Make Your Own Mat for Cricut, Silhouette Cameo, KNK Zing and Other Die Cutting Machines

make your own cutting mats

How Do you Make Your Own Replacement Mats for Die Cutting Machines

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Did you know its easy to make your own replacement mats for your Cricut, KNK ZIng, Silhouette Cameo, Black Cat and other electronic cutting machines?

The cost of a new Cricut mat isn’t too bad (pack of 2 mats for 7.95 at Amazon)- but the price of a new QuicKutz Cutting Mats for Silhouette is hefty- about 25.00 at my LSS and pack of 2 at Amazon is about $30.00 .
It is easy to make your own mat. If you prefer to just try and find a cheap replacement mat, the best price I have found for new mats for your Silhouette or Wishblade it at KNK USA. I also have had great success buying the Cricut 12 by 24-Inch and cutting in half – so you end up with four 12×12 inch mats for under 15 bucks.

How to make Your Own Cutting Mats

To make your own mats you need a few household items- some you may already have:

Plastic mat
Adhesive ( See 2 options below)
Masking or Painters tape
Permanent marker ( for drawing on measurements)

A lot of people use flexible cutting mats for the kitchen found at dollar stores. You can often find some in similar material sold as a craft mat or flexible thincutting board. You need to get a sheet that will end up being at least 9×13. (it can be longer). If you can get sheets with a grid even better.
Other things to use- stencil material, quilting template.

OPTION ONE ADHESIVE – Using Xyron to Make Your own Cutting mat

Xyron 900 9 Inch Creative Station

If you have a Xryon 900 Xyron 900 this is perfect. You MUST

Easy-Tack Repositionable Adhesive Spray

use the Reposition-able Xyron Cartridge however or it will be too sticky. Some people are able to do this without using the machine. If you can get the cartridge cheap then worth a try. I tried this method and prefer one below. The tack last longer and can be refreshed easily.

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OPTION TWO- With Spray on Adhesive (My Recommendation)

An Adhesive Spray, This MUST be repositionable.
A good choice is Krylon Repositionable Adhesive Spray. You can also use a Quilt Basting Spray 12 oz. You can find this at Wal-mart or Michael’s, etc. the brand is not important- just make sure it is repositionable. It will not work if you get permanent adhesive. The can last a long time. Be careful of nozzle drying up between uses.

You need Masking tape or painters tape.
You use this along the edges of your mat before you put on the adhesive spray so it does not cover the whole sheet- you need non-sticky areas along edges of the mat so rollers on your machine can grip.

So, use your tape along the long edges and cover about a 1/4 inch on each side all the way around. You want this masked and protected so it is not sticky when you spray. You will remove when dry.

If you use the spray, then go OUTSIDE to spray (fumes) if you are pregnant get someone else to do it. Do a couple of light coatings rather than one heavy coating. You can also add a bit more later to freshen if needed.

If you are using your Xyron. Put on your tape and run through machine or use cartridge.

Peel off you tape and you will have your mat! The mat is probably a little too sticky. I use a lint free cloth to dab on it a bit to rid of excess. A cotton t-shirt or washcloth is fine. Just dab all over newly sticky mat. If it’s too sticky your paper will tear instead of lift off.

Use your ruler and marker to mark gridlines if you like. (I rarely bother)

You might also like: My Favourite Scrapbooking Tools

Have you made your own mat for your Silhouette Cameo or KNK machine? Let me know how it went!


  1. Linda from Vegas says

    I buy the flexible chopping mats from the 99cent only store, cut them to size, trace the measurements from an old cricut mat with a permanent marker, put a thin coat of Royalcoat repositional glue on them, let dry over night and use.

  2. says

    I´m from Costa Rica, and I don´t speak english very god.
    PLease, I need information about the silhoutte machine, because i like scrapbooking and i bougth one, but no body have this kind of things in Costa Rica, and haw we have not sellers, I don´t know how learn about the use.
    I tryed to print and cut, but my machine can´t found the marks… maybe i´m working wrong… please, can you help me.

