Best Vinyl Roll Rack, Holder, and Storage Options of 2019

Best Vinyl Roll Rack, Holder, and Storage Options

As you keep improving your craft skills, you’ll notice that the colorful craft vinyl rolls keep stacking up, creating chaos in your workspace. So instead of letting them lie everywhere, it’s best to find a good way to store them.

This article will review some of the best vinyl roll racks, holders, and storage options of 2019. It will also explain what you should look for in a standard vinyl roll holder.

 

Buyers Guide for the Best Vinyl Roll Storage

best vinyl roll holder

Here are some guidelines for you to help you figure out which storage option is the best option for your craft room.

1. Why Should You Organize Your Vinyl Roll Storage?

It’s important to have all your rolls in one place. This way, you can easily arrange them, access them, and protect them from damage.

I also know that you will most likely have way more adhesive vinyl and HTV vinyl in your craft room than you need. You can also save up some space in your room or office by storing these on the back of the door (shoe holder), under the desk (wrapping paper containers) or on the wall (see racks below).

2. What Dimensions Should I Look for?

A standard vinyl roll is up to 12” in width, though there are wider options you can use for special projects. Always consider the width and diameter of your vinyl rolls that you typically buy when you are looking for a holder.

3. Price

A standard mounted vinyl holder can go up to $15 for a capacity of 20. But the price varies a great deal, depending on the material quality, capacity, and brand. This article will demonstrate why some holders are much more expensive than others.

 

Top 15 Vinyl Holder and Storage Racks

We scouted the internet and asked other crafters what type of storage they like using to help compile a lovely list of ideas of how you can store your collection of vinyl. I’m sure one of these will be suitable for your room.

1. Harper Blvd Leal Black Storage Rack Review

If you want a vinyl roll rack with a modern and elegant design, you should take a look at this black one.

With a size of 27.5“ x 35“ x 46“, you shouldn’t have trouble mounting it to a wall. But if you don’t have enough wall space, you can also use it as a standard rack.

The top pole connects the two sides of the rack that help it stand. You can disconnect it by unscrewing the sides from each other. Then, you can hang the front side to the wall and use it as hanging vinyl storage.

The aesthetics and space-friendly features are a considerable upside, but this rack can only fit up to 8 rolls. So, if you’re looking for higher storage capacity, you may want to skip it.

Pros

  • You can hang it on a wall
  • Elegant design
  • Space-friendly with 27“ wide and 35“ high

Cons

  • Small storage space

>>> Click here to grab this rack from Amazon

 

2. ArtBin Vinyl Storage Rack Review

ArtBin’s rack is a budget-friendly standing storage option. There are two holes on the top, so you can also place it on your wall. Since its size is just around 16.5“ x 8.6“ x1”, you should always have enough space for it.

To assemble it, simply unfold it and it will lock into position. There are no additional screws or other accessories that you need to use if you want to use it as a standing rack. You’ll need to apply two screws or sturdier nails and easily mount it to the wall.

There’s a space for 12 rolls, with each hole being 2” in diameter. You’ll have a hard time finding a cheaper vinyl roll storage rack that can fit 12 rolls and almost any space.

Pros

  • Low price
  • Easy to assemble and disassemble
  • You can mount it to the wall
  • Good utilization of space

Cons

  • Looks unimpressive

>>> Click here to grab this cheap vinyl rack from Amazon

 

3. Signworld Vinyl Storage Rack Review

This storage rack has a bigger capacity and uses up a little more space than some other models. It’s 70” high and 33” wide, so you will have to find a proper place for this one. But once you find where to put it, you will have a place for 40 vinyl rolls.

The powder-coated steel material prevents damage and corrosion while keeping the whole product stable. You just slip a roll into one of the arms on the holder, and it will stand. Each one can hold up to 30 lbs. of weight. You won’t need to worry about the rack breaking under the weight of all your rolls.

However, there might be a problem if you want to place smaller rolls on the arms. Most 30” rolls will fit perfectly, but you may have difficulties with other sizes.

Pros

  • Holds up to 40 rolls
  • Strong and durable construction
  • Stands still

Cons

  • Might not fit rolls with a small diameter
  • Challenging to assemble

>>> Click here to grab this vinyl holder from Amazon

 

4. The Roll Keeper Craft Vinyl Storage Review

This vinyl roll holder has an interesting, mount-only design. It can hold 25 vinyl rolls in a very tight space. Since it doesn’t have legs, you can only hang it to the wall or door. It is only 6” wide, so it won’t take up a lot of space on your wall.

If you don’t want to spend much money on vinyl storage, consider this one, as it is both affordable and has a lot of capacity. You can even get bigger storage from the same manufacturer, holding up to 50 rolls.

Keep in mind that the hanger is not the most durable so don’t stack it with heavy rolls, as it may break.

Pros

  • Large capacity
  • Takes up very little space
  • Convenient to use
  • Comes in larger sizes

Cons

  • Can’t stand, mount-only
  • Not the strongest hanger

>>> Click here to try out this cheap option for storing your rolls

 

5. Holdin’ Storage Hanging Holder Review

The Holdin’ Storage is another mount-only vinyl roll holder, but this one has space for much more than just rolls. It’s made from a durable, soft fabric with pockets and sleeves for various accessories on each side. At the center of the holder, there’s a strong metal bar that keeps everything in place.

Just hang the 360-degree hook on a pole in your room and you’ll have all your crafting accessories in one place.

You can fit up to 20 rolls inside this storage option. However, the accessibility and organization are not ideal since there are no separate pockets for your rolls. You always have to open the holder and dig through.

On the upside, the outer pockets fit scissors, ribbons, tapes, cards, pens, highlighters, and any other crafting accessories. This storage is quite affordable and it’s one of the more interesting-looking options around.

Pros

  • Stores up to 20 rolls
  • Pouches for other accessories
  • A unique design

Cons

  • Sorting and organization are difficult

>>> Click here to grab some of these nifty storage holders

 

6. Alvin King-Size Mobile Storage Review

This one has 4 built-in wheels that make it your personal storage cart. It has a simple cube-like fence design with four different openings for your rolls. All these openings are 9“ x 14“, so you can sort different rolls in different pockets.

The best part about this storage is its mobility. You can push it around and it will smoothly glide through the room.

But you should know that you need to assemble this product yourself. Since it comes in many different parts and requires some additional tools, it’s not easy to put together. If you don’t consider yourself handy enough, you should probably skip this one.

Pros

  • 4 built-in wheels make it mobile
  • Big enough pockets for more than just vinyl rolls
  • Sturdy steel construction

Cons

  • Difficult to set up

>>> Click here to grab these wheeled roll storage trolleys

 

7. Stanton Wrapping Cart Review

Here is a versatile vinyl roll storage option with three drawers. This wooden construction is designed to help you keep gift wrapping supplies organized, but you can also use it for vinyl rolls and other supplies too.

As it is only 20” wide, you can fit it in most spaces you can easily move it around since it has 4 built-in wheels. Drag it from corner to corner until you find a perfect spot.

The top part consists of long poles which act as roll holders, while the drawers are on the bottom part. The rolls also fit into the drawers, but you can use them for accessories and various other things.

The Stanton cart is a reliable, great-looking product with multiple uses. However, it may strain your budget.

Pros

  • Wooden, modern furniture design
  • Doesn’t use up a lot of space
  • Has good capacity
  • 3 drawers for storage
  • 4 built-in wheels for mobility

Cons

  • More expensive than most vinyl holders

>>> Grab this beautiful wrapping trolley for your rolls

 

8. Signworld Vinyl Storage Rack Review

Signworld racks come in various sizes and this one can fit 20 rolls. Design-wise, it is simply a smaller version of Signworld’s popular 40-rolls rack.

In this case, you get a 26” x 32” x 16” storage rack that you can mount to a wall or any other hanging space. When you unpack the rack, you need to make two holes and put up two screws or hooks. These hanging accessories don’t come with the product.

When you mount it, you’ll get space-saving, 20-roll storage that can hold up to 600 lbs. of weight overall.

As with its larger model, the arms on this Signworld holder are a little too big for some smaller rolls, so depending on your preferred vinyl rolls, you may want to consider a rack with thinner arms or poles.

Pros

  • Good utilization of space
  • Reasonably cheap
  • Strong construction

Cons

  • Not suitable for rolls with small diameters

>>> Click here to buy this roll rack on Amazon

 

9. Signworld BV38 Holder Review

The Signworld BV38 is perfect if you’re looking for wider roll holders. It can contain only three rolls on its stainless steel poles, but these rolls can be 42” wide. As it fits a 7” diameter, this holder is perfect for bigger vinyl rolls.

As with most of Signworld’s vinyl roll storage holders, you will need to hang this on a wall. There are two holes that you can mount on two hooks or screws and it should hold well. Each pole is extremely strong and it can hold up to 77 lbs.

Pros

  • Perfect for big, heavy rolls
  • Fits seamlessly into any environment
  • High-quality material

Cons

  • Only contains 3 rolls

>>> Click here to buy this roll holder

 

10. Whitmor Clear Organizer Review

 

The Whitmor organizer is for those who want to save a lot of space and don’t need to organize their vinyl rolls very precisely. It is a very convenient way to keep all your rolls in one place and store them away when you don’t need them.

You can place around 25 rolls inside of this organizer, but keep in mind that the measures are for standard gift wrap. The organizer is 31” long, and it is made from a clear material and has a zippered top.

You can zip up all your rolls in this holder and the impenetrable material will keep them from damage. If you opt for the Whitmor, you won’t have to worry about moisture or any other external conditions. So if you need a super cheap, spacious, and portable organizer, consider this one.

Pros

  • Good protection from moisture
  • Easy to move around or put away when not needed
  • Stores a lot of rolls

Cons

  • Hard to organize
  • Not for serious crafters

>>> Click here to grab some gift wrap organizers for your vinyl rolls

 

11. MISSLO Organizer Review

The MISSLO organizer is also a holder that requires a wall or a door to set up. However, unlike other mounted-only storage options, this MISSLO comes with two hooks so you can place it on a door right away — no need to do any additional drilling and assembling.

Since there are six different-sized pouches, you can store not only rolls but also various other things like crafting accessories and items of clothing. The pouches are waterproof, so your rolls and other vulnerable objects will be safe as long as you don’t overload the holder.

The organizer is 59” high, but with only 14.5” wide. So, you’ll have a lot of storage capacity in a small space, and you can even take it traveling.

Pros

  • Comes with two hanging hooks, setting up takes minutes
  • Waterproof, protective material
  • Low price

Cons

  • Can’t hold too many heavy items

>>> Click here to purchase one of these shoe holders for your vinyl rolls

 

12. IRIS Storage Box Review

If you’re looking for a discreet storage box that you can hide away when you don’t need it, consider this one. This plastic box is 33” wide, so it should fit most of the standard rolls.

It gives you a 33”x12” space to fit your rolls. The product comes with a divider and an accessory box. You can place it inside and make a separate section, where you can place scissors or other accessories that you use together with your vinyl rolls.

You can easily put this box under your bed and store it away when you don’t need it. It is also sturdy and big enough to store some other things inside. But if you want to store only rolls, there are cheaper and more easily organized alternatives.

Pros

  • A section for accessories
  • Easy to put away
  • You can use it as a regular storage box

Cons

  • The price

>>> Click here to purchase this storage container on Amazon

 

13. Wallniture Multi-Use Brackets Review

With this holder, you’ll get a modern, minimalistic design to fit in your household interior. Place it directly on the wall, or under a shelf, and it will look appealing as well as being useful.

It comes with two brackets with a set of 6 circles on both sides to hold your rolls, maps, other long objects. The circles are durable, with a diameter of almost 3”. The best thing about them is that you can choose the length of the holder since the two sets come separately.

Despite all the great features, this holder still contains only 6 rolls, and for the price, you can get a better value; however, if you like the design, you won’t regret buying it.

Pros

  • Pick the length of the holder yourself
  • Durable material
  • Looks great in any room or office space

Cons

  • Expensive considering the low storage space

>>> Click here to grab this stylish vinyl roll holder

 

 14. AdirOffice Mobile Storage Review

This is a storage option for professionals. This sophisticated wooden storage can fit up to 20 regular-sized rolls regardless of length. You can easily organize your vinyl rolls and access each one without any trouble.

The storage is made from durable wood and it should last for a long time. There are 4 wheels at the bottom which make this storage easy to move around. There are also two handles, so you can also effortlessly carry it around.

If you’re serious about crafting or if your business involves blueprints, maps, or another type of paper rolls, consider this storage. However, you should know that it is the most expensive one on the list.

Pros

  • High-quality wood
  • Serious design that fits any interior
  • Top-notch organization
  • 4 wheels for moving it around

Cons

  • Very expensive

>>> Click here to grab this nifty storage cart for your vinyl rolls

 

15. PACON Classroom Keeper Storage Review

Although it has “Classroom” in its name, this PACON holder is suitable for plenty of other spaces. It’s interesting, colorful design can add life to a sterile environment and the 27.8 x 25.1 dimensions mean you can fit it into any corner and small space.

The best thing about the storage is that you can use a divider to set up the size and the number of slots. For example, you can make 4 big slots or 16 small ones. Thanks to this, you can customize the holder any way that you want.

On the other hand, the cardboard material makes it one of the least durable options on this list. So you get a good looking and spacious holder, but it may be easily damaged by moisture or improper handling.

Pros

  • Small and spacious
  • Possibility to adjust the size and number of slots with divider
  • Simple, colorful design

Cons

  • Not very durable

>>> Buy some of these boxes from Amazon and give them a try

 

Verdict on the Best Vinyl Roll Holders/Racks

Best Vinyl Roll Rack, Holder, and Storage Options

Before you make up your mind, think about your priorities. Are you doing crafting as a hobby, or are you serious about it? How much storage capacity do you need and how often do you plan to use the rack or holder? These and many other parameters will bring you closer to a decision.

Once you know what you want, it will be easy to get the correct vinyl holder. If you’re willing to do the assembly, the Alvin King-Size Mobile Storage might be your best choice. It is versatile and sturdy without being overly expensive. But if portability is your top priority, consider the MISSLO Organizer instead.

Whichever one you opt for, organizing your vinyl rolls will make your work easier and more comfortable, so don’t hesitate and choose a storage option today.

Any other ideas of what to use to store all those vinyl rolls? Please share them with us.

Till next time,

Sam xxx

Cricut Maker vs. Cricut Explore Air 2 [Comparison Guide]

The name Cricut needs little introduction for crafters and people who make decals and other embellishments. This company manufactures some of the best vinyl and die cut machines that are perfect for a variety of purposes.

Among them are the Cricut Explore Air 2 and the Cricut Maker, the topics of this article. We’ll also explore which one is the overall winner if you compare Cricut Maker vs. Cricut Explore Air 2.

The answer to this question may not be as straightforward as you might think. This is why we’ll take a closer look at all the features each of them has to offer.

