Cricut Heart Buffalo Plaid DIY Earrings
I admit it, I'm a sucker for the Buffalo Plaid trend, and I don't see it ending anytime soon. I already had my house decked out in buffalo plaid for Christmas, and now that I've put everything away, I still want more buffalo plaid. What I can I say? So I made these buffalo plaid DIY earrings with hearts cut with my Cricut sheets so I can satisfy my craving for plaid all year long.
The heart charms are all double sided so they are extra thick. The best part is I cut all the shapes for these earrings with just the Cricut Fine Point Blade, which means they can be made with either the Maker or the Explore Air 2!
If you want to know how I made these "charming" heart buffalo plaid DIY earrings with my Cricut (sorry for the bad pun), keep reading. I'll also share my secret for cutting glitter with my Cricut without ruining my mat. It's a little thing that makes a big difference in the life of your Cricut mats!
If you don't have a Cricut, but you still want to make theses , you're in luck! You can print my free PDF of heart charm shapes and cut them out by hand with sharp scissors. Then you can punch the holes with a small hole punch (I'll tell you about my favorite hole punch in a bit!). Super easy!
If you do plan to cut the hearts with your Cricut Maker or Cricut Explore Air machine, I'll give you my SVG cut file for these heart charms FREE so you can make these buffalo plaid heart earrings for yourself, or to sell! You'll find out how to download my free SVG file for this project at the bottom of this post.
Ready? Let's get started!
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Buffalo Plaid DIY Earrings - Materials List
- A vinyl cutting machine. I have the Cricut Maker, available at Michael's, Hobby Lobby, Joann, Walmart, HSN, and most craft stores. I got mine from Amazon here. You can also use the Cricut Explore Air 2 or any cutting machine you have that will cut a thicker material like canvas backed chunky glitter.
- Cricut Strong Grip (Purple) Cutting Mat. You can buy these on Amazon here, or at Michael's here. They are also available at Hobby Lobby, Joann's, and Walmart.
- 8 pack Buffalo Plaid Faux Leather Sheet Assortment. For this project, I only used the materials found in this assortment pack I bought from Amazon here. It has two thick, chunky glitter sheets, three thin, fine glitter sheets, one solid pebbled faux leather sheets, and two buffalo plaid printed sheets. (note: the three fine glitter sheets in this set are thinner than the plaids and chunky glitters)
- Chunky Glitter Vinyl in Red and Black (optional). I was bummed that the buffalo plaid faux leather assortment above didn't include a red glitter sheet or a chunky black glitter sheets, so to get those, I bought this great assortment pack of chunky glitter vinyl from Amazon here. This is totally optional of course - I think great earrings can be made from just the plaid pack above!
- Cricut Strong Grip Transfer Tape. This is to protect your mat from the chunky glitter residue AND hold your chunky glitter sheet firmly to your cutting mat so it won't move around while cutting. I like the Cricut brand for this application because it's super sticky. I bought mine from Amazon here.
- Blue painters tape (as needed). This will help keep your glitter vinyl in place on your mat. You can get it at any hardware store and most big box or grocery stores. Amazon also has it here. (If your mat is new and very sticky, you may not need to use it, but I always do just to be sure.)
- A weeding tool. I use the weeding tool that came in my basic 5 pc Cricut tool set here. You can get also get the basic Cricut tool set at Michael's here, or from Hobby Lobby, Joann's, or Walmart.
- Glue with a fine tip. My favorite is Art Glitter Glue with the precision tip. Don’t worry, it doesn’t have glitter in it! You can get it on Amazon in a small bottle here or as a large and small bottle set here. The screw on precision tip allows you to squeeze very small amounts of glue in very small spaces, perfect for Cricut faux leather earrings.
- A small hole punch I strongly recommend using a small hole punch to punch the holes in the charms if your Cricut doesn't cut them cleanly - my Cricut didn't with the materials I used in this project. This is my go-to hole punch for making Cricut earrings from Amazon here.
- Chain - I used 8mm curb chain from my jewelry making stash (from Fire Mountain Gems in silver finish here). It's also available in gold finish here. You can find similar curb chain at your local Michael's Hobby, Lobby, or Joann, or on Amazon. You can absolutely use a smaller size link if you prefer, like this curb chain in gold finish from Amazon here, or this curb chain in silver finish from Amazon here. I'm just trying to use what I have on hand and not be wasteful. 🙂
- Jump rings - I used this assortment of 6mm size jump rings in different metal finishes from Amazon here. Again, your local craft store or bead store will have plenty of jump rings to choose from if you want to pick some up in person. Try to stay with 6mm to 8mm sized jump rings for this project.
