how to open and set up Cricut Maker 3
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Unboxing Cricut Maker 3 + Setup Guide

Learn how to open and set up your new Cricut Maker 3, see what comes inside the box, and how to do a test project.

I just got my brand new Cricut Maker 3 and am dying to open it up and start making things with the new Smart Materials for Maker 3 and Explore 3. If you have a new Cricut Maker 3 too, or if you’re still considering buying and want to see what all comes in the box, I took photos and videos of the entire unboxing, setup, and test project process so you can follow along as you go. I’ll also be sharing a full review of Cricut Maker 3 and how it compares to the original Maker next week.

unboxing cricut maker 3

Unboxing Cricut Maker 3

Let’s start by opening the box, which can sometimes be the scariest part for Cricut beginners. When you first open the lid flaps, you’ll find an envelope that contains a setup guide, warranty and safety info, and a piece of Smart Vinyl. You’ll use that vinyl to complete your first test project, so keep it handy.

unbox cricut maker 3

Now you can pull away the cardboard buffers from the top. Your Cricut Maker 3 is underneath, all nice and snug and safe.

open a new cricut maker 3

It’s wrapped in plastic to avoid scuffs during shipping. Stab a knife blade or weeding tool through the tool cup on top to remove the plastic without scratching the machine.

what comes in cricut maker 3 box

Next in the box is a packet of additional Smart Materials. You’ll find a full sheet each of Smart Vinyl, Iron-On Vinyl, Smart Paper, and Transfer Paper. I really like that they include all three so you can get a feel for them before you stock up on materials.

what comes with cricut maker 3

Finally, in the bottom of the box, there’s a USB cable for connecting to your computer and power cords. The difference between the Maker 3 contents and the original Maker box contents is there is no mat and no pen included with the Maker 3. Those now have to be purchased separately.

Recap Of What’s In The Cricut Maker 3 Box:

  • Cricut Maker 3 Machine
  • Cutting Blade (already inside clamp B)
  • Power Cord
  • USB Cord
  • Smart Vinyl For Test Project
  • Setup Guide
  • Warranty Info
  • Safety Instructions
  • One Full Sheet Each Of Smart Vinyl, Smart Iron-On Vinyl, Sticker Paper, and Transfer Paper
set up cricut maker 3

Turn On Your New Cricut Maker 3

Now that we’ve unpacked everything, let’s set it up and turn it on.

First, we will plug the power cord into the back of the Maker 3, then plug the other end of the power cord to a nearby outlet.

how to open cricut maker 3

To open the Maker 3, pull up on the lid. The front will automatically open. Don’t continue to pull, and don’t pull on the front door, as that can damage the machine. Just let it naturally unfold slowly.

set up new cricut maker 3 tutorial

Remove the foam piece from under the clamps, then press the power button. The two clamps will move to one side of the machine, then back again.

Recap Of How To Turn On Cricut Maker 3:

  1. Plug power cord into back of Maker 3
  2. Plug other end of power cord into wall outlet
  3. Open by gently pulling lid
  4. Remove foam piece from under clamps
  5. Press the power button
cricut design space setup

Setting Up A New Cricut Maker 3

Alright! It’s on, Girlfriend! You’re halfway there! Now comes the fun part. We’re going to get this baby going!

First, if you don’t already have Cricut Design Space downloaded onto your computer, you’ll need to do that now. Just follow the link on your setup card (the green one that was in the big white envelope) to get the software. (Don’t worry, it’s free.)

Once you have Design Space downloaded, you’ll open it up and choose New Machine Setup. You will need to either log in to an existing Cricut account or create one. (Also free)

On the New Machine Setup page, select Smart Cutting Machine, then Maker 3. You’ll then see three steps to connect your machine to the Design Space Software. Follow those and wait for the connection to complete. That’s it!

set up Cricut maker 3 screenshots

**Note: While the Maker 3 does have bluetooth connectivity, you have to use the USB cord to set it up. If your computer doesn’t have a USB slot, you’ll need an adapter.

**Another Note: Your new machine comes with a free 30 day trial of Cricut Access. Definitely take advantage of that, even if you don’t plan on purchasing it later. It gives you a good feel for what you get with Cricut Access and whether it’s worth it to you to buy.

Recap Of How To Set Up Cricut Maker 3 In Design Space:

  1. Download Design Space from
  2. Sign into Cricut account or create one
  3. Select Maker 3
  4. Connect to computer with USB
cricut maker 3 test project screenshot

Doing Your First Test Project With Cricut Maker 3

The last step of the setup process is to make a test project. You’ll be given six decal options to choose from. If you’re a complete beginner and don’t have any weeding tools yet, I recommend you choose the bear, football, or mountains.

Insert the piece of Smart Vinyl that came in the big white envelope long-ways to span across the front of the machine tray. Gently slide it up as far as it will go, then push the blinking button to have your Maker 3 pull it in.

cricut maker 3 test project during setup

The machine will check to make sure you have enough material first, then once it passes the size test, the Go button will blink.

Give it a press and watch the magic happen!

When it’s done, the machine will slide the vinyl sheet to the end of the rollers and the load/unload button will blink again. Press it, and your vinyl slides right out.

cricut maker 3 test project tutorial

Now all you need to do is peel off your sticker and put it on something. I chose a water bottle, but you can stick it on anything you’d like.

cricut maker 3 first project for set up

Recap Of How To Do A Test Project With Cricut Maker 3:

  1. After new machine setup, select the decal you want to make
  2. Follow on-screen instructions for loading the test piece of Smart Vinyl
  3. After the machine is finished, press the unload button
  4. Peel off sticker and put it on something fun like a water bottle or journal cover
Cricut Maker 3 Unboxing and Setup With Lela Burris

Watch The Full Unboxing And Setup Video Soon

In case you’re a visual learner, I recorded this whole process for you to watch, pause, rewind, and follow along. For now, you can see the short and condensed Instagram Reel, and next week I’ll have the full video up on Youtube. And come back next week, because I’ll be sharing my full review of Cricut Maker 3 and how it compares to the original Maker. I can’t wait to show you the first project I made with it!

If you need a reminder to come back for the review, drop your email below and I’ll add you to my weekly Cricut email where I share new blog posts, videos, Cricut product launches, and helpful tips and tricks.

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