This week I wanted to talk about everyone’s favorite notion – the rotary cutter. This fascinating invention has made life so much easier for quilters around the world. I know this because my mom will tell me stories about having to cut all of her fabric out with scissors before there were rotary cutters. You know the stories I’m talking about, just like the ones my dad used to tell me about having to walk up hill both ways to school every day.
I personally own 6 different rotary cutters and my all time favorite is my Olfa Deluxe Rotary (Ergonomic). Considering that I have psoriatic arthritis in my hands and fingers, the ergonomic part is especially important to me. The other reason I like it is for the locking mechanism, easy to engage and helps me feel more safe with Anne in my sewing room. The one thing I thought I would address in this post is disposing of the rotary blades, even when they are too dull for fabric cutting, they are still quite sharp and dangerous. Here’s what I like to do:
What you might not be able to tell in the picture is that the yellow container on the left of the cutter has “dirty” blades in it. These blades are covered with lint and are too dull to cut my fabric. The blades on the right are new. I always keep one empty container on hand and I usually buy my blades 5 at a time. As the container on the right empties the one on the left fills up. Once the right hand container is empty the left hand one gets taped shut with packing tape thrown away. Then I buy a new set of 5. The empty one is now where the dull blades will go.
I read some interesting disposal methods online including wrapping the blade in scraps of fabric or paper before throwing it out. This concerns me. How many times have you had to go dumpster diving in your trash bin in the sewing room? I have done it on many many occasions. My fear would be the fabric or paper becoming dislodged and slicing my hand up. Just because the blade is too dull for fabric does not mean it is too dull for my skin.
What is your favorite brand rotary cutter? Is there a great ergonomic one out there that you think I should try? How do you dispose of your blades?