How to Upload Fonts to Cricut & Create a Subway Art Sign

How to Upload Fonts to Cricut & Create a Subway Art Sign

– Hello everybody, my
name is Jennifer Maker. Welcome back to The Great
Maker Show and Tell. (bright ukulele music) Today we are making a
personalized subway art sign, which is a sign made with different types, colors and sizes of fonts. But before we can do that
we need to talk about fonts. Specifically how to install
and use them on your computer and mobile devices, so that you can use them
in Cricut Design Space. Now, I am going to bet
that you already know what fonts are, but let’s just do a refresher on them. Fonts are a set of
displayable text characters in a specific style. When you type a word
anywhere on your computer or mobile device, it
calls upon whatever font you selected, or was the default, to display the letters, numbers, and other characters on your screen. So when we type on the
canvas in Cricut Design Space we can use that display text
imagery for our own purposes in creating our cut files
and our designs, right? Cricut Design Space already has a number of fonts installed for you to use. These are all the same fonts
that came pre-installed on your computer or device, plus any fonts that you install later, plus extra fonts provided
by Cricut Design Space. So we can divide our fonts
into two general categories. System fonts and Cricut fonts. System fonts are computer system wide and not specific to your
illustration software, or any other one specific
kind of software. Cricut fonts on the other hand, are pre-installed by
Cricut and can only be used in Cricut Design Space. So the first question most
people have about fonts is, can I install new fonts? And yes, you can! You aren’t limited by the
fonts already on your computer. You can install more. Installation of fonts
differs, based on whether you’re on a Mac or Windows computer, or using a mobile device. But the general principle is the same. You install the fonts on
your computer or device, not from within Cricut Design Space. So, in a nutshell you
would find the font online, and I’m gonna tell you more
about that in a little bit, download it, unzip it, and
then locate that file itself. It usually ends in .OTF, or .TTF. And now, I am fortunate to
have a Windows computer, a Mac computer, an iPad and an iPhone, all here in my craft room. So let’s head on over to each one, so I can show you exactly
how to install a font and use it in Cricut Design Space. Then once we’ve done that, we’re gonna create some fun subway art, in Cricut Design Space. And I will show you how to cut it and apply it to the
canvas, just like this. So let’s begin with a PC computer, running Windows 10 and
the Google Chrome browser, which I recommend in general. So first we need a font. So we’re gonna start
with a font that I made, go to,
and click on libraries. And then scroll down until you get to the, enter the free resource library link. Click on that. If you have the password already, which you can get for free by signing up for my newsletter, enter the password. If you don’t, you just use
the form that’s right here on the page, to request it. So once you’re inside
my library scroll down and look for my font. If you have a problem finding my font, because there are rather a lot of files in my free resource library, I recommend that you search for it. So on your Windows computer press Control plus F at the same time, and a box will pop up in
the upper right hand corner of your screen, usually
that’s where that is. Type in the word font and hit return. And locate all the instances
of fonts on this page. So, here’s my maker pen writing font. You click it and it downloads, and you can see in the lower left corner, that it’s downloading. If we click this little
arrow, it’ll tell us it’s still working on it. And we wait until it’s done
and then click it again then choose open. And it’ll open it up in
your Windows File Manager. And sometimes it decompresses it for you, and sometimes it doesn’t. If it doesn’t it’ll look
more like this over here where it just says maker pen writing font. And when you hover over it, it says compressed zipped folder. To open this just double click it, or right click it and select decompress. One of the two will work. Once it’s open, double
click the maker pen writing font folder and double click
it again to open it again. Now you want to double click
this maker pen writing file. It’s an open type font file. And once you’ve clicked that you will get an installation screen that looks just like this. Just click that install
button up at the top. And give it a moment to
install and that’s it. You can close this window,
your font is now installed. Congratulations. Now, if you already have
Cricut Design Space open you need to reload it, okay? You won’t be able to see the
font until you reload it. But once you have, let’s go on in there and click new project and click on text. And we’ll type a test word. Now, to change the font, you want to go up to the font menu. And type in the name of the
font that you just installed. So in this case, maker. And there it is, when you click it, your test text changes to
the font that you installed. And that is it, that’s all you have to do. Now let me show you how to
install a font on a Mac, using OS 10 and the Google Chrome browser, which again I recommend. So, we’re gonna need a font. We’ll start with the one that I made. So go to,
and click on libraries. Scroll down and click on enter
the free resource library. And type in the password. If you don’t have the password, just sign up for my
newsletter and it gets sent to you for free. Once you’re in the library scroll down until you find the font. If you can’t find it in the long list of free files I have, I recommend that you
