Did you LOVE stickers in elementary school? I did too! And super cool for those of us who do love them still- stickers are making a BIG comeback! And using a Cricut cutting machine to make your own stickers is simpler than it looks.
In this tutorial, I’ll show you step-by-step how easy it is to make your own print and cut custom stickers with a Cricut. And if you’ve already tried it and been frustrated because your paper didn’t cut through or the cut was off, check out the Troubleshooting section at the bottom of the post.
- Questions Frequently Asked About Making Stickers with a Cricut
- Download Free Stickers for Back-to-School
- Tutorial: How to Print and Cut Stickers with Cricut for Beginners
- Troubleshooting Print and Cut Stickers with Cricut
- Watch the YouTube Video for How to Make Stickers!
- What’s Next: How to Choose the Best Sticker Paper AND How to Waterproof Your Stickers
- How to Design Your Own Custom Stickers in Procreate
- Print this Tutorial For How to Make Stickers
Questions Frequently Asked About Making Stickers with a Cricut
Can I Make Custom Stickers with Cricut?
Yes! That’s the wonderful thing about print and cut with a Cricut cutting machine. You can import any image and create homemade stickers with it (without being a graphic designer)!
I create my custom designs in Procreate, but you can also use Canva, use clip art, or find images in Cricut Access. It’s a good idea to be sure that the image you’re using is either yours or you have a personal use or commercial license to use them.
What Do You Need to Make Stickers with Cricut?
- Sticker Paper
- Cricut Machine
- Desktop, Mobile or Tablet
- Cricut Mat
- Image or Design (PNG, or JPEG)
How Do I Turn an Image into a Sticker on Cricut?
If your digital images do not have a white border around it already, then you will want to use Cricut’s NEW Offset feature to add a white outline around your shape. This shows Cricut where to cut.
What are the Different Types of Stickers?
Once you know the basics of the tutorial below, you can make all kinds of stickers! I’ll be showing you kiss-cut stickers, but you can also make die-cut stickers. These stickers can be used as bumper stickers, car decals, water bottle decals, lunch box decals, or promotional stickers. It’s really crazy how popular stickers are- and how many sticker shops there are too!
Download Free Stickers for Back-to-School
Stickers are my favorite thing about Back-to-School. And making stickers is my favorite way to use my Cricut. If you love stickers too, then you will love how easy it is to make your OWN professional-looking custom stickers with a Cricut!
To help you jump into the sticker-making craze I created some FREE school-supply stickers for you to download.
If you’ve never made stickers then making these Back-to-School Stickers with a Cricut is going to rock your Cricut world. And I promise after this lesson; the next time you try to print and cut you’re sure to get an “A++.”
Tip: Looking for more sticker designs? Cricut Access has a ton. Just search “Images” and filter for “print then cut”. Don’thave Cricut Access? Get a free one-month trial here!
Tutorial: How to Print and Cut Stickers with Cricut for Beginners
Supplies and Tools for Making Stickers with Cricut
- Create with Purpose – School Supplies Sticker Set* from my Free Resource Library
- Inkjet Printer I love my Canon Crafter’s Printer (if your home printer is a laser printer that works too- just make sure you get sticker paper that says “for laser printer”.
- Sticker Paper: I use this matte sticker paper and this glossy sticker paper for inkjet printers
- Computer, Smartphone, or Tablet (I have a mobile-specific sticker tutorial here)
- Small Paper Trimmer or Scissors
- Cricut Design Space– I’m demonstrating using Cricut Design for Desktop
- Cutting Machine like a Cricut Maker or the Cricut Explore Air 2(The Cricut Joy now has sticker paper available but I haven’t tried it yet).
- Light Grip Cricut Cutting Mat (You can use the Standard Grip as well)
- Fine Point Blade (comes with the Cricut machine)
This page contains affiliate links.
Instructions for How to Make Stickers with a Cricut
Step One: Download and Save the Free Sticker Design or Use Your Own Image
The first step to sticker making is to download the digital image! For access to my Free Library, you’ll need the password. It’s easy- you can get it instantly when you sign up through one of the email opt-ins on this page.
Scroll down in the Free Library until you reach Printable Art and Stickers. At the very bottom of the list look for Create with Purpose Art Supplies Stickers 1 and Create with Purpose Art Supplies Stickers 2. Click on the links to open. Double click or click and hold for options and choose save to downloads.
If you’d like a great place to get more sticker downloads- Cricut Access has a huge assortment of print then cut projects and stickers for as low as $7.99 a month.
Note: IF you are using your own design you can now add a white border in Design Space with Cricut’s new Offset feature. However, you do have to remember to flatten the offset and design layers to a single layer before you send to printer. For more on this print then cut feature check out my post, How to Use Cricut’s Print then Cut for Beginners.