  3. Dalene says

    Does anyone have any ideas for making a 39 inch long cutting mat? I want to be able to use the left over vinyl from a 12 inch roll. Just trying to make my penny go further.

  4. Carmen says

    Thanks for the money saving tip! I will get busy on this and share it with you when I’m finished!


  5. miella says

    After I finally found the adhesiv spray here in germany (UHU Sprueh Kleber 3 in 1) I made my own cutting mat.

    Thank you so much for sharing this great tip!

    I also have a tip: laminating film (foil?) is great as cutting mat. You can put together as many as want. The film should be laminated (you can laminate a grid!).

    Many greetings from germany
    and best wishes

  6. Lori says

    i have sprayed my platic mat. but what do you protect it so it stays sticky and does not get dirty? Wax paper, a transparence?

  7. Lisa-Free Cutting Files and Craft Ideas says

    There are two things you can do: wax paper, transparencies as you suggest. The best tip I got was to stick two mats together when storing!

  8. says

    I laminate a piece of A4 card and spray with Krylon repositional spray glue. works a treat on my craft robo

  9. Lori V says

    hi, if you have the silhouette, did anyone get on the 1 year unlimted downloads, i did, only 14.99 per month, i have been adding to my libray, over 300 so far, new releases and others. they had a promotion, code is store, not sure is still going on, it is fun and going to start doing some cutting.

  10. Marie says

    To response Lori V, I got 6 mths unlimited downloads free when I pay the last 6 mths for originally $39.99 but got the last 6 mths for $14.99 then went to pay & got 2 mths free if I paid all at once. WHAT A SMOKING DEAL! I’ve downloaded all the images to date for only $60. I’m having so much fun. We just celebrated my daughters 5th b-day & we cut out wands & crowns to decorate. SO cheap & fun.

  11. Lori V says

    yes, having fun downloading. Has anyone used the sketch pens, you can purchase with the silhouette?
    wanted to know if any good,
    i have used a ball point pen, to do journeling, that works well, but i wanted color ones.

  12. Christi Grace says

    WOW! What a treasure trove of great info! THANK you all so much for the wonderful & economical ideas!

  13. Penny says

    I am still trying to get my subscription password to work… GRRRRRR… I want to have downloading fun as well…

  14. Cecelia says

    I have a problem. I wanted to just cut out one square on an 8 x 10 paper. However, I didn’t want the small square, I wanted the 8 x 10 paper with a square cut out of it When I put it on the mat, it stuck and when I tried to take it off, it tore. I need the large piece, not the small piece and the mat is too tacky. Any suggestions on how I can use a mat that isn’t too sticky for regular paper? I tried repositional and it was too sticky also. Frustrated, Cecelia

  15. Lala says

    Hi, can anybody help? First time i’m trying to use my Silhouette SD, the card stuck on the mat very badly even before start cutting? how can i /clean wash it?

  16. Lala says

    also if i used UHU or any stick glue does it leave marks on paper or card stock?? i think it does

  17. Melissa says

    I had tried adding some spray glue to my old silhouette mat… it didn’t turn out all that well.

    After reading your cricut-mat method, I went out to walmart and got two mats. I just did my test cut, and it’s FANTASTIC!! I have two cutting mats on back-order, I think I’ll be cancelling that since this is so much cheaper and there’s no waiting. Thanks so much for this post, it’s quite appreciated!

  18. says

    hi there…

    so you have been using 12X24 cricut mat for your silhouette machine and it’s worked right ? because i want to try one..i lived in Indonesia and getting all those tools means i have to ship them to indonesia.. please let me know..
    thank u

  19. Jamye says

    Hi Lisa….I just got my silhouette and am so frustrated with the mat and everything sticking. It looks horrible :( Not that I figure its going to be beautiful but I did not think that everything would stick so badly that I need to scrape it. Does it just need to be “seasoned”? And soon things will not stick so badly? All I have done is a bunch of experimenting and good thing…I would be very frustrated at this point trying to make anything to work with.

    Also, any tips on using vinyl? I want to make some things for Christmas presents.