search the page for it. Go to the edit menu, choose
find, and click find. In the box that comes up,
type font and click enter, and you’ll see the font
highlighted on your screen. Just click on it and it
downloads and this window in the lower left corner appears. When it’s finished click the
little down arrow and choose show and finder and once
you’ve done that you’ll see it. It usually goes to your downloads folder. Let me zoom in on this so
that you can see it better. So here’s the zip archive. To open a zip archive just
double click it, it’s that easy. Then double click the decompressed folder that we have right here. And here are two fonts, it’s the .OTF that’s the actual font. Double click the .OTF
file right here like this. And when you do that
font book opens for you. You see a window like this. Just click the install font button. And that’s it, that’s all you have to do. Now let’s go ahead on over
to Cricut Design Space. Remember if you already had this open you need to reload Cricut Design Space for your font to be installed, okay? So let’s do some test text. Click on text and type in the word test. And then go up to the font menu and search for maker,
the name of the font. And there it is, so you click on it. And that’s it. You now have the maker
pen writing font installed and you can use this
same process to install any other font on your Mac and use it in Cricut Design Space. All right, so let me show
you how to install fonts on an iPad or iPhone,
running iOS 11 or higher. The process is the same
regardless of whether it’s an iPad or an iPhone. So first we need to go to the app store. We need to get a free app called iFont. So once you’re in the app store,
click on the search button down at the bottom. And type in iFont,
i-f-o-n-t, and search for it. It’ll probably be the
first result you get, so click on the download icon. Wait, give it some time to download, it’s not too big, though. It was pretty quick for me, click on open. And it’ll give you a
little tutorial on stuff. That’s all you need to
do for now with iFont. So now we need to go get a font, and we’re going to go get
the one that I created. So go over the And click on libraries,
scroll down and click enter the free resource library. And when the screen comes
up type in the password that I sent you an email. If you don’t have a password,
sign up for my newsletter and I’ll send it to you for free. Now locate the font in my list. If you can not find the font, because there are too many
free files in my library, which I think that there probably are, too many at this point. It’s a little hard to find things. Here’s a tip, go up to the
bar at the top of your screen where the URL for your,
for the webpage is, and delete everything that
you see in that top bar. Just you’re gonna hit the backspace key, which is all I’m doing here. Type in font, and then down
where it says, on this page, tap find font. And then it highlights
for you on the screen, it makes it so much easier to find things. So click that and you’ll get a screen that looks like this, tap more. And then tap copy to iFont. Now you’ll see it’s opened
the zip archive for you. So you can unselect about this font, but keep maker pen
writing regular selected, that’s your font. And once you do this you’ll
be directed back to iFont. And over on the left you’ll
see an option to install the maker pen writing regular font. Tap the install button. And then you’ll be guided
through a series of menus, so tap allow, and then tap install. And then you’ll need
to put in the passcode for your iPad or iPhone, if you have one. Tap install, and then tap install again. And then tap done. So you have to go through
this process to install the font on your iPhone or iPad. So now we can go to Cricut Design Space. Now if you already had it
open, which you probably did, you have to restart it. Otherwise your font will not be visible. So, if you don’t know
how to restart an app you just double tap
your home button, right? So that’s the big round button at the bottom of your phone, or your iPad, double tap it twice. And you get a screen that looks like this. And find the Cricut Design Space window, and swipe up with it. So by that I mean you
hold down with your finger and you move your finger
up quickly to swipe it up and that basically removes
it as an open application. It doesn’t de-install
or anything like that. So now when you go and open
up Cricut Design Space again, it’s restarting it from
the very beginning, okay? So you have to restart to see new fonts, after you install them. So back in your restarted
Cricut Design Space, click on text at the bottom. And a insert font window comes up. And you need click on all. ‘Cause it defaults to Cricut. So click on the all tab at the top of that little box there. And then type in the name of the font that you just installed, so
we’re gonna type in maker. And you can see it right there at the top. So just tap that and
then put in some text, so that we can see what it looks like. And there is our test,
make that nice and big and there we go, we have installed a font in Cricut Design Space on
the iPad and the iPhone. Now here is an awesome tip for you. If you like to use both
your iPad and iPhone and your laptop and computer, whatever, you like to use all of them, just make sure that the same font is installed on all the devices you use. And then regardless of
where you design or cut from you know that any saved
projects that you created have that font. That’s all you have to do, okay? All right. So now let me show you how
