My husband gave me the go ahead to buy a die cutting machine. I always wanted a Cricut but I am afraid to buy one because I don't think I would always use everything that is on the cartridges and they are expensive. I am worried I will be limited on what I can do if I don't buy a bunch of carts for it. Does anyone have the Silhouette? I don't know anything about those. Are they any different from the Cricuts? Then I was wondering if I should get the Big Kick or the Spellbinders Grande. Decisions decisions....
Between the Cricut and the Silhouette - I have a Cricut (the small one), and if I had to redo it I would make the same decision again (I've never paid more than $35 for a cartridge, and usually less than $20), but the Silhouette is pretty popular. It lets you buy individual images for about a dollar, and I think it lets you cut using fonts on your computer.
Regarding the Cricut though, I don't think anyone really uses everything on any given cartridge. I do really like my Cricut and I've been careful to limit my cartridge collection only to stuff I will actually use.
Between the Big Kick/Big Shot and the Grand Calibur, I would go for the Big Kick/Big Shot every time. While the Grand Calibur can only cut very thin dies, the Big Kick can cut most of the thin dies (everything but the very largest of the Grand Nestabilities), most embossing folders, and most of the thicker dies as well (there are a few very wide dies for use with the 12" wide Big Shot Pro, but those are a very small minority of dies). Between the two, the Big Kick is a much more versatile machine.
I love my Cameo--the designs that are offered by Silhouette are great, but the more I use the software, the more comfortable I am with creating my own designs, especially ones with fonts. I love being able to cut any True Type font to cut titles.
I never really considered getting a Cricut because I was already invested in the Quickuts metal dies when the Cricuts became popular. By the time I decided I needed an electronic die-cutter I really knew I didn't want a Cricut because I didn't want to have to buy the carts.
Now when I take my Cameo to a crop (and set it next to a dozen Cricuts...) I always get asked what it is and I reply every time with "It's like a Cricut, but better...no carts!" and everyone thinks it's great (unless they hate computers!)
In my opinion, your best bet would be if you can go to a store or a crop and actually see and use different machines.
Also do a little research on the various machines available, and take into consideration the cost of the machine and the supplies, storage space, etc.
Whichever direction you choose to go in will be an investment, so try not to make a purchase like this on a whim (I know its hard not to!).
All that said, I really love the versatility of my Big Shot. I love the embossing folders and love that it cuts all kinds of materials like foam, sponge, fabric, chipboard, grunge paper (and board!) magnet, veneer, felt, craft metal etc.
Every machine will have its own fan club out there, so do a little homework and see which one is right for you.
I love my new Cameo! I had the original one, used it a lot or at least I thought I did!! I use the heck out of my Cameo. I have a big kick and a slice, I have NO idea why I bought the Slice. I have the Sidekick too. I try to make myself use these things, but I always go right back to the Cameo.
One evening I was doing a page for the page maps challenge. I could not for the life of me come up with some thing for a certain area of the map. So I hoped on over to the Silhouette store, found something that was perfect, paid .99 cents and done!! You can't do that with a Cricut.
I did purchase the Cricut when it first came out, had it for a week and returned it.
But like Kim above says. Really think about it, try them both if you can.
When I made my decision after Christmas, I you tube'd videos like mad! That way I could see the ease of use and which one looked more like me. I also priced dies vs cartridges. None of the big 3 (J, HL or M) allow you to use the coupon on the cartridges, but HL and M allow you to use the coupon on dies. I am lucky to have the space for the dies in my room. I agree with aquabunny-BigKick/BigShot (same thing) over Spellbinders because the BigKick can cut more types of dies with various adapters, including the Spellbinders. HTH!
I have a cricut and I just bought a Silhouette Portrait,,,,,,
I loved my cricut,,,but I agree with Kim KV,,,,,you can't find the perfect cut for less than a dollar and have it cutting out in less than 4 minutes with a cricut. You can do that with a Silhouette,,,,,,
I also find many of the cricut carts to be cartoony and cute,,,,,sometimes I LIKE cartoony and cute,,,,,but sometimes I like intricate and sophisticated,,,,In the Silhouette store, you'll find all kinds of designs,,,,,,
Edited by CommaHolly on 03-01-13 11:15 PM. Reason for edit: No reason given.
I have a BigShot which I love and used for many years. I love that it can cut all different types of materials (with steel ruled dies) and I love that it embosses.
This past Christmas, I got a Silhouette Cameo.
I LOVE it! I cannot say enough good things about it! I love creating my own titles and "welding" them together, cutting them out. I love that I can purchase all different designs from the store individually but I also love designing stuff myself to cut out!
I love that I can sketch with it and do the print and cuts.....
I highly recommend the Cameo!
I love my Silhouette Cameo, too. You can buy inexpensive designs in the online store and be cutting them out almost instantly, but you can also use any kind of true-type font - including dingbat (picture) fonts, and there are tons of free fonts available. The other good thing about the Cameo is it has an SD card slot, so you don't have to keep it by your computer. You can save your ready-to-cut design on the card and then take the card to your Silhouette. This is great if your computer and Silhouette are in different rooms, or if you want to take your Silhouette to a crop.