- Earring hooks - I used earring hooks from this assortment of earring hooks in different finishes these from Amazon here. Hobby Lobby, Michael's, and other craft stores, as well as your local bead store, will have lots of earring hooks as well.
- OPTIONAL - Colored Sharpie markers for coloring the white edges of the heart charms after you cut them. I have this Sharpie assortment pack on Amazon here, and I can always find a matching color to use in this set.
- Two pairs of flat nose pliers – These are used to open and close your jump rings. Using two pliers makes it so much easier to hold your jump rings and twist the open and closed. I’m using one pair of wide nose pliers and one pair of needle nose pliers for this project, but you can use any two flat nose pliers you have in your jewelry making tool box .My favorites are Wubbers brand in the "Baby" size. You can see the Baby Wubbers Chain Nose Piers on the left on Amazon here, and the Baby Wubbers Flat Nose Pliers on the right on Amazon here.
Note: If you are buying jewelry making tools for the first time, you definitely want to read my post Beginner’s Guide To Jewelry Making Tools.
Materials Needed for Making This Project without a Cricut
If you are making this project by hand, you'll need the following items from the above list:
- Buffalo Plaid Vinyl Pack
- Chunky Glitter Sheets in Black and Red (optional)
- Hole Punch
- Earring Hooks
- Jump Rings
- Two pairs of pliers
- The PDF printable sheet from my Resource Library
If you will be cutting these hearts by hand, head down to the bottom of this post to get access to my Free Resource Library. Download the file for this project and print out the PDF inside with all the hearts on it. Be sure to keep your printer settings standard (no resizing before printing). Then skip down to STEP 7 to get directions on how continue to project from there.
STEP 1 – Download Free SVG
Download the SVG cut file for the heart charms from my Resource Library. You can get the password to my Resource Library from a link at the bottom of this post.
Save the zipped folder that downloads to your computer. You'll need to unzip or extract the files FIRST before you can upload the cutting file to Cricut Design Space. Make a note of the file location after you unzip it so you can find it in the next step.
STEP 2 - Upload SVG to Cricut Design Space
When you open Cricut Design Space, click on NEW PROJECT to get started. Then click on UPLOAD from the left hand side menu.
Click on the UPLOAD IMAGE button, then click BROWSE to locate your file.
Navigate to where you've saved the already unzipped SVG file for this project. Double click on the SVG file to bring it into the upload screen in Design Space.
You'll see a preview of the heart charms for this project. Hit the green SAVE button.
After you've selected your file to upload, you'll see it as the first item in your "recently uploaded designs" row.
Click on it so it is outlined in green. Then click on the green INSERT IMAGES button in the bottom right corner.
STEP 3 - Prepare SVG for Cutting
Now your heart charms are brought into Cricut Design Space. These little hearts are already perfectly sized for our dangle earring project, so you don't need to resize them. You can see the charms holes are already part of each heart shape, and your Cricut will cut them out for you.
I want to point out the holes don't cut out perfectly from the buffalo plaid or chunky glitter materials. But don't worry! You can poke the hole out with your weeding took and trim the hole with small scissors. Or you can use a hole punch to make the holes after gluing (that's what I did).
This is how your SVG file will look when it comes into Design Space.
All of your hearts are grouped together already when they come into your canvas in Design Space. You can see the blue box bordering all of the hearts in the preview above.
Drag all of the hearts up to the top most left corner of the screen as shown below.
A note about this SVG file: this file will make 20 charms out of 5 different colors/materials of your choice. Each heart has a front and a back, so you need two heart shapes to make one charm.
If you want to make less charms, select all the hearts and then click UNGROUP in the top right of the Layers panel. Then click on the heart or hearts you want to keep from cutting, and click the eyeball next to that shape in the layers panel on the right. This will hide some of the hearts without removing them from the file. Remember if you don't want a heart to cut, you'll need to "hide" the front and the back side.