    Thanks for your tips above. I will definitely be using them. :)

  20. Lisa-Free Cutting Files and Craft Ideas says

    try taking some fabric- like old -shirt, and pressing and lifting all over the mat to reduce stickiness . You are NOT the only one with this issue, btw. I really have been happy just to buy Cricut mats and cut down. I refresh with re positionable Kylon adhesive spray or just buy more mats. I cant be bothered with the hassle. Good Luck!

  21. Anonymous says

    Try running over your matts with a masking tape type lint roller. It’s pretty good at cleaning the surface of debris wich exposes the sticky surface

  22. Anonymous says

    How does one cancel a cut on a silhouette when the Paper starts to lift or another problem comes up.I have shut off mine, but it remembered the job and on the next cut it started where I left off. I even tried pulling the plug and restarting?
    If anyone can help I would appreciate it.

  23. maria says

    hi, does anyone work with mac? i own the silhouette and mac, i use illustrator, it cuts perfectly as long i don’t print and cut, i’m having problems with the registraton marks….. i’m desperate……thanks

  24. Shona Robinson says

    Anonymous…is their a cancel button or reset all on the silhouette?
    Also I was thinking for those that already have a cutting mat..which Im sure you do. You could also photocopy or make several, laminate…and then follow the rest of the above directions? Just a thought.

  25. peg says

    hi,sometimes the light is too bright and it doesn’t pick-up the registraton marks. maybe your working close to window . i have the silhouette.hope this helps

  26. Lori says

    How does one cancel a cut on a silhouette when the Paper starts to lift or another problem comes up.I have shut off mine, but it remembered the job and on the next cut it started where I left off. I even tried pulling the plug and restarting?
    If anyone can help I would appreciate it.

    Hi Sharon – when the paper starts to shift on me I hit the power button. It turns off the machine and then I turn it back on – when the little screen pops up – click “abort”. Then you can start all over.

  27. LeaAnn says

    Yesterday was my first day to play with my Silhouette. I can’t seem to get the knack for it and the cuts went off the edge of the paper. I’m lining up the paper with the corner marks at the top so what am I doing wrong? Also, I read on here where it will journal for you using pens? How do I get it to do that????

  28. jch1259 says

    I am so glad i found this forum, since i have ruined my 4th cutting matt for the silhouette and i am so tired of wasting my money on them, so today i am going out to buy a cricut matt and cut it down. But what about the edges like they have on the silhouette matts? do i need to put any thing around the edges so the feeder works on them? and what does everyone use to cover them to protect them from yucky stuff sticking to them? Thanks

  29. jch1259 says

    ooops my bad i just saw the answer to one of my questions about storing them; it was #8. lol i totally missed that one.

  30. jch1259 says

    i just thought of another question can you buy just one of the colored caps any where? since i have doubles of the pink and blue caps and somehow or another the yellow caps just walked away and no where to be seen. I would love to avoid buying the whole set again with the replacement blades that now you can buy on its own. Thanks

  31. Jessi says

    Wow, this is exactly what I needed! I just bought a new original Cricut, and the boards are only 6″x12″. I wanted to make stencils to put a poem on my walls, and the lines are 48″ each. I just don’t have the patience to cut and stick one word at a time on my wall I thought about getting a 24″ mat and cutting it in half. I have to do each letter one-by-one because the spacing between them is different if I do a line at a time, so I really just wanted to be able to make longer sheets of stencils.

    I had the general idea, but wanted to see if anyone had ever done it before. And, well, the adhesive suggestions will save me a lot of time analysing in the store.


  32. krafting kelly says

    I rarely use the yellow cap. I use the pink and the blue and just adjust my thickness on those. There’s not much difference between the max on blue and minimum on pink. I haven’t seen anywhere to buy just one color of cap.

    About the print and cut: My problem is usually that my printer prints out slightly crooked. I “eyeball” placement so the registration marks look even (a little paper will hang off the edge) and have the Sil read it manually when I’ve positioned my blade in the “green” area. Reading the tutorial on this is helpful.