>>> Click here to purchase your Cricut Maker (Our Preference)

>>> Click here to purchase your Cricut Explore Air 2

 

Cricut Explore Air 2 vs. Cricut Maker

Both of these machines are upper-end models from Cricut. As such, they share certain characteristics.

Similarities

You’ll find that both machines are super easy to use. The setup and printing/cutting process is simple to master even if you don’t have any prior experience. With either model, you should be able to start crafting your designs a few minutes after plugging in the machines.

Cricut Explore Air 2 vs. Cricut Maker is a tie in terms of compatible materials. They are both capable of writing, scoring, and cutting through more than 100 materials. These machines work equally well with delicate paper and tough leather, matboard, and even balsa wood.

Built-in Bluetooth is yet another shared characteristic. This allows you to transfer your designs from a computer or a tablet to the machine. In fact, these Cricut models come with a cloud-based app that you can use to customize and edit your projects anywhere. All you need to do is to download the Cricut Design Space app.

Cricut Design Space Projects

With this in mind, you should know that there are thousands of printable images and 920 patterns in the Design Space app. They come in full color and you can, of course, upload your own designs. While you’re at it, feel free to check out some of the 60,000 images in the Cricut Image Library.

Besides the stock photos and designs, you might also find the double tool useful. The machines come with two cartridges that house separate sets of tools. This means that you don’t need to waste time switching blades, scoring wheels, and stuff. Just install the tools needed for the project and let the machine do its thing.

Finally, both the Cricut Maker and Explore Air 2 are designed to write and cut twice as fast as competitor machines. This is achieved via the high cutting force that may make these machines suitable for professional high-volume cutting, writing, or scoring.

>>> Click here to purchase your Cricut Maker

>>> Click here to purchase your Cricut Explore Air 2

 

Cricut Maker vs. Explore Air 2 Reviews

Now that we’ve highlighted the common features, don’t go out and buy one yet. Let’s take a closer look first. One at a time, shall we?

1. Cricut Maker Review

The Cricut Maker is 22.6 x 7.1 x 6.2 inches and about 15 pounds. This makes it fairly portable, but chances are the machine will have a dedicated spot in your work area.

This machine was mostly created to be a fabric cutting machine, but it also does a brilliant job with over 100+ other materials. See what type of projects you can create with the Cricut Maker here.

The Maker comes in four different colors so you can easily match it to your other gear. Still, this model truly shines in terms of compatible tools. However, some of them might not be included in the basic package.

Cricut Maker Machine home vinyl cutter

Rotary Blade (Included)

The rotary blade is just one of the new blades for the Cricut Maker. The rotary blade utilizes a rolling and gliding action to help you cut through different materials like fabric, paper, vinyl, and more. You don’t need any backing material to use this precision and speedy blade.

You can grab some tips on how to cut fabric with the Cricut Maker here.

Knife Blade (Not Included)

cricut-knife-blade

This knife is engineered to perform like an X-ACTO blade. It allows you to cut materials of up to 2.4 mm thick, including matboard and balsa wood. You can find out what sort of materials you can cut with the Cricut Maker here.

 Fabric Pen (Not Included)

This is an excellent tool for tracing out patterns to help you preview if they’ll fit. The ink is not permanent so feel free to apply it to different fabrics.

Scoring Wheels (Not Included)

The Cricut Maker is compatible with the company’s scoring wheel and double scoring wheels. These tools are razor sharp for creating deep scores in any material.

Other Compatible Tools

If this is not enough for you, Cricut has more optional tools for the Maker. They include fine and deep-point blades, fine-point pen, and calligraphy pen. Plus, the Adaptive Tool System controls the blades and provides precise cutting force.

And guess what? You can store all the tools in the built-in compartment to keep them within reach and neatly organized. The Cricut Maker also features a docking slot with a USB charging port for your smartphone or tablet.

What’s Inside the Box?

What Comes with the Cricut Maker

The Cricut Maker in this review comes with the machine itself, a set of tools, and the materials needed for the first project. When it comes to tools, you get a rotary blade with a drive housing and a fine-point blade (housing included). There is also a fine-point pen for laying out the designs.

The package also includes a couple of 12 x 12-inch cutting mats and the design app is compatible with all the major operating systems. You get access to 25 free sewing patterns and 50 premade projects for free. There are a ton more available by subscription.

If you need other extras like sticker papers, vinyl sheets, iron-on materials, and such, check out some of the ready to print bundles on offer.

Price

The Cricut Maker is the company’s flagship model with all the best specs. You can expect it to come with a price that matches its status. Nothing else anywhere near the price range can match its 2.4mm cutting depth and 4kg cutting force.

You’ll need an industrial machine to outperform the Cricut Maker at upper 3 figures. And they’re not going to have the portability and ease of use.

Due to all of these improvements, the Cricut Maker will cost you about $100 more than the Explore Air 2.

You can read through our full Cricut Maker review here if you wish to learn even more about this cutter.

>>> Click here to purchase your Cricut Maker

 

2. Cricut Explore Air 2 Review

Cricut Explore Air 2 vs Silhouette Cameo 3

As one of the latest additions to the Cricut family, Explore Air 2 is designed to optimize your workflow. The app, dual tool holder, and speed all help you to save time on your projects.

The dimensions of 24 x 9.5 x 9.5 inches make it a bit bigger than the Maker. It also comes in more colors. The Explore Air 2 is a more affordable machine so it’d make sense to appeal to a wider range of styles.

Best Cricut Machine 2019

When it comes to the tools, the Explore Air 2 also uses a premium German carbide blade that’s compatible with Cricut writing and scoring styluses. Needless to say, the extra styluses are not included in the basic package.

This Cricut also has a decent cutting force of 210gf (gram-force). It’s a fraction of the Maker’s 4kg cutting force, but it’s as high as its top competitor’s and more than enough for most materials. With the standard blade, the Explore Air 2 can cut up to 1.5mm deep.

For deeper cuts, you’ll need to switch to an upgraded blade that can cut up to 2mm. The machine can cut through the same 100+ materials as the Maker except not as deep, of course (because you can’t use the knife blade in this machine).

Another thing that stands out is its struggle to work with fabric. You can’t use the rotary blade on this machine, so if you wish to cut fabric you will need to use a backing for the fabric, or stiffen it up pre-cutting.

It is still a fabulous machine though, and ‘good-enough’ if you don’t really work with thick materials or fabric. You can see why we love our Cricut Explore Air 2 so much in this post here.

What’s Inside the Box?

The package in this review includes the machine and the built-in blade. It means you need to factor in the price of additional styluses, materials, and any other tools that you might need.

That being said, the machine is also available in a bundle that comes with accessories such as a hook, scraper tool, and scissors. You’ll also find an iron-on foil, printable vinyl, and a set of Cricut markers besides. There are other Cricut Explore Air 2 bundles available.

cricut explore air 2 everything bundle

So if you are just starting out, it might be best to go for the bundle. But don’t hesitate if you prefer the fun of shopping for everything individually.

Price

The Cricut Explore Air 2 can be purchased for around $100 cheaper than the Maker. Shall we say that you are getting a lot for your money?

This machine is capable of handling everyday use with ease. If might be good enough for a small business if you’re using it for in-house production. However, you might want to consider the Maker if you’re producing stuff for sale.

You can read through our full Cricut Explore Air 2 review here if you wish to learn even more about this cutter.

>>> Click here to purchase your Cricut Explore Air 2

 

Pros and Cons

First of all, you can’t go wrong with either the Maker and or the Explore Air 2.

When it comes to downsides, there is some room for improvement in the Design Space app. It is quite basic which might be fine for beginners, but you might want more options to edit and customize the graphics.

Some people might find the machines a bit loud. But all cutters in this price range will have noise, especially at Cricut’s speed and cutting ability.

With that said, the more affordable Cricut Explore Air 2 may have some limitations in terms of cutting power and depth. You are not likely to notice any difference with standard materials like vinyl, paper, and cardboard stock. And if you wish to cut something thicker, you can always get the upgraded blade that can cut up to 2mm.

The major benefits of both machines are the dual tool cartridge and speed. The software allows you to choose two different speed modes and you can use the tools simultaneously. This can be a major time saver.

 

Individual Benefits

The top of the line Cricut Maker is superior with 4kg of cutting power and 2.4mm cutting depth. This puts it close to the levels of professional machines and allows for greater versatility in terms of materials and designs. Cricut’s Adaptive Tool System controls the blades or tools to match the material in use.

Cricut Maker Blades Knife

Unlike the Explore Air 2, the Maker is compatible with rotary blades for fabrics. And don’t forget all the additional tools that are compatible with this model. Overall, you are getting exceptional precision for any material.

The difference in cutting force is much higher in the Maker, which restricts the Explore Air 2 to light- and medium-density materials. But it can handle all the standard materials really well.

And then there’s the price. It’s safe to assume that Cricut Explore Air 2 fits the budget of most crafters and business owners. More importantly, you won’t be making any significant compromises in terms of performance.

Although it’s a matter of personal preference, you might be attracted to the Explore Air 2’s vivid colors that range from eye-catching persimmon to soft cherry blossom.

 

Cricut Maker vs Air 2 – The Final Verdict

Would it be a cop-out to declare no explicit winner? How about two winners? Hear us out before you throw your hands up in the air.

In essence, the final choice is up to you and it boils down to what you use the machine for.

Crafters, DIY enthusiasts, and small businesses are bound to find the Cricut Explore Air 2 quite adequate. It can turn your ideas into fruition regardless of your niche and area of interest.

Cricut Explore Air 2 Review

On the other hand, the Cricut Maker is a lean mean die cutting, vinyl and fabric cutting machine. It rivals the power and speed of much larger industrial die cutters and decal makers. The advanced features and specs allow for greater precision and more intricate designs.

Best Cricut Sales and Deals

Here’s the story. Get the Cricut Maker if you’re using it for your business. You won’t have to upgrade until you move to a factory space. Especially if you wish to cut detailed designs, cut thicker materials or wish to cut fabric. This cutter will also save you time as it works so much faster than the Explore Air 2.

However, if you only want a cutter for your home, you can easily find a winner in the Explore Air 2 at about half the price of the Maker.

Which one do we use? I love using the newest and latest. That way I know the technology on the machine will last for a few years. So we personally use the Cricut Maker at home.

>>> Click here to purchase your Cricut Maker

>>> Click here to purchase your Cricut Explore Air 2

See how these two cutters compare against other vinyl cutters by reading through our vinyl cutter machine reviews.

How to Find the Best Blank T-Shirts for Printing

How to find high quality blank t shirts for printing

How tough can it be to start a T-shirt printing business?

When done right, it is one of the most straightforward projects due to low capital and human resources requirements.

What is a fundamental prerequisite to finding success in T-shirt printing? If you think about it, the quality of the fabric and the overall finish of the product is what makes all the difference.

But how do you find the best quality blank T-shirts for screen printing and HTV design work?

We have made a checklist of important factors you should consider to ensure that you find top-notch fabric for your printing endeavors.

 

Checklist for Finding High-Quality Blank T-Shirts for Printing

Different Types of Shirt Printing Methods

Each of the following six factors is essential in simplifying your quest for finding the best quality blank T-shirts. Without further ado, let’s break down the nitty-gritty of where to buy blank t-shirts for screen printing or vinyl HTV designs.

1. How to Choose your Blank Tee Shirts?

blank tees

There are a few qualities that separate a high-quality tee from an ordinary one. You should pay attention to these qualities to ensure that you get your hands on top-notch blank shirts. If we had to break it down into basics, the ideal product will have good quality at a reasonable price, have an optimal fit, and be made from the best materials.

For anybody who is just starting a T-shirt printing business, it can be very challenging to get the best quality blank tees without increasing the price you sell at, but do try to stay clear of cheap blank t-shirts, and rather focus on quality.

Customers will not be willing to pay more to buy tees from a new source so you should avoid increasing your material procurement cost beyond a permissible budget. We advise you to ascertain the maximum price you can pay for plain tees and buy the best quality products you can find at that price. You can expect to pay around $4 – $7 per quality tee, possibly less if you purchase in bulk.

Your tees will sell only if they provide the right kind of fit. Based on who your target customer is, your fit can vary between loose or baggy, regular, and slim fit.

The blanks you get should be made from top-notch materials. How do you pick the right material? We have addressed it in detail later.

 

2. Purpose of Printing

How to use a heat press machine to decorate a t shirt

One of the vital factors to consider when starting your T-Shirt printing business is your target audience and the kind of products you want to offer. Being aware of the audience and your short-term goals make it easier to decide what kind of blank tees you should be procuring.

You can choose from a variety of apparel categories and offer any combination of two or more styles. If you’re going to focus on sportswear, go for plain blank T-shirts that have a quick dry feature. Procuring a blend instead of pure cotton to add some polyester will be ideal. You can browse through some activewear tees here.

If you’re going to offer tees to cater to top-notch fashion trends, you might want to go for premium blank T-shirts from reputed brands to get a comfortable and feel-good fabric. Another factor you may want to consider is whether you’re buying blank tees that are made from 100% organic cotton.

Being environment-friendly is a significant positive characteristic of any business today.

What kind of blank T-shirts should you procure? How many blank T-shirts will you need and at what time interval? Answering these essential questions gets relatively simplified if you clearly define the purpose of printing at the get-go.

 

3. Types of Printing

blank t shirts for printing

To be able to pick the right kind of blank T-shirts for printing, you need to know what variety of printing techniques you’ll be using. Many different printing methods are used, and they cannot be applied to one type of fabric.

You can choose from five printing techniques to implement in your business. Although screen printing and heat press printing are the two most commonly used printing methods, there are three more alternatives that you can consider.

Screen printing is used for simple designs that are not too colorful and complicated. It is the ideal method to use if you aim to create a large number of the same T-shirt design. One of the benefits of this technique that has made it famous is its accuracy – guaranteeing a replica of the design on each T-shirt.

Screen Printing Vs. Heat Press Printing

Heat press printing is more suitable for creating a small number of T-shirts with a complicated design. It is a cost-effective way to replicate intricate designs. However, it is not ideal for mass production.

If this sounds like your preferred option, you can learn more about the best heat press machine for shirts here.

heat transfer vs screen printing

Dye sublimation is an effective method for printing minimalistic designs on light-colored polyester T-shirts. Direct to Garment (DTG) is the least durable and is well-suited for hobbyists who have a top-notch textile printer.

Still feeling confused? You can learn more about the types of shirt printing here.

 

4. Choosing the Right Fabric

high quality blank t shirts for printing

Based on the printing method you will be using, you need to decide what kind of blank T-shirts you should be procuring for the business. The fabric you need may vary greatly, but cotton and polyester are two of the most used T-shirt fabrics.

Your customers will not appreciate a T-shirt that looks great but is not comfortable. The right fabric ensures that your T-shirts feel as good as they look, if not better. If your T-shirt shrinks after it is washed, it is a big lose-lose situation. It is vital that you focus on the quality of fabric you’re going to use.

