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How to Clean a Cutting Mat

blue rotary cutting mat with fuzz embedded in it

I love Quilt As You Go and use it for almost all of my quilts – but cutting the batting squares and then trimming the finished blocks to size makes a real mess of your cutting mat. All those cotton fibers get embedded in the mat and no amount of rubbing with a rag will get them out.

But there’s a really easy solution – easy, fast, and cheap.

rotary cutting mat with fuzz embedded in it and a white artist eraser

Yep. One of those inexpensive white artist erasers.

Just rub it on the mat wherever it’s fuzzy, like you’re erasing the fuzz.

blue rotary cutting mat with white artist eraser and balls of fuzz

It pulls all the fuzz right out of the cuts and balls it up so you can just brush it into the trash.

Easy peasy.

clean blue rotary cutting mat

In five minutes your cutting mat will look almost like new, all ready for your next quilt. 🙂

Here are some related posts about rotary cutting tools and how to use them. . .

Here are handy links to all the posts about quilting tools and supplies.

Sewing Machine


Rotary Cutting Tools


Other General Sewing Room Supplies

One More Hugely Popular Post that Seems to Fit Here Better than Anywhere Else

Return to the Let’s Make a Quilt main Table of Contents.

Move on to the posts about choosing your quilt pattern.

Happy quilting!


  1. That’s a great idea. I will have to try it.

  2. This is an awesome tip! Thanks for sharing…I am going to give it a try, especially after cutting up batting!!

    • Anonymous SAYS...

      A plastic dish scrubby also does the job of cleaning your cutting mat.

      • That’s what I used to use, but on my mat it wouldn’t grab the batting fibers.

  3. Anonymous SAYS...

    have you ever heard of actually washing your board? Like with soap and water in the bathtub? I have, but am reluctant to try it, have an enormous board…

    • I’ve heard of that – but I’ve never tried it. I know that heat and cold can both warp it, so I’ve always been nervous about the temperature. Mats are expensive so I’ve never been willing to try it. 🙂

    • Anonymous SAYS...

      Yes, I’ve tried it & it works great! Just slightly warm water!

  4. Annie SAYS...

    I SO needed this tip, thanks!!

  5. jill SAYS...

    Great tip! I use the Casabella dog hair remover. Works great on my cutting out board and even better on the cat and dog hair located all through the house.

  6. Excellent tip! I have an old cutting mat that I use for cutting batting but of course that is full of fuzz. I was at Dollar Tree yesterday looking at those erasers and wondering why I felt that I needed one. Now I know.

  7. CJ SAYS...

    Don’t throw out all the threads & fibers you clean out of your mat! I keep a cloth bag ( made of “ugly” fabric) clipped to my sewing room trash can. Every thread, snippet of fabric, holey sock etc goes into it. When it’s full I sew up the opening & take it to the animal shelter – perfect pet bed! The trash can is for chocolate wrappers!

    • Anonymous SAYS...

      What a great idea!

  8. Wow, the above tricks just what I need. You saved my mat, I should have seen your post earlier. Thank you very much for your advice.

  9. Natalia SAYS...

    Are these mats flexible? I wonder whether curving it back would open up the cuts and allow the super embedded fibers to be erased out even more?

    • Yes. I’ve seen another method of cleaning out the cuts that involves curving the mat back and then pulling hr fuzz out with tape, but I have a large mat and it’s very floppy when you bend it back. I found that way really hard to control.

      • Natalia SAYS...

        I can see that floppiness would be difficult, and imagine rolling it slowly around a hard cylinder (like a fabric bolt centre or something bigger) perhaps anchoring the inside edge with tape, and doing the eraser or tape method. I feel I would prefer knowing the cuts weren’t completely jammed with fibres. LOL

  10. Anonymous SAYS...

    Thank you!

  11. Cathy Wilson SAYS...

    Can I share your idea with the ladies in my quilt guild? This did a great job and most likely more cost effective than the expensive eraser I purchased at a quilt shop.

  12. Alice Brinkerhoff SAYS...

    I have a True Cut mat and the lines are red and have worn off, or I have cut through them and they are gone.

    Any ideas on how to replace the red line!

    • Sorry – I don’t know of any way to bring back the original lines. But I don’t see any reason you can’t draw new ones – just use a straight edge and a marker that doesn’t smudge. (Test it in a corner or on the back.)

  13. Craftynutkins SAYS...

    That was a brill idea, the mats are expensive, I used to paper craft on mine but turned my skills back to sewing as I retired from work