  33. Lorrie says

    I am looking for a response to jch1259’s questions of what to do when cutting down the cricut mat for the silhouette. Do I need to put something on the sides so they are not sticky like the silhouette mats? Please advise!

  34. Lisa-Free Cutting Files and Craft Ideas says

    You have to cut down the width to fit in the silhouette. You use tape along
    side so stickiness wont gum up rollers. You can use masking or painters

  35. Jules says

    Excellent ideas Miella and Wendy I bought some crafters companion stick and spray my first attempt to make my mat sticky again was a disaster I sprayed too much 2nd one was perfect I like the idea of laminating a piece of card marked out I will try that next is there a certain thickness it should be does it need to be exact
    Many Thanks from UK

  36. Ana h says

    Is there really a difference between the thin mat and the thick mat that comes with the machine??? The thickness fells the same on both.

  37. Cali says

    With the new Silhouette, the difference between the thin and thick mat is not actually the thickness but the amount of adhesive. The thin paper mat does not have as much adhesive as it is not needed and is more likely to damage the paper when removing it from the mat. The thick mat has more to grip the thicker paper better.

  38. Michelle says

    i just wanted to add – if you use non-alcohol baby wipes on your mats when they loose some of their stickiness it will help restore them.

    Love all your ideas and suggestions. :)

  39. happycrafter says

    hi im soooooooooooooo happy right now i live in the uk (scotland),and i just tried my own homemade cutting mat for the 1st worked a treat i followed another readers tip and laminated an a4 sheet of card and sprayed it with crafters companion stick and spray at 1st i thought it was not going to go my way as it wouldnt cut, but figured out that so long as the use registration marks option was set to off it cuts really well i hopw this helps others who are not so sure about trying some of the tips.
    thanks for the tip

  40. Valarie says

    Great idea. Provo craft mat is very easy to cut down to size. I forgot to remove the adhesive on the cut side and I had paper stuck all the way down where the roller traveled. I used the clear cover for the mat to mask of the part of the mat I wanted to remain tacky and wiped with the WD 40 with a cloth and the adhesive came off with no problem. I did have to take off about an inch on the cut side. These mats definatly are a lot tackier than the ones that come with the silhoutte. I am doing a project cutting out 70 trees out of construction paper and the first 2 cuts stuck big time. I went over the mat with some paper to tone down the tackiness and that helpd a bunch. I used the 12×24 mat and cut one 9 x 15 mat hoping that I can do a 12 inch border(cant wait to try after I get all my trees done!) This left me with a piece at the bottom that I used cross wize and it measures 9×12 (ish) it came out just a bit shorter than the original mat with the sil. but the width is just fine and it worked great. When I used the silhouette for the first time I right away thought the cricut mats where better and wondered it they could be made to work. I was so happy to find someone had already tried it and was willing to lend a hand. Thanks bunches.

  41. Cariad says

    I laminated some grid paper and used re positional spray glue and it worked fine. You can create your own free grid paper online and print it off from the link below. You customize the grids and paper size to suit your own needs

  42. Jessica Grijalva says

    WOW!!! Just read through your entire post, and ALL the comments!! Sooooo helpful!!!! I just got mine for christmas, and had some problems, but so far I’m getting the hang of it! For the comment with the sil not reading the registration marks, I found out that if my printer prints at low quality, or my ink is running low, my sil wouldn’t read the marks either. I printed in highest quality, and sure enough it worked!

  43. RetiredPJ says

    If you place your hands, palm side down, all over the storebot and/or homemade mats it will reduce the tackiness…this is especially important for many cardstocks! (Learned at a papercrafting store demo)
    Since this chat got a little off topic I’m adding this. Does anyone know how to dismantle the Cricut Expression, or have schematics? Mine is making funny noises and I’m wondering about doing preventive maintenance.

  44. Teri says

    Just found this post and the answer to most of my questions. However, I would like to know if anyone can tell me about using a Cricut mat on the Silhouette. I was under the impression that the Sil would only cut lines inside the working area, outlined in red. How do you get it to cut up to 24in. long when your cutting area on the Sil is only 11in long? Will it continue to cut the graphics that extend beyond the 11in cutting area as long as I use a cutting mat that is long enough?

