I've never been one to fall for the latest and greatest gadget. I don't own any of the big, fancy tools. I go for simple.
My favorite tools are:
Tonic Scissors-I've owned many scissors in my life. I swore up and down that I didn't want or "need" these. A friend of mine encouraged me to pick them up and put them in my hands. I fell in love. The grip is perfect. They cut well (yes, there are "teeth" on one side of the scissors. Flip the scissors over and the teeth go away for a nice straight cut.) I've had mine many years and they are still nice and sharp.
For traveling on an airplane, I paid a few bucks for a pair of rounded scissors (with a protective cap and in pink) from JetPens. They are sooo much better than kids' scissors. I can fly with them and not have to worry about someone confiscating them.
Bone folder-used for folding, scoring, burnishing, rub-on letter transfers and all things that involve smooshing something down. It can also be used to tear paper if your ruler is buried under piles of paper. One of my best investments!
Glue stick-my glue sticks of choice are: Coccoina, Tombo (permanent), Scotch (permanent), Avery (permanent). Anything labeled permanent is usually fair game. Coccoina is my favorite (a great source for it is here). I love the 40 gram size as it lasts a longggg time. Smells good, too.
Metal ruler-Yes, you can use it to measure. I use it to tear. I have about four metal rulers. The smallest ruler I have is 6" (perfect for the airplane) while the largest is 36" (perfect for tearing large sheets of paper down.) The trick to tearing is instead of grabbing the paper and tearing up towards you, hold it and if you're right handed, place the part of the paper you want to tear on the right side of the ruler. Hold the paper at an angle so that you don't tear up towards you but instead tear to the left. Keep the tear going against the edge of the ruler as you tear. It takes a bit of practice but it does work!
Old rag-I use an old rag for burnishing papers down. Anytime I glue, I have my handy rag nearby and I gently burnish the papers down to the page.
Old catalogs or magazines are my favorite gluing surface. When I'm done, I toss it in the recycling bin.
Additional favorite tools:
Glue dots- I love mini, permanent glue dots for attaching transparencies to the page. A little dot of glue in each corner, smoosh down and I'm good to go.
My 14+ year old Fiskars rotary paper trimmer. I use it exclusively to cut matboard. I've never had to change the blade (only the little rubber strip under the blade.) It slices through matboard like butter.
Staz-On ink pad in black (stamps on everything including tape and transparencies.)
Rubber stamps-will get their own post soon.
Pens-got their own post yesterday.
Gel medium (has its own post here.)
Glue brushes-I use cheap bristle brushes. Harbor Freight has the best price on them. You can get a whole box for about $5. I don't like foam brushes. You use them once and then toss them. I like the bristle/chip brushes as I can wash them with a little soap and use them repeatedly.
What are your favorite tools?