The Best Tools and Supplies for Engraving with Your Cricut
The Cricut Engraving Tool allows you to do all kinds of projects with your Cricut Maker that you may never have dreamed are possible. It can engrave acrylic, wood, and my favorite, metals. I love engraving metals SO much, I just spent the summer writing a book all about it. And in the process of experimenting and crafting, I discovered what I think are the best tools and supplies for engraving with your Cricut Maker.
Coming from Holiday Maker Fest?
The supplies and tools that are marked with a * are ones I introduce in my Maker Fest Class, Engraved Christmas Photo Cards and Ornaments!
The extra supplies for Maker Fest that aren’t strictly for engraving, like the Printable Vinyl and the Clear Printable Sheets are listed and linked at the bottom of the post. Thanks and I’m glad you’re here! ❤️
Best Tools for Engraving with Your Cricut
- Cricut Maker * THE machine I love best for engraving! However, you can engrave with a Cricut Explore Air and the Chomas Engraving Tool as well.
- Cricut Engraving Tool (w/ housing) *OR the Engraving Tip (w/o housing)
- Strong Grip Mat *- This is recommended for engraving, however, you can use a new standard grip mat and just tape your blank down well.
- Standard Grip Mat– Used with double-stick tape for the Sensor Jig method.
- Painter’s Tape *- A must-have so that you can tape down your blanks on the mat.
- Guillotine Cutter, 8.5” * OR get the Guillotine Cutter, 12” *- If you plan to use the flashing then I’d go for the 12″. I just upsized myself.
- Jeweler’s Shears *- I LOVE LOVE LOVE my jeweler’s shears! Any jeweler’s shears probably work the same but this pair from Vintaj is inexpensive and what I use.
- Tin Snips– These have a serrated edge so I don’t use them for detail work- I use the Jeweler’s Shears.
- Bolt Cutters, 12″– This is to cut bracelet blanks in pieces to make rings, or to cut the stems off of silverware.
Hole Punch Tools
- Hole Punch Pliers– This is the size you’d use for jewelry.
- Screw Hole Punch– With two sizes this another tool used by jeweler’s
- Power Hole Punch– A versatile tool because it does lots of different sizes as well as punches holes in leather and thicker gauges of metal.
- Crop-a-Dile *- A tool you may already have for scrapbooking or crafts. It has two sizes of hole punches. The smaller size is perfect for cap rivets and the large works well for grommets or snaps. Punches through both metal and leather.
- Ring Bending Pliers– A small shaper that helps you get a rounded bend but making multiple small movements. A smaller circumference than the bracelet bending pliers.
- Bracelet Bending Pliers– Similar to the Ring Bending pliers but it has a larger curve for bracelets.
- Bracelet Bending Bar– A metal bar that you can use to curve your metal bracelets.
- Flat Nose Pliers*- A must for working with aluminum flashing as it will help you avoid cuts (you use to gently flatten the edge). I also use mine for opening and closing jump rings all the time.
- Needle Nose Pliers– A good precision tool.
- Buffing Block (matte) and (high polish)
- Metal Files– These are designed to help you get a smoother edge to your cut metal edges or ends. Mostly used with higher gauges of metal.
- Mini Grinder/Polisher– Totally not a necessity but I LOVE having mine. It’s a pretty inexpensive buy that you’ll be happy you have if you plan to do any production work at all. It grinds the cut ends, but it also buffs and polishes out scratches to a beautiful shine. Use with compound polishers.
- Crop-a-dile Corner Chompers (rounded)– Another new fave of mine! These are great for rounding the corners of metal flashing pieces, or Cricut Aluminum. They give a nice finished look to your engraved designs as well.
This page includes affiliate links- which means that you don’t pay extra, but I get a small commission when you purchase through them. This helps me buy more supplies for these tutorials! So if you choose to support me in this way, thank you!
Best Supplies for Engraving with Your Cricut
What Metals Can We Engrave?
There are more metals that you can engrave then you maybe knew! Cricut lists two metals in their official list of what can be engraved, although their Material Settings give us six settings for metals.
So far I’ve found 14 different metals that can be engraved. If you want to know what’s possible, and you’d like to know what Cricut Material Setting to use then you’ll want to check out my blog post, 14 Surprising Metals You Can Engrave with Your Cricut Maker.
Where Do You Find Your Blanks?
I get my blanks primarily in the jewelry section of my local craft stores, and I find my spatulas and servers on Amazon. Depending on what you want to engrave, you really just have to consider the depth of the project. Cricut allows you to engrave max at 2.44 mm.
Note: If you’re using a Silhouette Cameo 4 you have 3mm clearance, and if you have a Silhouette Cameo you have 5mm of clearance.
Probably my favorite source material for engraving is Aluminum Step Flashing. I get a little more into this metal in my post, How to Spray Paint Metal for Engraving. You’ll really appreciate how inexpensive and easy to source this metal is.
