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When I started crafting, I often found myself stuck at night without something necessary to move on. A good pair of scissors. Tape. Pompoms. Glue. Oh, the number of times I’ve been without glue!
Now, I try to keep track of what I use on a regular basis and keep it stocked up. Sometimes I still have to wait until I can go out and buy what I need, but it happens much less often now!
What do you need to avoid stalling when you’re making something awesome? Here’s my suggestions for crafter staples that you need to keep in your house at all times.
Nearly every craft I can think of requires cutting. Sewing, quilting, embroidery, scrapbooking, bullet journaling… the list goes on.
So save yourself the trouble and keep various kinds of scissors. Small scissors for embroidery, large scissors or paper or sewing, and maybe even safety scissors for kids.
Remember not to use fabric scissors on paper! Fabric scissors are a prized possession and must be kept in tip-top shape.
To keep your scissors sharp, follow these tips:
- Avoid moisture.
- Cut only the material those scissors are intended for. Kitchen scissors for food, paper scissors for paper, and fabric scissors for fabric.
- Have a spare pair.
- Invest in a good pair of scissors, even if they’re more expensive. They’ll last longer and save you money in the end.
- Avoid cutting onto pins.
- Don’t drop them!
- Keep your scissors in a case.
- Sharpen your scissors regularly, or have it done by a professional.
- Wipe your scissors clean after use.
Tape is useful for keeping things together, but it can be decorative too! Here are some varieties of tape you may want to stock up on:
Using the right kind of glue can be the difference between a strong hold and a sticky mess. Choose the right glue for your project:
- Super glue.
- Mod podge.
- Hot glue gun glue.
- Craft glue.
- Fabric glue.
When you’re not sure what you need, you can always check the handy website This To That, which tells you how to “glue things to other things”.
They’re not just useful for sewing! It’s worthwhile to keep these supplies around even if you don’t do any sewing or embroidery.
What should you have?
- Seam ripper.
- Measuring tape.
- Steam iron.
- Ironing board.
- Straight pins.
- Safety pins.
- Pin cushion.
- Rotary cutter.
I love felt and keep it around to make toys for my toddler. There are other crafty uses for this fabric, though! Here are some unexpected uses for felt:
- Make felt boards.
- Kids crafts.
- Add padded to vases, plaques, picture frames and more.
- Use felt to erase chalkboard when an eraser isn’t available.
- Put on chair feet for silent movement and to protect your floor from scratches.
- DIY Christmas tree skirts.
- DIY cat toys.
- Dampen sound and vibration.
Paper is useful for sketching, drawing, making plans and to do lists, and for a whole host of crafts. What can you do with different kinds of paper?
- DIY party favors and decorations
- Make framable art
- Paint on it
- Make DIY journals
- Paper lanterns
- DIY gift tags
- Paper wreaths
- DIY holiday cards
- Tissue paper flowers
- Origami cootie catchers
So what kind of paper should you stock up on?
- Construction paper
- Printer paper
- Tissue paper
- Origami paper
- Lined paper
Sure, it gets everywhere and it’s impossible to clean up. But some crafts just need glitter! Ignoring the mysterious industrial uses for glitter (is glitter in our food? Is it in our soap and shampoo? Can glitter be found in our money?), there are the crafty uses for glitter:
- Add glitter to candles
- Add glitter to your DIY holiday cards
- Make cute kids crafts
- Add glitter to your DIY manicure
- Mix glitter into slime
- Decorate your mason jars
- Make sparkly easter eggs
- Make DIY baby shower or birthday party decorations
Ribbon and twine
Pens, pencils and markers
I’m a pen collector, but then I think most people are. I don’t mean that I seek out and find fine selections of pens that I curate and care for. I mean that I collect random pens bought, found, and gifted in case I need it later.
And we always need a pen later.
You should keep these writing tools around for your crafts:
Velcro is so useful for so many different reasons. I wrote a blog post about velcro here.
Keeping paintbrushes and acrylic paint around will allow you to personalize and customize things at a moment’s notice. It’s good for kids crafts, too.
Here’s what I like to keep on hand:
- Cups I don’t mind using for washing brushes
- Acrylic paint – I like to have at least the primary colors to work with plus black and white
Pliers are useful for a million different things. Especially if you make jewelry, you need some to close those findings!
Every now and then, you need precise measurements, especially if you are sewing. I recommend having at least a sturdy stainless steel ruler and a measuring tape.
Supplies for your specific craft
You have things you need that I don’t. If you make jewelry, you need findings, chains, beads, etc. If you sculpt, you need clay. It’s best if you make a list of everything you use regularly and keep them on hand!
So, what do you keep around for your crafts? And what do you find you don’t need as much?