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All About Cricut Card Mat 2×2 for Maker and Explore!!

Learn all about the Cricut card mat 2×2 for the Cricut Maker line and Cricut Explore family. Cut four Cricut cards at one time!

I finally got my hands on the new card mat and I have been having a lot of fun making all sorts of cards! You can now cut any card design that the Cricut Joy had on a bigger machine using the new Cricut card mat.

So now you don’t need a Cricut Joy machine to make those last-minute birthday cards or greeting cards. And your recipients will love getting the easy cards because a homemade card is always best!

First, let’s talk a little bit about the new mat, then I’ll walk you through making your own cards in Cricut Design Space, and then I’ll show you how to use a blank card with the Cricut card mat.

Cricut did send me the product to try, but this is not a sponsored post. All opinions are my own.

cricut card mat directions

What is the Cricut Card Mat 2×2?

The Cricut card mat is quite a bit different than other Cricut mats.

The Cricut Card Mat 2×2 is like the Cricut Joy card mat, except it’s specifically for the Cricut Maker, Cricut Maker 3, Cricut Explore Air, Cricut Explore Air 2, and Cricut Explore Air 3.

And instead of only being able to cut one card, the 2×2 card mat can cut up to four cards at once! Quick and easy designer cards for all occasions. Think birthday cards, Thank you cards, Christmas cards, Just because cards, and more!!

If you are still deciding on a Cricut machine, check out my post on which Cricut is right for you (compares the Cricut Maker, Cricut Explore family, and the Cricut Joy).

cricut card mat x

The 2×2 card mat will come with two protective covers on it. Make sure to peel them off to reveal the adhesive. And also make sure to put them back on when you’re done cutting to lengthen the life of the mat!

using cricut card mat

Each quadrant (where each card will go) also has numbers on the bottom that correspond to the size of the cards you will be using (more on sizes below).

how to cricut card mat maker explore

What makes this card mat different than all the other Cricut cutting mats is that you can slide the back of the card in between two layers of the mat. There is a top layer that is clear/white that contains the adhesive and then the bottom layer that the bottom of the card lies on.

cricut maker card mat tutorial

We will go over how to insert a card into the Cricut card mat further down!

What Card Sizes work with the Cricut Maker Card Mat?

Cricut has released quite a few different card sizes and the Cricut card mat works with all of them. You can also use all of the Cricut Joy card sets with the 2×2 cutting mat. Some of the card sets even have foil sheets to use with the foil transfer system!

There are two different types of boxed card sets:

  • Insert Cards: With Cricut insert cards, you cut and write the card first and then insert a precut card on the backside of the front of the card. These come in a variety of sizes and package sizes. You can get anywhere from 8 to 42 cards in a box.
  • Cutaway Cards: Cutaway cards have an adhesive so you stick the precut card on first, and then use the cutaway setting to cut the top layer of the card and then peel off the pieces.
cricut explore card mat supplies

Both card sets come in multiple sizes and you will have to specify in Cricut Design Space which card size you are using. As of writing this post, there are still boxes marked Cricut Joy cards that use sizes A2 and A6 while the new card sets use an R or S number.

Size of Insert Card Sets:

  • R10 = 3.5 inch x 4.9 inch (R stands for Rectangle card)
  • R20 = 4.25 in x 5.5 in
  • R30 = 4.5 in x 6.25 in
  • R40 = 4.75 x 6.625 in
  • S40 = 4.75 x 4.75 in (S stands for Square card)

Cricut Joy packs still use the A size.

  • A2 = 4.25 in x 5.5 inch = R20
  • A6 = 4.5 in x 6.25 = R30

As of now Cutaway card sets come in R10, R40, and S40.

Designing Cards in Cricut Design Space

There are several different ways to make cards using Cricut Design Space. There are thousands of insert card images that are available in you have Cricut Access and some are available for free.

Or you can always find a free SVG file online, or make your own designs, and upload those.

Under the My Projects drop down menu, you can find Cards, Insert Cards, and Cut Away Card Categories.

cards cricut design space
different card types cricut

Using Pre Made Project Cards

If you don’t want to make any changes to a card and you want to cut out one to four copies of the same card, you can find a card in the Projects drop-down under cards and click on it.

Some will pop up and ask what Finished Size you want and some will automatically be a size. You can click on drop-down menu to see if you can change the card size. Then click Make It.

card size cricut design space projects

The next screen will be the prepare screen where you can change Material Load Type to On Card Mat. You’ll notice only one card comes up. If you want to cut more than one, simply click on the up button of the Project copies and then click Apply.

cricut card mat prepare screen

I changed mine to four and design space will automatically center the card designs on the 4 corners of the 2×2 mat.

card project copies cricut

How to Cut Four Different Cricut Cards

Now let’s move on to how to cut different cards!