100% Cotton shirts are a favorite these days, but they usually tend to cost slightly more than the blended shirts. Click here to browse through 100% cotton blank shirts.

If you’re going for blends instead of pure cotton, a double-blend with 50% cotton and 50% polyester is one of the most commonly used fabrics. But double blends can vary in their constitution with some fabrics having 90% cotton and 10% polyester. Click here to check out the top favorite 50/50 blank t-shirt brands.

You can opt for much softer tri-blends consisting of 50% cotton, 25% polyester, and 25% rayon.

 

5. The Ever So Essential 50/50 Blend

When customers buy T-shirts, one of the first things they check is the material by feeling the fabric. If it does not feel soft and comfortable, it will most likely not sell. A safe bet for new businesses is to go for the 50/50 blend, essentially deriving the best of both cotton and polyester. Cotton adds comfort and polyester adds tear-resistance.

A crucial benefit of using the 50/50 blend relative to 100% cotton is that it does not shrink. It is also cheaper in the long run, allowing you to keep production costs in check.

Click here to check out the top favorite 50/50 blank t-shirt brands.

 

6. Procuring the Best Blank T-Shirts

best blank t shirts

Wondering where to buy blank t-shirts for screen printing that is actually high-quality? There are two essential factors to consider when choosing the supplier you’re going to procure your blank T-shirts from – the price and the quality.

A significant component of your direct costs in the T-shirt printing business can be attributed to the price of blank T-shirts that you pay to the supplier. You do not want to buy overly expensive T-shirts because that will increase your selling price and reduce the affordability of your products.

If somebody is supplying blank T-shirts at a cheap price, there is an inherent concern about the quality of the fabric. There is a delicate balance between the quality and price of blank T-shirts that you need to maintain.

When you buy blank T-shirts for your business, procure different sizes, light as well as dark colors, and different fabrics. You should have an arsenal of blank T-shirts – round neck, polo, V-neck, halter, half-sleeve, full-sleeve, and sleeveless.

If you can regularly update your products and offer a variety of T-shirts, it will not take long to create a loyal and rewarding customer base.

 

7. Brands You Should Consider

When starting your T-shirt printing business, you need to decide if you will be relabeling the T-shirts to try to create your brand name or use the label of the company manufacturing the blank tees.

If you buy your blank tees from a popular brand, it may not be a bad idea to let your customers know that you’re printing on quality products they can trust. Some of these brands do however sell tear-away labels so that you can remove it and replace your own brand label instead.

Here are some of the popular T-shirt brands that offer standard quality T-shirts:

Some brands offer premium quality T-shirts:

Brands like AIstyle and Tultex are cheaper alternatives to the premium brands of American Apparel and Alternative Apparel. Tees from AIstyle and Tultex tend to shrink and can be inconsistent concerning color and size in different batches. As a result, AIstyle and Tultex tees are more affordable.

Summing It Our Guide to the Best Blank T-Shirts

With a wide array of companies selling all kinds of clothes, it can be a daunting task to find high-quality blank T-shirts for printing. The importance of finding quality shirts for printing cannot be underestimated. At the end of the day, if you offer T-shirts that feel and look good, find customers.

With the help of this checklist, finding the best quality blank t-shirts for printing should be a piece of cake!

Till next time, Happy Printing!

Best Vinyl Cutter Machines Under $300 [Cheap Vinyl Cutter Machine]

Cricut Explore Air 2 vs Silhouette Cameo 3

Are you trying to find a cheap vinyl cutter machine? We have a handy guide for you on the best vinyl cutter machine for under $300.

Physically, vinyl cutters resemble small printers and plotters. However, instead of printing and drawing, they cut sheets of vinyl from pre-designed patterns.

Some cutters are powerful enough to work with other materials such as PVC, leather, and wood, in addition to easier materials like paper and fabric.

Vinyl cutters are essential tools for those in the sign making business and those interested in starting their own shops. However, they can also come in handy for everyone looking to print their own custom t-shirts, greeting cards, and home decorations.

Keep reading for reviews of the best budget vinyl cutters costing under $300 and a comprehensive buyer’s guide.




Cheap Vinyl Cutter Machine Reviews

So what is the best vinyl cutter for under $300? Here are some reviews to help you decide. 

I will outline the top features, the pros and cons of each in detailed reviews, which should help you choose the best cheap vinyl cutter 2019 has on offer.

The Sizzix Big Shot Plus is the beefed-up version of the Big Shot, Sizzix’s wildly popular small vinyl cutter.

It can do everything the standard Bigshot (which comes in multiple sizes) can, only that it has a bigger 3” opening. It is for cutting and embossing projects and Sizzix markets it as a hobby and small business model.

The Sizzix Big Shot Plus is based on… take a guess, the Sizzix Big Shot. The two look very much alike and they come in multiple sizes. This particular Big Shot Plus has a 9” opening.

Despite the larger size than the standard 6” model, the Big Shot Plus can easily fit any desktop. It is compact and portable, perfect for those who work in more than one location. This cutter measures 15-3/4” (W) x 11-3/4” (D) x 7-1/2” (H) and around 16 lbs.

The Big Shot Plus is a manual vinyl cutter, which you might expect at this price. It has an ergonomic handle wrapped in a comfortable rubber grip. The improved design is more ergonomic, which puts less stress on your hands and wrists.

This cutter can work with the entire Sizzix library, including Thinlits, Bigz, Textured Impressions, Framelits, Impresslits Embossing Folders, and Texture Fades. Only the Bigz Pro dies are out of its reach. You can also cut and emboss multiple small dies simultaneously.

The machine is made up of ABS plastic housing, solid steel gears, unibody cast roller housing, and solid-core steel rollers. The package includes the machine, adapter A, adapter B, platform, and two cutting pads.

The standard warranty on this model is 1 year, though you can extend it to 3 years if you register your cutter on the manufacturer’s official site (assuming you bought from an authorized dealer).

Pros

  • 9” opening
  • Cuts and embosses
  • Sturdy
  • Lightweight and portable

Cons

  • Can get tiring in extended use

>>> Read more reviews on Amazon, read through our detailed Sizzix Big Shot Plus review or click the button below to check the price.


​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​2. Silhouette CAMEO 3 Review

The Cameo 3 is perhaps Silhouette’s most popular die cutting machines.

This dual-carriage machine is Silhouette’s top die cutter yet it’s affordable if you can find it at generous discounts online. It can work with a range of materials and connect with the most popular operating systems. If you need a potent DIY machine, this might be it.

The Silhouette Cameo 3 is a desktop vinyl cutter made for serious enthusiasts. You can use it in commercial settings though perhaps not for churning out products that fly off the shelf. It’d be perfect for design purposes.

In addition, the Cameo 3 is also a great option for hobbyists who have outgrown their first cutters. There are countless users who swear by it, which you might have heard.

It offers a wide range of possibilities. Compatible materials include cardstock, fabric, vinyl, and most types of paper. The maximum supported sizes are up to 12” wide and 10 feet long.

The Cameo 3 features high-quality cutting blades with auto speed and depth. The maximum cutting depth is 2mm, which is standard at this price range. This a dual-carriage cutter which means it can perform two different operations in parallel. 

You can connect the Cameo 3 to all currently supported versions of Windows and Mac OS. Additionally, you can use Bluetooth to hook it up to your smartphone or tablet. It also has support for Silhouette Cloud, which can be great collaborative teams. Other supported technologies include PixScan and Print & Scan.

Pros

  • Dual-carriage
  • PC and Mac compatible
  • Bluetooth connectivity
  • 2mm cutting depth

Cons

  • This thing can get loud

>>> Read more reviews on Amazon, grab more info on the cutter in our Cameo 3 review post or click the button below to check the price.


The Cricut Explore Air 2 is arguably the world’s most popular vinyl cutter.

It offers standard connectivity options, dual-carriage construction, adjustable blades, and a highly competent design software. The secret has long been out about the Cricut Explore Air 2. It’s a safe choice that you can’t go wrong with. Here are some of the reasons why.

The Cricut Explore Air 2 is an easy-to-use vinyl cutter. While vinyl is the primary material, the Explore Air 2 can work with faux-leather, specialty paper, adhesive foils, cardstock, iron-on vinyl, specialty vinyl colors, and poster board.

In terms of size, this cutter has a 12 x 12” StandardGrip cutting mat, which is on par with the majority of similar models. You can use this cutter for vinyl stickers, greeting cards, custom home décor, as well as custom-printed t-shirts and baseball caps.

The Explore Air 2 is a dual-carriage model and it can perform two actions simultaneously.

You can combine between cutting, writing, and scoring any way you like.

The cutting blades are made of German carbide and you can adjust the depth and pressure via the onboard Smart Set dial.

In the compatibility and connectivity section, the Explorer Air 2 lets you connect to Windows and Mac computers. Bluetooth allows it to hook up with iOS and Android devices.

The Design Space design software lets you create your own designs.

Pros

  • Dual-carriage
  • Works with various materials
  • Win, Mac, iOS, and Android compatible
  • 12 x 12” cutting mat

Cons

  • No automatic pressure and speed adjustment

>>> Read more reviews on Amazon, see our informative full review of the Explore Air 2, check out the great value bundle deals, or click the button below to check the price.


The Mophorn Laser Plotter is both a cutter and a plotter. One thing is for sure. You are bound to be taken by or not care for the bold modern design with loud transparent blue endpieces. You can use it with a wide range of materials and it’s fairly fast.

The Mophorn Laser Plotter is an affordable cutter/plotter for the hobby and DIY crowd. 

It offers decent power and speed, though perhaps not enough for heavy duty production use. But you’ll have no problem using it in a typical design agency or other small businesses.

In terms of material compatibility, this plotter can work with Kent paper, postcards, drawing paper, scrapbooking paper, inkjet photo paper, and other types of paper. It can also work with soft polyester and PVC films of up to 0.1mm thick.

This plotter can accommodate the A4 and letter papers with its maximum supported width of 8.25”. The maximum supported length is 78.74”.

The Mophorn also has adjustable speed and pressure. The speed range is 0.4 to 11 inches per second and there are seven preset speeds. The pressure goes from 60 and 700 grams, and against with 7 presets. The controls include “Forward,” “Back,” “Align,” “Test,” “Cancel,” “Start/Pause,” and “Power.”

In terms of compatibility, this plotter can only work with Windows. Mac and Linux systems are not supported and there’s no plan for future support.

You can use SignCut X2, FlexiSIGN-PRO, WinPCSIGN, Artcut, EuroCut, Adobe Illustrator, CorelDRAW, and Auto CAD to prepare your projects.

The recommended uses include making stickers, jigsaw puzzles, scrapbooks, cards, 3D cards, paper crafts, and gift boxes.

Pros

  • Doubles as a plotter
  • Easy to use
  • Onboard controls
  • Excellent design software compatibility

Cons

  • Can’t engrave or emboss

>>> Read more reviews on Amazon or click the button below to check the price.


Plotter and cutter combos are very popular in vinyl cutter circles as they can handle a wider range of projects. And the Vevor Vinyl Cutter and Plotter is as affordable and capable as they come, what with its adjustable pressure and speed and comprehensive onboard controls.

The Vevor Vinyl Cutter and Plotter is a compact desktop machine with a maximum material handling width of 13.8” (but note that the maximum cutting and plotting width is 11.2”).

When it comes to speed and pressure, the Vevor model is second to none in its price class. It allows you to adjust the speed from 10 to 800 millimeters per second and the cutting pressure from 10 to 500 grams.

When it comes to materials, the Vevor Cutter and Plotter can work with various types of paper in addition to vinyl. You can use this plotter cutter to make stickers, prints for T-shirts, greeting cards, labels, home decorations, and other stuff.

Perhaps the Achilles’ heel of this plotter cutter is that it is only compatible with Windows PC. Even if that’s not a problem, people might get the impression that it’s not cool enough for Mac!

Luckily, it is very easy to operate. It has a backlit LCD display and the controls include an emergency start/stop button. The installed pinch rollers are compatible with affordable Roland blades.

Pros

  • Compatible with Roland blades
  • Easy to operate
  • Wide range of applications
  • Adjustable speed and pressure

Cons

  • Doesn’t work with Mac

>>> Read more reviews on Amazon or click the button below to check the price.


The Brother CM350 is a budget cutting machine that perhaps outside of its price range. With this cutter, you’ll also be able to scan and edit your designs. What’s more, it can work in standalone mode if need be.

First of all, this electronic cutting machine is jam-packed with modern features. The high-resolution 4.85” touch LCD display is the centerpiece, not the least because you can’t miss it. You can use the LCD to create and edit your design with the help of the built-in ScanNCut 2 application. This is especially handy if you don’t have your computer around.

The Brother CM350 can also double as a scanner – and a good one at that, which is near impossible to find at this price range.

The maximum width is 12” and the included cutting mat is 12 x 12”, which you can upgrade to a 12 x 24” cutting mat if needed.

This cutter is compatible with Windows Vista, 7, 8, and 10. It is also wireless-ready for use with the ScanNCut Online app and ScanNCutCanvas. The former is an online transfer app while the latter is a cloud-based storage app. There is no support for Mac or Linux.

Pros

  • Doubles as a scanner
  • 85” touch LCD display
  • ScanNCut onboard, online, and cloud apps
  • Wireless ready
  • Works in standalone mode

Cons

  • The app isn’t the easiest to use on the machine itself and doesn’t support Apple devices

>>> Read more re​​views on Amazon or click the button below to check the price.


Crater’s Companion makes two versions of the well-known Gemini die cut machine – the Gemini and the Gemini Junior. The standard Gemini is the topic of this discussion. It is a die cut machine so it can both cut and emboss.

The Gemini by Crafter’s Companion is ideal for hobbyist cutting and embossing projects.

It is compact and lightweight and not intended for heavy-duty commercial use. The Gemini weighs around 15 lbs., which gives it just enough heft to not move around when it’s working hard.

Make no mistake about it. This machine works fast at a 16-second pass-through at A4 or letter size.

This is impressive considering the fact that it is a made for casual and light commercial use. Needless to say, the much smaller Gemini Junior is going to be much faster, i.e. 10 seconds for a pass-through.

This cutting and embossing machine is compatible with the majority of embossing folders out there. Also, it can work with a wide range of materials, including vinyl, fabric, foil, cardstock, and paper. It works with thin metal dies and has a decent pressure for a hobby machine.

The highly responsive control buttons are one of the highlights of this model. They include start/stop, pause, and reverse. With them, you won’t have to do things manually anymore.

The cutting mat is 8.5 x 11” and can cut edge to edge A4 and letter-size formats.

The package also includes two clear cutting platforms, a metal cutting platform, plastic and magnetic shims, rubber embossing mat, several Gemini dies, multimedia die, 3D folder, user guide, and power cable.

Pros

  • Auto feed
  • Physical control buttons
  • Plenty of accessories
  • Versatile

Cons

  • Not wireless

>>> Read more reviews on Amazon or click the button below to check the price.


The Sizzix Eclips 2 is a compact DIY vinyl cutter that can cut and draw on a range of materials. Operations like engraving and embossing are out of its reach. Thanks to its cartridge-free construction, it has more versatility despite the fact that you have to use it with a computer.

The Sizzix Eclips 2 is aimed at vinyl cutting enthusiasts and DIYers. It is a relatively compact desktop machine at 26 (W) x 6-1/2 (D) x 7” (H) and solidly built at over 18 lbs. The cutting mat is 12 x 12”.

The original Eclips was limited in terms of design that you could create with it, a common complaint about the otherwise very popular machine. To overcome this obstacle, Sizzix designed the Eclips 2 to be completely cartridge-free. The downside of this approach is that you have to have a computer or a laptop with you to work this machine.

Compared to the original Eclips, it is quieter, more efficient, and faster. It is also more precise and has the ability to automatically adjust the cutting speed.

In terms of compatibility, the Eclips 2 can work with all major versions of Windows and Mac OS. It is not wireless, so you can’t pair it with your iOS and Android phones and tablets. Sizzix equips the Eclips 2 with the eCAL lite software, a stripped-down version of the popular Sure Cuts A Lot.

The Eclips 2 has auto-adjusting cutting blades that wield the proper amount of pressure for particular projects. The maximum pressure is 600 grams. The cutter can show you the laser cut preview. Also, you can replace the blades with pens if you want to draw instead of cut.

Pros

  • Improved cutting speed and efficiency
  • Cartridge-free construction
  • Automatic adjustable cutting blades
  • Larger 12 x 12” cutting mat

Cons

  • Doesn’t emboss or engrave

>>> Read more reviews on Amazon or click the button below to check the price.


The Silhouette Portrait 2, the long-awaited update to the very popular original Portrait, came out in November 2017. If you are after a cheap Cricut machine, then this is it.

It is a compact and lightweight machine with excellent connectivity and multitasking abilities.

If you’re looking for a cheap vinyl cutting machine that can hold its own against expensive heavy-duty machines, you may not have to look any further.

The relatively compact and highly portable Portrait 2 measures 18 (W) x 8 (D) x 9” (H) and weighs 3.5 lbs. This cutter can work with 8” wide dies and 2mm media with its deep cutting blades.

This cutter has closed the gap with the top-of-the-line Silhouette Cameo 3, with which it shares a number of features. It has the same automatically adjustable blade that adapts to the thickness of the material. It can cut up to 2mm thick materials, just to name a couple.

The Portrait 2 excels in connectivity options. It can work with all the currently supported versions of Windows and Mac OS. Additionally, you can connect it to iOS and Android devices via Bluetooth and control the cutting process remotely. You can also connect it to your Silhouette Cloud account as one of your 5 devices.

In terms of materials, Portrait 2 can work with paper, transparencies, vellum, cardstock, vinyl, fabric, magnet paper, and heat transfer material. This is why it’s often marketed as a die cut machine rather than a vinyl cutter.

The Portrait 2 can handle materials of up to 10 feet long. However, it doesn’t have the power and build quality to withstand heavy commercial use. Instead, it is best used as a hobby device or for small workshops with moderate daily output.

The package contains the cutter, 8 x 12” cutting mat, autoblade, A/C adapter, power cable, USB cable, and Bluetooth removal tool.

Pros

  • Versatile
  • Relatively affordable
  • Wireless connection
  • PC and Mac compatible

Cons

  • Not a production quality machine

>>> Read more reviews on Amazon, see our Portrait 2 review post, or click the button below to check the price.


The Curio by Silhouette is a versatile and small vinyl cutter machine. It is among the cheapest options on the market and a great option for hobbyists. Aside from cutting vinyl, this cheap vinyl cutter machine can do many other things.

The Silhouette Curio is a compact machine made for desktop use. It is lightweight and has a small footprint. This modern cutter can cut thicker materials than its predecessors up to a maximum media thickness of 2mm. It also has an 8.5 x 6” base. However, you can buy the 8.5 x 12” mat separately if you have bigger projects. The deep cut tungsten alloy blade is one of the highlights.

This highly popular little cutter can also perform stippling, sketching, etching, printing, and embossing duties, making it one of the most versatile affordable cutters. As you might suspect, don’t expect commercial-grade quality from the Curio as it is made strictly as a hobby machine.

The Curio uses a dual head carriage, meaning it can do two things at once. For example, you can cut and score at the same time. Additionally, its cutting force of 210g is significantly lower than the other Silhouette vinyl cutters.

In terms of compatibility, you can connect this cutter to both PC and Mac via the included USB port. It uses Silhouette’s proprietary Silhouette Studio program and pulls resources from Silhouette’s own Design Store. It is easy to control and operate and equally easy to maintain.

Additionally, you can count on Silhouette’s excellent customer support and the large tight-knit community of Silhouette users whenever a problem arises. The package contains the cutting mat, embossing tips, USB cable, AC adapter, and installation CD with the app.

Pros

  • Very affordable
  • Versatile
  • Strong cutting blade
  • Windows and Mac OS compatible

Cons

  • Strictly for hobby use

>>> Read more reviews on Amazon, read our Curio review post, or click the button below to check the price.

Buyer’s Guide on How to Find the Best Vinyl Cutter Machines Under $300

When shopping for a cheap vinyl machine, you should take some things into consideration.

First, consider the type of motor the cutter’s equipped with. After that, you should look into compatibility and connectivity options.

Besides that, the compatible materials are a given – everyone knows how important that is.You should also consider other features, such as tracking precision, material size, speed and pressure adjustability, and noise levels.

Finally, you might as well look into the warranty and customer support quality.

Just because you are chasing cheap vinyl cutters, doesn't mean that you need to buy 'crap'. So here are some guidelines for you to follow.

1. Type of Driver Motor

There are two main types of driver motors used in vinyl cutter machines – stepper and servo motors. Let’s take a closer look at each option.

Stepper motors are affordable. They’re less sophisticated and precise than servo motors. Instead of smooth gliding, they move in small steps – thus the name.

If you’re working on small designs, a stepper driver might not be able to cut with perfectly smooth edges. They’re mechanical in nature and quite a bit noisier. Think of the dot matrix printer – about the same kind of noise.

If you can only afford to purchase a cheap vinyl cutter, then you will most likely have to settle for a stepper driver - and then just expect to have a bit of noise as it cuts.

Servo motors are driven by digital encoders that translate the commands sent by software. They offer smooth and relatively quiet operation.

Also, they’re far more precise than stepper motors, allowing you to create complex shapes and work with fine details. However, they can be significantly more expensive so you might not find them in cheap machines. If you can raise your budget a bit and prefer to get a machine with a servo motor, you should hop over to our vinyl cutter reviews here.

2. Compatibility and Connectivity

Digital cutters can work with a wide range of devices, and some of the more expensive models can also work on their own.

If you’re shopping for a budget cutter, you can assume that they all support the latest Windows operating systems. Think of it this way. If you’re a manufacturer, you can’t sell a lot of products if you don’t support Windows, though many of them support Mac OS X as well.

Decide if you want to go wireless or strictly wired. Bluetooth receivers are the most common option. They’re mostly used to connect the cutter to online design apps, cloud-based storages, and or design stores.

You can connect Bluetooth-enable machines to iOS and Android devices. This is helpful for whenever you can’t access your computer.

3. Type of Material

While all models can cut vinyl, they can work with other materials as well, including various types of paper, such as drawing paper, cardstock, postcards, Kent paper, scrap paper, and inkjet photo.

In addition, a large number of cutters are also able to handle fabric and clothing. Some models can work with faux leather, genuine leather, and even wood. So think about what other materials you’d like to work with.

4. Tracking Precision

If you plan on working on highly detailed projects, you’ll need a cutter with high tracking precision. Those with digitally driven servo drivers can have up to 10 times better tracking than those with standard stepper drivers (but again will probably cost you more than $300).

The quality of the built-in software also plays a role in tracking precision. The more comprehensive apps will let you iron out minor imperfections in your design for superior tracking precision over uneven surfaces.

5. Project Size

Vinyl cutters vary in size and capacity. Desktop models typically feature 6 to 12” opening and 12” cutters are most often equipped with cutting mats of 12 x 12” to 12 x 24”. They are great for smaller projects and light workloads.

On the other hand, commercial use cutters can go over 100”. With them, you can take on the biggest and the most demanding tasks. By commercial use, we mean production quality. That’s if you’re producing products for sale.

You may not need a commercial cutter for other business uses. If you run a design agency or print shop, for example, any of our recommended machines may serve your needs.

6. Adjustable Pressure and Speed

The pressure determines the type the thickness of compatible media. You may find 500 to 800 grams of pressure to be enough as found in most budget machines. The more sophisticated models can adjust the pressure on their own to fit various materials and thicknesses.

You might have to take the cutting speed into account as well. Commercial machines are swift and have variable speeds. Almost all models can adjust speed automatically, but some of them may also let you set your own speed.

7. Noise

Vinyl cutters are not quiet machines by any stretch. However, there are significant differences in noise levels. The mechanical gear on those with stepper drivers tends to be pretty loud.

On the other hand, those with digital servo motors are considerably quieter. They also tend to be more expensive and harder to operate due to the installed software.

8. Warranty and Customer Support

Finally, you may want to take the warranty and customer support into consideration before making the final decision. You might find US companies to offer the best customer support overall.

The warranty is a bit more subjective. If you’re like many Americans, you might look at a machine breaking down as an excuse to buy a new one. In any event, the standard warranty is 12 months. These are mechanical devices so most manufacturers are not going to offer very long warranties.

Some may extend the warranty if you register your cutter on their official site. That alone is controversial as well and many people don’t bother. It might seem free but it’s not. You’re going to have to provide your personal data and guess what they’re going to do with it? Facebook anybody?

Final Verdict​​​​​​​​

So, is there such a thing as the very best vinyl cutter machines under $300? Not really. It’s better to break them down.

For one, the Sizzix Big Shot Plus is the best option if you’re looking for a manual cutter. It’s sturdy, portable, and capable of cutting and embossing. It is also the cheapest vinyl cutter on our list.

But if you need a quality digital cutter with good compatibility, the Silhouette Cameo 3 is perhaps your best bet. It is a dual-carriage model with PC and Mac compatibility. It is way more than just a vinyl cutter, so it is brilliant for those who enjoy a wide range of DIY projects.

On another front, if you are looking for a dedicated vinyl cutter and plotter combo, the Vevor Vinyl Cutter and Plotter. You can expect intuitive onboard controls, adjustable speed and pressure, and excellent reliability.

Now that you have found a new budget cutting machine for your home, why not hop over to our craft blog section. We have loads of tutorials, project examples as well as step-by-step posts to help you get started.

Cricut EasyPress 2 vs. Heat Press Machines

Heat Press Machines vs. Cricut Easy Press 2

Before talking about any direct comparisons, it’s best to ensure that you have a firm understanding of what a traditional heat press machine is, how a heat press works, and how it looks. Then it will become easier to determine whether a portable Cricut EasyPress 2 is the better alternative.

A traditional heat press – commercial or designed for home use – is a machine that can imprint various graphical work on fabrics and other materials. It makes use of applied pressure and heat to transfer the ink or heat transfer vinyl from one material to another.

Cricut Easy Press 2 vs. Heat Press Machines

Heat presses come in various shapes and sizes and in different designs. The three types of heat press machines are clamshell, swing-away, and drawer-style heat presses. Each one has various advantages when it comes to safety or saving space, but for the most part, the operation is virtually the same – you’ve got to press something to make something.

Now that we have a good understanding of traditional heat press machines, let’s have a look at what Cricut invented as a mid-way point between these traditional heat press machines and standard home irons.

 

What Is the Cricut EasyPress 2?

EasyPress-2-Sizes

The EasyPress 2 was released in 2018. It is designed as an upgrade over the original EasyPress which had limited ironing capabilities.

EasyPress 2 is the perfect combination of an iron and a heat press. It’s compact, easy to use, capable of high temperatures, highly configurable, and it heats up much faster than you would expect.

The gadget can be used to manually print customized artwork on T-shirts, hoodies, pants, and all other apparel and items that aren’t curved (hats, caps, mugs, stationery, etc.).

What makes it better than using a regular iron? First of all, you can use it with sublimation ink paper which means that you can get much more detailed prints and have superior color retention, contrast, overall quality, and durability against wear and tear and multiple washing machine cycles.

Secondly, you can set the temperature and the timing on the digital control.

 

Cricut Easy Press 2 Features

Cricut EasyPress 2 Review

The EasyPress 2 can be heated up to 400° Fahrenheit, which is equivalent to 205° Celsius. This is a 40-degree improvement over the original Cricut EasyPress and a welcomed one at that. That’s because the 400° F range is recommended for impeccable ink transfers and minimizing the loss of color quality.

Furthermore, at high temperatures, you have a much easier time achieving a darker shade should you decide to keep the pressure on the fabric for a few extra seconds.

If you are working with heat transfer vinyl, this range of temperatures will ensure that you can work with a wide variety of types of HTV such as foil, sports, glitter, holographic types and more.

The heating time is fast. It takes less than two minutes for a complete pressing cycle at 400°. This puts the EasyPress 2 on par with a wide range of entry-level heat presses and even some heat presses designed for small businesses.

A massive improvement over the original model is the availability of three sizes.

EasyPress-2-Sizes-Hero-1000x667

The Easy Press 2 comes in the following sizes:

  • 6” x 7”
  • 9” x 9”
  • 10” x 12”

Each of them can be used for various projects. For example, the 9” x 9” EasyPress 2 is perfect for tote bags and t-shirts. The largest EasyPress 2 can be used for customized pillow cases, blankets, drapes, etc. And, the smallest model can be useful too. You can read more about which EasyPress size to buy in this post here.

It’s the perfect size to print customized onesies if you want to create a unique wardrobe for your kid or if you want to target a whole new demographic with your small business. It’s also good for printing small party favors for branding or commercial purposes.

Another cool thing about the EasyPress 2 is that it has an automatic shutdown feature. It kicks in if the device hasn’t been used for 10 minutes. This is really important if you have a very busy schedule and you often get interrupted when working.

Now, let’s talk accuracy. Cricut shirt press done via the EasyPress 2 iron-heat press combo can have amazing results. One downside is that you’re tied to the device for the duration of the transfer process since you have to apply the pressure manually. Another problem is that you can’t set the required pressure, so it still leaves it up to a bit of guesswork.

With a standard heat press, you get a stable base to work on and a way to lock the material in place. When operating the EasyPress 2, it’s all about hand-to-eye coordination, stable hands, patience, and more practice.

Another negative is that you will need to purchase the Cricut EasyPress Mat. Whilst you can use a folded towel, I really find that the mat is needed if you wish to regularly work with iron-on material. The mat holds in heat really well and will ensure that you can apply some pressure as you are pressing. The mat is not cheap, so be prepared for that additional cost.

