
        So now I’m reading the Q & A pages and come across this post.

        What’s the deal here, can I purchase a different program to install which will allow me to use the Cricut Expression or not?????

        That’s somewhat discouraging to think that one of your employees would leave out the info that I could purchase a different program which will allow me to cut out your files, and not have to purchase a whole new machine.
        I still have the e-mail if you would like for me to forward that along I can.

        Just so I understand this correctly,

        I CAN use my Cricut Expression to cut out the SVG files as long as I use the SCAL2 program. Is this correct???
        Thank you so much for help.
        Bridget W.

  9. Pualani Wagner February 22, 2014 at 12:11 pm #

    I love your cuts, I have bought several of them. I am so happy that you are going to do this for us. I own a Silhouette Cameo but, I knew Cricut had to do something, I use Adobe Photo shop so this is not new to me but trying to adjust it to the new machine which I don’t have yet and find that your expertise will help a lot of people out there…..Much Aloha & Mahalo

  10. Jay February 23, 2014 at 7:52 pm #

    Hi Leo,

    Thank you for the video…can’t wait to see the comparison of all the machines later. Like you, I still think they have a lot of work to do on the software. I’ve watched a couple of videos by crafters, and it’s not as easy as Cricut said it would be, there are still adjustments to be made when cutting different materials. So, it is a work in progress. Love the way you guys get down to the nitty-gritty, just the facts, the way I like it.

  11. Laura February 23, 2014 at 9:05 pm #

    Awesome review. Thanks for doing it.

  12. Mari February 24, 2014 at 6:15 am #

    Hi Leo. Thank you so much for the explanation. I love your designs! Can’t wait to purchase several! I’m so glad I found you all! Keep up the beautiful work! Thanks for sharing!

  13. L. Borja March 4, 2014 at 7:39 am #

    Thank you so much for posting this video, it’s really going to help me once I start testing out my machine…I “LOVE” your files and I’m happy to hear that they can be cut out on the Explore. You guys are the best. Keep up the good work.

  14. Barbara March 15, 2014 at 7:13 am #

    Hello Leo and Mary, Have you had a chance to play with the new Cricut Machine yet? Thinking of upgrade from the original since I have all the cartridges but I value your opinions since you both are the experts in this field. If your not happy – I can give my old machine and supplies to a family member and get the new eclips2. Thanks for all you do.

  15. Kathleen April 2, 2014 at 11:11 am #

    I watched your video on importing one of your svg files into the design Space and how to size it etc. But I am having trouble. I am trying to size one of your svg files in the Cricut design space. I choose the edit box and leave the lock in place. On the width I put in the size from your PDF file and hit enter. I did that for each piece of the file. The file is Sew Crafty I am working with. I went to cut it and it said it was to big for a 12 x 12 mat. So I went back to check the size it was showing and they all reverted back to what they came in at. I tried multiple times but they never would hold the change in size. I tried hitting save after each edit in size of an image and that didn’t work either.Can you help? I love your files and want to cut many of them.

  16. svtenderheart April 29, 2014 at 11:00 pm #

    I am so excited to see your post and to join the SVGcuts family! I got my Explore in March because I have so much invested in carts. I will be a frequent visitor and advocate of your site now that I can use it with my Cricut and purchase from you as well. I would very much like it if you have some basic templates for things like the step cards, and could advise where to search for those. I would also like if I can get an svg template for the diamond fold card as well. I have Corel Draw XV, but I am not doing something right to create these templates. I would rather pay you and have them sooner than I can work it out. :-).

  17. Jill April 30, 2014 at 2:58 pm #

    Just viewed your video about using svg. files with Explore. So glad to know that it will work. I bought the Explore because I have so many Cricut carts. Now I can start buying and using some of your lovely items.

  18. Judy May 8, 2014 at 4:09 pm #

    I am new to svg files, having upgraded from the Expression to the Explore. I am delighted with your designs, they go together so well! I’m also happy with my Explore.

  19. Allison Ellis May 17, 2014 at 1:00 pm #

    hi Leo,
    Have you had chance to try out the Explore yet? I am interested in buying one.

  20. Tannika May 23, 2014 at 6:50 am #

    I have the cricut explore and I love it and I love your work. I have purchased the luxury handbag kit along with two other kits. I can not get the bags to come out right with the heights, can you PLEASE help with this. I’m going through sooooooo much paper trying and I want to get this right for a special occasion that I have coming up. You give the widths and the finish bag size, but I’m new to the game so I need big time help!!! Thanks in advance…..

    • SVGCuts May 23, 2014 at 12:22 pm #

      Please use our contact form. We’ll be happy to help!

  21. Leslie May 26, 2014 at 2:01 pm #

    please help.. I purchased two sets and can’t insert them into the cricut design space to use with my explore. It keeps telling me that they aren’t svg files. the files that I downloaded say they are compressed. I’m not sure what I am doing wrong? I am following the video.

  22. Pat Nixon May 27, 2014 at 12:48 pm #

    Can you please explain…How to cut a circular font monogram using the Cricut and or Inkscape?

  23. Brenda Price May 27, 2014 at 5:22 pm #

    I purchased your files for the box cards and I am trying my hand at the first one. I am new to using the Cricut Explore so this could totally be something I did or am doing wrong. I first loaded the cut files for the box (the first color used). Your example showed this should cut on one mat, but it came up using 2 mats and the first one was dashes and cut lines that “look ” sort of like the box I’m cutting or like it might be score lines. The second mat cut what I was expecting and does not show any scored lines.

    Any ideas what happened?

    Thanks for helping!

    • Denise Rodgers August 4, 2014 at 7:38 pm #

      Brenda, the same thing happened to me. I see no one answered your question. :(

  24. Brenda Price May 27, 2014 at 5:24 pm #

    I should have said that I am cutting the air balloon card?

  25. Hopeful June 13, 2014 at 4:09 pm #

    Is there any way possible to take a file – just an outline for a gasket for an antique tractor and convert it so that it will cut with my original expression. History – I created the file in a jpg and used the trace function in the Cameo design studio. All I need is the cutting ability for one file with the Cricut due to the fact that it will cut the material just a little deeper to cut through the rubberized material which I can not get the Cameo to do. It can do all of the others I need with ease as they are a thinner material. If anyone understands this and can give guidance, I would be grateful. This is our only holdup to getting done what we need! Thanks in advance to anyone who reads and tries to help us in our conundrum!

  26. Sharon Young July 4, 2014 at 2:12 pm #

    What is a Bluetooth eclip?

  27. Claudia July 6, 2014 at 2:13 pm #

    Hi, Leo. Thanks for the great video! I have the original Cricut and SCAL (still able to use it) and have been thinking of getting a new machine that would cut better. I’ve been torn between the Cameo and the Cricut Explore, because I have a lot of carts (way more of your files!), but have been turned off by the fact that I thought I had to pay $9.99 per month just to use the software online. I’ve been to tons of websites and watched numerous videos, but yours is the first one to say that you can use the software for free using your svg files! And I can cut and score at the same time with it! Just wondered if you (or anyone else) knows if I can use my own carts with the software online without paying the $9.99, since I own them. I understand I have to pay it if I want to use their images. I’m still not ready to make the purchase and will hold off until you have done the comparison. I absolutely love your files and think you are both geniuses! Thanks so much!

  28. Nicole September 23, 2014 at 6:01 pm #

    Can design space work with Cricut Mini?

    • SVGCuts September 30, 2014 at 6:49 am #

      No it does not. Sorry, Nicole.