Tuesday, March 28, 2006

26 hours and counting

Ugh. Yes, 26 solid hours of baby stomach bug, and it's still going strong. I've spent a lot of time washing things: pajamas, sheets, rugs. In fact, it was while washing the living room rug that this post started to materialize. See #12 below for an explanation.

There's an article in Forbes about the top 20 tools of all time. But they've got it all wrong, at least from a crafter's perspective. I mean, really: the harness? Clearly, we've got our own lists of the most important tools out there.

I've been thinking lately about all the great products and tools that exist that I'm not aware of. I had never heard of Gocco until I started blogging, and my Grandma just told me about a rotary cutter she's using to make faux chenille. I'm sure there are lots of other things out there that I don't know about and that might be really useful. So I was thinking that if we each post our favorite tools and products maybe we can learn about new things from each other. Of course, many of the best crafting tools are obvious, but it's fun to see what other people use and value most.

If you participate in this, drop me an email with a link to your post and I'll put all the links together in one post.

Here's my list:

1. The pencil. In my case, the Koh-I-Noor Rapidomatic mechanical pencil.

2. The rotary cutter and self-healing mat. I can't believe I ever sewed without it.
3. The sewing machine. Need I say more?
4. The computer. I mean, how else would we bloggy types communicate with eachother?

5. These nifty see-through plastic rulers. I use them for everything because you can line up your cutting lines precisely with them.
6. Knitting needles. Of course. If I were a crocheter I'd add the crochet hook, but I'll leave that for someone else's list.
7. Sewing needles. Ditto.
8. Muslin. Isn't it great? I like the natural, unbleached quality of it. I first started using it in design school, and now I find myself using it more and more for a variety of projects.

9. Spectra acrylic paints. They're great for all sorts of surfaces, including fabric, wood, magnets, etc. I like using them for t-shirts because the paint stays pliable when it dries.
10. The loom. I'm actually a little surprised that Forbes missed this one.

11. Fabrico inks and Speedy Cut printing blocks. Perfect for making your own stamps and printing them on fabric. Those nifty white Pentel polymer erasers should really be listed here too; they're great for making little stamps.

12. Eucalan wool wash. What's so special about it? It leaves knits and sweaters really soft, and you don't rinse it out after washing. I also use it to wash the baby's Robeez shoes. And this is where I pull together my entire post: this stuff is great for cleaning vomit off the carpet! It dawned on me in the middle of the night that it might work, and I'm pleased with the results so far.

So there you have it: crafting products that even have other fantastic uses. And now I'm going to put all the crafting materials away and go to bed for some much-needed sleep. I'm hoping for a well-hydrated, vomit-free Wednesday.

One other unrelated item: Todd wrote an interesting post/book review today that involves Gee's Bend quilts. Just thought you might be interested.


  1. Anonymous10:00 PM

    Great list Liesl, I have only one tool to add, but as I'm a novice it really does seem the most important: my Quick Unpick. I think they are also called seam rippers.

  2. Anonymous10:14 PM

    I love that you posted this list! I will have to get thinking in hopes of adding something interesting!

    The spectra paints look great. My acrylics alwas put out a shiny surface and matte medium just chanes their color. Here is my question, are the sprectras matte and milky without being pastelly?

    Thanks for any info you can provide and thanks again for this terrific post!!

  3. sorry about baby bug hanging on... what a drag....

    GREAT list! love it!!

  4. Fabulous post, especially for one laid low. My deepest sympathy for anyone knee deep in puke :-(

    Have posted on this on my blog.

  5. Anonymous1:26 AM

    Where do you get the Spectra paints?

    I have to agree with Allison, the seam ripper would definitely be on my list!