Submitted by Liz M.
Linda G. shared a great “spa treatment” for our self-healing cutting mats at the November MPS Guild meeting. Thanks Linda!
The information came from “National Quilters Circle”. (https://www.nationalquilterscircle.com/article/caring-for-your-self-healing-cutting-mat) According to the resource, our mats need moisture to re-hydrate them as well as a soft scrub brush and mild soap to remove the embedded fibers and accumulated dust/oils.
- Prepare a tub or large container in a solution of 1/4 cup white vinegar per gallon of COOL water.
- Add a few drops of mild dish soap per gallon of water.
- Soak mat for 15-20 minutes.
- Gently scrub with a soft brush to remove fibers and dirt.
- Dry with a soft towel and lay flat out of the sun to finish drying.
Take a few minutes to try the spa treatment and enjoy your “new” mat!
Tips to ensure your mats last many years:
- Store flat away from heat or direct sunlight.
- Take care when traveling to avoid direct sunlight and excess heat while your mat is in the car.
- Rotate/vary where you cut on your mat to decrease the deep cuts in one area.
- If cutting batting, clean the fibers from the mat with an eraser.
- Change your rotary cutter blade regularly.
If the spa treatment does not help your mat, try some of the following ideas I found in various blogs and websites to re-purpose your mat. Tin snips or kitchen shears will cut the mats.
- Flip it over and use the back of the mat to cut. Measure with your rulers-you won’t miss the grid marks.
- Reserve one mat for cutting fleece and batting.
- Cut it up and use to stiffen the bottom of bags.
- Puzzle mat-assemble puzzles on it and move if the table is needed.
- Place a mat under your sewing machine or serger to decrease movement and vibration.
- Cut up and use as pattern templates.
- Shelf liner for wire shelves to prevent items from falling through.
- Table protector for crafts or grandchildren’s projects.
I hope this information will give your 2020 sewing and quilting a fresh start!