Your browser is outdated. Upgrade to a modern browser to better experience this site.

Warped Cutting Mat Help

Sandra Hatch

Help for Warped Cutting Mat


Elaine has a problem. "I made a mistake and left my cutting mat in my car and now it is warped. Does anyone have a suggestion on how to straighten it back out? It fell off the seat and rested against the back of the front seat and is bowed on one end. Any help would be appreciated."

I typed "warped cutting mat" into my Google search box and found an answer from the Olfa company (they produce self-healing cutting mats). They wrote that once a mat has been warped, it can't be flattened. But, Frisk, another manufacturer of cutting mats, say to leave the mat in direct sunlight or warm water for a period of time and it will resume its original shape. Another site suggested putting it on flat sheet and placing in an oven at 200 degrees Fahrenheit! I think I would try the warm water or sunlight. If you want to read more suggestions, check out the Web through a search

Paula writes: "A warped cutting mat could be placed on a hot driveway or patio and weighted with planks, boards or blocks until it lays flat again."

Angela from Australia writes: "I warped my self-healing mat just like the quilter in your last Quilt Connections. I put it back in the car in the boot (trunk) laid flat and weighted down with a box full of magazines (quilting, of course). It came with me to drop the kids to school, shopping, etc., for about four days. When I took it out it was straight again."

Jo says: "Elaine requested suggestions to undo her warped cutting mat. I warped my cutting mat when I ironed something on it. Afterwards I placed it outside on the sidewalk in the heat of the day. That flattened it for me and in a short amount of time."

Claire chimes in: "This is for Elaine with the warped cutting mat. I bought a brand-new mat and put it in my trunk. Guess what? Yup, by the time I took it out, it was warped. I placed it on a card table over a heat register, then stacked quilt books, covering the entire top and left it for about a week. Now you can't even tell it was ever warped. I hope this helps because they are so expensive to replace."

Vicki shares her experience. "I once read that a woman left her cutting mat in her car and it warped. Her husband said 'what the sun did can be undone by the sun,' so he put her mat outside with a piece of glass on it, weighed it down with a brick, and just like magic, the mat became flat again. It's worth a try!"

LaDale has a similar solution. "I also left my cutting mat in the car. I put the mat out on the hood of my car in the sunshine for a couple of hours, and it became perfectly flat again. The only bump it has now is where I picked it up again to bring it back in the house. If I were to do it again, I would leave it there until dark to let it cool, then pick it up."

Eileen solved her problem. "I was living in Nevada and returning from a workshop when I accidently caught one corner of a large cutting mat in the locking edge of my car's trunk. By the time I got home, that corner was turned up. I was able to straighten it flat again by laying the mat on a towel on a table, covering it with another towel, then using a steam iron (on the lowest temperature at which it would still steam) ironed over the towel and mat. I was careful that the mat didn't get too warm. After ironing, and while the mat was still warm, I placed a weight on it while it cooled. This took many tries, but it did flatten the mat. This is not a quick cure, but I still have the mat, and it is still flat.

"Another suggestion is to cut the warpped part away and use the remaining piece of mat to cut smaller projects, or make one that is easy to carry to classes."

Elaine tried everything to fix her cutting mat. "My DH (dear husband) used his laptop on my cutting mat and the heat from it caused a big hump in the middle! I tried laying it in the sun, covering it with a press cloth and warming it with an iron, stacking books on it -- every suggestion I could find -- and ended up taking my craft scissors and cutting the flat section into smaller pieces to use next to my sewing machine and to take to classes."

Patricia used her head: "I had a warped cutting mat once. I laid it on a flat surface, heated the warped area with a blow dryer and placed heavy books over the warped area. After letting it set for 24 hours, it was flat again."

Jan has a solution that works for her. "When my Olfa cutting mat got warped, I put it between the mattress and box spring of a bed. I left it there for a few months and it worked. Now when I am not going to be using my mat for while that is where I store it."

Juanita has a warning: "I straightened out my cutting mat by putting it in direct sunlight and found that it worked, but the measurements are no longer accurate. I can use the mat, but do not depend on the grid for accuracy."

Thanks to Juanita for this warning. Be sure to check the grid measurements with a ruler before using it as a dependable measuring device when cutting on it. And if you need to replace an unrepairable cutting mat, the new has a few to choose from!