Cricut users can often find learning Design Space a little intimidating, but a new feature provides an easy solution to a problem that has dogged veteran users for a long time. Specifically, how do you make round corners in Cricut Design Space?
The new Offset tool, introduced in early 2021, creates an outline around any shape or text on the Design Space canvas. Users can choose to set the outline to have round corners, thus creating an easy way to have DS display any shape with round corners.
This is my favorite feature of the new Offset tool, and it sure beats the old method of welding and slicing circles and squares to make round corners. This simple method will save you tons of time and aggravation and give you perfect results!
Update: In the November 2021 Design Space update, Cricut added several new options to the Shapes menu, including a rounded corner square and rectangle. This is great news, but if you want to make other shapes with rounded corners like triangles, stars or something else, you can still use the steps we’ve outlined below to achieve fast, easy and perfect results!
How to use the Offset tool to create Round Corners
1. Select a shape from the Shape Menu
The first step is to open the Shapes menu from the left-hand tool bar. Select any shape with corners (ie. any shape except the circle) from the menu. I have chosen a basic square for this demonstration.
2. Open the Offset menu
The next step is to click the shape to highlight it, then select the Offset tool from the top toolbar. The Offset menu contains two options: offset distance, and corner style. You can drag the slider left or right to increase or decrease the size of the offset line. (Or you can enter a specific value in the measurement box.) The larger the offset, the more round the corner will be.
(Users should note that the offset has a 1 inch limit.)
The most important step is to check the rounded corner option in the menu. This selection makes the corner round. Luckily, rounded corners are the default setting.
3. Delete the original shape
After you have filled in the values in the offset menu, you will have a new shape on the canvas. Design Space treats the Offset as a separate object from the original square we placed on the canvas.
Click the original shape to highlight it, then delete it. (You can delete by clicking the trash can icon in the upper right corner of Design Space, right-clicking your mouse on the shape and selecting Delete from the shortcut menu, or pressing the Delete key on your keyboard.)
Now the only shape remaining on the canvas is the rounded square. It is ready to use like any other shape in Design Space. Resize, re-scale, slice or weld the new shape to fit into your project.
Bonus tip: how to make a perfect rounded corner frame
So now that you know how to make a rounded corner shape, how do you make a perfect rounded corner frame for a label, decal or t-shirt graphic? Once again, the Offset tool rides to the rescue!
Select your rounded corner shape, click the Offset tool in the toolbar and create another offset around it. This time, it will create a perfectly even frame around the original shape!
Slice the offset shape and the original shape
Conveniently, the two shapes line up perfectly. All you have to do now is select both and click the Slice tool from the lower right-hand corner. (Or right-click and select Slice from the shortcut menu.)
Delete the two solid shapes from the layers menu. Your perfectly proportioned round corner frame is ready to use.
Use this new frame for any Cricut project
This round corner frame can be resized, re-proportioned and used with the Slice, Weld, Attach or Group tools to make labels, decals, iron-on designs and more!
External Offset vs Internal Offset
Just a quick note on the Offset tool: if you drag the slider to the left, you get an internal offset. (ie. a shape smaller than your original). In most cases – like a rectangle, triangle or polygon, the corners will not be rounded! You can see the exception below is the star shape, which has internal and external corners. Only the internal corners will be rounded!
I hope you found this step-by-step pictorial to be helpful and easy to follow. The Offset tool is my favorite new Design Space feature that’s been introduced this year. It makes designing so many projects easier and better than they were before.
Here are more design tutorials to help you on your crafting journey: