Sewing Patterns, Pattern Review, Sewing Classes, Sewing Machines and Sewing Machine Reviews!
Platinum Sponsor: Stylish Fabric
Over 20,000 of high quality reorderable fabric

[SIGNUP - FREE Membership & 1 FREE Sewing Lesson ]
[Sewing Classes|Shopping Bag Your Shopping Bag|Login|Help]
Sewing Review and Pattern Reviews Sewing Knowledge Base Sewing Patterns Sewing Classes & Sewing Lessons Sewing Machine & Embroidery Machinery Sewing Message Boards Sewing merchants Blog Help/FAQ About Pattern Review


Advanced Search
Tags
New to PR?
Find a member
MY Stuff
Friends of PR Benefits
My Pattern Reviews
My Account
Edit Profile
My Page
Widget
Photo Album
Favorites
Wish List
Pattern Catalog
Notifications
Calendar
Deal Corner
Sewing Machines
Sewing Machine Central
Compare Sewing Machines
Sewing Machine & Serger Reviews
Embroidery Machines
Sewing Reviews
Sewing Patterns
Review Gallery
Sewing Books
Sewing Supplies
Sewing Websites
Sewing Stores
Sewing Class Reviews
Sewing Expo Reviews
Sewing Tips & Techniques
Sewing Podcasts
Fabric Glossary
Sewing Review Requests
Read All Review Requests
Add a Review Request
Live Chats
Chat Room
Chat Schedule
Chat Transcripts
Sewing Classifieds
See all Classifieds
Add a Classified
Sewing Contests
all contests
contest gallery
Favorite Links
reviews with comments
merchant gallery
article archive
newsletter archive
Craft Resources
contact info
shipping rates
returns & refunds
testimonials
Platinum Sponsor - Stylish Fabric
Stylish Fabric
Inexpensive, durable rotary mat (Tip/Technique)
Viewed 5218 times
Review rated Helpful by 3 people   Very Helpful by 28 people   
Posted by: patsijean
photo
About patsijean star
TN USA
Member since: 1/16/03
Reviews written: 19
Sewing skills:Advanced
Favored by: 1 people
tips added: 8
Bio: more...
Report a problem with this review
Posted on: 10/29/07 2:55 PM
Web site/URL: photo
Featured in the PR book!
Like most quilters, I like to use a rotary cutter for much of my cutting. As a sewist I like to cut most patterns with my rotary cutters and electric shears. The most important accessory for rotary cutting is a good cutting mat, but most are small, or expensive if large. I have been using my cutting mat for at least 15 years, and probably will use it for 15 more. How? I use a smooth-bottomed, rectangular vinyl chair mat available for purchase in most office supply stores. My mat is 3ft by 4ft and is large enough for nearly all my cutting needs. It does not seem to harm my rotary blades any more than normal use would and I can lay out and cut several garment pieces at a time. A child's shirt takes only one layout session as all pieces will fit on the board. When sewing for my grandson I will carefully stack 2 or 3 pieces of fabric and cut out the pattern with either my large rotary cutter or my Black & Decker electric shears depending on the fabric. The smooth surface is great for moving the shears along. Under the mat is an old cardboard cutting mat. I use the inch marks for lining up fabrics but not for accurate measurement. I often place instructions under the mat so that I can find them without searching for the last place I put them down, and most print can be read through mat. The cost of a mat like this is about $30-$50 depending on size and thickness, however, you do not need a thick mat for this purpose. Many mats will have a chair lip at one end. This can be removed with a good circular saw, and the edges sanded. Now you have two mats, one large and one small. Click the link above for a captioned photo album.
Merchants on PR
Gwyn Hug
Fabric Shopping Help!
Deals!
Lanetzliving Vintage Sewing Patterns
Vintage Sewing Patterns
Deals!
Style Arc sewing dress patterns
Patterns That Fit
Web site

<< Previous Next >>

Add Tip/Technique    Read All Tip/Techniques


16 Comments      Login to Add a Comment
kkkkaty said...
that's very inventive, good idea!
10/29/07 7:14 PM
motomoda said...
What a clever idea! I wish I hadn't thrown out my wonky chair mat :(
10/30/07 0:24 AM
Nancywin said...
Great idea1 I'm interested to know about how "squishy" it is. I have a pinnable mat that I bought at JoAnns, but whenever I cut something fine, like silk or lining, the cutter embeds it into the mat. Does this happen with yours?
10/30/07 0:44 AM
patsijean said...
Nancywin, This is obviously not a "squishy" mat, however, when I use a dull rotary cutter, having to push a bit harder to cut cleanly, a very fine fabric has embeded on occasion, but not every time. I found that by changing to a new, sharp blade the problem is all but eliminated. There may be a few tiny fibers embeded, but not enough to be a problem or pull out fibers. I think that cleaning/scrubbing with the abrasive side of the cleaning sponge helps a bit too and I did just scrub the mat. Right now I am making a reversible cape for my husband's Halloween. One fabric is a slipery poly-satin and so far no problems. Let me try something even thinner.............Nope, no problem....cut a thin silky with an older blade and with a new one. Silk Dupioni cut just fine.
10/30/07 12:15 PM
patsijean said...

10/30/07 12:30 PM
Stitchology said...
Wonderful! Now I can lay out large amounts of fabric on the floor.
10/30/07 1:59 PM
Susan M said...
I am so impressed with your ability to see this as a rotary mat. I will pass this on to every sewer I know. Thanks for posting.
10/30/07 2:02 PM
Babe B said...
Brilliant! Thanks very much for sharing.
10/31/07 9:13 AM
Miss Fairchild said...
You are brilliant! After all those years I spent working in an office, I never thought of using this for a mat! And putting it on top of your other paper mat is clever!
11/7/07 8:48 AM
Grandma DRake said...
Wow EEE! this is so clever, I will be running to the office supply store to get one (I was on my way to JoAnn's). How clever!
11/7/07 4:09 PM
JEC said...
Hi Terrific Idea and I never would have thought of it. Thanks. Judy
12/1/07 2:29 AM
Raye of Sonshine said...
What a Great Idea!!! The other cutting mats are expensive and sometimes you can find these cheap at second hand stores!!!
3/6/08 3:34 PM
SewPurple said...
Wow! Great Idea!!
3/24/08 6:25 PM
Lucy in Virginia said...
This is a great idea, since the other mats are so expensive! I do have a question. I have one I bought from WalMart which is getting rough and snags delicate fabrics. Obviously it is scarred and not a self-healing mat. Do the chair mats self heal as you cut into them?
12/22/08 10:41 AM
patsijean said...
Lucy, I have been using my mat for nearly 11 years and I have no problems with it. The surface of the mat feels fine to me. I don't know if that means it is "self-healing" or not. I occasionally use rubbing alcohol and a Scotch Brite cleaning pad to clean the mat, then wipe the little fibers off the mat with the sponge side of the pad. I would suggest that when cutting very fine fabrics like silkies you use a new blade as using an older blade that requires you to push harder could push fine fibers into the mat.
12/23/08 9:56 AM
carolrv said...
Thanks for the great idea. We recently started living in an rv and I think I could slide that mat under our mattress!
7/8/10 8:56 AM

Copyright © 2014 PatternReview.com® , OSATech, Inc. All rights reserved.
Conditions of Use | Posting Guidelines | Privacy Policy | Contact Us