If you want to cut from less than five colors/materials, you can hide the hearts in the row you aren't going to cut. You can also recolor the hearts so there are only four (or three or two) colors of hearts on the mat. To do this, select the hearts you want to recolor and then choose a color from the FILL menu at the top of the canvas. Remember, hearts you want to cut from the same mat all have to be the exact same color.
Go ahead and hit the green MAKE IT button.
STEP 4 - Prepare Mats for Cutting
After you hit the MAKE IT button, Cricut will separate your heart charms by color onto a separate mat for each color. You can see the separate mats in the preview on the left.
The colors don't really match up to the material colors in this project, but that's ok. The important thing is I'm cutting 5 sets of 4 hearts (each with a front and a back).
For all of the mats in this project, you can leave the MIRROR toggle set to OFF. It's not necessary to mirror for this project. Your front and back hearts are already mirrored in the SVG file for you.
IMPORTANT NOTE BEFORE CUTTING: From the first mat preview, we can see the heart charms shapes will cut in a straight line from a piece of material that's long and skinny. I prefer a wider rectangle shape to cut from - it's easier to tape, and the material is less likely to shift and move while cutting. So I like to rearrange the shapes on this screen before cutting.
To do this, click and drag each heart into position to arrange them in more of a short and wide rectangle. Be sure to keep your shapes inside the red border line!
Now we see our heart charms shapes will cut from a roughly 3 inch 4 inch wide square of material. Make a note of this measurement and click the green CONTINUE button.
STEP 5 - Choose Your Materials
For both the buffalo plaid faux leather and the chunky glitter, I chose Faux Leather as my material. I left my cut setting to DEFAULT but you can adjust yours to how you know your machine cuts if necessary.
Cricut Explore users can turn the Smart Set Dial to Custom and select Faux Leather. You'll also use the Fine Point Blade for this project. Any other cutting machine users can follow their machine's settings for thick material like leather or denim. If possible, remember to adjust your cut settings so the blade cuts 2 or 3 times! If you can't adjust your cut settings, remember Cricut users can press the "cut" button again after your first cut (don't unload your mat!) and your mat will cut again.
STEP 6 - Prepare Mats For Cutting Faux Leather
The buffalo plaid will cut with a strong grip purple mat.
Cut a rectangle of the first color of buffalo plaid slightly larger than the size you noted in the cutting preview screen before. Place the material pretty side down on your sticky purple mat and tape all around the edges with blue painter's tape.
Load your mat into your machine by hitting the load button (two arrows) on your Cricut Maker.
Then hit the GO button and your machine will start to cut.
The Faux Leather setting automatically cuts your material two times. When the cut is finished, you'll be prompted to unload your mat.
Your hearts should easily and cleanly pop out of the material. Remove your hearts from your cutting mat and set them aside.
Repeat the steps above to cut your second mat with the second color of buffalo plaid.
Remember to drag your hearts out of a straight line on your mat and into more of a rectangle shape. Also don't forget to tape down your material on your mat!
Unload your second mat and set the second set of hearts aside.
Here's an example of what I mean when I say the holes don't cut cleanly from this material. But it's no big deal, you just need enough of a hole for a jump ring to slide through!
Step 7 - Prepare Mats for Cutting Chunky Glitter
Now it's time to prepare your purple mat for cutting mats 3, 4, and 5 from chunky glitter.
We will use the purple mat for cutting. Chunky glitter vinyl cuts best when it is placed glitter side down on the mat. To protect our mat from getting glitter stuck all over it, we are going to put some Cricut Strong Grip Transfer Tape down on the mat first, and then stick the glitter to that.
Earlier you made a note of what size material you need for your set of 8 hearts to cut from. If you don't remember, you can hover over the mat preview to see what size glitter sheet you'll need to cut.
Cut a piece of chunky glitter that size, and a slightly larger piece of Cricut Strong Grip Transfer Tape.
Place your Cricut strong grip transfer tape STICKY SIDE UP on at the top left corner of your Cricut purple strong grip mat. Press the piece transfer tape as much as you can so it sticks well to the mat. This step will protect your cutting mat from getting glitter stuck all over it after you make your cut.
Place your glitter sheet piece with the glitter side down in the top left corner of your mat. Press it down all over to get a good stick on the transfer tape.
Then tape the sides down with blue painters tape.
Before you load your mat, remember to move your white star wheels off to sides of your roller bar so they don't make track marks in your glitter sheet.