Step Two: Upload the .png or .jpeg or .svg Files into Cricut Design Space
First thing, create an account if you haven’t done so.
Then, open up Cricut Design Space, and on the Home page choose New Project. This will open up a new canvas.
Click the upload icon from the left side toolbar of this new canvas. This opens up the Uploaded Images page.
Select Upload Image. Then, on the next page choose Browse. This should open up your files. Check Downloads, and you’ll find the zip files for Create with Purpose Art Supplies Stickers 1 and 2.
Choose “Art Supplies 1.png” and upload it to Cricut Design Space.
Step Three: Upload the .png Image File and Process the Image
NOTE: These are directions are for Cricut Design Space for Desktop, not the Cricut mobile app. For a tutorial using the mobile app, click here. The mobile app does not have the same options for this step.
Design Space will open the file and a screen will appear that will start the image upload process for a printed image file. First thing, it will ask you how detailed the image is. Choose Complex.
Next is the Clean-Up Page (optional)- If you have a transparent background (checkered) then you do not need to do anything on this page. IF you have a background to your custom design that you want to remove, click on the background with the magic wand tool and watch it disappear.
Click Continue, and then on the next page click on Save as Print then Cut Image, not as a cut file. And your image is ready to be saved in your uploads! Save. This process may take a few seconds.
Now select Upload again and choose the file Art Supplies Stickers 2 .png design. Repeat the process of preparing the image as a Print then Cut and complete the upload as before.
Cutting an Outline Border- A .png file is an image file that may have a transparent background. This is important because we want to have Design Space cut an outline from your white background and it needs to be able to see where to cut around the shape.
Note: If you are using an SVG file for your print then cut design you will not see the same Image Processing page or the Clean- Up page.
Step Four: Insert Stickers into Your New Canvas
To do this, Select both sticker files and then click Insert Images at the bottom right of the page. That will open up the images on your canvas. Your images will load onto your canvas larger than we need them to be. Drag your cursor to select both images.
Step Five: Adjust the Size of Your Sticker Sheets
In this tutorial, we’re making two smaller sticker sheets. So we want to Select a Layer and change the height to 6.75″. Because we’re going to rotate these, the height is going to be the width.
Repeat this with the second layer. Because our constraints are locked, this will automatically adjust the width as well.
Place the sticker sheets side-by-side at the top of your canvas and snug them up against the top of the canvas as far as they’ll go so that they are both aligned to the top of the canvas.
Note: The maximum image size of Cricut’s Print then Cut is 6.75″ x 9.25″.
Step Six: Align, Attach and Rotate the Sticker Sheets
Select BOTH Layers and move the one on the right so its right side is at 9.25″ on the top ruler. Attach the Layers, and then in the Rotate box in the top toolbar type in 90.
Step Seven: Save Your Print and Cut Project
Before you click Make it, go ahead and save your project by choosing the word Save at the top right side of your screen. This will now be stored under My Projects and if you were to look for this a second time, you’ll find it on the home page under categories and My Projects on the web.
A NEW feature of Cricut Design Space n 2021 is that you can now save your project to a searchable Collection as well.
Step Eight: Load Your Sticker Paper in Your Printer
Make sure you have sticker paper loaded into your printer in the correct cassette. And remember to load it upside down if that’s how your printer works. I’m using sticker paper for an inkjet printer.
Note: Wondering what other kinds of sticker paper you can use for your print then cut stickers? Or just want to know more about the options? I do have a post that will help you choose what the best sticker paper is for you. Spoiler- Sometimes it’s not sticker paper at all but printable vinyl that’s the best choice! Find out more about what’s available and the pros and cons for each in the post. ❤️
Step Nine: Hit the Make it Button and Go to the Mat Preview Page
Once everything looks good on your canvas click the Make it button in the top right corner of the screen. This will take you to the Mat Preview Page, which will show you your images positioned on a mat. There is a black line around your piece that wasn’t there before. This is the registration box. (It helps the machine sensors know where the boundaries of the design are on your page). Select Continue.
Step Ten: Print Your Sticker Design
Connect your machine if you haven’t done so yet. Select Print to print your design. When the print window pops up it may give you the option of printing with the bleed on or off. I noticed the app didn’t have this feature.*
You want the Bleed toggled OFF.
Use System Dialog (Optional)- If you have a rear-feed printer then you will want to use system dialog so that you can choose the rear-feed tray. You have to hit Print in this first box and that will bring up the system dialog BEHIND your browser so you’ll need to minimize the screen to see the System Dialog.