EasyPress-2-Sizes-Mats

Like most digital heat presses, the EasyPress 2 also plugs into any 110V household outlet. And, the heat plate is protected. But Cricut went for a ceramic coating for protection. On traditional digital heat presses, the coatings are more diverse and durable.

>>> Click here to buy a Cricut EasyPress 2

 

Cricut Easy Press 2 Pros and Cons

Of course, there aren’t just benefits to using the Easy Press 2 as your go-to printing crafts tool. Here’s an overview of where the gadget shines and where it lacks in convenience, adjustability, or performance.

Pros

  • Lightweight
  • Small footprint
  • Auto shutdown feature
  • Quality ink transfers
  • Affordable
  • Heating pads available in multiple sizes
  • Fast heating time

Cons

  • Doesn’t store settings
  • Requires manual pressure
  • Not compatible with curved elements

>>> You can read our full review of the Cricut EasyPress 2 here.

 

Cricut EasyPress vs. Heat Press

A traditional heat press for apparel can be of great use for crafts projects or for monetizing artwork. There are some obvious benefits to using a heat press over the EasyPress 2. As already mentioned, with a heat press, you’re not tied down to the machine during the pressing cycle, because you can set the required pressure.

Heat Press Machine

Furthermore, you benefit from more stability and improved accuracy provided by the heating element and the support element. They can lock fabric, ceramic, and stuff into place so that the design won’t shift in any direction.

When using the EasyPress 2, there’s a chance that you might shift the font, logo, or drawing from side to side or that you can create wrinkles in the fabric as you start pressing the iron down. There’s also a risk of ruining a design if you can’t maintain a steady hand for the whole two minutes it takes to transfer the ink.

But, it’s not all really that bad. If you want to save money and be more hands-on with your projects, you just have to be prepared to ruin some fabric during trial runs. Once you get the hang of it, the EasyPress 2 can match much more expensive traditional heat presses.

In terms of space and portability, the EasyPress 2 gets an edge over any compact heat press. Heat presses are still big whether you’re talking about a clamshell or swing-away heat press. For Cricut, the apparent solution to portability was to eliminate most of the automated functions and the large framework.

Here you can see how much the difference is in the size that the presses take up.

Buying a Heat Press Tips

So obviously is space is an issue, you should get the Cricut EasyPress 2. If you wish to take a press with you to craft events and craft group sessions, then you should get the Cricut EasyPress 2.

Here’s something that’s highly debatable. What is better to have? A machine that can heat press a couple of items or one that can heat press almost anything?

The Cricut Easy Press 2 comes in three sizes, you know that already. But, a standard heat press machine, would have a heating pad big enough for use on a wide range of clothes and accessories. Whereas with the EasyPress 2, you’re kind of tied down to the size you’ve chosen.

Here you can see the difference in heat pressing a shirt when you use the Cricut EasyPress 2 or a standard heat press machine.

heat transfer vs screen printing

The reason this is debatable is that the choice comes down to preferences or needs. The EasyPress 2 is cheap in the grand scheme of things. If you only want to do one thing, say onesies, you won’t need a large heat press. But, if you want to target more than one demographic, create diverse merchandise, then having multiple EasyPress 2 models is somewhat counterproductive.

If you purchase a Cricut EasyPress 2 that is too small for the design you which to press you will also risk over-pressing parts of your design as you will need to press the design multiple times.

 

Closing Thoughts

So which is best for what?

The Cricut heat press is fabulous for people that work on party favors, personal projects, or those that specialize in unique content and don’t want to branch out. People who only occasionally need to use a heat press machine may actually prefer the ease of use and compact nature of the Cricut EasyPress 2.

Those who have limited desk space will also prefer the small compact size of the EasyPress. The device is cheap after all, and once you’ve mastered it, it can print on fabric just as well as most heat press machines designed for home use and startup businesses. We personally use a Cricut press for our work at home.

>>> Click here to buy a Cricut EasyPress 2

It is important to note though that the EasyPress 2 is not intended for commercial-scale production cycles and the different sized models are clear indicators that you will be limited in what you can print on with a single EasyPress 2 model.

If you regularly create products that require the use of a heat press machine we would stay clear of the EasyPress and invest in a decent quality heat press machine. If you want to purchase a more durable and longer lasting press, then a heat press machine is for you.

How to Print your own T-Shirts

If you sell your items, we would recommend a heat press machine as we have found that designs last longer when applied with the correct settings for temperature, time and more importantly pressure (which you can’t set on the EasyPress 2).

A heat press machine is truly a big step up from the EasyPress, but the EasyPress is a big step up from the iron, so it probably comes down to how regularly you wish to use the press, as well as whether you wish to sell the items you create.

>>> Click here to start doing some research on which heat press machine to buy

I hope that this post has helped you figure out which press is the best press for you. If you have questions please leave them in the comments below.

Till later,

Sam xxx

Best 16×24 Heat Press Machines of 2019 Reviews and Buyers Guide

16x24 Heat Press

Depending on their purpose, heat press machines come in various sizes. If you want to build a business printing T-shirts of any size, you should opt for a heat press that has a 16” x 24” pod dimension. These machines also let you transfer your design to a wide range of other objects.

In this article, we will look at the best 16 x 24 heat press machines and all the factors you need to look out for.

 

Guide to Buying a Heat Press Machine 16×24 in Size

Below you will find a short guide containing some crucial information on what you should look out for in your new heat press machine.

Why this Size?

This is a big heat press that you can use to imprint your design on many different substrates. With it, you can design medium-sized banners, flags, pillows, and various other objects.

Unlike small heat presses, you can apply a larger application to your t-shirt or working with XXL shirts and full-shirt designs. However, these machines are less portable and aren’t ideal for hobbyists.

What is the Cost?

Depending on the features, warranty, shipping, and other parameters, these machines can cost from $300 up to $1,000. Choose wisely depending on your budget and preferences.

Can I Use These for Business?

A lot of T-shirt and other crafting businesses use heat press machines 16 x 24 in size. They are affordable, efficient, and they are perfect to begin a serious production. There are even bigger machines you can look at if you expect high turnover, but the price may be too high in that case.

 

16 x 24 Heat Press Machines Review

Below you will find all the top 16 x 24 heat presses currently for sale. We will look at their features, as well as discuss the pros and cons in order to help you find the best choice for you.

1. YUCHENG TECH 16×24 Heat Press Review

This is a great heat press if you plan to imprint many T-shirts over a short amount of time. It is a quality machine with a hot Teflon pad which protects the clothes and other substrates from burning.

Thanks to the smart LED screen, you can adjust the temperature and the timer. With a smart thermostat controller, you’ll always know where you are in the heating press, and you can set a temperature limit depending on the type of fabric you’re imprinting.

To start, you should manually adjust the press with the convenient handle. Then adjust the temperature and timer and let the machine do the job. The timer will beep to tell you that it’s done.

The aluminium plate distributes the heat evenly along the surface of the press, so you won’t see unequal imprints on your t-shirts and other objects. The press heats up to 490°F, which is enough for most types of substrate but may be limiting for some users.

Note that this heat press takes up some space. It weighs over 120 lbs., so before you decide to get it, you should have a suitable space for it.

Pros

  • Smart LED screen to adjust temperature and timer
  • A built-in thermostat
  • Aluminium heating plate distributes heat equally

Cons

  • A bit expensive
  • Maximum temperature doesn’t go beyond 490°F

>>> CLICK HERE TO READ THE REVIEWS AND SEE PRICING ON AMAZON

 

2. Ving Swing-Away Heat Press Machine Review

The design of this 16 x 24 heat press machine is convenient if you want to use a tight workspace. It’s narrow with a swing-away design that you can move away once it finishes the transfer. This way, you will be able to avoid any burns and injuries, and working in a tight space will become less frustrating.

The shirts you work with will remain flat once you apply pressure and the machine will imprint your design without mistakes.

A small digital scanner on the side takes care of the time and temperature. A countdown timer will warn you when the work is done. Just move the handle away, remove the T-shirt, and you can immediately prepare a new transfer.

This press is popular for designing T-shirts, clothes, pillows, and bags, but you can also use it to imprint ceramic and metal material. The temperature goes up to 750° Fahrenheit.

Finally, all the circuits are gathered in a box which makes them accessible and easy to check and repair. You’ll have no trouble replacing wires and other parts if it ever breaks. Unfortunately, there’s a higher chance of that than with some other models.

Pros

  • Swing-away handle
  • Good for various material
  • Easy maintenance
  • Affordable

Cons

  • Questionable durability

>>> CLICK HERE TO READ THE REVIEWS AND SEE PRICING ON AMAZON

 

3. SYH01 16×24 Heat Press Review

The SYH01 is a powerful heat press machine 16 x 24 in size, and it can reach a temperature of up to 750°F, which is great for various type of material. Besides cloth, you can transfer graphics to wooden, metal, and glass objects.

It has a simple “sandwich-type” mechanism. Lift up the handle, place the substrate between two pads, and press. The handle is lightweight and easy to use. It locks in place when you hit the pressure button, which will then start the transfer.

This heating press also has its own display screen, where you can manage the time and temperature. The timer counts up to 999 seconds before it starts beeping to let you know it’s finished. After the process finishes, the heater turns off and the pressure stops. You just lift the handle and take out the finished product.

If you decide to purchase this heating press, you get a 2-year warranty. You can use the machine for business and mass production, too. It is able to produce a high number of quality imprints for a short amount of time.

Pros

  • Heats up to 750°F
  • Ideal for various materials
  • 2-year warranty

Cons

  • Doesn’t use space very well

>>> CLICK HERE TO READ THE REVIEWS AND SEE PRICING ON AMAZON

 

Verdict

There’s a lot that these machines have to offer. Whether you plan to craft for hobby or fun, or you intend to do it commercially, all three machines should do a great job.

If you prioritize space, you should look to get Ving’s Swing-Away heat press, which is narrow and can fit smaller rooms due its clamshell design. The downside, in this case, is that it might not be durable enough for extensive use. With YUCHENG Tech, you get a reliable heat press, but it’s less versatile than some of its competitors.

The SYH01 is the winner in this case. It can go up to 750°F, which is a high enough temperature for harder materials, including glass or metal. It’s also sturdy and easy to use.

Know someone else that is looking for a 16×24 heat press for sale? Then share this post with them.

Till later,

Sam xxx

The 10 Best Mug Press Machines 2019 Guide & Reviews

Best mug press machine reviews

Are you trying to find the best heat press machine for mugs?

Printing on mugs is just one of many ways for companies and freelance designers to handle their branding.

Along with T-shirts and stationery, coffee mugs make for some of the most eye-catching mediums for you to display your artwork or message on.

What’s also cool is that with all this new technology, everyone can own and operate a mug heat press - hello to mug gifts for mothers, friends, teachers, family members and more.

Of course, having something worth transferring from sublimation paper to a fine ceramic mug is important.

best mug heat press machine reviews

But so is having a machine that won’t fail you and that will do justice to your skill as an advertiser, designer, or both. There’s no shortage of manufacturers claiming that they make the best mug press machines.

Obviously, not all of them can be correct. In this article, you’ll be able to read reviews on some of the best entry-level, mid-range, and commercial mug heat presses on the market.

You’ll also learn about the important features to look out for in these machines in order to avoid getting fooled by false advertising or “fancy” wording.




Coffee Mug Heat Press – What to Know Before You Buy One

There are a few considerations you need to be aware of before buying a cup heat press that looks cool and has some decent reviews.

Mug Printing Machine

Most of the time, the affordable machines will be too similar in specs to even tell apart from one another unless you check the logo.

1. Temperature

This means that the devil is in the details. First of all, if you’re looking at a mug heat press that can barely break 380° F it means that you won’t be able to guarantee a long-lasting imprint.

For ceramic material in particular, being as close as possible to 400° is considered ideal.

2. Timer

Now you have to look at what the timer offers. There are some machines that allow a maximum timer setting of around 240 seconds. That’s usually enough for ceramic and way more than a plastic mug will need.

But, the longer you make the pressing cycle, the darker the imprint turns out. If you’re looking for a darker shade then you may need a few extra seconds. That’s when machines with timers that go from 0 to 999 come in handy.

Not that you should ever get to 999 or anywhere near that mark, but it’s good to know that you can extend the pressing cycle without having to operate the machine twice per mug. It saves time, ink, and money.

3. Adjustable vs. Automatic

There are really three types of mug presses: those that are manually operated, those that have a mix of automatic and manual features, and those that are fully automatic.

It’s hard to tell which combination is better unless you know just how reliable the machine readings are. It’s always easy to rely on a pneumatic pump to apply even pressure to your mug. But what if that machine is poorly designed and the pressure is not enough to facilitate a clean detailed imprint?

The same thing goes for fully automated machines. There are a couple of models for home use that don’t require anything from you than to just add the mug and press the start button – temperature and pressure settings are calculated by the machine.

That’s not to say that working the pressure screw can’t be tedious or difficult at times. Some machines are simply calibrated better than others and some testing may be required before making a decision.

It also comes down to how much you trust a brand and how much you trust machines to have error-free software. Sometimes giving your work a more personal touch may not be such a bad thing. Besides, it would be easier to experiment with different “recipes.”

4. Production Goals

At the end of the day, probably nothing matters more than what your actual goals are. Figure out what do you need a mug printing machine for and everything will become so much clearer.

If you’re not looking to sell tons and tons of mugs, you won’t need a very fast, heavy-duty machine to make your vinyl or sublimation mugs. You can settle for a slower one that doesn’t use as much power and doesn’t cost too much.

If you want to make your mugs to order or to promote your brand or company, then you might need a machine which supports mug pads of different sizes. This will allow you to put your artwork on small cups and large mugs and make your presentation more appealing.

Last but not least, if you are considering a medium-sized commercial production, then you need a heavy-duty machine first and foremost. On top of that, one that can press multiple cups at the same time is always preferred. Even two cups at the same time are better than one at a time.

Also worth noting is the fact that not all commercial mug heat presses may allow you to work on mugs and cups of different sizes simultaneously. So, if that’s something important to you, you should look into that feature first.

5. Warranty

Due to how much work these machines are put through, manufacturers rarely offer more than one year of warranty. This is why it’s tricky to judge the durability of a mug heat press. It’s not usually the chassis that gives but the heating element and moving parts. Therefore, unless you’re getting a commercial-grade heat press, it’s best not to abuse it.

On the other hand, if you’re running a business, you can now write off the cost of the machine in one year. That’s assuming your company has a positive taxable income.

6. Attachments

You probably know that there are various “2-in-1,” “5-in-1,” “6-in-1,” and other similarly labeled models of coffee mug heat presses. Some of the best heat press machines also come with a mug attachment as well.

This usually refers to the number of attachments supported (sometimes to create other products such as bowls, caps, t-shirts and more). It doesn’t always indicate how many separate elements you get in the package.

This also doesn’t indicate that the machine you’re looking at is a dual-station model or otherwise. For that, you just look at how many presses or levers there are. Each lever typically indicates a separate heating pad.

