I like paper-craft and I will soon make my cat a giant house/structure thingy from cardboard, so I decided it would be better to make a proper cutting mat from an old scrap of insulating wallpaper rather than cut onto a thin layer of temporary cardboard with no markings. I made the whole project in about 20 minutes from materials I already had, and the result is pretty good.
I'd really appreciate if you enjoyed this instructable to vote for it in the various contests it's in. Thanks :)
Step 1: You Will Need...
Hopefully these should be all things you will already have
- Thick board/fabric
- Thin cardboard would probably do for light work, something thicker if you needed to cut harder materials. I used a scrap of insulating wallpaper which is pretty thick and very difficult (near impossible) to cut through with the knife I plan to use on it. Try to use something that will be strong enough not to let the paper crumple, but soft enough not to damage and blunt the blade.
- Pen and pencil for marking guides
- Ruler or measuring tape. Preferably a long ruler that is as long or longer than the length of mat
Step 2: Finding the Center
Measure the length of your mat, then divide it by two to find the centre. Make a little mark at the centre.
Repeat for the other sides (remember your mat may not be cut perfectly straight)
Join the pairs of opposite sides with a line as shown in the picture, forming a cross shape
Step 3: Measurements and the Grid
Along each axis (line), make a dot at every 1cm interval (or other interval if you want to be more precise or want use the crazy imperial system).
Draw horizontal lines perpendicular to (90 degrees to) one axis, the length you want the grid for. I made mine 10cmx10cm. Do the same for the other axis, and you should end up with a good grid.
Step 4: Final Tweaks
I then decided to use an accurate compass (apart from a slip at the 12cm mark) to draw circles from the center. You can use your previously draw 1cm distances as radii increments, I went up to a diameter of 24cm.
I also added in some guidelines for squares, only deciding to use a ruler once over 10cm which was a mistake (although the idea was just to show where the squares were and then use the previously drawn guides).
If you want, it may be helpful to draw stencils on for cutting out those shapes, like stars or letters or unicorns, whatever you fancy!
I'd really appreciate if you enjoyed this instructable to vote for it in the various contests it's in. Thanks!
Good luck and happy crafting!