Are you an avid sewer or just really like crafts? Or are you a beginner just getting started? Either way, there are important sewing tools that you should definitely have in your sewing kit, and a rotary cutter is one of them.
It can cut through most sewing materials more precisely than a regular scissor does. They’re also lightweight and extremely easy to maneuver, these cutters will always produce professional results regardless of skill level. Read on to see why rotary cutters are useful, what else to use them for and more.
Top 3 Picks
Best Overall: Fiskars Rotary Cutter
We chose the Fiskars as our top pick because it’s made out of high-quality titanium steel, and it has a 60 mm blade. It can cut through any fabric such as many layers of fabric, foam and batting. There’s a lifetime warranty included with this rotary cutter in case it’s defective in any way that’s not your fault.
Best for budget: NICAPA Rotary Cutter
The NICAPA rotary cutter is our runner up for the top picks because it has a very nice design that’s very comfortable. It also comes with 5 replaceable blades so if your blade gets dull after some time, you have the spares. It can cut through paper, felt, fabric, vinyl and more. It’s also budget friendly which is attractive.
Best value: Honey’s Haven Rotary Cutter
While this is the only true kit that made our top picks, the Honey’s Heaven rotary cutter has everything you need to make cutting through thick fabric a breeze. It helps too that it has a safety button that locks the blade which is important.
What is a Rotary Cutter?
A rotary cutter is a cutter that cuts perfectly straight lines with its blades. The reason for that is that it helps keep your material completely flat, which is why you’re able to achieve the straight lines.
Some rotary cutters are 45 mm blades. Some are 18. Some are 60. They each got different things they can cut through, so remember to check what you’re buying.
Why You Need a Rotary Cutter
You need a rotary cutter because it will make your sewing projects (or other projects) much easier. It can cut perfectly straight lines and some rotary cutters come with a kit that can help you cut the fabric. It is much more efficient than a scissor.
The goal of a rotary cutter is to flatten the material and glide the blade smoothly across the surface. It creates constant pressure and increases your ability to manipulate your lines as a result of the design. What might take hours with scissors may take minutes with a high-quality rotary cutter. The benefits range from flexibility to making sewing crafts and work easier and more enjoyable.
Other Uses for Rotary Cutters
Besides fabric, a rotary cutter can be used for the following:
- Paper, thin or thick
- Foam, thin or thick
- Plastic (some of them)
Rotary Cutter Blade Sizes
While they appear similar in size, the different sizes have different things that they can do.
18 mm blades are perfect for more precise cutting and thin layers of material.
28 mm blades are ideal for very small jobs that needs cuts made through a few layers of material.
The 45mm blades is the most popular with people who sew because it has the right sharpness to cut through enough layers of material.
The 60mm blades are larger and perfect for tougher material such as leather, vinyl, plastic and more. It can cut many layers of fabric.
Rotary Cutters vs Scissors
Although both rotary cutters and scissors have the same goal, which is to get that material cut, they both have their differences that makes them stand out. We’ll dig in a little deeper to show how:
Speed and Comfort
A scissor, depending on material, may take a bit, especially if it’s thick material. A rotary cutter can easily cut through thick material, especially a 60 mm blade. Also, after trying to cut thick material with a scissor, it may make your hands cramp up after a while. Most rotary cutters have an ergonomic design to make sure there’s no awkward bending of your hands and fatigue.
This is what we came for, to see how well these tools can cut. The rotary cutter is good for precise and clean cuts, which means straight cuts. But if you are needing to cut small curves or the nitty gritty details, you’ll probably want to use a scissor.
It’s pretty obvious that the cutting accuracy on a rotary cutter is superior to a scissor. The use of rotary cutters helps to reduce pattern line displacement or distortion. Scissors, on the other hand, can frequently result in a jagged edge if the user lacks stable hands. This is especially visible with lightweight/sheer materials that move readily, such as chiffon. Even with the steadiest of hands, the mechanical opening and shutting of scissors just cannot compete with the smooth cut of a rotary cutter.
If you need to cut something like leather or thicker material, it’s clear that you’ll want to use a rotary cutter. A rotary cutter has the power and blade sharp enough to cut precise lines on those fabrics. But if you are dealing with beads, sequin, lace or embroidery, you will want to use a scissor as a scissor is best for dealing with extremely delicate details of the fabric.
5 Best Rotary Cutters For Fabric and Crafts
The Fiskars 01-005875 Rotary Cutter is a best seller for good reason. From its high-quality build to its ease of use, it’s no wonder it’s a very popular rotary cutter tool.