NOTE- DO NOT spray paint the aluminum UNLESS you are able to engrave it between 8-24 hours later. The paint bonds to the metal making it impossible to engrave through after about 36 hours. I do have a post on How to Spray Paint Metal for Engraving that I HIGHLY recommend you read. There is a window for engraving once you spray paint, this post gives you the info you need to get it right.
ETA– My SECOND favorite source material for engraving is Cricut Aluminum Sheets. I’m adding these to this list because recently I discovered that I could use Infusible Ink on Cricut Aluminum metal and engrave through it. To see more on this visit my post, How to Engrave Infusible Ink on Cricut Aluminum.
- Aluminum Flashing Sheets (5″ x 7″) * (Important- Don’t get galvanized!) OR get the Aluminum Flashing 8″ Rolls *
- Cricut Brand Aluminum Sheets (they come in 4″ x 4″, 5″ x 7″, and 8″ x 8″) These are AMAZING paired with Cricut’s Infusible Ink.
- Anodized Aluminum Sheets, Colored (6″ x 6″ 24 gauge)
- Anodized Aluminum Business Card Size
Engraving Blanks- Jewelry or Accessories
- Stamping Blanks, Assorted
- ImpressArt Ring and Bracelet Blanks
- Engraving Blanks, varied
- Anodized Aluminum Heart Shaped Pendants/Tags
- Stainless Steel Asst. Shapes Pendant (Pack of 60)
- Anodized Aluminum Key Fobs in Misc. Colors– These are fun to engrave and simple to find. You can get a standard dog tag shape, a business card shape, or dog bones for dog tags as well.
Engraving Blanks- Serving Flatware Pieces
- Grill Spatula– The grill spatula I use in my book. I like that it’s not HUGE and it’s heavy duty.
- Cookie Spatula– I use this in my post on How to Engrave Cookie Spatulas.
- Spreaders– I tried a few types of servers but I liked how these had more area for engraving than the more pointed spreaders.
- Pie or Cake Servers– This started the trend! I love this brand from Amazon. They have a good weight, are inexpensive, a modern design, AND they engrave really well!
Supplies to Darken Your Engraving
- ImpressArt Enamel Marker, Black– An enamel marker that is useful for darkening jewelry designs.
- Sharpie (Industrial)– Totally doable. It does wear off over time but it’s a great beginner’s hack.
- Patina Gel– This is Liver of Sulphur in gel form. It requires some special handling so you’ll want to make sure you read the instructions. This is a more pro solution to darkening your metals and it can give a really nice, aged look to brass and copper. CAN NOT be used with aluminum.
Supplies to Color Your Metal
- Vintaj Patinas– Like fluid paints these marble really well.
- ImpressArt Set of Colored Enamel Markers– Used primarily for darkening small engraved surfaces like jewelry it also comes in colors to add glam!
- Multi-Surface Craft Paints
- Gilder’s Paste, Assorted (Rich Gold, and Black)– I really like this product. It’s a bit like shoe polish but more dry. It wipes on easily and can cover a larger area quite easily. Comes in colors that can be mixed.
- Rustoleum Hammered Metal Spray Paints– A spray paint that’s designed to adhere to metal. This has a nice texture to it which makes cheap aluminum flashing look much more high-end. You can see it in action in my post, How to Spray Paint Metal for Engraving.
- Cricut Infusible Ink Pens (Note: infusible ink can only be used with Cricut Aluminum because it’s been treated on one side to accept the ink)
- Cricut Infusible Ink Transfer Sheets (see note above) SEE the POST on engraving infusible ink for more info.
Affiliate Disclosure: Jennifer Swift is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.
Additional Maker Fest Class Supplies
Additionally, I recommend these supplies in the workshop. However, you do not need to purchase ALL of these for the class. I recommend that if you have the All Access Pass for Maker Fest that you watch the workshop and then purchase what you need.
- Glossy Printable Vinyl Sticker Sheets or Frosty Clear (I use Zicoto)
- Clear Printable Film for Inkjet
- Glitter Mod-Podge
- Various Small Christmas Embellishments (check the seasonal Christmas section or the doll house section if there is one at your local craft store.)
Interested in Learning More About Engraving Metals with Your Cricut Maker?
You’ll find a lot of engraving tutorials and designs on this website! There are tutorials for engraving flattened vintage spoons to make bookmarks, engraving pie/cake servers, spreaders, and snarky desk signs. Each of these has a YouTube video to go with it. You can check out my Engraving Tutorials YouTube playlist for more inspiration!
I also have a book, Engraving Metals with Your Cricut Maker that I’m really proud of. It solves the common problems, and expands the limits of what’s possible with the Cricut Engraving Tool!
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I also have a new facebook group, Engraving Metals with Your Cricut Maker that I’d love to have you join. It’s a great group and I’m trying to go live regularly to answer your questions!