I love my rotary cutter for cutting fabric. And I love my paper trimmer for cutting paper. If those two tools got together and had a love-child, it would be the Free Style Mouse by Purple Cow- and I would adopt it and take it home!
As you can see from the picture, it looks a little different from most of the other paper-trimmers and rotary cutters out there on the market. Why, it looks kind of like a computer mouse! (Hence the name!)
To use it, you place your hand over the top of the cutter, then press down to engage the blade, then slide away from you to cut paper, fabric, or even metal. The brilliance of this design is that while the FS “mouse” is sitting on your table, the blade is up & retracted into the housing. It’s only when you press down that the blade engages. I cannot tell you how brilliant this is! Even if my kids pick it up or drop it on the floor, that blade is away and safe. But when I want to use it, I don’t have to fuss with locks or blade guards- just press and go!
I also love the ease of changing blades. I have traditional rotary cutters, and I’ll be honest- changing blades sets my teeth on edge. (I have a minor fear of being cut.) However, these blades are permanently set into a plastic housing. To change blades, you twist the knob until the unlocks, pull out the unit (still while holding the knob) and place it in it’s little protective tray. NO TOUCHING BLADES! Hooray! Even the storage trays have a little “lock” on them so that if you drop the tray, the blades won’t spill out.
Now, let’s talk about all of the blades you can use. I’ve never seen so many for one tool before- there are TWELVE- and the kit includes: straight, perforated, short wave, deckle, long wave, pinking, scallop, squiggle, Victorian, colonial, scoring and stamp. Wow! And each blade is numbered- so you can place it back in it’s corresponding storage tray. Brilliant!
So now we’ve established that the design is brilliant…but how does it cut? Never fear, intrepid crafters, the FreeStyle Mouse lives up to it’s promise. I used it on Foamies ™ craft sheet, paper, cardstock, fabric, and fabric backed with fusible web (one layer of each.) On each surface it cut smoothly and cleanly, not leaving and hanging bits or threads. (I used the straight blade, Victorian, and deckle when testing it out.) I was pleased with how nicely and cleanly it cut on all of the items I tried- even the Foamies!
I admit that I didn’t even try to cut multiple layers of fabric- the blade size is smallish, and frankly, if you’re cutting denim or 4 or more thicknesses of fabric for a quilt, you should stick with a 45MM rotary cutter. But this little qizmo is the perfect cross-over tool for those who like to dabble in many mediums.
My new BFF Paula (who designs for Purple Cow) told me that you can actually cut metal with this bad boy, too! I haven’t tried it yet, but I’m gonna. I can also see the value in buying 2 sets of blades- one just for fabric, and the other dedicated to paper.
In sum, this is my new go-to cutting tool. I see a great potential for folks who have joint paint or hand limitations, too- it may open the world of crafting back up to them. For me,Â the “plus” is that you can wiggle and waggle and ziggle and zaggle all over the place and not slice your finger off! And at $49.95 MSRP, it’s a lotta bang for your buck!
OK, Crafty Peeps! Any thoughts? Leave me a comment!
If you are considering purchasing the FreeStyle Mouse, I hope you’ll consider using my affiliate link:
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