How to Make Santa and Candy Cane Christmas Earrings with a Cricut
I'm in the holiday spirit already, and I have so many fun Christmas earrings I want to make! I just made some cute Santa earrings and Candy Cane earrings with my Cricut, and I can't wait to share them with you.
If you haven't made faux leather earrings with your Cricut yet, this tutorial is a good beginner Cricut earrings project. You can make these DIY Santa and Candy Cane Earrings with the Cricut Maker, an Explore Air 2 or even the Cricut Joy! (See this post to learn a few tips and tricks before you try making faux leather earrings with a Cricut Joy.)
In this tutorial, I'll give you my step by step instructions and tell you exactly what materials I used to make this project.
A link to download my original SVG file for this project is in the Materials list below.
If you'd rather watch a video tutorial, click on my Santa and Candy Cane Earrings YouTube video below:
Ready? Let's get started!
Want to see all of my Cricut earring & jewelry tutorials? CLICK HERE
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DIY Santa and Candy Cane Earrings - Materials List
- A vinyl cutting machine. I have the Cricut Maker, which you can get at Amazon here or at Cricut.com. You can also use the Cricut Explore Air 2 or even the new Cricut Joy!
- Smooth white Faux Leather. I used this smooth white faux leather from Amazon. Smooth faux leather is better than pebbled for this project.
- Heat Transfer Vinyl in assorted colors. For the Candy Cane, I used Siser Glitter HTV in Red . For the Santa, I used the same Red Glitter HTV, as well as Siser Easyweed in Black, Light Pink, and Coral. I also used Cricut brand Foil Iron On in Chrome.
- Optional: Foil Iron On for the earring back. I used Cricut brand Foil Iron On in Chrome but you could also use regular HTV in white, or any HTV you'd like.
- Cricut Strong Grip (Purple) Cutting Mat. You can buy these on Amazon here.
- Cricut Standard Grip (Green) Cutting Mat. Available on Amazon here.
- Blue painter's tape. This will help keep your faux leather 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.
- Cricut EasyPress Mat. I like the 8x10 size for making earrings.
- A small hole punch (for punching earring holes in the faux leather). This is my go-to hole punch for making Cricut earrings from Amazon here.
- Earring hooks - I used these silver toned shepherd's earring hooks from Amazon.
- Small jump rings - I used the silver toned jump rings from this assortment of 6mm size jump rings in different metal finishes from Amazon here. You could also use 5mm size jump rings if necessary.
- Two pairs of flat nose pliers – My favorites are Wubbers brand in the "Baby" size. My everyday use pliers are the Baby Wubbers Chain Nose Pliers and the Baby Wubbers Flat Nose Pliers.
- The SVG file template for these Santa and Candy Cane earrings. It's design #153 in my free resource library. You can get the password to my library instantly by filling out the form below, or at the bottom of this post.
DIY Christmas Santa and Candy Cane Earrings - PROJECT INSTRUCTIONS
STEP 1 - Download the SVG Cut Files
Download my free Santa and Candy Cane Earrings SVG file (#153) from my Resource Library. Save the zipped folder that downloads to your computer. Then unzip the folder to access the folder's contents. You'll need to unzip or extract the files FIRST so you can upload the cutting file to Cricut Design Space.
STEP 2 - Upload the SVG File to Cricut Design Space
If you need help uploading a file to Cricut Design Space, click here.
When your earring shapes are on your canvas, you can hide either the candy cane or the Santa if you don't want to cut them now by clicking on the eye next to the layers you want to hide.
These earrings are already appropriately sized for earrings. If you want to size down the candy cane a little, you can, but I don't recommend sizing down the Santa. He will get too hard to weed.
You'll notice this design doesn't have pre-cut earring holes. That's because I'll be punching the holes using a hole punch later.
Click the green MAKE IT button.
STEP 3 - Preview the Cutting Mats & Cut the Faux Leather To Size
The mat preview screens will load. The Cricut will cut one faux leather layer and several heat transfer vinyl layers, all separate mats. It's not necessary to mirror the mats for these project.
Click on each mat in the mat preview on the left and make a note of this size material you'll need to cut so the Santa and Candy Cane earring shapes cut out completely. For example, in the white faux leather mat preview below, the size material to cut is 5.5 inches wide and about 2.5 inches tall.
NOTE: Cutting the material to size is an important step to help ensure you'll get a good cut!
After cutting the white faux leather to size, press the green CONTINUE button.
STEP 4 - Make Material Selections
Now you'll select your material for the first mat. I suggest cutting the faux leather mat first.
Note: If you're using a Cricut Explore Air 2, turn your dial to "Custom" so you can choose the setting recommended below. If you're using the Cricut Joy, set the machine to cut with a mat and then select the material setting below. You won't have a purple cutting mat, but follow the directions below using the green mat.
I already have my preferred material selection - Faux Leather (Paper Thin) - saved as a favorite material in Cricut Design Space as seen below.
If you do, too, click on Faux Leather (Paper Thin) now. If you don't, click on "Browse All Materials" to search for this setting. Type "faux leather" in the search bar and click on the magnifying glass.
When Faux Leather (Paper Thin) appears, click on it to select it. Click on the yellow star on the right if you want to add this material setting to your "Favorites" so you can find it easily again in the future. Then click DONE.
After you've selected Faux Leather (Paper Thin) as your material, choose MORE from the Pressure dropdown menu:
Now it's time to prepare the faux leather mat for cutting.
OPTIONAL - Add Foil Iron On to the Back of the Faux Leather Before Cutting
An optional step is to add a vinyl backing to the white faux leather before cutting. This adds some structure to one layer earrings faux leather earrings to keep them from curling. It also makes the earrings look more finished.
NOTE: If you want to learn more about different ways to put a backing on faux leather earrings, check out my YouTube video called What To Put On The Back of Faux Leather Earrings.
Cut a piece of foil iron-on (or the heat transfer vinyl of your choice) in a size that is just slightly smaller than your faux leather piece.
Using an Easy Press Mini or an Easy Press and a cover sheet (teflon sheet or parchment paper) press the foil iron on to the back of the faux leather. Peel the cover sheet off of the foil or vinyl and let it cool.
STEP 5 - Prepare Mats for Cutting
Place your cut piece of white faux leather pretty side down (foil side up if you put foil on the back) in the top left corner of a sticky purple cutting mat.
Now tape all around the faux leather with blue painter's tape. Press the material down to your mat firmly with your hands.
Load the prepared mat into the Cricut by lining the mat between the mat guides and then pressing the double arrows button. Be sure your white star wheels are moved out of the way so they don't leave tracks on your faux leather!
The "C" Cricut button will start to flash, indicating the machine is ready to cut. Press the C button to begin the cut.
When the cut is finished, but before you unload the mat, use a sharp tool like your weeding tool and carefully lift the edge of the earring shapes to see if they cut all the way through. If they did, then click the double arrow button to unload the mat.
Usually though, shapes I'm cutting with foil on the back need an extra cutting pass. That's easy to do! Just press the C button again to repeat the cuts (this only works if you haven't unloaded the mat!).
Return to Cricut Design Space to start cutting the heat transfer vinyl mats in the order shown on the mat preview screen. Place the vinyl shiny side down on a green cutting mat. I use the Vinyl or Washi Sheet setting to cut regular heat transfer vinyl. I use Glitter Vinyl to cut glitter HTV, and Foil Iron On to cut foil. I use the Default pressure for all vinyl cuts (I usually repeat the cut for glitter vinyl, however).
Cut each vinyl mat using the appropriate cut setting and weed to remove the excess vinyl.
STEP 6 - Press the Vinyl onto the Faux Leather
Using an Easy Press Mini (on the lowest temperature setting) or an Easy Press (set to about 275 degrees), press the vinyl layers one at a time onto the candy cane and Santa faux leather backs. Line up the first vinyl layer and then cover your earring shapes with a cover sheet (teflon sheet or parchment paper) before pressing. Press each layer for 5-7 seconds, just long enough for the layer to adhere to the layer below.
Peel away the carrier sheet carefully. Repeat with the other earring.
The Candy Cane earrings only have one vinyl layer to press, but the Santa earrings have 5 layers. I recommend referring to the finished earring photo below as you press the Santa layers.
I suggest pressing the layers in this order:
- Santa Hat
- Mustache & Hat outline
- Eyes and Mouth
Leave a small gap between the bottom of the hat layer and the top of the face layer. The hat outline will fit right in that space.
STEP 7 - Punch the Earring Holes
I'll use a 1/16" hole punch to punch the earring holes in these Santa and Candy Cane earrings.
Punch the hole in the top of one earring, making sure the hole isn't too close to the edge. Then use that earring as a guide to punch a matching hole in the other earring.
Almost done! Now it's time to attach the earring hooks.
STEP 8 - Attach the Earring Hooks
To attach the earring hooks, you’ll need small jump rings, earring hooks, and two pairs of flat nose pliers.
To connect the earring hooks, you’ll first need to turn the bottom loop on the fishhook sideways so your earrings will hang correctly.
Grip the earring hook between your thumb and forefinger with one hand, and use flat nose pliers to grip the bottom earring hook loop. Twist the wrist holding the pliers firmly so the loop turns 90 degrees.
Once your earring hooks are turned, use your two pliers to grip each side of a jump ring. Make sure the opening of the jump ring is facing up in the 12:00 position. Then twist one wrist to open the jump ring slightly without distorting the original circle shape of the jump ring.
With the jump ring open, slide on the faux leather earring, and then add the earring hook. Be sure the hook is facing in the right direction.
Then use the second pair of pliers again to grip both sides of the jump ring and twist the jump ring closed again.
Repeat with the second earring. That's it!
If you do make this project, I would love to see your Santa and Candy Cane earrings! Please share a photo of them in the comments, or tag me on Instagram: @amyromeucreative
Want to see all of my Cricut earring & jewelry tutorials? CLICK HERE