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Silhouette Cutting Mat: Should the blade be cutting it?

The Silhouette Cutting Mat can make or break a project and therefore it brings up a lot of questions and concerns.   If it's not sticky enough the paper or medium can slip around and the design will get all wonky.   If it's too sticky it can be tough to remove the cut designs.  If the mat's loaded wrong the blade may cut outside the cut area.  And what about the blade actually cutting the mat?  That's the question we're answering today from a reader.

Joann asks:  "If my design is visible on the (cutting) mat, am I cutting too deeply? I know they are replaceable but...$$" 
I have searched high and low for Silhouette's official answer on this and I can't find a thing so I'll just tell you what I have found from my experience: No!  As you can see in the picture, my cutting mats have etched lines and various designs all over them from the blade.

As long as the blade is not cutting all the way through the mat you do not need to worry.   It can be expected that the blade will the leave the design on the mat. 

If a lower blade setting is used than what Silhouette Studio recommends, you risk not cutting your material completely and then having to double cut it - which will only make more marks on the mat and create a higher risk for actually cutting through the mat.

If you have a question you'd like answered by Silhouette School, email the teacher at

Thanks for coming to class today at Silhouette School.  If you like what you see, I'd love for you to pin it!

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  1. I didn't worry about mine too until I rinsed it to give it a new sticky coating (spray). I had little bits and pieces of plastic come up and my mat was very rough. I could not use it for any cutting. I found out that there is an adhesive layer, that I used a razor blade and pleaded off, then re-stickied my mat. It still works fine, but it took too much time to do and I will just purchase a new mat form now on.
    Yes, I think score marks are fine so you can get a good cut...but I do think that there is only so long a mat is useful. I have since used mats for specific items: only paper, only vinyl, only material, etc...

  2. I have finally toss 3 mats that have I have used for at least a year each and I use my machine almost daily. The mats were so worn and restuck a few times that they just wore out. Mine had cracks in them and I figured it was time to toss them. It sure makes a difference with an new mat! I also tired the new CGull mats that are listed as good for the silhouette 9not as thick as the cricut mats) but found that they were very sticky. I used a t-shirt on them for quite a few times and my paper was still hard to remove. They were so sticky that removing the paper removed the design that was printed on the mat. I may try another one to see if I got a bad one. The price on these mats were very inexpensive but the hassle wasn't worth the price in my ook.


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