4 All Things Sewing and Some Things Not

PaperCutouts Collage

So in this part, I explore cutting paper. In the past I’ve had problems cutting designs with small cutouts. The cutouts pop out while the machine is operating, the design isn’t cut all the way through the paper in some parts, and the sharp points get scrunched up.

Starting with the cat design that I scanned in for part 1, I set the machine to the suggested settings for card stock: cut pressure 1 and cutting depth of 4. I taped down the edges of the card stock with tape. I used clear tape as that is all I had. Low-tack painter’s tape would have been better for ease of removal and visibility. I did a test cut first. Then I cut three cats. The results came out great!

CutCats Collage

I then tried a more intricate design I scanned from “Simply Paper Cutting: Hand-Cut Paper Projects for Home Decor, Stationery & Gifts” by Anna Bondoc. This design had been giving me conniption fits on the ScanNCut. Admittedly I had not thought to tape the edges of my card stock down before.

Now I thought I’d try a more rigorous approach to debugging my earlier problems. Using the suggested settings, here’s attempt #1:

CP0 CD4 Collage

Some of the lines were not cut all the way through the paper, so I increased the cutting pressure. Here are attempts #2 and #3:

CP2-4 CD4 Collage

By the time I got the pressure up to 4, it finally worked!

The next thing I wanted to try was to reduce the scrunchies. It seems logical that the scrunchies will be exacerbated by more of the blade being exposed. So I tried reducing the blade depth, leaving the cut pressure at 4. Here are attempts #4 and #5:

CDExp Collage

The scrunchies seem to be improved with a shorter blade depth. I didn’t try anything less than 3.0 though perhaps I should have.

Mat Loading

To get the mat to load properly, particularly on the right side, hold the mat up a little past level while it feeds. Apply very gentle pressure towards the rollers. This seems to work much better and the mat will feed properly most every time.

Hold Mat Up

Mat Cleaning

As others have suggested, just use a fragrance-free baby wipe to remove any paper or fabric fibers that may be stuck on your mat. After it dries, the mat will still be nice and tacky.

Using Paper

If you feel that your paper is not going to stay stuck to the mat, use some low-tack painter’s tape to hold down the edges of the paper. Apply the tape in the areas outside of the tacky region.


I love this machine! I think that the possibilities are endless for both paper cutting and fabric applique cutting. If you’re having problems with cutting a particular design, you may have to experiment with changing the cutting depth and cutting pressure. Don’t forget to tape down your paper with low-tack tape if you need to, hold the mat up while feeding it, and occasionally clean the mat with a baby wipe!

More ScanNCut tips can be found at www.scanncut.com.

Also see me on denversews.com

Comments on: "Fun and Games with a Brother ScanNCut (part 2)" (1)

  1. I am new to the scan n cut looked at video on you tube they make it look so easy. I am having problems with the paper/ card scrunchio on some of the sharp points . will try to do as you suggest .thanks jenny.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: