Wednesday, January 13, 2021

The New Cutting Mat

 There comes a time in every quilter's life where you need to replace your cutting mat. My realization came as I prepared to take new photos for the revised bird tutorial

My cutting mat looked dirty and disgusting! It was already scarred with too many cuts. Not surprising given how many quilts I make in a year and how old it was. The problem was WHERE was I going to get a cutting mat for my large 38" x 50" drafting table? The company that made the one I had had long gone out of business.

It was a week before Christmas. I looked all over the internet and couldn't find anything that suited me. Some of the ones on Amazon had lousy reviews. One woman said a new blade in her rotary cutter sliced right through one. Um, nope. I could find 24  x 38" for over $100, but I needed one almost twice that size. I looked and looked. Really, I looked. (Fair warning, as I looked TODAY I see one exactly the size I was looking for that I did not see in December.)

Finally, in desperation, I called my best pal Julie. She asked her husband Larry, and HE directed me to this website:

I did, and was at first rather dubious. Then I typed cutting mats in the Search bar and got this: Cutting Mats.  One look and I knew I might have found cutting mat heaven. I could even get a mat WITHOUT A GRID! Oh holy wonderful! The only question was, HOW GOOD ARE THESE MATS?

Since the prices were so reasonable, I elected to buy a "small" (24" x 48") mat and try it out. I wouldn't cover my table, but it WOULD fit perfectly on my sewing table. (I have an 18" x 24" mat beside my machine now and it shifts around something awful.) The mat was less than thirty bucks and the freight was reasonable. SOLD!  I placed my order the day before Christmas.

It arrived yesterday. Right out of the box, it unfurled nicely and an hour later was almost flat. As you can see from one of the photos above this mat is thicker than the average cutting mat. Almost twice as thick. It was shiny as all get out on one side, and beautifully matte and smooth on the other.

This morning it is practically flat all on its own. I will finish setting it up later, but here's the $64,000 question: How does it work?

This is a very bad picture of me trying to get a very close up of the marks it made when I sliced up a scrap of fabric with my rotary cutter with a new blade. You can't see any cuts. Neither can I. The thing is an absolute dream.

A larger one is DEFINITELY in my future. I'll probably order it tonight after work.

By the way, the one I bought is a: 2' x 4' Rhino Self Healing Large Cutting Mat (no Grid).

Oh happy happy joy joy!



Diane Koch said...

Wow, wonderful!! I would never have thought to look in other industries for something like that. I'm saving this info for future use! Thanks for sharing.

JustGail said...

Thank you for the link. I'm not ready for a new mat yet, but the info is always good to have.

Quiltdivajulie said...


Unknown said...


I got a mat that looks like that and it works great but I notice my cutting wheel became dull very soon so I have to sharpen it much more often. It is a large with one inch squares made by arrow Did you have the same problem?

Linda Swanekamp said...

Since before Christmas, I have had that company bookmarked for mats. I could not decide between the 2' x 4' Rhino, Extreme, or SpeedPress mats. All are roughly the same price, but not sure which one to buy. A huge unexpected vet bill for Mr. Cat has made the process even slower. Thanks for sharing your experience.

Frog Quilter said...

Thanks for sharing as I need a new mat too!

Ellee said...

Looks like you found a great product. Is there an odor? Most cutting mats have an odor that gives me an awful headache.

Sewtwinkletoes said...

Thanks I just ordered a 2x4. Mats haven’t e been an ongoing issue for me. When we move I am going to have a sewing room with a 4x8 cutting table so knowing I can order 1 mat instead of 4 is thrilling! So happy!

QuiltGranma said...

Will love to hear your review after you have been using it a while... dulling the rotary cutter sooner is not a plus that was mentioned in another comment. I too am in need of a new mat. I appreciate your help in this with the links.