The included accessories may also include protective gloves, high-end cables, and almost always an instruction manual.

Even though most machines are straightforward and easy to use, having detailed instructions on how to press on various materials is important as it can save time spent on researching those facts yourself.

7. Price

Price is always a problem for some people. Luckily, when it comes to heat pressing mugs at home, there are many affordable machines that can get the job done beautifully.

If you don’t mind waiting for the pressing cycle to be over in a few minutes, a low-wattage mug heat press might be your best bet.

8. Bonus Features

There are a few interesting features, some rarer than others, that you may find on a coffee cup heat press machine. One of them is a safety feature that’s also for quality control. It’s the secondary thermometer that kicks in and resumes the pressing cycle if the default temperature sensor fails.

Another cool feature is alarm notification. This alerts you when the heating pad reaches the desired temperature and the transfer is complete. This means you can prep more mugs while waiting for the one in the machine to finish which can speed up your production cycle considerably.

Dual temperature unit support is also nice to have. Since not all machines are manufactured in the US, some of them may come with instructions that use the metric system and the Celsius scale for measuring temperatures.

Top Mug Heat Press Machine Reviews

So what is the best cup press? Here are some mug presss reviews to help you decide. 

I will outline the top features, the pros and cons of each in detailed coffee mug printing machine reviews, which should help you choose the best mug heat press 2019 has on offer.

1. F2C 2-in-1 Mug Heat Press Machine Review

This F2C mug heat press machine is one of the fastest compact presses on the market. It takes less than two minutes from start to finish printing one mug. This is even if you’re going for a darker shade and at a higher temperature.

The machine comes with a single attachment by default. It’s a 9” x 4.5” rounded element that’s designed for standard-sized mugs. 

The maximum temperature output is 393° F which is mostly enough to ensure quick ink transfer and color clarity.

Because the machine is designed for small businesses and hobbyists, it has a straightforward design and it’s very easy to use. The panel on the right side lets you set the temperature and time. You can then apply pressure manually using the lever on the left.

Another cool feature is the dual temperature display which allows you to switch back and forth between Fahrenheit and Celsius, whichever you’re more comfortable with. Due to its size and limited heat output, the heat press doesn’t have a big power draw either.

Its size and weight make it highly portable. You can use this for show and tells, proof of concept, and even during pitches.

PROS:

  • Dual temperature display
  • Accurate readings
  • Low power draw
  • Rapid pressing cycle
  • Highly affordable

CONS:

  • No additional attachments

>>> Read more reviews on Amazon or click the button below to check the price.


​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​2. TC-Home Dual Digital Display Heat Press Machine Review

This TC-Home unit is designed for one thing and one thing only: facilitating high-end transfers from sublimation ink paper onto mugs and coffee cups.

The heat press is reasonably priced and has a low power draw which makes it a solid choice for home workshops and startup design firms.

You can use it to transfer artwork and logos on coffee mugs as proof of concept. You can also start a small scale production because the machine operates fairly fast. But, you can only print one mug at a time so it’s important to manage expectations.

You can set the temperature at 200°-400° F. You can also set the timer for the appropriate amount of time depending on the material the mug’s made of (plastic, ceramic, etc.). A wide temperature range is always good to have.

The machine operates on 110V which makes it compatible with all US home outlets. And, due to its small size and weight, this allows you to carry it with you to various locations such as showrooms or meetings.

It’s easy to operate the TC-Home mug press using its digital displays and buttons. You just need to familiarize yourself with the proper settings for each type of material as there are no preset programs you can run. The rubber handle gives you a good grip on the press and it also protects you from the heat.

To operate the pressure settings, you have to use the tension screw. Due to the machine’s design, you get easy top access to it. You don’t have to let the press cool down before making adjustments between presses, as waiting for it to get to the right temperature is by far the longest wait when using these presses.

Durability is not an issue thanks to the steel frame. However, because this machine is not designed to support a high production rate, you may not want to run it nonstop.


PROS:

  • Great grip handle
  • Digital controls
  • Average power draw
  • Decent temperature range
  • Affordable

CONS:

  • Feels a bit flimsy

>>> Read more reviews on Amazon or click the button below to check the price.


3. Yescom Automatic Mug Heat Press Review

What sets this heat press apart from others is its ease of use and convenience. As an automatic heat press, you don’t have to worry about keeping your hand on the press until the ink transfer is complete.

The Yescom includes a pneumatic press design which makes this a mostly hands-free device.

After you place the mug on the element, you then adjust the pressure setting, temperature, and timer (depending on the material) before starting the machine.

Once the transfer is complete, the machine will automatically release the mug.

One thing to note about automatic presses is that there’s even less room for error. Since you aren’t in control of pushing down or pushing the plate forward, everything locks into place automatically.

You’ll hear an alarm when the process is complete. The temperature goes up to 400°. As far as personal heat press machines are concerned, this is exactly what you need for mugs. And, with a wattage rating of just 280W, it’s a safe choice for many hobbyists.

Another benefit is that the machine fits just about anywhere. Its dimensions are roughly 12” x 8” x 6”, which makes it suitable for any home office, studio, or workshop.

The machine also comes pre-assembled and with a detailed manual; this makes it a beginner-friendly choice. You can use it with any 110V standard outlet. You can even switch between Fahrenheit and Celsius.

As for the mug element, it’s big enough to fit a standard 11-oz. mug. There are no smaller or larger elements provided for this model, so the standard mug attachment is the only one you get.

The mug is inserted vertically as is the case with most entry-level automatic mug presses.


PROS:

  • Low power draw
  • Compact design
  • Automatic press
  • Alarm notification

CONS:

  • No attachments

>>> Read more reviews on Amazon or click the button below to check the price.


4. Super Deal Pro 2-in-1 Mug Heat Press Review

This Super Deal Pro 2-in-1 mug heat press is a manual-operated machine. It allows you to digitally set the temperature and timer for the press, but the pressure adjustments and the press itself are not automated.

There’s a pressure adjustment knob with easy access from above. The press itself has a handle and is rubber-coated to protect you from the heat and give you a firm grip over the lever. This mug heat press is similar to many others in this price range.

Super Deal offers multiple heat press machines including for T-shirts and other apparel. But what makes this model particularly appealing is its high heat output and the fact that it comes with two attachments.

The package includes two elements, one for a standard 11-oz. mug and one for a 12-oz. latte cup. The latter comes in a cone shape. This provides some much-needed versatility to the heat press as it allows you to create a wider range of merchandise if you want to scale up production for your startup.

Of course, you can only press one mug at a time – but there’s nothing to stop you from getting a dozen of them (and you might be able to train someone to operate 3 or 4 of these machines at a time). The maximum heat output can be held steady at around 420°, ± 2°.

The solid steel framework makes this a durable machine and reliable in the long run, especially for a portable model. The display panel can be set to display Celsius or Fahrenheit.

The timer only goes to around 240 seconds. But, that’s enough for all ceramic applications anyway. Another cool feature is the cycle recording function.

The machine automatically records how many times you’ve completed a pressing cycle so you can always check how many mugs you’ve made.


PROS:

  • Two mug attachments included
  • Pressing cycles recorded
  • High heat output
  • Smooth operation

CONS:

  • Standard one-year warranty

>>> Read more reviews on Amazon or click the button below to check the price.


5. Iglobalbuy 3D Sublimation Vacuum Heat Press Review

If you’re looking for something more innovative to showcase in your workshop, a sublimation vacuum heat press machine might be just what you need. The unique heating system saves time and lets you easily switch between office mugs to phone cases, tiles, metal accessories, and even glass.

The reliability of this press is what makes it stand out, perhaps even more so than its versatility. The press functions much like an oven and the pressure and heat distribution are always spread evenly.

It’s not that a classic manual mug heat press can’t do a good job, it’s just that a vacuum heat press does it better.

But before diving into more of its highlights, here’s one thing you should consider. This tool is not cheap and it also has a massive power draw.

It may not be the ideal choice for hobbyists, but at least Americans don’t worry about the energy bill, which is much cheaper than Europe on a per kWh basis (your mileage may vary if you’re outside of the US).

As far as actually operating it goes, it’s nothing to be scared of. The process is fairly similar to that of a traditional heat press. You just put the mug between the vacuum film and the platen. Then set the temperature and timer and let the machine do its thing.

The LCD screen makes configurations easy to do and each function is clearly displayed. What’s interesting to note about the readings is that they should be a lot more accurate than what you would see on a classic cup printing machine because heat losses and transfers are much more predictable in a vacuum.

A nice safety feature is the addition of a second thermostat. Only one works at any given time and the second one only kicks in if the primary thermostat fails. This prevents you from ruining your mugs during the transfer process.

And yes, we did say mugs. That’s because Iglobalbuy designed this cup heat press for commercial use. It can handle up to 12 mugs at the same time.

This can really help you scale up production and get out your merchandise at a good clip. Remember we mentioned buying a dozen compact heat press machines? You don’t have to if you go with this one.


PROS:

  • Backup thermostat
  • Pressing cycles recorded
  • Can be used on glass and metal
  • Accurate temperature readings
  • Intuitive digital control panel

CONS:

  • Expensive
  • More parts that can fail, including a sensitive vacuum pump and gauge

>>> Read more reviews on Amazon or click the button below to check the price.


6. Sican Mug Heat Sublimation Press Review

If you’re a traveling designer and you need to print out some of your artwork on the spot, nothing highlights your work better than a cool coffee mug. It’s easy to do this with the Sican sublimation mug heat press.

Sican has a very nice solution for traveling designers and hobbyist crafters. This mug press machine is manually operated but it’s also as compact as they come.

The machine runs on 450W which isn’t a lot when compared to most heat presses in the same size and price range. The sturdy framework also makes this a suitable choice for mobile workshops such as those set up in an RV.

Now, despite its size, the heat press can still generate around 400° during the pressing cycle which is just what you need to transfer high-quality artwork.

But, it doesn’t exceed 400°, so if you’re looking for a darker shade or tone, you may be out of luck. The control panel is fully digital, as to be expected. The press is operated manually via a small lever. You’ll also notice a mechanical pressure adjustment system.

Both temperature and pressure adjustments are possible, and this will be helpful if you’re working with various materials such as ceramic, plastic, and more. You can also set the timer using the control panel.

You won’t have to keep your eyes on the machine during the pressing cycle since an alarm will alert you when the mug is done. Also worth noting is the fact that you can use multiple sizes of mugs as long as they’re between 10-17oz.

One thing that you won’t be able to do right out of the box is printing on a tapered mug. A separate attachment must be purchased.


PROS:

  • Compact and light
  • Reasonable power draw
  • Digital controls
  • Customizable pressing cycles

CONS:

  • No attachments

>>> Read more reviews on Amazon or click the button below to check the price.


7. Tengchang Digital Display Cup Press Review

Tengchang is responsible for a wide range of heating presses. The manufacturer makes standard presses for shirts, presses for cups and mugs, and also multifunction presses which can handle all of the above with the right combination of attachments.

That being said, if you’re only interested in transferring ink on mugs, there’s no real need for anything more advanced than a basic cup press machine, especially not if you’re not planning to commercially release your mugs just yet.

This Tengchang machine can heat press mugs in a timely manner. The temperature goes up to 400°. You can set its timer between 0 and 999 seconds, although you’ll never need to go past 240 seconds for most coffee mugs.

There’s only one mug attachment included. It’s 9” long and 4.5” tall which is pretty much standard. You can use this for coffee mugs of different sizes, depending on how you configure the machine and how much paper you’re using.

The steel frame seems very solid for such a tiny device. But this is always a welcomed feature. The digital control display allows you to set the time and temperature for the pressing cycle. However, the pressure setting can only be altered from the tension screw.

The press lever is small, which gives the machine a small vertical footprint when not in use. It has a quality coating applied which make the handle fairly cool to the touch.

Speaking of coating, the element is Teflon-coated so that there’s some protection from scorching. This can save you some money on buying separate silicone or Teflon sheeting.

There are those who are hesitant about Teflon as it might noticeably lower the temperature at the point of contact (so that the actual operating temperature is lower than what’s on the display). We’ve found that it isn’t too bad with this Tengchang machine. You only have to hold it down a little longer to get a darker print.


PROS:

  • Compact
  • Affordable
  • Adjustable settings
  • Optimal heat output
  • Digital control panel

CONS:

  • No additional element attachments

>>> Read more reviews on Amazon or click the button below to check the price.


8. Smartxchoices 2-in-1 Coffee Mug Heat Press Review

This Smartxchoices mug press is another reliable alternative for those seeking compact heat presses for small-scale production or for creating proof-of-concept office or kitchen merchandise.

The machine comes with two elements or mug attachments, which is what the “2-in-1” stands for. This can be a big deal for a lot of designers since most machines only have one attachment. And, finding compatible replacements or extras is not always as simple as you think.

The heat press has temperature stabilization and you can set it for up to 430° Fahrenheit. You can also switch the scale to Celsius if you’re more comfortable with that. The top end of the heat output is very good; that ensures that you get the recommended 400° during the pressing cycle even if the temperature varies.

The timer can be set for up to 240 seconds. 210 seconds is usually considered enough for most ceramic applications. However, you can use a few extra seconds if you want your print to have a darker shade and a bit more contrast. Just make sure that the material can handle it.

The standard attachment for the mug press is an element designed for 11-oz. mugs of between 3” and 3.5” in diameter. The secondary element is cone-shaped and can be used to print your artwork or company logo on 12-oz. latte mugs.

What’s also interesting to note is the large heating surface which ensures even heat and pressure distribution as well as a full cup surface print. This is one of the small details that matter most if you want to create various custom merchandise.


PROS:

  • Standard mug attachment
  • Latte mug attachment
  • Average power draw
  • Digital control panel
  • Even heat distribution

CONS:

  • Limited timer

>>> Read more reviews on Amazon or click the button below to check the price.


9. Zerone ST-210 Double Station Mug Heat Press Review

If you’re tired of dealing with printing one cup at a time or if you’re simply ready to scale up your production, you might want to consider the Zerone ST-210 as your new coffee mug heat press machine.

This heavy-duty unit features a double station design. This means that it comes with two heating pads and that you can print two mugs at the same time, doubling your turnaround. Back to our 12-press factory, you’d only need 6 of these, and you might be able to train someone to work 3 of these machines at once.

The two heating pads don’t have to operate simultaneously. Secondly, you can simultaneously print on mugs of different sizes, and transfer different impressions too.

If you’re all about creating unique mugs and you only want one of each, this is a good way to get things done fast and cut down on the delivery time. A 180-degree transfer should be complete in roughly 90 seconds. Of course, this may differ slightly depending on the size of the mug.

The machine fits heading pads for 6-oz. through 17-oz. mugs. It can also fit two conical mugs at the same time. However, it’s not recommended to print on two 17-oz. latte mugs at the same time (they’re not going to fit anyway).

