Fiskars Rotary Trimmer

Reported By Julie Fei-Fan Balzer

About a year ago, I wrote an article about my love/hate relationship with paper trimmers. You can read it here. A lovely woman named, Cheryl, read it and sent me a Fiskars Rotary Trimmer. She is one of the Fiskateers – a group of four women who host a website dedicated to Fiskars love. It’s a lovely community (I’m mostly a lurker there) and you should check it out if you get a chance. But, I digress….

I was thrilled when the trimmer arrived. I unwrapped it and immediately started to use it.




Photos kept slipping. The trimmer was bigger than I was used to. The measurement arm extender thing folded out from the top rather than the bottom. I just wasn’t happy.

But, a funny thing happened as I kept using it. That trimmer and I started to get along! And here’s why:

1. This is the first trimmer I’ve ever owned where you can actually see where you’re cutting! Seriously! It’s amazing. You drop a clear guard and the rotary blade cuts right at the guard’s edge. I love that.

2. I have never replaced the blade. One year and counting. It still cuts photos and paper cleanly.
3. The face of the trimmer has a grid – which makes lining paper and photos up straight super easy. The grid is on both sides of the blade, so cutting small pieces is very easy!

4. The trimmer has rubber feet that grip the table.

5. For those of you who are safety minded (little kids around, etc.), the trimmer has a lock which keeps the rotary blade and arm locked down.

My only gripes are:

1. I’m annoyed at where they put the break in the ruler (where the arm thing comes out). It is in a really inconvenient place (at 4.25″), but I’m not sure where else they could have put it

2. The trimmer cuts straight about 90% of the time. Part of it is user error. I often find that the photo or paper is stuck to the face of the trimmer and needs to be adjusted carefully. I’d like it to cut straight 100% of the time.

This is the same trimmer that Heidi reviewed on Tuesday and I think her side-by-side comparison to the old Fiskars trimmer is spot on. Like her, I would definitely recommend this trimmer to someone looking for a portable trimmer. It’s my go-to choice these days! My advice is to stick with it past your initial impression. I think it’s worth the wait.

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5 Responses to Fiskars Rotary Trimmer

  1. Avatar
    Laura January 18, 2008 at 3:47 pm #

    thanks for the info! i am thinking – THiNKING – thinking about getting a new trimmer. but i am AFRAID!!!! a decision like this, shouldn’t be so stressful! 😉

  2. Avatar
    Ashley January 19, 2008 at 12:42 am #

    I hated my fiskars rotary trimmer! My sis in law gave it to me last year for Christmas and it started out OK but then I noticed it wasn’t cutting card stock very well.. and I don’t craft that much.
    The edges started fraying. Even when I bought new blades it still sucked!
    Hope you have better luck with yours.

    I finally bought a Making Memories self sharpening rotary and love it!

  3. Avatar
    Clearly Inspired January 24, 2008 at 6:00 pm #


    Thanks for the wonderful critique on the fiskars trimmer. The scallop looks big and I cannot find one that is that big. Where did you get that blade? The scallop blade that I got makes really small scallops. I love the trimmer too! You can email me at

  4. Avatar
    melita January 25, 2008 at 8:46 pm #

    Hi Julie, thanks for your review. It does take a little getting used to. I really love that it has rubber feet and doesn’t slide all over the place. By the way, the photo you have is the personal portable trimmer, not the portable rotary trimmer. Just FYI!

  5. Avatar
    axeboyzone February 16, 2008 at 6:27 am #

    I have one of the 1200E
    paper trimmer, I bought it for my school’s office and it has lasted! I love it, and would highly recommend it.