Craft Room Essential Tools and Equipment


Hi again. At Curio we run a number of
craft workshops and I’m often asked what I suggest is the basic equipment and
supplies that a beginner would need to set up their craft room. Well of course
it really depends on what sort of crafts that you’re doing but what I can tell
you is what equipments and supplies you will need that can be useful for a
number of different crafts. I’m going to split this over two videos, so this video
will be mainly about the equipment that you can gather together to set up a
craft room. One of the most important pieces of craft room equipment is the
surface are you working on. As you can see, I only have a blank desk here. I
normally work on a glass mat, which are readily available from some of the
bargain shops in the UK. I like the glass mats because you can clean anything up easily on it. Any spills. You can use it to mix paint on and it just wipes
down afterwards. I haven’t got it here for two reason. One is it’s still at the
workshop, it’s a bit bulky and heavy to carry around which is one of the
disadvantages of it, however, that said if it’s in your craft room and you’re not
going to move it around a lot that’s fine. The second disadvantage is with the
camera. The glass mat reflects an awful lot of light, so I haven’t bothered
bringing it. Alternatives are craft sheets which are a a teflon coated, woven
sheet, very similar to a baking sheet and indeed some people do use baking sheets
to work on. Basically it’s to keep your main work surface clean. Next on our list
is a cutting mat. You will find these are absolutely invaluable. They’re available
in a range of sizes. In the UK we can get them A4, A3, A2, A1, A0. Basically in a
full range of sizes. They’re self-healing so if you cut them with a craft knife
you’re not going to go through. So it’s great if you’re cutting paper, card, that
sort of thing. Next on my list is something to cut with. Used in
conjunction with the cutting mats, these are craft knives. These are my favorite
type of craft knives. They have got an interchangeable blade. Just unscrew
and pull the collet down and remove the blade. They do however need changing on
a regular basis. They can easily get blunted. The cheaper alternative is one
of these knives, which simply slide out. When the blade becomes blunt you snap
off against one of those lines and you end up with a fresh blade. These are
cheap and cheerful. They’re not particularly sturdy and they’re not
accurate to cut with but for a beginner they might be enough. The third thing I
recommend is a steel rule. This one measures in inches and centimeters but
that’s not so important. The important bit is the fact that if you are using a cutting
knife down the side of it, you’re not going to damage the ruler as you would
if it was made of plastic or wood. Again, these are available reasonably cheaply,
perhaps a pound or two. Next on my list is some form of paper trimmer. If you’re
doing a lot of paper crafts, these are really quite essential. This one is by
Cricut and it will cut a full 12 inch, which, if you do scrapbooking and you
want to use 12 by 12 pages, it’s perfect for. It has a ruler that slides out of
the side so you can measure further down. And the way this works, it has a channel
with a little knife in it. The blade is there. So it works like a craft knife
but it’s guided along that channel. It also comes with another blade, which
doesn’t actually cut all the way through and is used for scoring card. So you can
score part way through to make it easier to fold. They’re great, they will only cut
more or less one piece of paper or card at a time. They’re an entry-level trimmer.
This. as you can see. is a much bigger paper trimmer. It uses a rotating blade
here, I don’t know if you can see that. And that runs along the edge of this knife to keep it nice
and straight and you basically press down and all along to cut your paper.
The third type of paper trimmer is the guillotine and this uses a long blade
against a steel rule with a finger guard and something to hold the paper
down in place. When you’re using these you need to make sure that you push the
blade over towards the rule as you’re pulling down or you’ll find you won’t
get a clean cut. Again this one is a 12-inch cut on it. This is a smaller one.
They usually sold as a photo cropping guillotine. They work on the same
principle but I find these are really useful if you use in six by six papers.
It saves getting out the big guillotine to do the same job. I think they’re about
seven or eight pound and I’ve honestly found that invaluable. These are the two
that i use the most. I prefer the guillotine versions over the roller cutters or the
ones with little slide blades. While we’re on the subject of cutting, scissors
are an essential item. Buy the best quality scissors you can. Buying cheap
means that you’ll buy rubbish basically. I always keep
a pair of scissors for a particular use so these I only ever cut paper with and
these I only ever use for cutting fabrics and materials. Don’t ask me why,
but for some reason if you start cutting fabric with your paper scissors
it blunts them a little and they’re not much good with paper anymore and the same
with the fabric scissors. If you start using those for something else they’re
not going to be much use for fabric. I don’t know the science behind that. It’s
just the way it is. It seems to work out that way. So make sure you’ve got a good
selection of quality scissors. The next tools I find absolutely invaluable are
glue guns. This is a range by Stick-It, and as you’ll see they’re two different
colors. And they’re two different colors for a reason. The red one is for high
temperature hot melt glue and the blue one is for low temperature hot melt glue.
