Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Comprehensive Overview of Cricut cartridge "Life is a Beach"

Today we are going to take a look at the cartridge "Life is a Beach."  While this cartridge is pretty subject specific, it is packed with lots of creative features.

Let's take a look at this page out of the handbook.  Along with the primary image (Hula Girl) you also get a font, a title, a border, a photo card, a square card and a charm.  Note that the font comes in both upper and lower case and the title is not layered which is unusual for Cricut words and phrases.

All of the primary images come with layers to create contrast and dimension.  In order to get a finished image that looks like the example above (in the left corner), you will need to cut the layer several times in various colors.  To duplicate their example of the Hula Girl, you would cut the hula girl in flesh color and then you would need to select the "layers" feature key and cut the layer 6 times in 6 different colors.  Tan for the hula skirt, brown for the hair, darker pink for the flower inside her hair, lighter pink for the inside of the flower in her hair and both red and yellow for the lei.  You can "hide contours" using Design Studio (click here to learn how with Design Studio), Gypsy (click here to learn how with Gypsy) or Cricut Craft Room (click here to learn how with CCR) to avoid cutting all of the layers over and over just to use a single cut out of the bunch. If you are lazy like me, you will cut all of the cuts in the layer 6 times and discard the leftovers.

The font is unique and definitely tropical.  Below you can see all of the upper case letters and numbers.

I have a hard time judging how a font will look as a word unless I see the letters next to one another so I created this Font Quick Reference Sheet. You can download a PDF copy of the Life is a Beach Font Reference Sheet by clicking the link below. You should print it in a horizontal orientation.  If you would like to share this information on your blog, instead of copy and pasting this info, please paste a link to my site:

Now lets look at the titles that come on this cartridge.  I copied and pasted the images from the digital handbook and the quality is HORRIBLE but at least you will get an idea of what you have to work with.
As I mentioned previously, none of these titles have layers which is so unusual for Cricut.  The same is true with the borders.  Unlike Give a Hoot's borders, these are flat images, but they are still a great feature!
To use an image as a border on a 12 x 12 layout, you wouldn't want to enlarge the image to 12 inches wide.  This would make the height way to big for a page border. In order to get a long border for larger pages like 12 x 12 paper, you can either cut multiples of the border image and line them up along the edge or you can use Design Studio, Gypsy or Cricut Craft Room to weld multiple copies of the border image together.  To learn more about welding with Design Studio, click here, welding with Gypsy, click here and welding with Cricut Craft Room, click here (these are all excellent youtube video tutorials.)

To download a pdf of this border quick reference sheet click of the link below.  When you print it out, set your orientation to landscape.  If you would like to share this information on your blog, instead of copy and pasting this info, please paste a link to my site.

The remaining creative features on this cartridge include a photo card, a square card and a charm.  The charm and square card are self explanatory but I was stumped about the photo card so I posted an inquiry on the Cricut message board which was promptly answered.    
The photo card is just like a photo folder where there is a window that frames the picture.  I made one using the umbrella graphic (see photo below).  In the center of the card there is an individual umbrella to layer on top of the one welded to the card.  Therefore, in order to get two different colors, I had to cut out the Photo Card twice.
I glued the yellow umbrella to the turquoise card and vise versa.  I have to say I was annoyed that cricut doesn't cut a dotted line (pseudo score line) indicating where to score and to fold the card.  I thoughtlessly tried to fold the card corner to corner which caused the cardstock to buckle.
The Life is a Beach page in the Cricut shop has a lot of  good information about this cartridge.  They have many more views of the content then you usually find on the Cricut website, so you should definitely take a look if you have any more questions.

Last but not least, here is a list of all of the images and phrases on this cartridge with their page numbers.  If you find any errors in the spreadsheet, please let me know so I can correct them. If you would like to share this information on your blog, instead of copy and pasting this info, please paste a link to my site. The spreadsheet below is a JPEG but you can download a PDF version of Life is a Beach here:


  1. Perfect timing and another great post!
    I am getting ready to start using this cart a ton to scrap our trip to Hawaii.
    Thank you for another informative post!

    1. I am so glad the timing worked so well! you are so welcome! Thank you for visiting again!!! Hugs right back at you-

  2. Replies
    1. It really is cute and perfect for scrapping those vacation memories no matter where you go (except maybe skiing -lol)

  3. Love the turtle, looks like an awesome cartridge

  4. I am having hard time cutting out the layers to fit on the image. If I am cutting the swim shorts out as a 5 what should I cut the layers out as?