All of us have these. Admit it.
We have these little gadgets that we really don’t need, but we’d be lost without.
I’ve listed my top three guilty pleasures below.
What’s your MUST-HAVE craft gadget? Come clean in the comments….I left one to break the ice! And if you find yourself leaving three or four comments because you’re a craft gadget junkie, you’re not alone! The first step is to admit you have a problem!
(Disclaimer: I use this “wave” blade on a regular basis, but not at all for what I was originally bamboozled into buying it for!)
Enter a young twenty-something. She looks around the quilt shop wide-eyed, excited to begin her first quilting adventure. She believes she is there to buy a few must-have tools to jump into this craft on the right foot, while the cashier spots a naive, fledgling quilter, easily convinced to spend way more money than is close to necessary.
I was told that by cutting the sides of my fabric with this “wave” blade, I could put them through the washer and dryer on a regular cycle, and they would not fray…at all. I can’t believe I fell for that.
So, now I use this blade to cut decorative edges on paper for cards and scrapbooking. Its shiny steel waves never touch fabric.
2. That Purple Thang (Yes, that is this gadget’s technical name.)
This is a very useful tool! (And I’m not just saying that because I’m a gadget junky!) According to Little Foot, the makers of That Purple Thang, “It pushes, pokes, pulls, p-fudges, p-turns, p-stuffs! It makes its own uses! Every quilter/crafter/seamstress needs one!” And I believe it! However, there are probably five other things in my craft room and around my house that could do the same thing…like the tip of a pair of scissors, or a mechanical pencil, or even a kabob skewer from my kitchen!
However, if you don’t have That Purple Thang, which is only a few dollars (it probably costs more to ship than to actually buy), you can’t say things like, “Work That Purple Thang!” And when a friend calls to ask what you’re doing for the afternoon, you can’t reply with “Girl, I’m just getting crafty with my Purple Thang!”
3. Paper Covered Brad System (This is NOT the technical name for this gadget, but I couldn’t think of a better way to sum it up!)
I am hooked on this, seriously. You’ve seen me use it a lot lately. I used it to embellish my cupcake toppers in my latest Patch piece. I use it for the centers of flower hair clips in my Etsy shop. As soon as I start a new project, I think, “Hmmmm, how could I use my new paper covered brad punch thingy.” It seriously is that fun! I’m telling you, this is dangerous. Does one really need paper covered bards adorning all of their projects? No. But they sure do look adorable!!!
Nikki, In Stitches says
A safety pin closer…
Ok, I don’t actually own this one, but the quilt shop I frequented way too frequently in Arizona had one. It seems kind of silly, no? But, I have to admit, it was nice to have!
(PS…this is also the shop that convinced me to buy the “wave” rotary blade. Uh oh, I think they got me again!!)
My favorite gadget is a peephole for a door. I do quilting and knitting and to figure out a quilt layout or to invision what colors may look best together, you lay out your fabrics or yarns in an order that you may use them in and step back and look through the peephole. Amazing!
You get the perspective of what the quilt will look like put together.
It is worth going to the hardware store and picking up a peephole and looking at everything you work on through it.
Nikki, In Stitches says
Tell me more! This is really just a peep hole that you would put into a door?
I am heading to Home Depot ASAP!!
Yes, just a regular peephole you put in a door. Try it out; it’s very cool!
I emailed you a few pics of the one I have to help you when you go to HD!
Nikki, In Stitches says
You are causing quite the stir. So much so, I’m writing a follow-up post about peepholes!
I’ll hope you’ll stay tuned to see what I find…and feel free to give us some tips on using it!
Shari J. says
I have a Purple Thang, I have an artist’s reduction tool which is like the peephole but what I can’t do without is my shot filled Beanie Babies! Yes, I gut them and then fill them with buckshot. They make wonderful frame weights for holding my needlework frames over the edge of the table and allowing me to have both hands free when doing my needlepoint. I also have used a sheep’s castrator tool and marbles for dyeing fabric. You can get some great sunburst, starburst, chrysanthamum type patterns using these.
Just found (or read a late link in my email) about this article! I have several tools I love–some I bought specifically and some are found items that work the same way. Pins may not be a “gadget” per se, but it drives me insane to buy a bad batch of pins that are dull. If I find good ones I buy two or three packages at the same time to not have to worry about them. I use a mirror like Nancy uses the peep hole. If you turn your back to something and hold a mirror up to see it over your shoulder it gives a new perspective the same way. Works great for rooms when you can’t see what’s wrong with something, or outfits, too.