A few things to note:

  • You can only cut out the same size cards on one mat (you can only pick one size per mat!)
  • CDS will separate cards onto different mats by the base color. I will show you how to work around this!
  • You can pick On Card Mat from where it pops up at first or on the left side of the Prepare Screen
  • The image needs to be 0.25 inches smaller on both width and height than the card you are using – so if using a R10 card that is 3.5 x 4.9 your images need to be 3.25in x 4.65in or smaller

The first thing you’ll want to do is to open a new project.

Then click on Images on the left menu. From here, I love to use the search bar. You can type in “insert cards” or more specifically “insert cards A2” if looking for that size or “insert cards Christmas” if looking for something in particular.

search insert cards cricut

If you want to see the details of a card and the size, click on the three dots in the upper right-hand corner of the image.

how to find card size cricut

I picked a bunch of Christmas cards and added them to my canvas. If they are rectangular cards, you can easily change their size by changing the Size tab and they will stay proportionate. I changed all of my rectangular ones so they were 4 x 5.25.

change size of cards cricut

Now that they are the same size I click on Make It and look what happens. All the cards end up on different mats. This is because of the color. Cricut always separates our cuts based on the color we have selected for the images.

cards on different cricut card mats

In order to get all the cards to cut on one Cricut card mat, we need to change all the cut colors to the same color (the pen colors do not matter, leave those as you want them!).

For me, the easiest way to change colors is with the Color Sync panel. If you’ve never used the color sync panel, it will become your new best friend! I use it all the time.

It’s over next to the layer panel. Click on Color Sync and you will see all the different color cuts you have going on. In this example, I have 4 different colors.

color sync panel combine

Simply drag each image into one layer. I dragged my red, gold, and silver image to the green layer. So now they are all green. The colors of the images on your canvas will change but that’s fine. You can choose whichever color card you want when you go to place them on your mat!

combining cricut cards on one mat

So now when I click on Make It, all of the cards are on one mat!

now cards on one cricut mat

Working with Different Card Sizes at One Time

So this is a bit more advanced, but I wanted to share an easy way to work with multiple size cards on the same canvas. If you are a beginner, this might seem too confusing at the moment, but will start to make sense the more you use your cutting machine!

Again, I added a bunch of different inset card images to my canvas. I want to have one mat of 3.25 x 4.65 cards and one with 4.25 x 6 cards.

I selected the three cards I wanted to make in smaller cards and changed their sizes to 3.25 in x 4.65 inch.

cricut card mat maker

I did the same for the three cards I wanted the bigger size.

size adjust cricut card

Again if I hit Make It right now and then select On Card Mat, I will have a ton of different mats because of all the different colors.

on card mat cricut maker
moving cards to same cricut card mat

So as we did above, we need to make all of the cards that I want the same size and also the same color so they are cut on one mat.

Going to the Color Sync tab, I moved the top three colors into one color (gold) and all the smaller cards to a red color.

how to cut cards on same mat cricut

So now when I go to Make It, the three cards that are the same size end up on one mat. You can check the material size on the drop down on the left

r size cricut cards
all cards on one mat

Tip: If for some reason you don’t get the pop-up of loading preferences, you can easily change the Material Load type on the left drop down menu to On Card Mat.

change to on card mat

Writing Sentiments Inside Card

So I know there is already a ton of information you are consuming about the Cricut card mat, so I didn’t want to go into detail on this point.

But I did want to mention you can have your Cricut write a sentiment on the inside of the card. I have an entire post on how to do this with the Cricut Joy and it’s basically the same process.

So check out designing the inside of a Cricut card here. One thing extra is that you will have to choose the Material Size of the card you will be using and also click and drag the text box to the center of the card (CDS will not automatically center it).

adding inside sentiment to cricut card

Then you will have your Cricut use the write feature on the inside first. Flip your card so the inside is on top and insert it into the mat.

Now let’s actually use the Cricut card mat 2×2 and make some cards!

Yield: 4 cards

How to Use Cricut Card Mat 2x2

cute cricut christmas card

Learn how to make four different cards at a time with the Cricut card mat for Maker and Explore lines.

