Let’s take a look at self healing craft mats. Do you need one? Which one is the best fit?
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General Considerations about Self Healing Craft Mats
- Large protective work surface
- Somewhat flexible
- 24×18 seems to range in price from about $25 (generic) to $40 (Altenew)
- Limited capacity for heat, use caution with heat tool, warping possible
- Not well suited to inking techniques
- Ink washes off the mat but stains the white lines
- White lines can be cleaned with alcohol but it might ruin the lines over time
- Difficult to see the ink on black surfaces
- Alcohol ink will stain the mat (doesn’t clean off with alcohol)
- Generally can be difficult to clean, wipe spills as they happen, mild soap and water to clean
- Matte surface reduces glare for filming
- Helpful for centerting and positioning
- Keeps a ruler on your work surface at all times
- Slides around on smooth surface, can put a non slip mat underneath
Why I Use a Self Healing Craft Mat
- I like having a grid system to help me center elements on my cards, the A2 outline is especially valuable
- I like having a dark surface for filming, it contrasts with the white background of many of my cards
- I like having a matte surface because it does not reflect light
- It is large enough to fill the entire frame
- It protects my work surface
- NOTE: I use a separate mat for ink blending and other messy techniques
Craft Mats Compared in this Post
Differences between Scrapbook.com and Altenew Craft Mats
- Imperial measurements only
- Single sided (grid on one side)
- Exclusive to Scrapbook.com
- Smallest measurement in grid ½ inch
- Price: $29.99 (technically sale price)
- Branding: Center and Bottom Corner
- Center lines for distinguished
- Measured work surface: 23×17
- No zero centered measurements
- Imperial and metric measurements
- Double sided (different grids on each side)
- Available at many retailers
- Smallest measurement in grid ¼ inch
- Price: $39.99 (full price, rarely on sale)
- Branding: Top Corner
- More prominent center lines
- Measured work surface: 22×16
- Zero centered measurements on top nd one side
Similarities between Scrapbook.com and Altenew Craft Mats
- 24×18 Size
- A2 landscape and portrait card sizes emphasized in the middle for quick reference
- 12×12 size emphasized in the middle for quick reference
- Self Healing
Conclusions about Self Healing Craft Mat Comparison
In general these mats are great for someone who wants a large, cut resistant, gridded, matte work surface to protect their table. Not an essential tool for most crafters.
If you like to ink blend and do many messier techniques this may not be the best fit.
If you only need imperial measurements and price is the most important factor, Scrapbook.com Mat is the best choice.
If you need metric measurements, Altenew is the only choice.
I have a slight preference for the Altenew mat because it has a quarter inch as the smallest measurement but I appreciate that Scrapbook.com was able to bring the price point down to be more in range of the generic mats available out there.