to use these awesome fonts that you found and installed in a project. So we’re going to make a subway art sign. So head on over to Cricut Design Space and click on new project,
then click templates. So we’re gonna use a
template for this one. So just type in canvas at the
top there in the upper right and select basic canvas. So here is a basic canvas,
it luckily defaults to a 12 x 12 cutting mat, which
is exactly what I want, because my canvas is 14 inches. If your canvas is a different size, you’ll want to change the size. Also, I’m going to click
in the upper left corner of my grid on my canvas,
I’m gonna click twice and it’s gonna remove my grid lines. So that we can see the screen better. And I just don’t need those
grid lines there right now. So it makes a nice, clean canvas for me. All right now, it’s time to put in text, so we’re gonna click that text icon. And I’m gonna start with the word maker. So I’m going to make a
subway art sign themed around things that I really
enjoy when it comes to being creative and making things. I suppose is really the theme here. So my maker theme. I am just gonna make
that text and go up to the font menu and choose a font. And I’m just gonna go crazy, I’m gonna pick a whole
bunch of different fonts for different things. I’m starting with this couture font because I really, really like it. I got this font at And it is free. So that’s d-a-f-o-n-t dot com. And I’m gonna go ahead and make this text as wide as my canvas, ’cause
it’s gonna be the primary word, it’s gonna be the big, bold word. And then at this point I’m
just gonna start adding new words and changing the
fonts to different things as I feel like. There’s not really a rhyme and reason, you get to choose what you like, what fonts you like, what words you like. You can choose the
orientation and the size, and the color and everything. It just needs to be pleasing to you, nobody else, just you. (laughs) Unless you’re making
this for somebody else, then you keep their aesthetic in mind. But. Yeah it’s not you know,
I like the idea of having a big, big word to sort of give you, this is your general theme. So my general theme of
this subway art canvas is gonna be maker. Other than that it’s just gonna be other words that I associate with this. And you don’t even have to do it this way, you could just do it, you
could do it with sayings, or phrases, or lyrics to a song. Whatever text you would
like to create, right? But the idea is that we’re
gonna use different fonts, and sizes and styles, and just make something really
interesting to look at. So it’s not just plain text, it’s really interesting text. People call this, also call this font art, or typography art. And one thing, you know that you’ll want
to keep in mind is that, little, fragile, skinny, delicate fonts will be a lot harder to cut, and a lot harder to see on your canvas. So generally speaking
you’re gonna want to choose big, bold, audacious fonts. Ones that are gonna, you know, that have some substance to them. So that when you cut them out and they’re on your canvas,
you can actually see them and they’re not lost on the background. Also, of course it’s
gonna be a lot easier to weed your vinyl when your font
is not teeny tiny. (laughs) Well let’s just talk about cursive fonts. ‘Cause I just did one
and here’s another one. You want to make sure that
your letters are touching when you make a cursive font. So you do that by selecting
the text that you just made and then you click on letter space, and you make it smaller
until they’re touching. Because when we write cursive
our letters touch, right? And it just looks better. So I mean of course this is your personal, you know you can do what
you want. (chuckles) You can totally do what you want, but as a font maker and as a graphic designer for 35 years,
goodness that’s a long time, I don’t know. Yeah we’re coming up on 40 years actually. Actually I think it’s 40 years this year. That’s a long time. (laughs) Anyways when it comes to a cursive font they just look better when the
letters are touching, right? And sometimes, especially
in Cricut Design Space it’s hard to get the letters to touch just the way that you feel they ought to. And that’s because Cricut Design Space doesn’t really honor
what’s called kerning. So some letters, even
though like you might type them in another program
would look beautiful, they don’t always look so
great in Cricut Design Space. So you may need to go up to the advanced menu and ungroup to letters and then move each
individual letter separately, so it’s just right the way you want it. I didn’t do that for this project, because there was a lot of text, and I was just trying to you know get this finished for you, but I have
shown that in other tutorials. But it’s just advanced and
you ungroup to letters. And then you can see, and you can move each
individual letter into place. Do make sure that you
have space in between all of your words so that
when you start layering your vinyl, it’s not so tight
that it’s really difficult and you accidentally have
a lot of overlap, right? I mean if you need overlap,
because that’s what you want, that’s fine, just keep
in mind that it might be more difficult, and if
you are off by even like you know a millimeter, it might not look quite
the way that you intended. Having a little white
space between your words, a little white space, because the idea is that
this is a pretty dense bit of text, right? It’s really art with text. And it generally looks
better when it’s dense. But again, you can do whatever you want. I’m trying to fill in the white spaces with words and, what font I choose makes the
big difference, doesn’t it? So some fonts are wider
than others, or taller. And so, I’m just experimenting