The Fiskars rotary cutter is made out of titanium, which is one of the strongest steels that there is. So, with high quality steel and being super durable, you can expect the Fiskar cutter to never break on you while using it. The blades are very sharp (again made out of steel) to ensure it can cut through anything.
Right or Left hand?
Luckily this rotary cutter is for both left and right hands. The blade can be assembled from either side of the unit making it perfect for either left or right-hand usage.
The material it can cut through
The Fiskar rotary cutter can cut through batting, multiple layers of fabric and even foam. As you can see it’s very good cutting through thicker materials.
How many mm blades?
The Fiskars rotary cutter blade is 60mm.
Fiskars Rotary Cutter Best Features
Besides having a 60mm knife blade, it also has:
- Improved sharpening
- Curved handle for comfort
- Sliding button
- Lifetime warranty
Fiskars include a sliding mechanism that allows you to extend or retract the blade of the device while it is in storage or in use for increased safety. The blade is capable of cutting through all of your heavier materials. If you plan on utilizing heavier fabrics for your quilting or sewing project, this is a fantastic choice. If you want a rotary cutter that is both affordable and effective, this is the one to choose.
While Fiskar does claim that they have improved sharpening, some users have still said that the blade is still pretty dull for what they wanted to cut through.
While Fiskar has some sharpening discrepancies, it is a great tool that can cut through most things such as fabrics and thicker materials. It helps that it’s made out of high-quality titanium and that it’s very comfortable to use.
If you are looking for a reliable rotary cutter that is at least 60 mm, here is Olfa Deluxe. It can cut through most thick and almost all thin materials thanks to steel knife blades. The handle is curved and has a soft grip so it’s comfortable to use. This cutter can cut through leather, Kevlar, Rubber, and more. A cool feature about the Olfa is that it has a squeeze handle to engage the blades. Another feature is that there is a two-step blade change, where the blade can slide back on and be removed. There’s also a blade cover that you can put on the blade when it’s not in use. It can be used if you are either right or left-handed, as you can use the blade on either side of the cutter. For replacement rotary blades, it can accommodate 45 mm blades.
- 60 mm blades
- Comfortable to use
- Squeeze handle to engage blades
- Some users have said the blade is not as sharp as manufacturer’s claims
If you are looking for comfort while using a rotary cutter, the NICAPA 45 mm rotary cutter is for you. Having an ergonomic design and can be used on left or right hands, it’s very comfortable to use. If you care about safety, you’ll be glad to hear that there is a safety lock on the blade that you can use so that you don’t accidently nick your fingers while cutting. The blade, of course, is made out of stainless steel and there are 5 replaceable blades. This cutter can cut through fabric, vinyl, paper, felt and more.
- Made for safety/comfort
- Comes with extra blades
- Can cut through multiple materials
- It sometimes leave wobbly cuts on the material you cut according to users
If you are looking to get the best value for your money, you’ll love the Honey’s Heaven Rotary Cutter Set. It comes with 5 replacement blades, A3 Cutting Mat, Acrylic ruler and Craft Clips. The blade is 45 mm, so it can cut through most thick or medium thickness of materials like six layers of fabric and paper. Of course, the blade is made out of stainless steel so it’s durable and it won’t rust. The cutting mat is 18 inches by 12 inch, leaving you enough room to use to cut anything that you are going to be cutting. The rotary cutter has an anti-slip handle that has a silicone finish so that your hands don’t slip out. The blades are very fast and very easy to exchange. There’s even a safety button to lock the blade.
- Safety button to lock the blade
- Anti slip handle
- Comes as a kit
- Doesn’t comes with instructions on how to use-could be an issue for beginners
Finally, we have the non-application rotary cutter that comes in a set. It includes five replacement blades, sewing clips, tape measure, scissors, and a beautiful shiny storage bag for everything that’s in this kit. The sewing clips that come in the kit can be used to help smooth the fabric. The rotary cutter has a 45mm blade that’s made out of high-quality steel. The blade can cut through leather, plastic, fabric, paper and cloth. It can be used at home, work or school wherever you need a rotary cutter. There is a comfortable handle so that you can use it without getting fatigued.
- Comes as a kit
- Blade very sharp
- Can cut through a variety of materials
- No safety features
You’ve made it to the end of this guide knowing a bit more about rotary cutters. While we think the Fiskar Rotary Cutter is the best rotary cutter that you can get, there’s still many options out there that you can get. You’ll need to consider what you are using a rotary cutter for, how big of a blade you need and if you need a kit or not. If you have found this guide about rotary cutters useful or have additional questions about them, please let us know below!