Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Tools of the Trade - The Unsung Heroes in My Toolbox

As a jewelry artist, I use many of the tools you probably imagine...scissors, pliers of every type you can imagine, a hammer, etc., but I'm always amused by some of the little things I use every time I sit down to bead...tiny things that were they to vanish, my work would become uber-frustrating.  (I'd probably even throw something.)  First up is the Jump Ring Tool!  This little booger is so important to my work that I have at least 3 of them stashed everywhere in my home.  It allows me to open and close jump rings without destroying their shape and purpose.  I wear it on my index fingers, and I've left the house with it on more times than I'd like to admit.  I don't usually notice until my hands are on the steering wheel, lol.

Next up is adhesive measuring tape! I cannot and will NOT live without this stuff.  There isn't a working surface (including my desk) that isn't already lined with the stuff.  It makes life so, so, so much easier to be able to look down and quickly measure something while your hands are full of beads, chain, and a cookie.  (Okay, just kidding about the cookie.)  I use the cheap stuff and the last time I bought it, I didn't pay attention and bought a brand without inches AND centimeters.  Word to the wise:  Don't Do That.  The tape repeats in 1' sections, and you'll be tempted to measure everything.

Finally, there's the handy dandy drill bit.  I've been stamping metal for about 6 months now, and this little guy makes great punctuation and cool designs, too.  Without him, I'd never be able to finish a sentence.  Best dollar I ever spent!

Hope you've enjoyed this peek into my tool box!  What quirky tools do you use every day that you'd sooner die than part with?



  1. My bead mat. I use a small one, but since my cats usually sit on it, I may have to get one larger.

    I bought a jump ring holder, but can't seem to get the gist of it. I'd rather use 2 pliers. Would you please take pics of it in use?


  2. Linda,
    Here's a vid on youtube that shows you how: