Monday, August 22, 2016

Essential Crafting Tools by Tracy McLennon

Design team member Tracy McLennon is featuring our August Main and Creative kits today as she reveals several of her go-to crafting tools!


I know that I love to know what other avid crafters like to use in their day to day crafting. So today, I thought I would share some of my favourite tools of the trade. There things are always within reach when I craft.

First, I have to give a shout out to my circle punches. I would never give them up. I have had to replace a couple over time, as well as I do maintenance on them regularly to keep them sharp and punching well. By far, they are the punches I use the most. I have them ranging in size from 1/2” to 3” and everything in between.

You may or may not have noticed, but I ink the edges of my cardstock and patterned papers about 98% of the time. I vary sometimes in the colours, but I have 3 go to colours. First and most popular is a chocolate brown. Tsukineko Pearlescent Chocolate to be exact. Then I also use black ink from time to time, that is also a Tsukineko Coal Black ink. Then sometimes when I like a lighter look, I will ink in a light grey, ColorBox Cloud.

Paper Trimmer-
This is a big one. I could not create without my Fiskars 12” Rotary Blade Trimmer. Now, the one I use is now you remember the purple trimmers with the lime green cut surface? That is the trimmer I still use to date. It's no longer made, and the replacable cut surface bar, is also discontinued. So I bought up what I could and only have 2 of them left. It is so well used that the lime green surface with measurements on it, is almost all worn off. I've had to re draw measurements that I often use.
A plus to a good rotary trimmer is, I have never had to change the blade, just the cutting surface bar. I have had this trimmer for over 10 years now.

This is another very important one for me. People often have favourite pairs of scissors for one reason or another. I have 3 pairs in my bag. First, my all purpose scissors for fussy cutting, flag snipping etc. are a pair of Fiskars “Easy Action” Premier No.8. These are a 5” blade, large for fussy cutting...but it's what I like :) The big reason I LOVE these scissors, are that they are spring actioned. I suffer from joint pain, and not having to work both ways when cutting makes a huge difference in the amount of cutting I can do.
My second pair of scissors are the Micro Tip “Easy Action” scissors from Fiskars. I use the ONLY for ribbon. That way they always make a beautiful clean cut.
My third pair is a pair of Wescott Craft Titanium. They are non stick and I use them for cutting adhesive.

This is another very important part of crafting. So here are a few of my go to adhesives.
My all purpose adhesive is 1/2” acid free ATG, in my big yellow gun. I use this most often.
For slightly smaller paper items that need adhering I reach for my Tombow Stamp Runner, like a regular tape runner, but can also stamp adhesive dots onto smaller spaces.
I do a lot of 3D work, so I always have 2 thicknesses of 3D foam tape and squares. I'm not really brand specific here, just whatever I can get my hands on.
I will often use a hot glue gun for adhering flowers, metal stuff and buttons. Mostly becuase I don't have the patience to wait for most liquid adhesives to dry.
For adhering ribbon I LOVE Tombow Xtreme Adhesive, it will stick any type of ribbon like nobodys business.
Last but not least for a liquid adhesive I use Tombow Mono Aqua. I like the dual tip that makes it pretty darn versitile.


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