Learning how to upload your own files to Cricut Design Space is one of the most freeing and exciting aspects of owning a Cricut machine. Beginners have many questions when they first get started. The one I hear most often is, how can I upload an image to Cricut Design Space?
Cricut Access provides thousands of images but most of us want to use files we find around the web from bloggers or on Etsy to perfect our vision. Some crafters even take to designing their own SVG cut files or converting images for their projects, which is an amazing skill to have!
How to Upload Images to Cricut
Sorting images and revisiting how to access past uploads is very important as well. Make sure to watch this video and learn how to navigate image files.
Select the Upload button at the bottom of the Design Panel to your left.
Click on the Upload Image button. Side note: On this page, you will also find a View All and Download button.
The View All allows you to view all images that YOU have uploaded to Design Space.
After clicking Upload Image, you will be prompted to browse your computer. Click the Browse button and your computer’s file explorer will open. Navigate to wherever you have stored your downloaded file – in most cases, this is your download folder on your desktop.
Make sure you have All Files visible. Sometimes computers hide specialty formats like SVG cut files.
Most computers will show a Chrome, Firefox, or Internet Explorer icon as the SVG file unless you have Inkscape installed and set up to label your files as SVG icons. I will cover understanding how to unzip and download files on your computer below.
Once you’ve selected your file, it will appear in Design Space. Click the green Save button at the bottom right-hand-side.
Your image will appear in the recently uploaded section.
Click on the image you want to bring onto the Canvas so that a green outline appears. You can also see what you have selected at the bottom right with a small icon. Once you have selected the image(s), click the green Insert Images button.
The image will appear on the canvas.
If it is too large, you can zoom out and scale it down using the arrow at the bottom right corner of your image. The layers of the image will always appear in the Layer’s Panel to the right.
Watch the full video below to see it step by step live!
Uploading Images to Cricut Design Space – Video
Types of Images to use with Cricut Design Space
The first thing a beginner to Cricut needs to understand is the difference between image file types. Cricut accepts the following file formats to upload into Design Space.
- SVG – An SVG cut file is a graphic format that stands for scalable vector graphics. This will be the #1 file you will use when crafting with your Cricut. SVG files are what give you the ability to layer by color with various materials like cardstock, vinyl, felt, etc.
- DXF – Similar to SVG files but I do not recommend them because they do not save with the same content data as SVG and therefore make them inferior quality to an SVG file. Always opt for using SVG files.
- PNG or JPEG – A PNG is just like a clipart image. For example, if you were to type in flower clipart into Google all the images there would be PNG or JPEG. What makes them different? Clipart images are flattened designs meaning the colors are blended and you cannot separate each layer by color. Instead, Design Space uses PNG or JPEG image files for Print then Cut projects. A Print Then Cut image literally prints our a colored image on your home printer (inkjet only) and then your Cricut Maker or Cricut Explore cuts the outline out. The only difference between PNG and JPEG images is that JPEG are typically lower resolution and PNG has a more crisp result. Ultimately either can work in Design Space.
- Gif and Bmp – I have never needed to use these file types
How to Unzip Files
As you can see learning to upload images to Cricut is quite straight forward. However, there are many designers you may purchase from on Etsy or files you may download for free from bloggers, that are stored inside compressed zips.
Why Do Creators Use Compressed Zips?
Designers (myself included) use compressed zips quite often because they allow the transport of multiple files or types of files from one person to another.
Sending files in zips also allow for size compression of the data which benefits uploading. When crafters purchase cut files off a site like Etsy, the designers are restricted by how many “files” can be uploaded in a single purchase. Compressed zips allow dozens of files to be downloaded with one click.
Here’s the important part…
Cricut Design Space does not accept compressed zip files. Therefore you need to unzip (aka extract) the files inside the zip folder before you can upload your SVG or PNG image to Design Space.
- Here is how to download and unzip files on a computer
- Here is how to download and unzip files on mobile devices
How to Create Your Own SVG Files or Convert Images to Layered SVG Files
Learning how to design your own custom images for crafting will give you more creative freedom than 90% of other fellow crafters out there. This is the next best step to take once you have mastered Design Space. Designing craft files for yourself will enable you to customize ANYTHING to your exact vision without settling.
The result? You will be able to save a lot of money because you are not always relying on the file designs of others, whether this is paying for them or taking the time to search for freebies.
If you want to custom design or convert your own images to SVG files I can help! Inside my Free the SVG program I start at step one and guide you to work your way to my level. I want to invite you to join my Free the SVG program here – spots are limited and the course does close at certain times throughout the year. I can help you create anything you can imagine!