  45. Kezz says

    Thanks so much Cariad – love that graph site, will print up mine in bulk tomorrow.

  46. Judith says

    Has anyone ever had trouble with the blade housing for the Silhouette? I love my machine but for the second time the cheap black blade housing has cracked. I don’t notice it until I change the blade and the housing falls apart at the threads where you screw on the blade cap. It is really expensive to replace the housing because you have to buy the whole set. I don’t understand why they don’t make it out of a more durable material.

  47. Jennifer says

    I just made a homemade mat using the quilter’s template (on sale for $1.49 at Hancock’s Fabric store) and I used my Xyron 900 machine and it worked PERFECT! Thank you so much!

  48. Lisa-Free Cutting Files and Craft Ideas says

    Hi- this is one of my favourite methods.. I have gotten lazy and mostly now just buy cricut 12×24 mats and cut down.

  49. Mary A says

    Thanks so much ladies for the tips on refreshing and fabricating new Sil mats. It is rather daunting to watch as the machine works and then everything starts slipping and going crazy. Replacement mats are outrageously priced; guess they think they have a captive audience (not!).

  50. Debby says

    Hi, I’m fairly new to the Silhouette, just got the SD a few weeks ago. I don’t understand the part about taping the edges of the home made mat with tape. My Sil mats are sticky ALL over. Am I misunderstanding? Thanks.

  51. Lisa-Free Cutting Files and Craft Ideas says

    You put a piece of tape along two side of mat where the rollers on Slhouette go ( to hold mat in place) so they dont get gummed up.
    If you;ve all ready made it sticky everywhere you can put tape on side or use something like Goo Gone to get rid of sticky…

  52. inverclyde22 says

    Hi, I’m new to this forum, but have had my Silhouette for a few months. I’ve found that an empty SD card box is ideal for storing extra blades. I know they come with a protective covering over the blade, but they could be quite dangerous if the covering falls off, so the SD box keeps them super safe. I also have three extra blade housings, so the blades are ready to use without the fiddly bit of having to change the caps.

    Can anyone tell me if there is a book I can buy which gives instructions on designing my own patterns, or os there somewhere here on the forum. Thank you :)

  53. Meme says

    Hi Gals!

    Wonderful advice…thanks so much…but I have a question, hopefully it hasn’t been posted and I just missed it, I am still using my original mat that came with my silhouette..I have just been applying adhesive but the paper backing is starting to come off with my projects…has anyone recovered that and if so what are you using? Just plain paper??

  54. Lola says

    I am so happy with your sight! I love that you share everything, in these days it hard to afford to do crafts and you make it a little easier for us to keep enjoying lifes little plesures.
    Thank you for all your information, and love the free files, i have both Cricuts, and SCAL2, Your the BEST!!

  55. Barneybear says

    Hi…another good ‘cutting mat’ idea……..If you can obtain ‘Myler’ sheets…xray film from your local hospital..they work wonderfully well!
    Love this site…Many thanks
    Barney from England

  56. says

    Hey just wanted to give you a quick heads up.
    The text in your post seem to be running off the screen
    in Safari. I’m not sure if this is a formatting issue or something to do with browser compatibility but I thought I’d post to let you know.
    The design look great though! Hope you get the issue solved soon.


  57. says

    Thanks for writing “Make Your Own Mat for Cricut, Silhouette Cameo,
    KNK Zing and Other Die Cutting Machines”. I actuallymight really end up being back
    again for more reading through and commenting here shortly.
    Many thanks, Gilberto

  58. Cindy Branchaud says

    Regarding the repositionable adhesive sprays…..I have recoated my old mats with this spray, they work fine…no issues. I have a question for whoever has a answer for me. I am running the silhouette cameo and my mats dance all over the place…I have changed my roller settings to see if that would help, but that didn’t do it at all…Any ideas would be great..thanks.

  59. Lisa - Free SVG and GSD Cutting Files says

    @Cindy- could there be glue from adhesive gumming up rollers?


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