What is the Cricut Venture? It’s Cricut’s large-format cutting machine, and it’s a real powerhouse. Learn all about the machine here, including seeing some projects I’ve completed and my thoughts on whether or not this machine is right for you. Cricut provided the machine for this review.
What is the Cricut Venture? All about this powerhouse machine!
If you’re new to Cricut machine—or even if you have a Cricut machine or two—you might be wondering what makes the Cricut Venture machine so special. If you’ve seen it, you know it’s big and capable of a lot.
But is it worth the price? What can it cut, and how big? How much space do you need to operate this machine? I’ll share my thoughts in this review post, including some examples of projects I’ve completed and why the Venture might be a good choice for you.
- Cricut Venture pros & cons overview
- What is the Cricut Venture machine?
- What materials can the Venture cut?
- How big can the Venture cut?
- Can the venture draw?
- Do I need to buy the Cricut Venture docking stand?
- Project tests & examples
- Wrap up & who the venture is a good choice for
Cricut Venture pros & cons
Not into reading? This box has a condensed list of what’s in this post organized into what I think are the pros and cons of the Cricut Venture.
- Large Cutting Capacity: The Venture can cut materials up to 24 inches wide, making it suitable for large-scale projects that other Cricut machines can’t handle.
- Fast Cutting Speed: With a cutting speed of up to 25 inches per second, it’s ideal for those who need to complete multiple repetitive cuts quickly, which is especially valuable for small businesses.
- Wide Range of Materials: The Venture can cut 100+ different types of materials, including vinyl, iron-on, paper, leather, and more.
- Compatibility with Smart Materials: The Venture is compatible with Smart Materials, allowing for longer and more continuous cuts.
- Drawing Capability: The Venture can draw designs up to 24 inches wide.
- Space Requirement: The machine is relatively large and requires a minimum workspace size of 35×42.5×41.5 inches, making it less suitable for those with limited space.
- Cost: The Venture costs more than other Cricut machines, which could be a potential drawback if you don’t think you’ll use its key features much (large-scale cutting/drawing and repetitive cutting).
- Blade Wear: While the machine is compatible with other Cricut blades, the Venture will wear out non-Venture blades faster.
- Mat Compatibility: The Venture requires specific performance machine mats, and mats from other Cricut machines are not compatible.
What is the Cricut Venture machine?
The Cricut Venture is Cricut’s foray into large-format cutting. It provides commercial speed and impressive precision while also adhering to Cricut’s promise of providing sleek, user-friendly machines.
One thing you’ll notice immediately when looking at the Venture is that it does not lay flat. That means you don’t load it from the front. Instead, and because it’s a larger machine, it sits at a 45-degree angle.
That helps to conserve room by negating the need for space behind and in front of the machine when working with mats. Cricut’s docking stand also helps increase functionality—and honestly, I think it’s a must have for this machine!
What materials can the Venture cut?
There are two main selling points to the Venture: cutting speed and its size. Let’s talk about what and how fast it can cut first.
The Venture cuts at speeds of up to 25 inches per second, so it’s a fantastic choice when it comes to speed. If you are running a small business and want to cut a bunch of the same design quickly, the Venture is a great choice.
And as far as materials go, it can cut pretty much everything you’d expect. That includes over 100 different types of materials—a few examples are vinyl, iron-on, paper, Infusible Ink, leather, poster board, and bonded fabric.
Venture blades & compatibility with other machines
You should use a Cricut Venture fine-point blade that comes with the machine. The Venture blade is designed to withstand higher speed and more pressure. The Explore fine-point IS compatible with the Venture machine, but it will wear out faster. So use it only in a pinch!
All of the other blades that are compatible with the Explore line of machines will also work with the Venture, including the deep-point and bonded-fabric blades. But like the regular fine-point blade, they will wear out faster.
How big can the Venture cut?
Much like Cricut’s other newer machines, the Venture is compatible with Smart Materials. In fact, if you want to really take advantage of the machine’s ability to make really large cuts, you’ll need to use Smart Materials.
When using Smart Materials, the Cricut Venture can cut up to 24 inches wide—twice the width of other Cricut machines. It can cut single images up to 12 feet long and repeated/separate images up to 75 feet long.
This, of course, also depends on the size of the materials you’re using. Cricut provides Venture-sized Smart Materials for removable vinyl, permanent vinyl, iron-on vinyl, sticker paper cardstock, and stencil vinyl.
However, you can also use the Explore-sized Smart Materials on the Venture if you don’t need the full width of the machine. That’s because the Venture has little plastic flip-up guides that you can adjust for 13-inch or 25-inch Smart Materials. I like being able to use materials with more than one machine.
