Beading Tools for Your Holiday Wish List
What if you had a magic beading genie at your disposal? You know, the kind that would bring you just about any beading tool you wanted with the snap of his fingers — if you had that kind of power, what would you ask for? Believe it or not, I think about that kind of stuff when I start browsing through beading supply websites. I mean, I can't have every beading tool that I would like to own, because there's just not enough room in my house for them all!
That said, I thought about what beading tools I would ask for, if I could have anything, and I was a little surprised at the final list of what I consider to be some of my favorite beading tools.
1. Bead On It Board. This one wasn't really much of a surprise. After I started using these luxurious beading boards, there was no way I was going to go back to my little scrap of Velux fabric! The Bead On It Boards are sturdy, comfortable, lightweight, and best of all, they have those fantastic little "bumpers" around the edges that keep my beads from rolling off in a zillion directions. (Which is kind of important when you do a lot of beading around a 5-year-old child and a 103-pound dog.) The Bead On It Board comes in a great variety of shapes and sizes, and best of all, I love the ever-changing array of fabrics to choose from!
2. Stamping Kit from ImpressArt. Okay, I have to admit, I was surprised when this one popped into my head, but it's true: I am now officially hooked on making stamped metal jewelry. It's just so easy, and so much fun, and I love being able to stamp out little pendants and earrings with my favorite Sanskrit yoga words on them, like "ohm", "namaste", and "shanti". There's just something about learning how to control that 1-pound brass hammer to create beautiful little metal discs for my jewelry-making projects that feels wonderful to me!
3. Xuron Fireline Cutters. Aside from the fishing line scissors that I discovered courtesy of bead artist NanC Meinhardt, my Xuron Heavy Duty Scissors are probably the best thread cutters I have ever used, hands down. They are easy to handle, get into tight corners for precision cuts, and aren't hard on my hands when I'm weaving in large numbers of thread tails. If you're going to splurge on a pair of high-quality thread cutters, the Xuron cutters are the way to go.
4. Mirrix Loom. Every serious beader should have a high-quality, small beading loom, and I don't hide the fact that I am completely in love with my Mirrix Loom. These are well-constructed, high quality, durable beading tools that are made in the United States by a mother-daughter owned small business. Of course, not every bead loom is perfect. The only thing I don't like about my Mirrix Loom is how easy it is to use with fibers instead of beads…because, like I mentioned earlier, I just don't have any more room in my house for yarns, fibers, and crafting supplies!
5. CraftOptics Telescopes. For years, I figured I was doing pretty good with my task lamp with the drop-down magnifier for when I needed to do fine detail work. But, then…I got my CraftOptics telescopes, and I was convinced. CraftOptics are the same types of magnifying lenses you see being worn by doctors, dentists, and other professionals who do important precision work. And why not for beaders, too? After using them for a few weeks, I noticed that my bead embroidery pieces were actually smoother, with straighter lines of beaded backstitch. Now, I'm at the point where I can't sit down to bead without first putting on my CraftOptics.
Want to see more beading tool top picks from an expert? Check out Marcia DeCoster's list of her favorite picks from the Beading Daily Shop, as well as her favorite beading tools and supplies!
What's on your beading tool wish list? Leave a comment here on the Beading Daily blog and share your beading tool wish list with us!