Note that Zerone sells the ST-210 with standard 11-oz. heating pads. For working on smaller or larger mugs, you’ll need separate elements. Luckily the cross compatibility seems to be there for use with other brands.

The fact that you can configure each station independently is a very useful feature and perhaps the main selling point of the Zerone ST-210. But, to take full advantage of this unit, you will have to invest in extra attachments too.

The machine is solidly built at around 15 lbs., but it does have a larger footprint compared to single presses.


PROS:

  • Can print two mugs simultaneously
  • Independent station configurations
  • Accepts different-sized heating pads

CONS:

  • Only comes with two pads of the same size

>>> Read more reviews on Amazon or click the button below to check the price.


10. Estink ST-110 Pneumatic Mug Heat Press Machine Review

Last but not least, the Estink ST-110 is another highly convenient portable mug cup heat press transfer machine for traveling designers or people working in small workshops.

You’ll realize how small the mug printer machine is by looking at the comparatively massive LCD screen is. It’s almost twice as large as what you see on most machines of this kind. That means that the readability is also better, which is never a bad thing.

The control panel is right under the screen and behind the heating element. It’s best to be careful when making adjustments as it’s easy to get burned if you’re not careful. But, that’s probably the only real drawback of using this design.

What makes it so convenient? The pneumatic press. You no longer have to worry about pushing and pulling the lever to press and release the mug. This is done automatically based on the timer settings you input.

What’s also interesting is the automatic cup size adjustments done by the machine’s sensors. They save you a lot of time when you’re trying to speed up your production on a small machine. The temperature control also gets some help from the machine’s processor which increases the accuracy.

The power draw is almost nothing since the ST-110 is rated at 280W. You can plug the machine in any 110V outlet and watch the magic of the built-in vacuum pump and heating element happen.

As you will notice, the standard cup size setting is for an 11-oz. cup. You may be able to use other mugs too with minor adjustments, but you won’t get full vertical coverage if you need it. However, you can ensure 180-degree printing in under three minutes, which isn’t bad for a compact starter machine that’s fully automatic.


PROS:

  • Fully automated
  • Low power draw
  • High pressure vacuum pump
  • Compact size with large LCD

CONS:

  • Average printing time

>>> Read more reviews on Amazon or click the button below to check the price.


How to Print on Mugs

How to Print on Mugs

Sublimation printing on mugs is one of the easiest and cheapest ways to monetize your artwork. This process involves turning sublimation ink into gas and transferring it onto the mug. This is done through the pores built into sublimation paper.

You can use sublimation paper to create a lot of different products.

The end result is almost always very smooth and maintains all the colors used by the artist. There’s one very important thing to remember when printing on a mug. Different materials require different temperatures, pressures, and pressing times.

While plastics mugs may be heat-pressed in just 60 seconds, ceramic coffee cups may take up to 210 seconds for the ink transfer to complete. No matter what you’re pressing your designs on, the recommended temperature is always around 400°.

Anything less and you risk losing color saturation and clarity. The temperature settings may differ from one material to another, but for the most part, you’ll only want to exceed the 400° threshold when working with certain fabrics (or if your machine is off and you have to compensate for it).

You also need to think about the different requirements for heat transfer mugs vs sublimation mugs.


What’s the Point in Buying a Cup Printing Machine?

Best Heat Press Machine

Most people look at a coffee mug printer and only think dollar signs. While it’s true that monetizing your artwork by printing it on various cups, mugs, or apparel has a lot of potential, there are many more things that you can use a sublimation mug press for.

What if you’re not an artist and you don’t plan on filling dozens of boxes with printed mugs? You can use a cup printing machine for branding. Put your company’s logo on a couple of office coffee mugs and include them in your gift packages.

People will always see your brand on a coffee mug. Business cards have a way of getting lost or forgotten. Another thing that you can do is using a heat press to make a few unique mugs and use them as proof of concept during presentations for your design firm.

And, considering how cheap some starter mug heat presses are, you can even use one to give new life to your favorite mugs at home. You really don’t have to worry about the brands. Just thank the manufacturing miracle known as China.

Furthermore, we’ve done the legwork for you and picked out the best mug press machines for your perusal.


Our Recommendation

Clearly everyone has their own interests and needs, so what works for you may not work for another designer.

That being said, it’s worth pointing out that F2C 2-in-1 heat press machine is the most balanced of all affordable mug heat presses. Its ability to handle long production schedules makes it suitable not just for hobbyists and small businesses but also for designers that want to start crafting commercial merchandise.

And, with all three key factors being completely under your control (time, temperature, pressure) you can make sure that each mug comes out exactly the way you want it to.

With that in mind, if you really want to ramp up your production scaling, then the Iglobalbuy 3D Sublimation Vacuum Heat Press with its 12-mug capacity can really help. It’s big and it can ensure you get the turnaround you want, from the comfort of your home or somewhere else.

The Different Types Of Heat Press Machines

If you’re looking to buy a heat press machine for your business, there are plenty of different options available.

in order to figure out which is the type most suited for your purpose, you will also need to decide what’s most important to you – ease of use, versatility, efficiency, portability or affordability. Different heat press machine types offer different features, so it is important to think about these.

To help you figure out which one you would like to buy, we have compiled a guide on how the different kinds of heat press machines work, what their features are and how much space they take up.

Here are the 5 types of heat press machines available on the market this year.

 

The Types of Heat Press Machines

Find below a quick and easy-to-understand outline on the main heat press types currently available.

1. Clam Shell Type

The clamshell heat press machine is one of the most popular and widely used heat press machines in the world today.

It’s called a clam-shell is because of the way it operates. It has a hinge at one end between two plates. This hinge allows the press to open and close just like a clam.

The reason it’s so popular is that they are very compact (because they open UP, rather than to the side or the front as the types mentioned below). To top it off, they are also very affordable.

There are both automatic and manual versions of clam-shell heat press machines. In the manual version, you will have to open and close the plates yourself. In the automatic version, this is accomplished by the device itself.

The drawbacks are that because of the way the pressure is applied, clamshell heat presses are not suitable for printing on thicker surfaces like mousepads. They are also more likely to have issues with the ability to apply even pressure and heating. And lastly, it can be a bit tricky to centre designs on your products, because you don’t have a clear view from above.

How to Print your own T-Shirts

These machines are perfect for beginners and also for people who operate a small business from home and have limited space.

The FancierStudio 15 x 15″ Clamshell heat press is currently the best selling press. Click here to see if you can find this press available on Amazon.

 

2. Swing-Away Type

The swing away heat press machine is named as such because it has a swinging upper plate. The top plate swings away from the lower plate so you can pop your product on the lower plate and then rotate the upper plate back above the lower plate.

Because of this swinging mechanism, you can take your time and carefully place your designs, without worrying about any burns, as you don’t have to touch the heating element — the swing away machine scores top marks when it comes to operating with comfort.

The primary advantages of this machine, however, are that it can work on materials of all thicknesses. The swing away press machine also typically delivers equal and consistent pressure over the printing area.

All these advantages have made swing-away press machines exceptionally popular commercially as well as in residential homes. The only drawback is that it is not portable and it occupies a large amount of physical space because you need plenty of room for the upper plate to be able to move.

Swing-Away heat presses are my favorite press to invest in. They are usually more expensive than the clamshell, but they are just so much easier to work with. If you can afford them and you have the room, definitely go with a swing-away over a clamshell for sure!

The FancierStudio 9 x 12″ swing-away heat press is currently the best selling press. Click here to see if you can find this press available on Amazon.

 

3. Draw Type

The draw type heat press machine allows you to ‘draw’ out the lower plate, giving you total access to your printing space. After pulling out the lower plate, you can just put your garments or materials there and then load it back in. The advantage this provides is, that you get a full view of the layout space.

Most of these types of presses also come with the ability to swing-away the upper plate as well.

These types of machines are commercial quality and come with super intuitive technology. As a result, they are SUPER pricey and way above the affordability level of most consumers who enjoy pressing on a small-scale.

Because they are ‘elite’, they are also pretty hard to come by.

The Hotronix Fusion 16 x 20″ draw and swing-away heat press is currently the best selling press. Click here to see if you can find this press available on Amazon.

 

4. Sublimation Type 

These days, you will find that most t-shirt vinyl presses are also suitable for sublimation work, which is fabulous.

Sublimation machines allow you to transfer high-quality digital images that have been printed out with a sublimation printer and sublimation ink and then heat press it onto T-shirts and other garments. This will enable you to make really complicated and intricate designs which will then be reflected perfectly on the T-shirt, etc.

The sublimation ink will last longer in comparison to vinyl and will never fade. You can read more about the difference between heat printing and sublimation here.

The PowerPress 15 x 15″ Sublimation heat press is currently the best selling press. Click here to see if you can find this press available on Amazon.

 

5. Multi-Purpose Heat Presses

Multi-purpose Heat Presses are the most versatile type of heat presses.

A multi-purpose machine is able to do much more than just pressing graphics onto T-shirts. They usually come with several attachments, which when outfitted lets you print on different items like caps, mugs, hats, etc – both curved surfaces and straight surfaces.

These are usually labelled as 5-in-1 or 7-in-1 in heat press machines. The number denotes the number of attachments that are included with the packaging. There are separate, distinct attachments for each type of item you’re pressing on.

Multipurpose heat machines usually have a large swing-away pressing surface for printing shirts and other flat items.

But this surface is detachable and it can be taken out to put in other attachments depending on the type of item being printed on. This added versatility lets you use it to make your own custom T-shirts,  plates, tiles, mugs, caps, coasters, mouse pads, jigsaw puzzle pieces, etc.

The F2C Pro 5 in 1 Combo Heat Press Machine is currently the best selling multi-press. Click here to see if you can find this press available on Amazon.

You can also invest in machines that are dedicated for mugs and caps. Click here to see our list of the best hat press machines, and here for our list of the best mug press machines.

Well, that concludes our guide on the different press types available on the market today.

Each of these press machines is designed differently and is meant for different uses. Each type has various features, and they have their own set of pros and cons, so research carefully before you go out and buy one. Our guide on the best heat press will help you find the best buy for your buck.

We hope our article could clear things up for you.

Until next time!

Sam xxx

15 Best DIY Craft Kits For Adults in 2019 [Most Popular Kits!]

Best craft kits for adults

What makes the perfect craft kit for adults? How do you select the best craft kit?

Indulging in a creative activity is something that most of us tend to forego as we take on the responsibilities of being an adult.

Spending time to create something using art and craft is undoubtedly one of the most rewarding and relaxing experiences. If you are looking for the perfect supplies to get started, we are here to help!

Craft kits come in all shapes and sizes, serve a wide array of purposes, and can be used to create beautiful objects. With thousands of craft kits available in the market, choosing the right option for your needs can be a challenge.

best adult craft kits

We have shortlisted 15 of the best craft kits for adults that cater to a variety of genres of craft products. Each of these recommendations is a perfect DIY kit that you should be able to use conveniently to get optimal results.

 

Best DIY Craft Kits for Adults To Buy Right Now

Without further ado, let’s get into the reviews of the 15 best DIY craft kits you can find.

 

1. Woolbuddy Needle Felting Starter Kit

The first recommendation we have is the Needle Felting Starter Kit offered by Woolbuddy.

It is a great craft kit for kids and adults alike. The kit includes six felting needles, a foam mat work surface, 16 colored wool, white wool, three thimbles, and systematic photo instructions.

Toys have gone through a complete transformation over the last couple of decades – from basic board games to outdoor toys to gaming consoles. Felt toys, however, have always been a part of kids’ toy collections.

If you want to handcraft felt toys for kids, this starter kit from Woolbuddy is an excellent choice.

>>> Click here to see more info and to check the price on this kit

2. Craft Crush Felt Succulents Kit

Indoor décor has transformed in recent years. One of the most exciting and beautiful home décor items is a succulent plant. Succulents can be placed in traditional pots or framed and hung up on walls. Succulents undeniably offer a fresh, natural look and feel to otherwise contemporary homes.

Craft Crush offers the Felt Succulents Kit that lets you make 18 beautiful succulents from felt.

You do not have to be a gardener to be able to make these succulents, and the kit comes with easy-to-follow instructions. You can buy a bowl, moss, and pebbles to create a terrarium – do not limit yourself to the frame in the kit.

>>> Click here to see more info and to check the price on this kit

 

3. Craft Crush DIY Bracelet Craft Kit Blush

One of the most commonly used accessories is a bracelet. Whether you are a man or a woman and irrespective of your age, you can comfortably wear a bracelet. Bracelets come in all kinds of styles and materials, having a wide price range. What if you could make bracelets instead of buying them?

Craft Crush offers an excellent DIY Bracelet Kit that allows you to create eight different bracelets.

You will not have to buy any additional supplies to create these bracelets. We especially liked this kit because it enables you to practice and hone your crafting skills like wrapping and beading.

>>> Click here to see more info and to check the price on this kit

 

4. Craft Crush Thread Bowls Kit

Craft Crush’s Thread Bowls Kit is one of our favorite DIY craft kits, primarily due to its simplicity and effectiveness. You can create three beautiful and colorful bowls of different sizes using this kit. You can use these bowls to keep small ornaments like earrings or use them only for decoration.

We recommend the Thread Bowls Kit because it includes everything you need to create the bowls – three bowl forms in different sizes, one ounce of water-based glue, three adhesive sheets, and 17 different colors of cotton thread (31.5 m).

You can use any combination of yarns to give each of these bowls a unique look.

>>> Click here to see more info and to check the price on this kit

 

5. Craft Crush Paper Bowls Kit

If thread bowls make a great craft kit, why should paper bowls be left out? Craft Crush offers a Paper Bowl kit that allows you to create three bowls of different sizes – 4.75 inches, 6 inches, and 8 inches. The kit includes simple instructions that will enable you to make these three bowls easily.

Since these bowls use paper as the primary material, you cannot eat out of them. Use these bowls for décor purposes or to hold your keys, baubles, jewelry, or smartphone.

The kit includes everything you need – reusable bowl forms, paper pieces, and glue – so you do not have to buy anything else.

>>> Click here to see more info and to check the price on this kit

 

6. Ultimate DIY Lip Balm Kit

DIY Craft kits for adults

Have you ever wanted to make your lip balm kit? If yes, Balm Diggity’s Lip Balm DIY Kit is a perfect choice.

The package includes 12 plastic tubes with caps, six stir sticks, two pipettes, 15 labels, an instruction sheet, three ounces of 100% natural melt and pour balm base, and four Lorann oils – dram Bavarian cream, dram orange, dram cherry, and dram peppermint flavoring.

The kit is made in the USA and can be used to create 12 lip balms. Each tube can hold 0.15 ounce of balm base. We especially liked the thoughtful inclusion of three ounces of balm base to provide for any spillage or wastage.

>>> Click here to see more info and to check the price on this kit

 

7. Walnut Hollow Deluxe Woodburning Kit

While some craft forms are elementary and do not require a lot of skill, there are others that do. Pyrography or wood burning is one such art that requires skill and consistent practice. If you are looking for a craft kit to start your wood burning journey, Walnut Hollow’s Deluxe Woodburning Kit is an excellent option.