with finding a font that fits in the space that I want to use. And it takes a little
while to find these fonts, thankfully Cricut Design Space shows us what each of the fonts looks like. And of course if that’s not
quite good enough for you there are alternatives to this. So one of course is to print out all of your fonts into a binder. This is something that I did
back in the ’90s. (laughs) But since then I’ve decided
that that’s a lot of paper and a lot of effort to
print out every font. And so I use font book on my
Mac to see all of my fonts. But if, another alternative to font book, especially if you’re not on the Mac, is to go to a website called, Wordmark, dot it. And when you do that you type
in a word that you’d like and it brings in all
the fonts on your system and it displays it for you. So you can see exactly
what that word looks like in the fonts that you currently have. So that’s a really good resource to try. And something else that’s cool. Is that some fonts have
pictures in them right? They’re called glyph
fonts, or I don’t know, ding bat fonts, right? And you can use these as
cutting files as well. So here I’ve used one that’s of a little decorative icon thing
and I put it in between crate and soul at the type
of my subway art canvas. And I had this heart that’s
in my maker pen writing font that you could use. Although, I think that,
the fact that it’s, it’s really the pen writing
font is really ideal for pen writing, not for vinyl cutting. So, I think I’m probably
gonna remove that, I’m not gonna keep that on the canvas. I wanted to see that it looked like. But, here’s another little glyph font. You just type it in there and place it where you want it to be. You know finding the glyphs themselves is still a little bit tricky, because it’s not always obvious where you know which letter
creates which picture. So to see these special glyph characters and figure out which
letter to type to get them, on Windows 10 you can
type map in the search box on the task bar, and choose character map from the result. And then over on the Mac
you can just go to font book and you can choose to have
it show you the repertoire of all of the characters in the font. And now I’m gonna save
my project just in case I accidentally lose my
internet access or anything. So I like this, it looks
really good the way it is. So that looks pretty good. So I’m gonna select
everything and I’m gonna click attach. And if I do that it keeps
everything in the position that it’s in, which is great if I want
to keep it this way. But I want to make some changes. And there’s a couple things
that we need to do here. So I’m gonna click cancel. So the first change I
need to make is to weld my cursive letters together. ‘Cause if I don’t do that then where the letters are touching, they will cut out there, right? So go through and select
all of your cursive letters and weld all of those. You can keep the other
ones unwelded, it’s fine. The cursive letters needs to be welded. I’d like to change the color
of some of these fonts. I think I’m gonna use three
different colors for my canvas. I have some really pretty
foil adhesive vinyl that I’d like to use. And it’s in sort of an aqua
color and a reddish color and a dark gray, almost black color. So I want to pick some
words and change them to the aqua color, and then
I’m gonna do the same thing with another set of words and
change it to the red color. And those will be my three
colors then, aqua, red and black. And I’ve decided that
heart is not gonna work it’s just too skinny. So we’re gonna just replace
this heart entirely. With a basic shape that’s here, available right here on Cricut,
so really easy to use. So let’s just delete that. And then go over and click on shapes and choose the heart
down there at the bottom. And we’re gonna resize this,
we’re gonna change the color to match our red color and resize it. And then put it into
position, just like that. So there is our completed design. This is our subway art design. Let’s save this again. Always good to save as you go. And we’re gonna click on color sync to make sure that we
have all three colors, just the three colors, no extra colors. So if we were to click make it right now, what would happen is that Cricut Design Space would
separate our words out like this. Which frankly, is not super helpful. Yes, you can do this and
you can cut it out like this and it’ll save on vinyl. But honestly, it’ll be
a big pain in the butt, and you’ll have to worry about placement and you’ll have to worry
about things being straight. I’m not gonna do it this way, I’m gonna do it differently,
and I recommend you do as well just to save yourself, you know a little bit of a headache. We’re gonna select all of the elements that are the same color,
and then we’re going to attach them, so first
we’re gonna do all of the red. And then go over and do attach. And then we’re gonna do all of the blue, so just hold down your
shift key as you select and click on each one. And then we attach it. And then we do the same
thing for the black. Just make sure you get each black element, holding down that shift key as you click. And then click attach. And now each of the
three colors are attached and when we click make it, everything is exactly
where we want it to be. Super big deal here. (laughs) Now if we cut out these 12 x 12 sheets, everything is right where we need it. And so we’re gonna be able
to layer this so much easier than if we cut out each individual letter. So, this is all we have
to do at this point, is there’s no extra steps
for cutting this out. You do not have to mirror,
because this is adhesive vinyl. You don’t want to move
