Crafting’s popularity has exploded over the past decade due in part to its fantastically low barriers to entry. Put simply, anyone can take up crafting with little more than some paper, glue and scissors. Whilst simple tools are fine for complete beginners, any crafter will tell you that as you gain experience you quickly find you need a set of crafting tools to take on new and interesting challenges.
There are dozens of different tools to choose from, each offering their own unique solution to one or more creative problems. As a beginner it can be difficult to determine which tools are essential and which are ‘nice to have’, which are staple products and which more specialised. To help you decide, here are ten essential crafting tools to get you started, all of which are available on www.handyhippo.co.uk.
- Crafting Knife
Arguably the staple crafting tool, a good crafting knife should be the number one purchase for any budding crafter. It will be your go-to tool for cutting out detailed designs so pick one that fits comfortably in your hand. A sharp, replaceable blade and an ergonomic handle are the two things to look out for when choosing your knife.
- Craft Tweezers
Even those with the nimblest of fingers will quickly find a pair of craft tweezers useful. They are perfect for maneuvering embellishments into intricate designs and removing fine cut outs or detail. You can also use them for piercing paper, picking up small items and placing things like vinyl onto your designs.
- Glue Gun
A good glue gun is another essential tool in any crafter’s arsenal. Once you have mastered its usage, you’ll be able to securely fix almost any embellishments onto your designs will pinpoint accuracy. Consider investing in a stand too to keep your workbench free of sticky residue.
- Hair Dryer
If you do not already own one, purchasing a small hair dryer is a solid investment for any new crafter. It will speed up the drying process and allow you to continue working on a certain design rather than having to leave glue or the like to dry overnight. It is also great at removing unsightly glue strings from your work pieces too.
- Paper Trimmer
Whether or not you plan on making cards, a paper trimmer is an incredibly useful addition to any crafter’s toolbox. No matter how steady-handed you are, it is highly unlikely you’ll be able to achieve the same accuracy and straightness as a good trimmer. As you gain experience you’ll probably want to expand your collection of trimmers, but pick a good sized one that is able to cut a range of sizes to start off.
- Adhesive Runner
Adhesive runners are incredibly useful. for applying adhesive onto cards, wood or any other materials for that matter. They allow you to cleanly and accurately apply sections of adhesive, without messing cutting and manual application.
A simple but highly effective tool for any crafter is a fine tip felt tip Sharpie. You’ll find yourself using it to mark up guidelines and designs on all of your materials so consider buying a pack unless you want to quickly run out!
- Measuring Tape
A good length of fabric measuring tape is another simple but effective addition to your crafting toolbox. Consider keeping one in your purse or handbag too incase you find yourself needing to measure up a length of fabric or card whilst out and about. Trust me, this will happen all the time once you start crafting!
- Set of Scissors
A good set of crafting scissors is essential for any crafter. Your set should include a pair of detail scissors for fine designs and cutting out small items and a pair of fabric scissors for cutting anything that isn’t card. A pair of general craft scissors is also a solid addition too.
- Rotary Cutter
Finally, a rotary cutter is the tool to buy for all those tricky jobs that your scissors or trimmer can’t handle. It makes cutting straight lines through card and all manner of fabrics a doddle, particularly thicker materials such as denim that many scissors cannot cleanly cut through.