How to sharpen a rotary cutter blade (temporarily)

comments 8
sewing tips
Blade + Al foil = Sharp! (And a happy LSP)

…and a happy Lumpy Space Princess

So, I am firmly team rotary cutter.  I own a pair of fabric scissors and I always think ‘oooh I’ll try this out’ but immediately go back to rotary cutters.  It’s just sooo much quicker.

In fact, I am so team rotary cutter that I even sometimes cut paper patterns out with them… it’s naughty, but I just can’t stand how long it takes to cut with normal scissors!  The only problem is the blades go blunt so quickly, and replacement blades are pricey.

Anyway I remembered that a long time ago, way before I even got a rotary cutter, I read somewhere that cutting some aluminum foil with your rotary cutter actually sharpens the blade.

LSP using a rotary cutter

“… this rotary cutter is like way too big for me but whatevs…”

And you know what, it works!  Well… temporarily anyway.  I found that it worked as a quick fix, but the blades would come back duller than ever.  I don’t really know why it works, nor do I have any theories, but if anyone wants to temporarily sharpen a rotary blade to tide them over before buying a replacement, try this out?


In social shenanigan related news, I am now a part of the Sewcialist’s Firehose which is a loooong aggregated feed of Sewcialist blog posts.  And as far as I know, if you sew and you use social media, you are a Sewcialist, so check go check it out.  I’ve found some pretty great new blogs there already.



  1. Yup, welcome to the firehose! I found you there. I’ll have to try this out and I totally agree, rotary blades are so much better than scissors.

  2. Sharpening tools with aluminium foil can be a hit or miss. Half the time when I sharpen my rotary blades they don’t work at all (maybe because my blades are Fiskars titanium?) but I do the same to my craft scissors and it works -_-

    Also, hello Tiff! Found you again when I got clicks to my blog from your old blog! Nice to see you blogging again!

    • Hey Rui! I just went and checked out your blog again, brings back serious memories!

      I found that it’s hit and miss too sometimes and I use Fiskars titanium blades too. But for me it’s more that it works initially and then just flat out does not work, and then no matter how you try to sharpen them they’re totally dead… who knows? So mysterious!

  3. I am definitely trying this- I HATE buying rotary blades but love using them… so I guess I gotta buy them! Any temporary fix to make them last a bit longer and I am on board!

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