The set is specially designed for beginners and comes with detailed instructions. The set includes a reusable pen, four tips, two wood plaques, six pencils, eight patterns, two alphabets, and one stand & transfer paper.

The simple instructions help you with using different tips for subtle shading and bold outlines.

>>> Click here to see more info and to check the price on this kit

 

8. Premium Jewelry Making Supplies Kit

One of the most popular DIY craft is jewelry making so this list would be incomplete without the Jewelry Making Supplies Kit by Gemybeads. You will be pleased to know that this kit comes with a 30-day money back guarantee and one-year free replacement warranty. All the supplies in this kit are made from top-notch, safe materials, and it complies with the US CPSC standards.

The kit includes 150 acrylic beads, 146 glass beads, 76 metalheads and charms, 10m silver wire, 10m elastic string, one storage box, one beading mat, one chain nose pliers, one round nose pliers, one side cutter, and almost 300 findings.

It is the perfect starter kit for adults who want to start making jewelry at home.

>>> Click here to see more info and to check the price on this kit

 

9. Craft-Tastic – Yarn Giraffes Kit

Craft-tastic offers the Yarn Giraffes Kit that lets you make two cute giraffes. These colorful, yarn-wrapped giraffes serve as unique home décor items.

The kit includes detailed instructions, 30 pieces of adhesive, 18 cardboard pieces, and 108 yards of acrylic yarn. It is a comprehensive set of supplies, and you will not have to buy anything else to create these two giraffes.

You start by sticking the cardboard pieces together, which creates a 12.75-inch and a 9.75-inch tall giraffe. The fun process of wrapping colorful yarn comes next.

These giraffes can be conveniently displayed on your countertop or cabinet shelf.

>>> Click here to see more info and to check the price on this kit

 

10. 4M Easy-To-Do Crochet Kit

Crocheting is a fun art form not only for kids but also for adults. If you want to learn crocheting, get your hands on 4M’s Easy-To-Do Crochet Kit.

It is a perfect set for beginners. The kit includes two crochet hooks, seven colors of yarn, and one plastic needle. It also includes a 14-page detailed instruction book.

You can create any three of the following items using this crochet kit – coaster, belt, placemat, or handbag.

You can easily combine this kit with other craft kits from 4M to create more crochets. Although 4M recommends this kit for ages 8 to 15, it is never too late to learn the art of crocheting.

>>> Click here to see more info and to check the price on this kit

 

11. Woolbuddy Needle Felting Owl Kit

Handmade felt toys are the favorites of many kids. Creating felt toys gets ridiculously easy with Woolbuddy’s Needle Felting Owl Kit. You can use this kit to create two owl-shaped felt toys, each measuring about two inches. The owl felt toys are made from wool, making them incredibly soft and squishy yet durable.

The kit includes a pack of colored wool, two felting needles, and easy-to-follow instructions. The wool included in this kit is premium-grade and hypoallergenic, making these toys 100% safe for your children.

You can easily attach these owl felt toys to your backpack, hang them from the rearview mirror in your car, and even use them as cat toys.

>>> Click here to see more info and to check the price on this kit

 

12. Wooden Music Box Kit

A music box is one of the most exciting toys for kids. You wind up a music box, and it plays a melodious tune. Is it possible to create a music box? ROBOTIME brings to you the Bunny Hand-Cranked DIY Music Box that allows you to create a robot-bunny wooden box that plays “Little Bunny Foo Foo.”

It can take between two to five hours to assemble it, and it measures 5.8” x 5.2” x 8.2”. When you wind it up, its gears, hands, and legs move as the music plays. The kit includes detailed diagrammatic instructions, sandpaper, white glue, a winder, a music box, 221 die-cut plywood pieces in four sheets, and some assorted dowels.

>>> Click here to see more info and to check the price on this kit

 

13. Craft Crush Dream Catcher Kit

While people hold contradicting opinions about whether dream catchers work, nobody argues about whether they look beautiful in a home. They enhance the look of any room and Craft Crush offers an excellent DIY Dream Catcher Kit to let you create one. This kit allows you to create a 36-inch dream catcher.

The kit consists of all the supplies you need for making the dream catcher – one hoop, seven feathers, 14.5 yards of acrylic yarn, 13 yards of cotton thread, 24” x 24” of craft paper, and 40 yards of fabric strip.

The dream catcher has sculptural aesthetics and creamy color, adding to its elegance.

>>> Click here to see more info and to check the price on this kit

 

14. Craft-Tastic – String Art Kit

String art is effortless yet beautiful. Craft-tastic provides a String Art Kit that lets you create three cool projects. The kit includes three 8.5-inch pre-printed durable foam canvases, 170 pins, and 60 yards of colorful thread. The three projects you can create are a peace sign, a heart, and the word “Hi.”

This kit is comprehensive, and you will not have to buy any other arts and crafts supplies to create the three projects. You can easily hang the completed canvases to display your art skills to others.

The kit comes with detailed instructions to guide you through all the pinning and stringing.

>>> Click here to see more info and to check the price on this kit

 

15. Loopdeloom Weaving Craft Kit

Loopdeloom is an award-winning weaving craft kit. The craft kit includes 120 yards of yarn and one spinning peg loom. The spinning peg design simplifies and quickens the weaving process. Although the manufacturer recommends Loopdeloom for ages eight and above, we found it to be a great DIY craft kit for adults as well.

You get a lot of flexibility and creativity with Loopdeloom. You can either use a single loom to create anything seven inches wide or connect multiple looms to create larger things like blankets.

We especially liked the versatile application of this craft kit as it can be used to create cell phone cases, scarves, skirts, baskets, headbands, and so much more.

>>> Click here to see more info and to check the price on this kit

 

Buyers’ Guide – Best Adults Craft Kits

Buying arts and crafts kits for adults gets fairly straightforward with these tips:

  • One of the first things to consider is the price of the craft kit. You do not want to be spending a lot unless you are buying a premium kit and you are an experienced DIY-craftsman. It is always advisable to go for starter kits to practice and hone your craft skills without burning a hole in your wallet.
  • No matter what you are trying to create, you want to buy a craft kit that is comprehensive and includes everything you might need. It can be expensive, time-taking and frustrating to purchase additional supplies to finish a craft project. A craft kit must be complete!
  • Your craft kit should come with easy-to-follow instructions. If you want to try a new craft form, having access to detailed and diagrammatic steps will help significantly. Before buying your next craft kit, ensure that it has in-depth instructions.

 

Final Thoughts

These 15 craft kits for adults to make are some of the best because of their ease of use, affordability, and artistic value. If you are looking for an optimal DIY craft kit, one of our recommendations is most likely to fit the bill.

Based on what you want to create, pick a craft kit that meets your needs without exceeding your budget. Use our informative buyers’ guide as a safety check to see that the kit you are considering is worth your money.

Till next time, keep crafting!

Sam xxx

Ultimate Guide to the Best Hat Heat Press Machines 2019 [Reviews]

How to heat press a hat

Are you trying to find the best heat press machine for hats and/or caps?

The devil is in the details when trying to see which of the best hat heat press machines is best suited for your artwork and your turnover rate.

You might be thinking about buying your first cap heat press, upgrading or adding to your current production, and there are key considerations to be made.

First of all, you need to have a good-sized cap element to ensure that nothing moves when applying pressure.

Secondly, you’ll want to have a machine that can deliver enough heat so that the transfer doesn’t leave you with anything short of a smooth and long-lasting imprint of your artwork.

Heat Press Cap

While it’s sometimes hard to compare seemingly identical machines (functionally at least) without getting into a huge debate about manufacturers and prices, let’s just say that you don’t have to.

Just check out these top three hat heat press machines picks. Each has its own unique qualities that make it ideal for various production scales. 

Find out which one can help you recuperate your investment in record time and what features are always worth paying a premium if you want to deliver quality products to your customers.




Hat Heat Press Machine Reviews

So what is the best hat press? Here are some reviews to help you decide. 

I will outline the top features, the pros and cons of each in detailed cap press reviews, which should help you choose the best cap heat press 2019 has on offer.

1. HappyBuy 6”x3.75” Clamshell Hat Heat Press

- Our Quick HappyBuy Hat Press Review -

This Happybuy cap heat press features a curved element which makes it ideal for transferring your designs and logos to various hats. Wondering what makes a heat press a hat heat press? That’s it! The curved element.

The one in question is 6” x 3.75” in size so it has enough surface area to allow you to create and transfer intricate artwork in fine graphic detail.

The machine is capable of working with various materials and different hat sizes. It’s also fully customizable in terms of press time, temperature, and pressure.

You can set the temperature to 399° C (about 750° F, though the unit is in Celsius only) and the timer up to 999 seconds.

The cap press machine has a clamshell design. For this reason, it’s a very good space saver and also good at applying pressure evenly onto the fabric. The design also allows for switching up platens so that you can work on hats of various sizes.

A quality protective coating is applied to the stock bottom platen. This prevents the material from sticking to the surface area or applying excessive heat to your hat.

The LCD screen is a nice touch too. It makes it easier to make the correct adjustments and lets you know how long it takes until the transfer is complete. The readability is very good so you don’t have to worry about the lighting in your studio or workshop.

Another benefit of the Happybuy 6” x 3.75” cap press is the stability of the platens. They make it so your hat doesn’t move during the heat transfer regardless of the pressure. This is very important if you want to minimize user error and wasting materials.

The ease of use is also off the charts. The handle is rubber-coated for ergonomics and heat protection; it’s pretty much all you need if you want to churn out hats all day.

The power consumption is 300W which is to be expected of a startup machine. You can plug it in any household outlet and start your long production run without worries.

Although it is quite small, it might just be the best hat heat press for home studios due to its impressive durability and high production rate (for the money).


PROS:

  • Relatively high production rate
  • Allows for accurate adjustments
  • Interchangeable platens
  • Highly durable
  • Quality aluminum heating element
  • LCD display

CONS:

  • Better for hobbyists than workshops

>>> Read more reviews on Amazon or click the button below to check the price.


​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​2. Mophorn 3.5”x5.9” Clamshell Cap Heat Press

- Our Quick Mophorn Cap Heat Press Review -

Mophorn designed this cap press for hobbyists and designers that haven’t reached a high commercial production rate just yet. It’s a quality machine which saves space and offers high quality graphic transfers.

The curved element is 3.5” x 5.9”. It’s not by all means big but more than capable of handling a wide range of hats and baseball caps whether you’re only looking to add lettering or more intricate designs.

The clamshell design is always nice to have not just because of the space-saving aspect but also because it offers plenty of protection by raising the heating element away from the workspace.

The action on the press is smooth and doesn’t require excessive physical force.

This will also help you to apply pressure evenly when closing the press. It will also prevent the cap from moving on the element so that you don’t mess up the transfer and end up with crooked artwork placement.

The service life of this Mophorn heat press for hats is rated at 12,000 hours. That means you will get 1.5 years of usage with the assumption of the standard 8,000 work hours a year before running up against the rated life. Think of how many hats you could produce in 12,000 hours and the profit potential of that number of hats.

As usual, you can make adjustments to the duration, pressure, and temperature. You can also see each setting clearly on the LCD display.

The power consumption is rated at 350W and the machine only gets up to a maximum of 300° C (about 572° F). That’s more than enough to ensure a quality ink transfer and a smooth end result.

The coated handle will protect you from burn and give you a firm grip over the press. The design allows for top access to the pressure adjustment knob, the worthy finishing touch on this user-friendly hat press machine.


PROS:

  • Easy to use
  • Heats up to 300° C
  • Medium-sized element
  • Clamshell design
  • Long service life
  • Quality transfers
  • LCD display and touchpad control

CONS:

  • Medium heat output

>>> Read more reviews on Amazon or click the button below to check the price.


3. F2C Pro 5-in-1 Sublimation Multifunction Swing-Away Heat Press Machine

- Our Quick F2C 5-in-1 Heat Press Review -

The F2C Pro is sort of a jack of all trades. As a multifunction heat press machine, you can use it to heat press hats and more, including mugs, t-shirts, and other items.

The 5-in-1 model features a swing-away design. It’s safer and faster but may not be ideal if you’re running a small home workshop. However, its top plate swiveling feature is what makes this one of the safest designs.

For some artists, this may even be the difference between being the best cap heat press machine and just another heat press.

The swing-away design lets you access the surface area with both hands from any direction and it gives you complete freedom of movement. You don’t have to worry about coming in contact with the heating element or the press mechanism malfunctioning and dropping on your hands.

But there’s more to the F2C Pro 5-in-1 cap press than its safety features. It comes with a 12”x 15” heat press. It has a non-stick surface, thanks to the professional coating, and also features multiple attachments including an aluminum cradle (3” x 3.5”) which can be used for mugs.

There are also hat and pad elements. Note that the machine is set up at the factory for use on T-shirts. You will have to manually attach the 6” x 3” hat element and reconfigure the machine accordingly. Luckily, you can use the manual to guide you through this.

The LCD display and control buttons are highly intuitive and have great readability in all lighting conditions.

There are however two minor downsides to this unit. If you know anything about how to heat press a hat, you know that for a sublimation process you need at least 400° for a quality transfer. That’s the F2C Pro’s peak operating temperature.

The heating element and surface is large, which explains the high power draw of 800W and a lengthy stable heat-up time of 20 minutes. It’s production capable when you reach a stable temperature.

If you’re interested in creating your own heat press hats, T-shirts, mugs, and other apparel or accessories, this sublimation swing-away heat press machine would make a hell of a lot more sense than one-dimensional hat press machines.


PROS:

  • Multifunctional
  • Swing-away design
  • Accurate temperature and pressure control
  • Easy operation
  • Multiple attachments included
  • Fairly durable
  • Non-stick coating

CONS:

  • Sublimation heat press takes longer to reach a stable temperature
  • High power draw

>>> Read more reviews on Amazon or click the button below to check the price.

Conclusion:

You may be asking yourself which of these machines stands out among the best hat heat press machines. The HappyBuy Hat Heat Press definitely checks a lot of boxes for hobbyists and designers working to scale up their production.

The clamshell design is easy to use, the temperature range is amazing (almost double the recommended requirement), and the degree of adjustability for sizes and materials is more than impressive.

The machine is not the fastest but it’s energy and space-efficient. Of course, if you’re not looking for something truly heavy-duty and commercial-grade, both the F2C and Mophorn are strong alternatives.

Particularly the F2C 5-in-1 model which is very versatile with its multiple attachments and swing-away design. Even with its higher price tag, the F2C 5-in-1 heat press machine can help give you a complete introduction into putting your unique artwork on apparel and accessories and how to do it for a living.

Now that you have found a new hat press machine for your home or business, why not hop over to our craft blog section. We have loads of tutorials, project examples as well as step-by-step posts to help you get started.

You can also find our guide with heat press reviews here.