Big Girl Glue Gun (with a stand)
I'll be the first to admit to being too cheap to invest in a good glue gun. I had one of those $2.99 mini guns for too long. I wasted so much time refilling itty bitty glue sticks, trying to get the gun to stand upright, giving up and letting it fall over, only to have it melt into the paper plate I used to rest it on, etc, etc. Enough is enough! I finally spent the $29.99 for a "big girl" gun, and what a difference! And I LOVE the stand it came with. That part alone is worth the money!
I mean a pair of high quality, SHARP scissors. That means no sharing with anyone under the age of 10, not also used for gardening, cooking, or car repair. It will change your life! Once you own them, write something ominous on the handle so everyone else in the family will know not to go near your scissors!
It's the fast and easy way to make straight cuts. No more uneven eyeballing! A scrapbook paper cutter or professional "office" cutter is so helpful to have around.
3M Command Strips
These things are amazing. As strong as a nail, but without the permanent hole left behind. I use these strips for hanging plates, frames, art, bulletin boards, and seasonal decorations. They also have velcro-like strips so you can remove and reposition an item. It takes all the stress out of deciding which wall to hang my latest scored item!
High Quality Spray Paint
It makes all the difference what brand of spray paint you use. Seriously. I learned in this post why it's so worth it to "splurge" for the $6 cans of paint vs. buying one of the cheapie brands. One coat of a good brand can do the job of 3 coats of a bargain brand. My faves are Rustoleum and Krylon.
It's time to level with you about levels. Gotta have one for hanging mirrors, wall arrangements, curtain rods, mounting TVs. And they're handy when you need to mark long straight lines. Thankfully Jason has one that I am allowed to "borrow" all the time.
For all manner of crafty craftiness! Matting frames, photo backgrounds, jewelry, origami, mod podging, and all kinds of paper crafts. Some are even pretty enough to frame all by themselves. I always have a selection of colors and textures on hand, and snag ones that catch my eye at the craft store.
I was a Mod Podge virgin for too long. This stuff really does rock! I love it now! An awesome tool for decoupaging, varnishing, sealing, gluing, and jewelry making. And as I found out in this post, it really does beat any homemade version on Pinterest.
Clear Nail Polish
I always keep a bottle handy. Add a dab on knots to make them stay put, seal or glaze small items, fix chips in wood, keep the ends of ribbons and string from fraying, coating metal to prevent rust, keep nylons from fraying, prevent cheap jewelry from turning colors. That's just the short list!
Clear Storage Boxes
This is my personal preference. Some people may love the look of opaque boxes, but I like to be able to see where my stuff is without having to do a lot of digging. A set of clear plastic bins with lids will work wonders for craft room organization!
It works so well, I'm always a little freaked out when using it. I'm thinking, "Ok, ok you got this. Just squeeze gently, and... Oh, oh, nooo! Omg!! omg!! My fingers are going to be stuck together for life! Somebody call 911!" I'm sure you'll be fine.
Helpful for preschoolers and hardcore DIYers alike. They've got restickable, permanent, washable, and color changing. I'm a sucker for the purple kind that fades to clear. It's great when I'm in a hurry and need to see where my glue is going. You know, for all that speed gluing that I need to do.
Assortment of Brushes
Sponge brushes, large and small art brushes, rollers, a good "painting the house" type brush, and even eye shadow brushes. The right brush for the right job :)
Scrapbook Adhesive Strips
My life savers for matting pictures in frames, and working with paper in general. I usually cut one tab in half and that makes the roll go super far.
Never go to the craft store unarmed! Retail, shmetail. Craft stores like JoAnn and Michael's have apps you can download to get coupons right on your smart phone. When you're in the store, ask to sign up for their mailing list to receive even more coupons! Society of Stampaholics has a fantastic post about how to save even more when using coupons.
Box cutter, utility knife. Tomato, tumahto. My husband and I can't agree what the proper name of this thing is. Whatever it's called, it's my best friend when cutting shapes out of cardboard or foam core.
Cordless Screw Driver
So much easier than using one with a cord! We're always busting it out for hanging items, installing curtain rods, or putting furniture together. And they come in pink too!
This is on my wish list. I can't tell you how many times I'm stuck cutting out a bazillion little shapes, and thinking, why don't I have a Silhouette machine yet? True, they're a bit on the pricy side, $200-$300 depending what extras come are offered with it. I'm still dreaming about owning one someday. And if you have a used one that's gathering dust in your closet, drop me a line!
Even if you don't consider yourself a pro sewer, you should still consider owning one. They have real simple, inexpensive models these days that would be worth the purchase. If you find yourself using the no-sew iron on strips all.the.time, it probably means you could use a sewing machine! I love mine for quickly hemming curtains, making simple bedding, lite clothes altering, and making throw pillows.
There you have it! Do you agree with the top 19 I chose? What would you add to the list?
FYI: I wasn't paid by anyone for endorsing any product in this list. These are things I really use, and really love :)
Sharing Thursday at Crafty Scrappy Happy, My Repurposed Life, The 36th Avenue, Somewhat Simple, House of Hepworths, No Minimalist Here