Olfa vs Fiskars cutting mat: What Are the Differences Between?
Cutting mats are a crucial part of almost all kinds of crafting: from sewing and embroidering to quilling and journaling. If you don’t want to see cut marks on your tabletops or furniture, you’re definitely going to need the help of the best cutting mat.
For cutting, shaping and slicing through paper, fabrics or cloth, if you use a rotary cutter instead of a pair of scissors, you are definitely going to need a cutting mat under your materials.
Otherwise, the pressure from cutting through your materials can definitely damage your tables, desks, and furniture tops, by leaving prominent cut marks from the rotary cutter on them.
To avoid such damage, it is very important that you use a good cutting mat for all your craft.
What are the Different Cutting Mats?
A cutting mat is a flat working surface usually made from durable and long-lasting materials like rubber, polypropylene and vinyl. They have elastic surfaces that can spring back up when pressure is applied, keeping the surface looking the same year after year.
These are called “self-healing cutting mats”, because no matter how much pressure you apply on these cutting mats, the surface will spring back and look the same.
There are different kinds of cutting mats available in the market, based on their materials, size, shape and marking.
Each brand of cutting mats have some special features and characteristics, making them different from the rest.
Olfa and Fiskars cutting mats happen to be two of the most popular brands of cutting mats in the market, preferred by crafting enthusiasts of all kinds.
Olfa Cutting Mats
Olfa is a popular brand when it comes to self-healing cutting mats. They allow a number of cutting mats of different sizes and styles that can be used for a number of crafting projects at home, schools, workplaces and offices.
Most of the cutting mats from Olfa offer not just self-healing features, but also protection of the rotary cutters used on these mats.
Their cutting mats are double sides: with one side for general cutting and the other side for detailed cutting.
Most cutting mats from Olfa have a thickness of 1.5 mm, which might be too thin for certain kinds of materials that require pressure to cut into shapes.
For heavy-duty cutting, Olfa also has a slightly thicker cutting mat with a thickness of 3 mm.
Fiskars Cutting Mats
Fiskers is also another brand that makes self-healing cutting mats of numerous sizes and shapes. Their cutting mats actually have surfaces that are built to last longer than others.
Besides, most of their cutting mats come with various shapes and sizes drawn on them, making cutting fabric and paper into triangles or stars easier.
These mats have lines and measuring grids drawn on both sides; both sides can be used for the same kinds of projects. In fact, one side can be used after the other side has become worn with use, giving you two identical cutting mats at the price of one.
These self-healing cutting mats from Fiskers also come with accurate angular measurements for 60-degree, 45-degree and 30-degree angles, making it easier to cut fabrics into different shapes.
Difference between Fiskers and Olfa Cutting Mats
Although Fiskers and Olfa are both very popular cutting mats among crafters and creative people, there are some very slim differences between them.
The most popular Olfa self-healing cutting mat, the Olfa 24” x 36” double sided rotary mat, has two different sides.
On one side, the measurement grids are larger for solid and general cutting, and on the other side, the measurement grids help for more detailed cutting.
Instead of confusing one or both sides with similar kinds of measurements that might be hard to follow, this rotary mat offers versatility in the same mat.
By using both sides of the mat, you can cut large pieces of fabric for quilting as well as smaller or thinner pieces for more detailed jobs.
On the other hand, with the Fisker 24” x 36” self healing rotary cutting mat, both sides have similar measurements.
However, this means that you are actually getting two cutting mats at the price of one because you can use both sides equally.
If one side becomes torn and weary with regular use, you can still get years of use from the other side.
- Rotating Feature
The medium-sized Fiskars 14” x 14” self healing rotating mat comes with an extra layer at the bottom, joined together so that you can rotate the top cutting mat with one hand while your other hand is busy.
This makes rotating the mat much easier when you need to work on your fabric pieces and papers without having to use both hands to do so.
If you are cutting angles on your fabrin or cutting them into circles, this is a handy cutting mat to own.
This is quite a helpful feature in this particular cutting mat by Fiskers that is not present in any Olfa cutting mat.
From multiple user reviews, it is confirmed that Fiskars cutting mats heal better and lasts much longer than any other brand of similar cutting mats, including Olfa mats.
- Measurement and Grids
With both Olfa cutting mats and Fiskars cutting mats come with detailed measurements and grid drawings on both sides, to aid you in cutting your fabrics and crafting papers perfectly.
- Harsh Smell
Some users have complained of a harsh chemical smell in most Friskars cutting mats, although the same complaint has been made of most other cutting mats, including Olfa.
However, in the case of Friskars, the smell is supposed to be more prominent.
The Olfa 17” x 24” cutting mat can be folded in half, which makes it easy to carry with you in a bag or a backpack.
However, this is also a one-sided cutting mat, as opposed to the double-sided ones available from other brands.
Although there aren’t many differences between the quality of Olfa and Friskars rotary cutting mats, the ones from Friskars are known to be more durable and give more value for price.