DIY Toolkit: Get the Inside Scoop on a Crafter’s Go-to Supply List

When it comes to do-it-yourself crafting, novices and beginners alike can agree on one thing: it takes a laundry list of supplies to turn a vision into reality. Luckily, each piece in a DIYer’s toolkit has the potential to serve as the foundation for dozens of projects, making the bang-for-your-buck factor a consistent guarantee. Take hot glue, for example. One $10 gun and a package of glue sticks from the craft store allows you to dream big in your studio. From DIY holiday wreaths and no-sew curtains, to lamp shade embellishments and paper pinwheels, this single supply could easily turn an idle afternoon into a productive one. So enjoy our list of DIY “must-have” supplies, including favorite brands and real-life examples and illustrations.

Clear Stain
When working with wooden furniture, it’s amazing the difference a couple coats of clear stain can make. As for brands, Minwax is a favorite.

Gold Glitter
Gold finishes are all the rage this season, and glitter is an inexpensive (and fun!) way to achieve the look. Seen here, it easily updates a brass candle holder.

Washi Tape
Available in just about any color and pattern under the sun, washi tape is my go-to finishing material. Wrap around toothpicks for a fun flag-shaped embellishment!

Super Glue
Nothing has more staying power than super glue. I recently used it to create a perfume stand, by gluing a candle holder to the bottom of a vintage glass plate.

Plastic Stencil
Don’t have the patience to hand paint intricate details? Use a plastic stencil to get the look in a fraction of the time. I’m a big fan of Royal Design Studio products.

Painter Tape
Create your own game table using ScotchBlue masking tape cut into squares. Cover the rest of the table with a bag, and then use spray paint to create the pattern.

Spray Paint
No single DIY tool gets used more often in our house than spray paint. This Goodwill lamp base got a whole new lease on life with a couple coats of teal.

Mod Podge
Revert back to your grade school days with this all-purpose material. It acts as both a sealant and an adhesive, making it a regular star in my studio.

DIY Gift Packaging
Although the subtly rising cost of gift wrap each new season hasn’t gone unnoticed, there’s no denying that it ends up playing a big part in the look of our holiday décor. As the gift pile grows beneath the tree throughout the month of December, the impact of the colors and patterns you choose emerges as a major player in the look and feel of your space.

Happily, we have an inexpensive alternative to store-bought paper that is easy on the wallet and the eyes. Simply by embellishing a plain foundation of brown paper, you can customize the finished pattern to suit your individual style. Put on some holiday music, pour a mug of hot chocolate and craft up the perfect gift wrap all your own.

■ Brown packaging paper
■ Scissors
■ Scotch tape
■ Washi tape in assorted patterns and colors

■ Cut the brown paper to size and use the clear tape to secure it in place
■ Once all of your packages have been wrapped, grab the washi tape and wrap several lengths around the brown paper, meeting the ends at the back.
■ Layer the tape, getting creative with color and pattern. With this project, the more random, the better!

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