Load your mat into your machine by hitting the load button (two arrows) on your Cricut Maker.
Then hit the GO button and your machine will start to cut.
When your machine has finished cutting, unload the mat and remove the glitter hearts. They should pop out easily, but you can always use your weeding tool or spatula tool to pry them up if necessary.
After you've removed all of your hearts from the mat, remove the blue painter's tape carefully so you can reuse it.
Repeat cutting the fourth and fifth mats with your other two chunky glitter colors. I did black, red, and silver chunky glitter.
Now that you've cut all of your hearts, use your weeding tool or another sharp object to clear the charm holes. If your holes didn't cut cleanly, you can trim the excess material with some small pointed scissors. I use my small 4 inch curved tip Fiskar scissors (instead of the Cricut basic tool scissors) that I got on Amazon for this task! While you're at it, use these little curved scissors to trim up any stray glitter or canvas threads on each heart before gluing them.
If they didn't trim out well or at all, no worries. We'll just hole punch them.
STEP 8 - Glue The Hearts Together
If you've cut your hearts out by hand, you can rejoin the project here. I suggest gluing the hearts together first as shown in this step, pressing them, and letting them dry thoroughly first, and then punching the holes afterwards. The 1/16" paper hole punch I bought on Amazon works great for punching the right sized hole through two layers of faux leather.
It's time to match up the front and back heart pairs and glue them together!
I used Art Glitter Glue from Amazon to glue the hearts together. I don't know why it has the word "glitter" in the name - there's no glitter in it! If you try some, be sure to buy the bottle that comes with an extra fine precision tip, which is great for gluing Cricut earrings!
Squeeze out a very small amount of glue all over the back of one heart. Try not to get too close to the edges or the charm hole.
Place the front and back hearts together, line up the outer edges, and press firmly all over to glue them together and make the charm as flat as possible. If any glue seeps out of the sides, just dab it away with a paper towel or damp cloth.
This is what they will look like when you've first glued the together. Don't worry, you are going to color the border after they dry and they will look much better!
Place all of your glued hearts under something heavy like a book overnight and let dry.
Step 9 - Finishing the Hearts
After the glue has dried overnight, you'll need to punch holes in any charms that didn't get a good clean hole cut with the Cricut, which for me, for some reason, was most of them!
I don't like how the white backing shows on the edges, so I used Sharpie markers to color the white edges to match the heart charms. I also put the Sharpie in the charm hole on both sides.
After you've punched and colored all of your hearts, you're ready to assemble your earrings!
STEP 10 - Assemble the Earrings
Time for the fun part - putting your earrings together!
To begin, you'll need two chain pieces about 2 to 2.5" inches long.
I don't use wire cutters on chain if I can help it - it can damage your wire cutters. So I like using pliers to twist open a link on the chain instead of cutting it, like this:
Now that your chain is the correct size, it's time to start hanging your hearts from the chain links.
I wanted my earrings to be nice and chunky, so I planned out how I wanted to place my hearts before I started connecting them to the chain. I opted for heart on the bottom link, two hearts on each of the other links, and then the last heart on the top ring.
Once you've got your layout set, time to connect your first heart to your chain with a jump ring.
To open a jump ring, use two pliers and grip each side of the jump ring. Make sure the opening in the jump ring is facing up (the twelve o’clock position).
Rotate one wrist forwards or backwards, so the circle creates an opening but doesn’t bend out of it’s circle shape. Imagine you are opening a door - the door swings away from the frame, but when you close it again, it pops right back into the rectangle shape of the door frame. The door frame shape is never distorted, and neither should your jump ring be.
When your jump ring is open, hook your first heart on to the ring and then onto the chain link. Reverse the above steps with the two pliers to close the jump ring again.
This takes a little practice, but you'll get it! You want to make sure your jump rings are closed very securely so you don't lose any of your earring hearts.
Continue adding hearts and jump rings to your earrings, until your earrings are full of hearts.
STEP 9 - Attach the Earring Hooks
Use a jump ring to attach an earring hook to the top chain link.
Repeat for the other earring. That's it!
Are you going to try this earring project? If you do, I would love it if you shared a photo of your finished earrings with me in the comments!
Want to see all of my Cricut earring & jewelry tutorials? CLICK HERE
Until next time... and happy creating!