Saturday, July 25, 2015

Reusing Your Silhouette Mat and More Money Saving Tips

Reusing Your Silhouette Mat and More Money Saving Tips

Today I'm working on a big cutting project with my Silhouette Cameo and I am going to need to use all of my cutting mats. As you may recall from my first money saving tips blog post, rather than buying new mats at $10 a piece (on Amazon, $5 cheaper than the Silhouette site), I reuse them! Here's a step-by-step picture tutorial to help save you time and money!

All you need to get started is your old Silhouette mat(s), a squeegee, masking tape and Krylon Easy-Tack Repositionable Adhesive Spray. The can is about $8 at the craft store or $13 online, but I always use a 40-50% off coupon, which most craft stores have available on their app and/or send out in weekly emails. I can spray approximately 20-25 mats per can.


Prepare Your Mats

You want to start out by scraping off any little bits and pieces or paper that are stuck to the mat. I use this squeegee my husband picked up from a sign supply shop that has a roller on one side which I like to use to press fancy papers down to the mat without scratching them.

If you find yourself having difficulty removing paper bits, you might want to reconsider the type of paper you are using with your Silhouette. Cheap, thin paper does tend to stick to the mat, rip, and overall works poorly for most projects. Your paper should be 60 lb minimum, in my humble opinion.

Apply Masking Tape to the Mat Border

When the mats are free of debris, apply the masking tape to the outside of the mat, making sure to cover all of the area outside of the 12 inch square. I use 1.5 inch wide tape and it works perfectly, covering the outside area while having enough extra tape to stick it on my spray board.




Hang Your Mats Outside

Carefully hang all of your mats outside on an old piece of wood or a big cardboard box. I say carefully because the tape can start sticking to the mat or the tape on other mats and the whole thing can turn into a disaster in seconds. Just kidding, relax. If they stick together just pull them apart. Remember, it's repositionable adhesive and temporary tape.


Spray Your Mats

Read the directions on the Krylon Easy-Tack. In short, shake the can for 2 minutes and then spray the mats from about 8-10 inches away for about 20 seconds per mat, making sure to cover it completely.




Air Dry

I let mine dry for at least 30 minutes before use. Since they are pretty sticky, rather than stack them up I stick them to the wall above my work station. When people come over they always ask what they are, it makes for great conversation.

See how great these old mats still work?



This whole process took me a total of maybe 10 minutes. I'd say I can cut about 40 sheets of paper per application of Easy-Tack. But of course, I use my old trick of repositioning papers on the mat, and turning the mat upside around to maximize use.

Thanks for stopping by. I'd love to hear about what you are doing to save money and time using your Silhouette.

Happy cutting!

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