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How to cut on the Silhouette {without a mat}… Or cut vinyl on the roll. {Tutorial}

How to cut on the Silhouette {without a mat}… Or cut vinyl on the roll. {Tutorial}

This post contains affiliate links

One of the things I’ve loved the most about my Silhouette is that I can cut without a mat. Why does this matter? Well, instead of being limited to only cutting as big as my mat is, I can cut as wide as my Silhouette (12 inches on the Silhouette Cameo, and 9 inches on the Silhouette Portrait), by as long as my material is. Which is pretty awesome, right???

And since maybe you’re thinking about getting a Silhouette , or you already have one, I wanted to show you how to cut without a mat too.

This is the PERFECT way to use those long rolls of vinyl.

I am going to show you, using the Silhouette Studio program that came with your Silhouette.

Step 1: Make sure you are cutting something with backing, like vinyl (PS- this is my favorite vinyl ever, and it’s an amazing price on amazon, with free shipping). If you cut something like paper without a mat, the piece you cut out won’t have anywhere to go, and it will be sliding around in your machine without any rhyme or reason… which is no bueno.

Step 2: Change the cutting mat option to “none”.

Step 3: Change width and height to match your size of vinyl. {I always add an inch or two to the vinyl, just to be sure it has enough material to cut. So if my object is 12 inches long, I’ll cut my vinyl 13 or 14 inches long}


Step 4: Set your rollers to the width of your vinyl. The roll of vinyl I’m cutting here is 9 inches, so I moved the right roller over the the 9 inch spot. Most of my vinyl is 12 inches, but it still works if it’s on the 9 inches spot. Just make sure both rollers are on your vinyl the entire time.

Step 5: Feed your vinyl in the machine nice and STRAIGHT. If it’s a little crooked to begin with, it will be A LOT crooked after several inches.



And go for it! Play around a little bit, and I guarantee you are going to love this feature too!

And yes, I use my husband’s ping pong table as a craft table. Haha!

If you liked this post, please consider purchasing an item from my affiliate links. It doesn’t cost you any extra, but I make a little commission off of each purchase, which helps pay for this blog and support my family.

Silhouette Cameo 3

Silhouette Portrait

My favorite vinyl ever

Thank you for reading. If you liked this tutorial, please check out some of my other Silhouette projects:


How to cut Fabric with a Silhouette


DIY Santa Pillow- How to use Heat Transfer Vinyl


DIY Screenprinting (Using Freezer paper and the Silhouette)

diy stenciling


Pallet Deer Sign






Thursday 28th of December 2017

I used the steps outlined and not even 25% of my image was cut. I tried again with a mat and it worked fine. Tried a second and third time with more force (I have the cameo 3 with the auto blade) and still the same thing. The same design worked perfectly with the mat so I am very confused and frustrated

Leila H.

Monday 24th of July 2017

I'm a 2 week old newbie and I'm loving my new Cameo 3. I've been cutting vinyl just fine without the mat withouit changing the mat setting. But, when I change it to "none" for the missing mat, my design cuts sideways. Even the little picture icon with the letter "F" is showing that my design is going to be cut sideways. Do you know how to fix this?


Thursday 8th of June 2017

When you are cutting permanent gloss vinyl (oracle 651) what are you using for cut settings? When using a mat I use: blade 2 Speed 8 Thickness 10 I'm not sure what or how to adjust for no mat. What do you recommend?

Diane Burton

Monday 10th of October 2016

i tried not using a mat , 12"x4' vinyl roll. cutting good and then at very last two letters in each of 3 lines of wording it starts to get out of line or off track. i tried it twice. same thing

Sunday 7th of August 2016

If I want to cut a design out for someone else how do I do it so that it doesn't stick to the mat