Disclosure: Some of the links in the post below are "affiliate links."
Do you have the problem I had with cutting fragile paper like old dictionary pages on your Silhouette Cameo? I wanted paper strips. Fillers. Like this:
I kept getting a mess. The paper stuck to the mat and tore. An internet search didn’t help much at all. The suggestion I saw most was to use a mat that had lost most of its sticky. So I used a mat that wouldn’t hold card stock in place.
Note: I show all the trials and errors first. To quickly see the solution, scroll past all the small pictures.
Ever seen that before? I bet you have. (Oops. Didn’t mean to show any of the mess under the desk. Blushing.)
But even that was too sticky for this fragile paper. I don’t fully understand the relationship, but it even caused the knife to drag and pull. Not clean cuts at all.
Which, actually is kind of OK for what I was doing but, well, not really. And what happens when you try to get the strips off the mat?
Pulling it off like normal? Ugh. No. Maybe the spatula will help:
Not a bit. Ooo! I’ve read to bend your mat and sort of peel the mat off your paper with the spatula! Let’s try that!
So far so good…….
Arghhhh! The paper is still too fragile! Oh, I know! Maybe the scraper?
Okay, okay. Bad idea. So what to do?
Here is what you’re here for. The method that worked for me. It’s so simple! What will you need?
- A cutting mat that has enough sticky power to it to hold cardstock
- A sheet of cardstock
- Krylon Easy Tack
- Give the sheet of card stock one, maybe two, very, very, VERY quick sprays of Easy Tack. We’re talking about less than a second to cover the sheet. Spray it once and if it feels like the fragile paper will stick to it stop there. If not, give it another very quick spray.
- Put the paper on the card stock. Go ahead and line up the paper to the card stock edges. If the paper is smaller, line it up with the top and left side. Or wherever your image will be cut. Is that clear as mud? Yeah. Thought so. Um… treat the card stock and paper as the one single piece that will be cut.
- Place the card stock on the mat. Fragile paper side up, of course.
- Adjust the cut settings. I use settings of — Print paper — Speed 4 — Thickness 2. I think the thickness is the most important thing here. You might have success with a thickness setting of 1. You just don’t want to go much, if any, higher so it won’t cut into your card stock.
Hopefully it’ll come out looking like this:
Yes, that has been cut into strips AND using the same blade as before!
What a difference, huh? It peels right off. No scraping, no tearing.
Hope this helps some of you who are struggling with the same problem. I haven’t tried this on anything other than the dictionary pages here, but the same technique should work on paper with similar rag content. I’d love to hear if it works on Bible pages, tissue paper, etc. Let me know!