How To Cut Mat Board Without Mat Cutter

How To Cut Mat Board Without Mat Cutter

Cut a mat board without a mat cutter may seem daunting, but it is entirely possible with the right tools and techniques. Whether you’re framing artwork, photos, or creating a DIY project, learning how to cut mat boards without a mat cutter can save you money and provide a sense of accomplishment. By using tools such as a sharp utility knife, a metal ruler, and a cutting mat, you can achieve clean, precise cuts. In this guide, we’ll walk you through the step-by-step process, offering tips and tricks to ensure your matt board projects look professional, even without specialized equipment.

What Is The Best Knife For Cutting Mat Boards?

Cutting a matt board without a matt cutter can be done efficiently with the right tools and a bit of practice. One of the most important considerations in selecting the best knife for the job. The ideal knife for cut matt boards is a sharp utility knife or a craft knife with a strong, replaceable blade. These knives offer the precision and control needed to achieve clean, straight cuts. When choosing a knife, ensure it is comfortable to hold and has a secure grip to prevent any accidents while cutting. Additionally, always use a metal ruler as a guide to maintain straight lines and protect your fingers from the blade.

Can I Use Scissors To Cut The Mat Board?

While it might be tempting to use scissors to cut mat board, they are generally not recommended for this task. Scissors can cause the matt board to bend, fray, or produce uneven edges, resulting in a less professional appearance. Matt board is typically too thick for scissors to handle effectively, which can lead to frustration and subpar results. Instead, stick to a utility or craft knife and a sturdy cutting surface to ensure your cuts are precise and clean. By investing in the right tools and taking the time to practice, you can achieve excellent results without the need for a specialized mat cutter.

Materials Needed:

  • Sharp Utility Knife Or X-Acto Knife
  • Metal Ruler Or Straight Edge
  • Cutting Mat Or Thick Cardboard
  • Pencil And Eraser
  • T-Square Or Right Angle

Steps To Steps Cutting Process:

Step 1: Measure and Mark

Begin by measuring the dimensions you need on the matt board. Use a pencil to lightly mark the cutting lines. Accurate measurements are crucial for ensuring your final piece fits perfectly in your frame or project. Double-check your measurements before moving on to the next step.

Step 2: Set Up Your Cutting Surface

Prepare a stable, flat cut surface, such as a self-healing cutting mat or a large piece of cardboard. This protects your work surface and provides a smooth area for cutting. Make sure your work area is well-lit and clutter-free to maintain accuracy and safety.

Step 3: Align the Ruler

Place a metal ruler along the pencil lines you marked. The metal ruler serves as a guide for your knife, helping to keep your cuts straight and precise. Hold the ruler firmly in place to prevent it from slipping during the cut process.

Step 4: Make the Cut

Using a sharp utility or craft knife, begin cut along the edge of the ruler. Apply steady, even pressure and make multiple passes with the knife, rather than trying to cut through the matt board in one go. This helps achieve a cleaner, more accurate cut and reduces the risk of the knife slipping.

Step 5: Check and Finish

After making your cuts, check the edges for any uneven spots or fraying. If necessary, make small adjustments or trim any rough edges with your knife. Wipe away any pencil marks and ensure the matt board is clean and ready for use in your project.


Cutting a matt board without a mat cutter is entirely feasible with the right approach and tools. By carefully measuring, using a sharp knife, and following a methodical process, you can achieve professional-looking results. Avoid using scissors as they can damage the board, and always prioritize precision and safety in your Hang Cutting Board On Wall process. With practice, you’ll find that cutting mat boards by hand can be a rewarding and cost-effective solution for your framing and DIY projects.

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