Active Time 5 minutes
Additional Time 10 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Difficulty Beginner
Estimated Cost $1

Instructions

  1. Place an insert card in the Cricut card mat. Open the card and slide the bottom half of the card in the opening on the side of the mat so that the crease of the card is right up against the edge of the card mat and the top is flush.loading card into card matcard in card mat cricut
  2. Press the top of the card down so that it is flat and stuck to the card mat.alignment card mat cricut Insert as many cards as you will be cutting. I am going to cut four R10 size cards. making cards with card mat cricut
  3. Make sure to move the four white rollers to the middle of the bar on your Cricut machine so they will not roll over the card and cause indentations. Just use your finger and push them over. Sometimes they can be a little hard to move!moving cricut rollers
  4. Use that setting that corresponds with your cards: "Insert Cards" or "Cutaway Cards" on the drop-down menu. They will be under Cardstock.Screenshot
  5. Follow all directions from Cricut Design Space. There will be pictures with text of every step you will do. Screenshot
  6. Load the mat when prompted. Make sure the left hand side of the card mat is right up against the left guider (this will help to make sure it cuts in the center).cricut card mat tips
  7. Insert whichever color pen that was designated in the A clamp and bush the flashing go button. (or any if you change your mind on colors!).cricut card with xcards on card mat cricket
  8. Your machine will keep pausing and CDS will tell you to insert a different pen. DO NOT UNLOAD THE MAT! Just change the pen and click the flashing light.
  9. When all of the cards are complete, the machine will pause and the load light will blink. Push it to unload the Cricut card mat.
  10. I like to use a spatula to gently start pulling the front of the card off the mat. Then I use my fingers to pull the rest of the way. The pieces the Cricut cut should stay stuck to the mat.removing card from matcricut christmas card gingerbread housemat debris
  11. Use a scraper to remove the leftover pieces from the card mat. Place the plastic protective sheets back on the mat when you are done.scraper on card
  12. Put one of the card insert pieces into the corners of the cut card and you are done making beautiful custom cards!cute cricut christmas card cricut card mat projects

Notes

See the post for full detailed instructions and tips for using Cricut Design Space when designing multiple cards.

Recommended Products

This post contains affiliate links from Shareasale, Awin, and Amazon.com. I receive a small commission at no cost to you when you make a purchase using my links (purple text). As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.

Did you make this project?

Please leave a comment on the blog or share a photo on Instagram

If you want to see the card mat in action, make sure to check out my YouTube video above or go to YouTube here.

cricut card mat projects

A Note About Cricut Foil Cards

Some of the card packs you can buy contain foil transfer sheets to use with them. The foil adds a special kind of sparkle to the unique cards!

Some cards in Cricut Access have foil already, but you can always change any of the pens to foil. Click on the Operation Drop Down menu on the top left and select Foil and then the tip type. Then you can choose your foil color.

Screenshot

If you are using a foil transfer sheet, CDS will pause and tell you to insert the foil transfer blade and attach the foil to the material with the shiny side up (check out my tutorial here on how to use Cricut foil). DO NOT UNLOAD THE MAT!!!

Screenshot of cricut design space using foil
cricut foil insert card mat

If you are using two different colors of foil, again DO NOT UNLOAD THE MAT. Remove the first color, and then tape the second color down.

Keep following CDS directions on when to remove the foil transfer tip and reinsert the fine point blade and housing.

cricut foil card

This wreath Christmas card was a bit ambitious with the foil, lol! It took about 20 minutes and the foil did rip in a few places because I didn’t tape down one side well enough.

But I still love how it came out!

foil card wreath

If you love the Cricut foil as much as I do, make sure to check out my other tutorials on making personalized address labels, shiny printable vinyl decor, and using foil on a reverse canvas.

cricut birthday card foil

Cricut Cutaway Cards

A little bit about cutaway cards…

cricut cutaway cards how

Cutaway cards work the same way except you will first peel off the Cricut backing to reveal the adhesive on the inside of the card.

using cutaway cards from cricut
how to use cutaway cards

Then place the insert piece face down on the adhesive. If you are using one color, it won’t matter which side is face down. I am using a holographic cardstock here so I made sure the holographic side was face down on the adhesive sheet.

card stuck on back

Then insert the cutaway card into the Cricut card mat as you normally would.

cutaway card instructions

Select Cutaway Card + Backer in the material drop-down and follow all of the instructions for your card.

Screenshot
cutaway thank you card

Once it’s cut out, use your fingers or weeding tool to take out the pieces and you’re done!

peeling cutaway card cricut

For this card, I actually changed the pen twice to see what the different Cricut pens looked like. I first used a blue glitter gel tip, then a blue gel pen (which was very light by shimmery), and then a blue fine point pen. The glitter gel tip definitely came out the brightest, but really depends on the look you are going for!

different cricut pens

If you’d like to learn more about cutaway cards, check out Cricut.com.

cutaway card project

So many amazing cards you can make with the Cricut card mat for the Maker and Explore lines!

If you are a fan of paper crafts, make sure to check out our roundup of other cardstock projects.

how to use cricut card mat

Thanks for stopping by and have a creative day!

leap of faith crafting
cricut card mat christmas

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