DIY Clean Or Dirty Dishwasher Magnet

“Are the dishes clean or dirty?” my kids shouted this across the house for the umpteenth time. Sure, they could open the door and look, but it’s so much easier to yell to ask mom and dad. (Insert eye roll.) Then I had an idea, I bet I could make something to easily tell them. Maybe I could make a DIY clean or dirty dishwasher magnet with my Cricut. So I did.

DIY Clean Dirty Dishwasher Magnet

We’ve been using our clean or dirty dishwasher magnet for about a week now. Although it hasn’t motivated my kids to empty the dishwasher on their own, it has stopped the age-old question. Yes! Everyone gets excited to turn the magnet, and thus far every time I’ve checked the magnet has been correct. Score one for mom.

Prior to the magnet, my husband started leaving notes folded over the handle of the dishwasher. CLEAN. In hopes of stopping kids from sticking their dirties in with the clean. My magnet is such a cuter solution.

Clean Dishes BEFORE

Clean Or Dirty Dishwasher Magnet Tutorial

There are a couple of ways to make a custom magnet. The easiest way is to use printable magnet sheets. Cricut used to carry them, but they’ve been out of stock for a while, so I bought generic ones on Amazon, which worked great.


Note, before beginning this project, make sure your dishwasher is magnetic. 

This was the first time I used the print/cut feature with my Cricut and I learned a few things after ruining the first magnetic sheet. So I hope my tips below help you save a magnetic sheet.


Download the dishwasher magnet file HERE. This will download a PNG file, which can be uploaded into Design Space. When you upload it, remove the background outside of the circle, but do not remove the white background inside the circle. Upload it as a “Print and Cut” file. You can resize the magnet if you want it smaller or larger. Mine is 3.5 inches wide.

If you aren’t using a Cricut to create the magnet, you can still use the file to print onto printable magnet sheets, but you will cut it out by hand instead of using the Cricut.

Note, all designs are for personal use only. Not for commercial use or resale. 

With the print/cut feature, you need to print the image through the Cricut software. When you are ready click “Make it.” The next page will show the set up of the magnet sheet on a Cricut mat. Note the black border around the magnet, which will print automatically and is what your Cricut machine needs to “see” where to cut. Click “Continue” on this page.

On the next screen, you will be able to print directly to your printer. Select “Send to Printer.” A printer set up box will appear. Select your printer and the number of copies, and then TURN OFF “Add Bleed.” While this sounded like something I wanted, it caused me all kinds of issues. Namely, the bleed was grey whereas the image is black. So I decided it looked better with a bit of white vs grey.

Next, TURN ON the system dialogue and hit print. (This is where I ruined a magnet sheet.) When I tested my print/cut on paper it was perfect, when I switched to the magnetic sheet the printer “jumped” while printing and messed up the print job because it wasn’t expecting something thick. By turning on the system dialogue another box appeared (it under my Cricut window, so you might need to minimize it to find it).

On the system dialogue, tell your printer to expect thick “paper.” I choose “photo premium paper,” printed at the “best quality.” Then I selected “print.” This time my printed magnet paper looked perfect.

For a visual to help you follow all of the steps, I created a short video.

After printing the magnet sheet, the normal Cricut cut process begins. When selecting the material, I selected a 6 mm magnet because I was not using the Cricut magnet sheets. Cricut instructed me to load my deep-point blade. I used my strong mat, loaded the mat and material, and hit “cut.”

The result is a clean or dirty dishwasher magnet cut in a perfect circle.

If you can’t get printable magnet sheets, you could also print the image on regular paper and use adhesive magnet sheets, but lining that up is a whole other step I didn’t want to have to deal with and the Cricut makes this super easy.

Here’s hoping the clean or dirty dishwasher magnet is as successful in your house as mine!

Dishwasher Magnet

4 thoughts on “DIY Clean Or Dirty Dishwasher Magnet”

  1. I’ve tried this 3 times with my own design. I attach then flatten. I print and put in my cricut and it is cutting all the letters out, not the circle shape. Any tips?

    • I made my design in another program and imported it in as a PNG with a white background behind the letters. I think the key would be to do the same in design space, make sure you are flattening it on a solid background – even if that is white. I hope that helps.

    • Excellent question because I wondered it if would! It has been 9 months since I made it, and it has held up well. The edges aren’t perfect. But there are no smears or smudges. The edges take the most beating because nails grabbing at it to turn it around. If I made it again, I would use a self-adhesive laminating paper (this – on top to protect it even more. But I am quite pleased with how it has held up with kids. It is also actually used every time, so it has been a big success in my house.


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