Wondering what is the black box on the sticker paper? Once you’ve printed you’ll notice that the sticker design prints with a black box around it that wasn’t in your design. This is the registration box that the sensor on your Cricut will use to align the cuts and will be trimmed off in the last step.
*Using Cricut Design Space App for Mobile? I do have a post on How to Make Stickers with an iPad that will walk you step-by-step through how to use Print then Cut on your tablet or smartphone.
Step Eleven: Align and Load your Printed Sticker Paper
I’m using a Cricut Maker and a light grip mat that is less sticky than the standard green mats. I’ve found that for paper projects and stickers the light blue mats are the way to go.
Place your printed sticker paper on your mat, aligning it as shown on the screen. Then load your mat by pressing the load/unload button on the Cricut.
Step Twelve: Select your Material Setting
Continue to follow the prompts on the next screen.
For a Material Setting, I usually select Premium Vinyl and change the pressure setting to Less for a kiss cut sticker sheet. For die-cut stickers try the .04 Stencil material setting. The Cricut Sticker Paper setting does not work because the Cricut sticker paper is cardstock-weight.
Note: Many people also recommend the Sticky Note or Washi Tape material settings.
Step Thirteen: Cut the Stickers with Your Cricut
When prompted press the flashing green “go” button on your Cricut. This will start the machine. First, it will find the black rectangle (the registration lines). Then it will check the tool and begin the cut.
When the cut is over, the screen will read 100% and then prompt you to click Finish.
BEFORE YOU UNLOAD THE MAT CHECK THE CUT. If it hasn’t cut all the way through your sticker paper you can still press the Cricut “C or Go” button on your machine to repeat the cut.
Once done, press the Load/Unload button to Unload the mat. One of my favorite tips is to flip the mat over and peel up the mat away from the paper. This is a little backward seeming, but the paper curls less this way.
Step Fourteen: Trim the Sticker Sheet
Using a small trimmer, cut off the black lines and then cut your image in half. They should fit nicely into an envelope. AND they make killer additions to your happy planner, notebook cover, or even as decoration on your computer or Cricut!
Troubleshooting Print and Cut Stickers with Cricut
Although print then cut is AMAZING, it can also be frustrating when it doesn’t work right. Here is some common Print then Cut problems and suggestions for solving them.
My Cut is Off or Wonky
Your machine may need calibrating, or the Cricut may not be able to read the Sensor Box. To calibrate your Cricut, go to the drop-down menu under your profile. Then follow the instructions for Print then Cut.
Cricut Can’t Read the Sensor Box
The Sensor box (registration box) is a black rectangle that’s automatically printed around your print then cut project when you send it to the printer. This black box is read by the sensor near carriage A on your Cricut so that Cricut will be able to tell where your designs are and cut them out.
Your Cricut will often not be able to “read” that sensor box and will either not cut at all or cut incorrectly. When this happens you may also see an error banner pop up on your page. There are different reasons this may happen. For instance- your black ink may be running low, the paper is too glossy, or the stars may be against you.
There are a few things you can try*-
- Put Matte Transparent Tape Over the Registration Lines (or just a small piece over the sensor)
- Use a Black Sharpie and a Ruler to Go Over the Registration Lines
- Try Adding Light to the Sensor with Your Phone’s Flashlight
*I have photos showing how to do these hacks in my post, 7 Tips for How to Use Silhouette Sticker Paper with a Cricut
It Didn’t Cut a White Border Around My Images
This may happen if you did not upload sticker designs with a white outline and a clear background, or if you are making your own stickers in Design Space and either didn’t put a cut shape behind your image, or didn’t use the offset to create a cut border. If you use either method, the only thing to remember is to Select both the outline shape and the image and Flatten them.
For more on using the Offset feature in Design Space check out my Beginner’s Guide to Print then Cut.
The Sticker Paper Sticks to the Mat and Tears when Removed
The best way to avoid this is to use a Light Grip Cutting Mat for your paper projects or a Standard Cutting Mat that’s lost some of its stickiness.
You could also try using a spatula to lift the paper off the cutting mat if it is tearing when you try to move it. And the anti- curling tip below is a must-try too!
The Sticker Paper Won’t Stick to the Mat
This happens when your mat has been used a lot and the stickiness isn’t what it used to be. To get around this, you can just use a little blue painter’s tape on each side of the paper to hold it down. Also, if you’ve moved your star wheels over to engrave try spacing them out along the roller bar again to help with the feeding.
There is a Warning Sign Next to the Print then Cut Layer
This means that your image is too large for Cricut’s Print then Cut feature. The maximum size for Print then Cut is 6.75″ w. x 9.25″ h. and defaults to letter-size paper (8.5″ h. x 11″ w.).
