This is a constant at my desk.  The CM Photo Trimmer is a small cutter designed specifically for trimming photos.  It is small and lightweight so it can fit easily on your desk and go anywhere with you.  It cuts up to 4 3/4″ x 7″.  There is a drawer on the side which can be used to store small items.  The trick to straight cuts is to make sure the arm is lifted all the way up and your photo is flush along the top.  Because of the top guard you would not be able to cut 1/2″ or smaller strips but I use this only for photos so it is not an issue.

The cutterpede by EK Success cuts up to 13″ x 15″ when the arm folds out to full extension.  The arm can also be folded in half for easy 6″ cuts and easy 2″ cuts can be made when the arm is folded in.  The cutterpede gives clean, straight cuts.  The blade can be replace and is long-lasting.  Although the cutting mat needs to be replaced fairly often it is inexpensive because it can be rotated and used 4 different ways and the mats are purchased in 2-packs.  I would not recommend using this cutter regularly for photos or heavyweight paper because it wears down the mats too fast.  This was my favorite cutter for a long time because of the clean, straight cutting and because it does not take up much room on my desk.  The arm does not match the cutter because it broke and when I requested a replacement, this is the one that was sent.  I originally purchased a pink Cutterpede from my LSS and it was damaged.  They would not replace it because it came as a package and they didn’t want to send everything back and would only replace the cutter but did not have pink except the ones in the package set.  Bummer for me because that was one of the reasons I bought it (I loved the pink).  So in the end it’s kind of funny that I ended up with a pink arm.


This product was my first-time QVC purchase.  There are a couple other places you can purchase this but for a long time you used to only be able to get it on QVC so that’s where I bought mine.  Since then they have also come up with a new package with more to it than the 2 rulers that I have.  This is a great tool for the perfectionist or for those that have a hard time “eyeballing” when matting your pictures.  To mat a photo (or add a border) you first adhere your photo to the paper leaving room around the edges.  The nice thing is that this can be an odd-shaped scrap paper.  Next, chose the size of mat that you want and line up the ruler.  There is a lip on the ruler so it will catch when you butt it up against your photo.  Take the exacto knife and cut along the ruler.  Continue on all sides for the perfect mat.  This can be done multiple times for multiple mats and layering.  The mat that comes with the Perfect Layers is self-healing but you can use any exacto knife and self-healing mat.  I prefer a larger 12×12 one that I use.  The only trick to using this system is to be careful with the knife – so you don’t cut yourself or take a chunk out of the plastic ruler.


This is a heavier 12×12 trimmer by Making Memories.  It comes with a magnetic ruler that stores underneath.  The best feature to this is that the blade is self-sharpening so there are no replacement parts.  It has a rotary blade and cuts beautifully straight and sharp every time.  This is the most exact cutting trimmer I have ever owned.  Although it does take up a fair amount of space, I have made room for it on my desk because I love it so much.  You can fold it in half to take to crops or so it fits in a smaller space.  Down sides to this trimmer are that you cannot cut chipboard or more than 2 sheets of heavy cardstock at a time.  You can also not cut small pieces of paper (ex. 1″ x 1″) because of the guard that the paper slides underneath.  You can cut 1″ off a 12″ sheet of paper but once it is 2″, it is difficult to cut in half.  This is my favorite cutter and I would not want to be without it, however if you are looking for an all-in-one tool this is not it.  I use this cutter every time I scrapbook but I also use other trimmers to cut smaller pieces of paper.

From time to time I will be giving a review of different products.  This is my personal opinion based on my experience.

I am going to start with the Fiskars Rotary Cutter.  This was one of my very first cutters.  It is an investment because it does not come cheap but I bought mine at Michael’s with a 40% coupon.  Although I do not use it on a regular basis for my scrapbooking I do not want to give it up.  This cutter works great for chipboard, felt, and multiple papers.  I use it for girl scouts projects, to cut chipboard strips and squares, and for large projects when a lot of cutting is required.  It gives a clean cut but you need to be sure to line up the paper with the measurements and not flush with the top or bottom.  You can purchase a variety of decorative blades which are easy to switch and can be stored in compartments built into the cutter.  I have had problems with the blade compartments staying closed (maybe because I store it upright under my desk) therefore I am unable to use these compartments to hold extra blades.  The cutter is large (but not heavy) and takes up a lot of space if you plan to use it day to day.  It has a rotary blade which has proven to be long-lasting.  There is a cutting mat that will also need to be replaced over time but can be rotated four different ways so this also is long-lasting.