anything on your mat, so don’t start moving things. Keep everything just where
it is here, click continue. And select your Cricut. We’re gonna click browse all materials. And I’m using that foil adhesive. And that’s it, we cut it, now. I need to show you a tip, if you’re gonna use this
foil adhesive as well. It is really stiff and it’s, it’s rolled up like this and
it does not want to lay flat at all, so what I’ve done is I’ve used this StrongGrip mat. A brand new StrongGrip
mat in fact. (chuckles) And I’m going to get it as
straight as I can on this mat, it is very, very rolled up and very stiff. Now smooth it all out. You want it to be nice and smooth without any bumps and wrinkles. And even though this mat is
brand new and it’s a StrongGrip it’s still kind of is
starting to pull away. So I’m gonna use my painter’s tape, just on the very edges. Just to keep that in place. And so if you don’t have a StrongGrip mat, just use whatever mat you
have and use some tape. For the side here you
don’t want your tape to wrap around the edge. I notice that when I do
that it kind of will get gummed up under the wheels
and can cause a jam. So instead, you know use a
more narrow strip of tape, so that doesn’t come to
the edge of your mat. Okay. So I’ve cut out all three of my mats. And it’s time to weed. And now I have sped up
this process considerably, otherwise we would be
here for quite awhile. We did this because yes, it took awhile. This is a full 12 x 12 sheet, and some of these letters are finicky, especially that skinny believe down there. That was probably the worst one. And also this was foil adhesive, it’s not, it’s very stiff, and it’s harder to weed, but entirely possible with patience. You just need to go slow. And I found that pulling it perpendicular to the letter helped a lot. Also you see me here cutting, squares around the words with my knife. This is a great tip that I have for you. So when you do this, you can then concentrate
on just that one element to cut out, and you
don’t have to worry about your vinyl sticking to everything. Of course you can also set
this up right in Design Space. You just put a rectangle
around the element that you want to do like this. You can totally use your knife as well. Just when you cut it, you
don’t want to cut so deeply that it cuts your backing layer. And there we go, we put on our transfer tape onto one of the layers. And then we’re gonna pull that off. And it’s a bit stubborn, so. (laughs) But there we have it
off, so now we’re gonna take that same piece of transfer tape and put it on our next layer
of vinyl that we weeded. And we’re gonna do the same
thing for the last one. So see how everything
is right exactly where it’s supposed to be without
having to worry about it? And then we place it on our canvas. We want to make sure
that’s down really well. I’m using my brayer and my scraper, I’m doing it from the back. And then I flip it over and I carefully remove the transfer tape. Again, it’s gonna be a little bit fiddly, because adhesive foil is very stiff, and it doesn’t want to bend very well. But if you use this method
that I’m showing here, Greg taught me this,
because he used to work in a sign shop. But you take your transfer tape and you basically pull all the
way over, so it’s now flat against your canvas. And you pull it across your canvas, or whatever surface you’re working on. And, so it’s like flat. It actually helps get all of those, your vinyl will come off easier this way. And it’s also creating like a nice, smooth surface to work from if you have to like place things down as you go. So, I just went across
using my weeding tool to keep the letters that
wanted to pop off down. And then when I was finished
used my braying tool and my scraper tool to make sure that all of that vinyl was down nice and good, and tight and smooth. (laughs) And there we go! This is the finished product. Really, it was really
quite simple to make. And it’s gonna look really nice
on my wall in my craft room. There’s one little mistake and that’s on the R here in maker. It started to tear. And I didn’t catch it in time. But whatever, I am not
worried at all about the R having a little rip in it. But if I were, it isn’t
different to just recut that R and then replace it there, right? We don’t have to recut the whole thing. We just fix the one little
bit if we wanted to. And that’s it, that’s how
we use all those awesome fonts that we’ve installed to create a beautiful subway art canvas and make a lovely topography art work. So as you could see, using the right font for a project makes a big difference. Generally speaking,
delicate and skinny fonts never seem to cut out very well. I favor big, bold and audacious
fonts for my cut projects. On the other hand, if
I’m using my Cricut pen to write something, those
skinny fonts always look better. So, it’s also important to weld any fonts with letters that touch one another, unless you think that you might
need to adjust those letters later on individually,
after you cut them out. And be sure that your
cursive fonts are touching to the extent that you want them to, by using letter spacing,
and then weld, right? So having the power to add and use fonts is such a big deal. You don’t even have to make subway art to appreciate the power of fonts. Just try adding a name
to your next project, set it in the font of your choice, and you’ll see how powerful this is. You can personalize
everything this way. (laughs) All right, so tomorrow I’m gonna show you how you can make perfect bows
using paper, that’s right. Don’t forget to send in your project ideas at And remember if you can tell
me what you want to make I can show you how to make it. Until tomorrow. (bright, ukulele music)

