crumple[transitive, intransitive] crumple (something) (up) (into something) to press or crush something into folds; to become pressed, etc. into folds

She crumpled the letter up into a ball and threw it on the fire.

This material crumples very easily.

Now you roll out a mat & it looks like this, flat, no rough surface or folds

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Your kid runs around on it & makes it not flat, with some rough surface or folds like this

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Is it idiomatic to say "don't crumple the mat**"**?

  • In Britain we might call the undesired action 'rucking' or 'rumpling' a mat. In fact, 'rumple' would be more natural than 'crumple' where I live. Feb 9, 2020 at 11:24

1 Answer 1


Again, assuming this is the toddler, remember that they don't speak English.

Look Isabel, you've messed up the mat. It's all crumpled (or rumpled) (or folded up) (or lumpy etc). Let's get it flat again. {demonstrate with toddler how to flatten a mat}. Now be careful next time.

It will probably only take about 50 times of telling her for her to start to get the idea.

This is really a parenting question, since communication with a native speaker isn't occurring.

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