When you pair FontCloud with Cricut Design Space you get pure magic. FontCloud is a free font manager offered by Creative Fabrica. You can use this online tool to unlock all the extra characters in your fonts. Now you can add all those pretty tails and swashes to your fonts in Cricut Design Space and take your project to the next level.
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What do I need
To use FontCloud you’ll need to sign up for a free account with Creative Fabrica. When I say free account, I really do mean FREE. There’s no subscription or free trial period. It is 100% free to use FontCloud when you register for the free account. After seeing everything Creative Fabrica has to offer I bet you’ll want a membership but that’s neither here nor there…let’s move on.
How does it work
Once you’re registered and logged into your account you can go to “tools” and then “FontCloud”. Click “Open FontCloud” and the font manager will pull up. It will be empty at first so you’ll need to add in some fonts. You can either pull in fonts you’ve already saved to your computer or you can add in some from Creative Fabrica. The main thing to note here is that you have to upload the actual font file folder (the .otf or .ttf file folder unzipped). If you have fonts from other sources like dafont.com or fontspace and you didn’t save the file folder you won’t be able to transfer them into FontCloud.
How do I Install fonts
Installing fonts is easy. Let’s start by adding a free font from Creative Fabrica. Open a new window on your computer and log back in to Creative Fabrica. Go to “freebies” and then “free fonts”. Some of the fonts are only offered for a limited time so if you see one you love you better get it while it lasts. Click on the font you want and then click “download”. The font will download to your computer. Where it downloads depends on your operating system. Find the download and open the zipped folder. Choose if you want the .otf or .ttf file (There’s no difference in the fonts between the two but the .otf is compatible with more software than the .ttf.) and drag it to your desktop.
Install the file however you normally would. Either open the folder and click “install” or if you’re using windows I suggest right clicking the file and choosing “install for all users”. Now that you have the font installed on your computer it will automatically transfer to Design Space and you can use FontCloud with Cricut.
Adding fonts to FontCloud
Now that you have the font installed on your computer and you’ve saved the file folder you can add the font to FontCloud. Click back over to your window that has FontCloud pulled up and click “Browse” in the bottom left corner. This will allow you to upload the font file folder you just saved to your computer. Again, it is important to note you can only upload the font file, not the zipped folder. The video above shows you exactly how to do this.
What can FontCloud do
Okay, now here is where the magic starts. Once you have fonts downloaded to your computer and then uploaded back into FontCloud you can unlock all the special characters. Type a sample word into the top of the screen where it says “preview fonts with your own text”. That word will then show up in all the different fonts you have uploaded to FontCloud. Choose the one you like most and click into the font. You will then see your sample word in that font at the top and you’ll see each individual character for that font in boxes at the bottom. Keep scrolling down until you see characters highlighted in blue. Not all fonts have special characters. If you don’t see the blue boxes then the font you chose does not have any fancy things like tails or swashes.
Once you see the blue boxes you know you’re in the PUA (private use area). This is where the fancy stuff is. To try it out on your text simply click the letter you want and it will copy to your computers clipboard automatically. Go up to your sample word and “paste” the copied character into your word. I use Ctrl + V to paste but you can also right click to paste or however you normally copy and paste items in your computer.
How do I use FontCloud with Cricut Design Space
Keep trying out different characters until you get the word looking exactly how you want. Once it’s just right, select and copy the whole word (Ctrl + C for me) and then open a new project in Design Space. Add in some text and change the font to whatever font you used in FontCloud. Paste the word into the text box in Design Space and it should look exactly like it does in FontCloud. Using FontCloud with Cricut can take a little getting used to but once you get the hang of it you’ll wonder how you ever lived without it.