The Material Setting for Cricut Sticker Paper Doesn’t Work
I recommend the Premium Vinyl setting as the best setting for most sticker papers when you want to make kiss-cut sticker sheets. But if you’re still having trouble with your Cricut cutting through your sticker paper (or NOT cutting enough), try changing your material setting to Sticky Note, or Washi Tape. For intricate cuts try the Washi Tape material setting.
Note: The Cricut Sticker Paper setting will NOT work well for most stickers because it is calibrated for the Cricut brand sticker paper which is cardstock weight.
One smart thing to do is to always check your cut BEFORE you unload. This way you can hit “go” again to repeat the cut and not waste your print.
There isn’t a Good Material Setting for My Paper
You can create your own Custom Material Setting for your paper! I show you how to do this in my post, How to Make Glitter Stickers with the Cricut Mobile App. Just name it the type of sticker paper that you’re using, and you’ll always know what setting to use.
The Paper Curls When Removed from Mat
There’s a GREAT trick to avoid this. Just flip your mat over after your cut and peel the mat back and away from your paper. So curl the mat- not the paper!
Watch the YouTube Video for How to Make Stickers!
What’s Next: How to Choose the Best Sticker Paper AND How to Waterproof Your Stickers
I hope you LOVE these stickers as much as I (and my friends) do. And if you have any questions about how to make stickers with a Cricut, or anything else, I’d love to have you ask!.
If you’re wondering more about sticker papers be sure to check out the resource in my post, How to Choose the Best Sticker Paper for Your Project. It will make you a pro at knowing all you need to about clear sticker paper, glossy sticker paper, or printable vinyl so you can make the best choice for creating beautiful stickers.
AND if you’d like some extra credit when you make your custom stickers read How to Protect and Waterproof Your Stickers! This post compares the best methods for how to create outdoor use stickers, waterproof decals, and more.
How to Design Your Own Custom Stickers in Procreate
AND, if you would like to know how to make your own sticker designs, I’d love to have you check out my post, How to Use Photos to Draw Stickers in Procreate (this shows you how to trace images to draw). As well as How to Draw Stickers in Procreate, which takes you through step-by-step how to draw stickers using the Procreate app! You can also design notepads, calendars, and more.
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Thanks for reading! I’d love to know what you think about the video, your favorite school supplies, or if you like your Cricut stickers. Just leave a comment below, and if you found this helpful don’t forget to save the pin image below to your favorite Pinterest Board, or share this with a friend!
Thanks for reading!
Print this Tutorial For How to Make Stickers
- Create with Purpose - Art Supplies Sticker Set* from my Free Resource Library
- Sticker Paper: I use this matte sticker paper and this glossy sticker paper for inkjet printers
- Inkjet Printer- I love my Canon Crafter's Printer (if your home printer is a laser printer, that works too. Just make sure you get sticker paper that says "for laser printer."
- Computer, Smartphone, or Tablet
- Small Paper Trimmer or Scissors
- Cricut Design Space- I'm demonstrating using Cricut Design for Desktop
- Cricut Electronic Cutting Machine- Cricut Maker, Cricut Maker 3, Cricut Explore Air 2 or Cricut Explore 3
- Light Grip Cricut Cutting Mat or Standard Grip Mat
- Fine Point Blade- This comes with the Cricut machines
- Download and Save the Free Sticker Design or Use Your Own
- Upload the png files in Cricut Design Space
- Process the .PNG Image File
- Insert the Images in Cricut Design Space
- Size Your Sticker Sheet
- Align the Sticker Sheets, Attach, and then Rotate Both
- Save Your Print then Cut Project
- Load Your Sticker Paper in Your Printer
- Click Make it and Check the Mat Preview Page
- Print Your Sticker Design
- Place Your Printed Sticker Paper on the Cricut Cutting Mat
- Select Your Material Setting
- Cut the Printed Sticker Sheet with Your Cricut
- Trim the Sticker Sheets
Cricut Sticker paper is cardstock-weight sticker paper and so the Sticker Paper setting in Cricut Design Space won't work for regular sticker paper. Use Premium Vinyl, Sticky Note, or Washi Tape settings instead.
Always check your cut before you unload because you can hit the "Go" (Cricut) button again and do another pass if needed.
In the new 2021 canvas, Cricut Design Space uses the term Operation instead of LineType and you can now have multiple windows open at once, and cut or paste between the different windows.
If the new canvas is giving you trouble you can go to Settings under your profile and toggle off the "new canvas" to go back to the classic canvas.
As of right now Cricut's Print then Cut is limited to the 6.75" x 9.25" but Cricut support told me that as the 12" x 12" printer popularity grows they are looking to expand that print window.
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