Obviously, you need to get the correct glue sticks to go with the right glue
gun. The reason for a low temperature glue stick, or should I say the reason
for a low temperature glue gun is if you’re doing something where you need to
touch the glue, you’re not going to burn yourself. So for example, if you’re making
paper flowers and you’re gluing the petals, you can actually manipulate the
petals while the glue is still in a pliable sort of state, without burning
yourself. You are likely to burn yourself with this one. If you start messing about
with the glue once it comes straight out of the glue gun. There are several types
of glue gun available. There are battery-operated glue guns. I don’t
recommend them because they take an awful long time to heat up, they don’t
seem to get as hot and the battery life on them isn’t very good. These are a
craft size glue gun and they take a seven millimeter diameter glue stick.
There are larger ones, which again are available corded or cordless. The cordless ones tend to work better than the battery operated ones
because they’ve got a built-in battery andthey take an 11 millimeter diameter glue stick.
You can buy very cheap glue guns. I don’t recommend it. I have bought a couple in
the past and they just seem to drip glue everywhere and have been a complete
waste of time. You’ll notice the come with a little
stand. It’s really important that you use that stand and when the glue gun
switched on that it stays in that position. Don’t lay it down or you will
damage the elements of the glue gun and it will kill it pretty quickly. So make
sure when it’s plugged in and switched on it’s always some sat on its stand until
you’re using it. Never lay on all side. Remember these don get Hot, even the
cool melt ones. Some people are a little bit immune to being burnt by glue guns, other people find it extremely painful and blister very easily.
So my advice to you is, when it’s on keep your fingers away from that part. My
next recommended piece of equipment is a heat gun. Again I think this is from the
same company as the glue guns that I use. And I find these are really really
useful. they’re sold primarily for heating up embossing powders and melting embossing
powders and they work very similar to a hairdryer. The only difference is this is
incredibly hot, so when you using it make sure you don’t get your hand in front of
it and when you put it down on the surface use the stand because it could
burn through the surface. I find this useful for drying gesso and drying paint.
It’s also good for drying texture paste and glues. It just gives it that little
bit of a boost to dry off and if you’re art journaling, you don’t want to be
waiting for paint to dry around so a quick blast with this will get it dry
enough to work on. Again, as I said before, they’re very very hot, so do be careful.
There is a risk of burning yourself. There’s a sticker there to warn you that
it’s a hot surface and to avoid contact. One of the uses for these that I find
really useful is, if you using a glue gun, you can get some stringy bits. Once
the glue has set and has cooled down and you end up with all these stringy bits,
if you give it a blast with the heat gun, all the string of bits melt away. Mmy next
essentials are paint brushes, and again go for a decent quality brush. Don’t
buy some of these cheap packs that you can get because you won’t use the
brushes in them. You might use them once and throw them away. Something like these
maybe a couple of quid each. They’re very. god I’ve used them for a long time and
they’re just like new. However my favorite crafting brushes are these and
these are sold as children’s paint brush sets from a well-known Swedish furniture
store. They’re about three pound a set.
I find them absolutely invaluable. There’s a good range of sizes. The one
inch brush in particular I use an awful lot and I even use this to
paint furniture with chalk paint. You can buy expensive paint brushes for chalk
painting, but I find even the one-inch brush is big enough to cover large areas.
It’s also small enough that you can get in all the nooks and crannies. A piece of
equipment that you might not have thought of, but I find these invaluable are palette knives. This is a metal one. They’re come in plastic. They may be
called spatulas. I find them great for all sorts of things, using texture paste,
anything that’s a thick medium, for smearing paint on things, and I found
myself using this a lot more than I thought I would do, so it’s well worth
getting yourself a supply of these. They come in different shapes and
sizes and again, as I said, you can get some plastic ones or
some metal ones. This is a stainless steel one, and again I’ve been using
this for years. This is a brayer, which has been very well used as you can see.
Again bayers have 101 different uses. if you gluing paper to card, you can use
it to make sure that you’ve got no bubbles. You can use it to apply ink onto
paper. You can use this to spread around paint. Again, it’s another tool that I
didn’t think I’d need but I do find it invaluable. Finally, a spritz bottle. I
always keep one of these handy, filled with water. Especially if I’m doing some art journaling or some painting or something like that. You can get lots of
different effects using water. I use this when I’m doing polymer clay work. If I
don’t want two layers of clay to actually stick together, I can spritz it with
water, put one piece of clay on top of the other, roll it out and then separate
them out as if they never actually touched. You can also use these to make
up your own sprays from acrylic paint, and I will be doing a video in in the future
about that. One of the things I will mention if you going to make sprays out of
it, is to cut this down. As you can see that reaches the bottom of the bottle
and if we were to add acrylic paint and water or whatever the acrylic paint
will settle at the bottom and it will clog that up.
So if you cut it about quarter of an inch or half a centimeter short of the
bottom, it’s less likely to get clogged up. Once these are clogged up it’s very
difficult to unclog. That one. I think I bought in a set from one of the pound
shops. These spritzer bottles come in sets of five or six and they are
marketed specifically for crafters. As you can see I’ve made a spray up of this
one. I have cut down the pipe so it’s about five millimeters short at the bottom
and I’ve added a metal ball bearing, just so when I shake that u,p it agitates any
solid that are in the bottle and stops it from clogging up the tube
and the actual spray head itself. I hope you found this video useful.
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