Cutting with mats and compatibility with other machines
You can also cut with a mat on this machine. The Venture mats are performance machine mats that are made of a more durable material.
You can use the more narrow 12×24-inch mat to cut a maximum size of 23.5×11.5 inches. When you use the Venture-sized 24×28-inch mat, you can cut up to 23.5×27.5 inches.
Other Cricut machine mates will not fit in the Venture and will crack and warp under the pressure of the pinch rollers. The outer dimensions of the mats and the orientation of the adhesive area are also slightly different. So don’t use the 12×24-inch mat you might already have and use with your Explore/Maker machines.
When working with the large mats, the Venture also has built-in mat supports. Follow the prompts in Design Space when cutting with mats. The software will let you know when you need to press the button to pop the mat supports out.
Can the venture draw?
Cricut also came out with some thick permanent markers, too. I used a regular fine-point pen and the new 2.5mm permanent markers to make some large-scale coloring pages, and both worked great.
Do I need to buy the Cricut Venture docking stand?
I love that it includes built-in roll supports behind the machine to help manage longer Smart Materials while cutting. It also has “catch baskets” on either side of the machine that help keep Smart Material clean and off the floor. (I use these for storage, too!)
You can also hang the performance mats between the catch baskets using hooks. I haven’t dont that yet because I have hooks in a closet that I hang all of my mats on, though.
If you do not want to get the docking stand or simply have a setup you like better, that’s not an issue. You just need a sturdy space with enough clearance for materials. Cricut recommends a minimum workspace size of 35×42.5×41.5 inches.
Project tests & examples
So let’s jump into some things you can make on the Cricut Venture! Of course you can make fast, repeated cuts of smaller decals and iron-on designs…but you can do that on any machine. For these projects, I wanted to illustrate a few projects that are of a scale only the Venture can handle.
Project #1: Creating giant coloring pages on poster board
The first projects I did were using the markers and dollar store poster board (the two for 50 cents kind!) to make large-scale coloring pages for my daughter. This was perfect timing because she was home sick and wanted something calm and quite to work on.
The first one I did, I used a fine-point black market to draw. This was a great choice for this more intricate design I found in Design Space. It was perfectly sized for a piece of poster board, too!
The poster board I got has a shiny side and a paper side. I put the shiny side down on a cutting mat and drew on the paper side. Of note—I had a strong grip mat only. I’d recommend using a regular or light grip mat for this project, though.
For the second piece of poster board, I created a custom name coloring page for my daughter. I used all fonts and shapes available in Design Space and focused on designs that would look good using a thicker marker.
Make sure to set your pen/marker type in Design Space to help give you an idea of how the design will look. Below shows the settings on the 2.5mm permanent marker. But I do have to say, it did end up drawing thicker lines than these.
The design still looked AWESOME, and I love how bold it is. My daughter had a great time coloring it and hanging it in her room. But do a few tests to make sure the design you’re writing isn’t too thick for whatever width pen/marker you’re using.
I also made this design a bit smaller than the full size of the poster board. So after my Venture drew the design, I also had it cut an additional rectangle out around the black border.
Project #2: Cutting repeated & large-scale vinyl decals quickly
For the second project, I wanted to test cutting repeated and large-scale vinyl decals quickly. So I put a bunch of Halloween designs onto my Canvas in Design Space. I made some of them pretty large—larger than you’d be able to cut on any other machines.
Then I filled in around the larger designs with smaller bats and whatnot. These cut insanely fast and beautifully! I’m a bit of an impatient weeder, so I set the pressure to “more” for this project. Weeding was a breeze.
After that, I grabbed some gold permanent Smart Vinyl and cut out a big moon phase trellis for my sister-in-law. Cutting and weeding was a breeze. The harder part of large-scale decals is the transfer process.
Once I was ready to apply transfer tape, I laid the decal out and started the process. Then I asked my husband to help hold up the transfer tape and provide slack for me as I slowly rolled the tape onto the design. Have an extra set of hands is a HUGE help.
Of course you can smooth out bubbles after applying the decal. But applying transfer tape in a way that minimizes bubbles helps to prevent them in the first place.
Wrap up & who the venture is a good choice for
Overall, this is a very impressive machine. And I really love the docking stand—it’s super convenient. But is this machine right for you? Given all of the pros and cons I’ve laid out and the machine’s capabilities, the Cricut Venture could be the right machine for you if…
- Are a serious hobby crafter who wants one of the best crafting machine the market—or have prior experience using Cricut machines and are looking to expand your capabilities.
- Run a small business that involves repetitive cutting of materials like vinyl, paper, or iron-on—or want to make large-scale cuts that other Cricut machines cannot make.
- Have ample space to accommodate the machine’s size and requirements.
- Value a faster and more efficient cutting process for projects.