44 thoughts on “How to Upload Fonts to Cricut & Create a Subway Art Sign

  1. I AM SO EXCITED ABOUT THIS!!! You got my Bat Signal – I've been DYING to have it properly explained!!! THANK YOU!

  2. I always love to watch your videos! It came out so pretty! ♡ I know you made your own font can you tell me how you did that? Is there a video i missed?

  3. Thank you for sharing this informative tutorial. I love your project. Did you treat the canvas before adding the vinyl? Can you paint the canvas, and then add the vinyl? Thank you.

  4. I love this project, and how you make things easy to understand. I want to thank you for sharing the info about I think this will be very useful to me. I love to watch your videos.

  5. Thanks so much for the awesome tips to upload fonts to a mobile device! I tried it with a free one from Creative Market and it worked perfectly! Love the subway art!!

  6. Hi Jennifer can you sent me the code for the font on line I am new to this just got a maker thx u for your font tutorial

  7. I'm so excited on so many different levels at how I've learned so many different things from you and I cannot wait to implement them. Too bad I have to go to work soon, or I'd be on this canvas with the quickness!!!!

  8. This is so pretty. I did some canvas with iron on. Now I want to make one with vinyl. Thanks for sharing. When you group the words can you do it on the iPad. I’m new and trying to learn so much

  9. Wow I love this project! What a wonderful idea. I would love to make some for teacher gifts as well.😀 Thank you so much for sharing

  10. Just wondering, when she says the word of the day, will she say something along the lines of
    "The word of the day is…"

  11. I gotta ask, where do you put all these lovely crafts you make? I'm running out of display space lol

  12. I love this! You could customise this for a new baby girl or boy or general babyish for a baby shower gift. A beautiful surprise for a wedding gift or at the engagement. Colourful and bright for a pre-school, the options are limitless. I did one of these years ago for each of my kids but on a photo software online and it was printed by someone else – this is more rewarding because you do the whole project from start to finish.

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