I’d like to start off by saying Silhouette didn’t send me the machine, offer me anything, and the thoughts are all my own.
My journey to the Silhouette began 3 months ago. I was really getting back into the grove of scrapbooking and realized I owned about 10 cartridges for my Cricut that I had owned for 5 years. I loved it for titles and shortly after I sold my Quickutz shapes and fonts. (A decision at times I wish I didn’t make) I went to look at buying a couple more font cartridges only to find they didn’t really release any that were good and basic recently. I then thought about selling my Cricut and buying the Silhouette, but decided to buy Sure Cuts A Lot 2. While it opened up fonts on my computer I never really loved it. It felt like a lot of work and things still didn’t cut as well as I wanted. Then recently when Provo Craft started suing SCAL2 and MTC. I knew I was done owning the Cricut. I put my cartrdiges and Expression on Ebay (the Expression w/ 4 cartridges is still up for auction/sale if you’d like to own one)
I bought the Silhouette after a week of online comparing the other choices.I looked at 3 choices, The Pazzles, E-Craft, and Silhouette. The price on Amazon and the online store sold me, and reviews and opinions from 2peasinabucket helped even more.
I ordereed on Monday afternoon and so excited to get it in my hands I paid $4 to have it the next day (Thanks to Amazon Prime) I spent most of Tuesday waiting for my wonderful UPS man and then I installed it made one cut and was in love. The cuts were so much smoother then the Cricut with SCAL2 or even with a cartridge. Then I spent the evening watching tv and spending time with my husband. Then yesterday I got to creating. I created this layout:
The title, Polaroid type frames and that scalloped border all cut with the Silhouette. Everything cut so smoothly. I’m still learning all the pressure settings, but it was wonderful. The border and frame both came from the online store. In fact that frame is only .50cents this week. I think I’ve downloaded all the free shapes and I’ve got over 100 on my wishlist.
My overall review: It’s a great powerful machine. The software was easy to figure out and there are tons of youtube videos that can help.
The Pros: The detail it cuts. The Cricut could never cut the “Mini Golfer” letters without ripping. I can use any true type font from my computer (I’ve downloaded a bunch in the past couple days). It can print and then cut for digital elements. I want to try this out later this week. It has a small footprint so it doesn’t take up too much space in your craft area.
The Cons: There are 2 different sized mats. It’s hard sometimes to know which one to use. There are also a lot of pressure settings (30) and while there are some pre-set already programed I spent some time adjusting them to not wear my balde and mat out too quickly. I found and read online that with Bazzill if you lower the pressure to about 12-15 and do a double cut you’ll get a cleaner cut and it worked wonderfully. Also it can by nosiy. I’m not sure if it’s louder then my Cricut but I’m not bothered by it, but it may effect those close you if you’re a late night cropper.
The Others: It only cuts 8 inches wide. While this doesn’t bother me. I can’t say I’ve cut anything bigger then 6 inches in a very long time. It might be a factor some.
One reason I wanted to get my review up today is that StitchSteals has the Silhouette for only $179 and with shipping it’s only $194. Which is less then Amazon. They also have smooth and flocked vinyl, fabric interface, and rhinestones.
Thanks for reading & Happy Crafting! ~Ann