This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Cricut. The opinions and text are all mine.

Whether you are new to the Cricut world or are contemplating upgrading your machine, there are so many reasons to love the Cricut Maker.

The Cricut Maker is perfect for all of your crafting needs because it cuts hundreds of materials quickly and accurately. It can handle a wide range of materials from fabrics, leather, and balsa wood, to the most delicate paper and fabric. It really is the ultimate smart cutting machine.

User experience is at the top of Cricut’s priority list and here are five reasons I love what my Cricut Maker can do!

Cricut Maker Knife Blade

The knife blade lets you cut thicker materials like balsa wood with ease. I’ve used my knife blade for some of my favorite projects. A family picture puzzle is something that makes a great gift and is super easy to do.

Check out the video I shared with my Facebook group (and on YouTube) that shows how easy it is to make your own using Design Space.

Expandable Suite Of Tools

In addition to all the great stuff you can do with the knife blade, Cricut has an ever-expanding suite of tools to use with the Maker. I love that there are always new ways to use my Cricut and new project ideas to explore!

With the adaptive tool system and quickswap housing, changing tools to fit your project is a snap. I love grabbing some cardstock and whipping out custom cards using the scoring wheels, wavy blade, and perforation blade. All you have to do to switch between the blades is press the button.

See how easy it is to use the quickswap tools in my perforated hidden surprise card tutorial.

Infusible Ink

One of my new favorite things to do is create amazing gifts with the Cricut Infusible Ink. I love making coasters (see my DIY coasters with vinyl, DIY photo transfer coasters, and fabric apple coasters) but they have never looked as good as they do when I use the infusible ink and the Cricut blanks!

Heat Transfer Vinyl

Even though I’m totally in love with the infusible ink, there are times when I really like using the good old heat transfer vinyl (HTV). Some of my favorite projects have been made using this easy to use material cut right on my Cricut Maker.

This Merry Christmas reversed canvas (see how to make reversed canvas projects here) is one of my favorites.

And talk about easy gifts, these tea towels with HTV are so simple to make that I’m gifting one to everyone on my list this year!

Cricut Maker Rotary Blade and Sewing Features

Last but certainly not least, I have been able to dust off my sewing machine and at least pretend like I know what I’m doing thanks to the straight cuts I get by using the Cricut Maker, fabric mat, and rotary blade!

I have made quite a few sewing projects by utilizing my Maker, and these Apple Hot Pads are one of my favorites!

If you’d like to give sewing a try on your Cricut Maker (or you sew and are interested in using the Maker to make faster cuts) check out the instructions for the apple hot pads below. If you want to see how to make the coasters as well, head to this link to see the complete set of instructions.

Grab Your New Cricut Maker Today

Head HERE to snag a Cricut Maker. TIP: If you sign up for Cricut Access first you will get an extra 10% off any purchases made on the site!

Apple Hot Pads – Instructions

The first thing you will need is the cut file from Design Space. You can find it here: Apple Hot Pads Pattern

Everything in the cut file is already sized to the appropriate dimensions so you really just need to place your fabric on your mat and you are good to go!

Here is the suggested order to cut your materials with your Cricut Maker for this easy sewing project:

Cut The Stem

Cut your stem out of faux leather using the included Design Space pattern and the standard grip mat, or alternatively simply snip off a length of jute rope to use instead. 

Cutting Tip: You can find Faux Leather Cutting Instructions here!

Cut The Leaf

Using your Cricut Maker and the pattern in Design Space, cut your leaf out of felt.

PRO TIP: when cutting felt, place a piece of transfer tape (or contact paper) sticky side up on your mat, then place the felt on the transfer tape. This will protect your mat and prevent the fuzz from the felt sticking to your mat. 

Set these pieces aside as you will use them once you start sewing. 

Cut Your Fabric

Adhere your fabric to the pink fabric mat and insert into your Cricut Maker. Each hot pad will need two rectangles in this fabric as well as two in your second choice of fabric. 

You will want to make sure that if you have a direction-specific pattern that you arrange the rectangles so that they are cutting in the right direction. 

You can do this directly in Design Space by moving around any pieces on the mat prior to cutting (see image below).

Make your selection for what you are cutting (fabric — and what type you are using), then follow the prompts to cut out your rectangles. 

Remove your rectangles from the mat.

Repeat these steps for the second fabric choice. You should have a total of four rectangles hot pad. 

Sew Your Fabric

Once you have four rectangles, two of each fabric pattern, you will sew them together. Take two alternating colors and sew together down the middle lengthwise.

Press the seam open.

Repeat with the remaining two rectangles making a matching mirror image.

Cut Your Apples

Once your rectangles are sewn together, you will cut an apple out of each square. Place your squares of fabric in the top left corner of your pink mat and insert the mat into your Cricut Maker. The machine will cut out the apple shape with ease using the rotary blade! It will also draw your seam allowance with the fabric pen. 

TIP: There are mirror image apple shapes included in the design because cutting the same apple twice will not allow the apple shapes to line up correctly when you sew them together.

Completing Your Apple Hot Pads

Cut out a square of batting slightly larger than your apple shape. You can simply do this freehand as it doesn’t need to be perfect, or you can choose to create and cut a square using your Maker. 

With the edges and seams matching, place a set of apple pairs right sides together. Layer the batting square underneath and pin.

Fold your faux leather cord in half to form a loop. Sandwich the loop at the top of the apple between the units with the raw ends extending 1/4″ past the raw ends of the unit. Baste in place.

Backstitching at the beginning and end, stitch around the apple leaving an opening for turning that is at least 2″ wide. 

Trim the batting to the edge of the shape, clip the curves and turn right side out. 

Turn the opening under 1/4″ and press.

Blind stitch the opening closed. 

Position a felt leaf 1/4″ to 1/2″ in from the top edge of the apple and pin. 

Topstitch around the apple, catching the tip of the leaf in the stitching.

And you are done!

Have a favorite project of your own to share?
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