24 Genius Crafting Tips from Our Readers
See what general crafting tips and tricks our readers have to offer.
Whether you're new to crafting and are looking for some tips and tricks or you're a veteran crafter who's been doing this for years, everyone can appreciate a little advice from other people who are doing the same things you do.
We asked the readers of our Quick and Crafty newsletter for their best crafting tricks, and they delivered. These 24 Genius Crafting Tips from Our Readers are tried-and-true techniques that have made crafters' lives easier. Try them out and see if they can help you, too!
Note: These are pieces of general crafting advice. If you want specific tips for knitting and crochet, take a look at these 16 Crochet and Knitting Tips You Need.
Quick Crafting Tips From Our Readers
We asked - you answered! Check out these general crafting tips and tricks from readers of the FaveCrafts Quick and Crafty email newsletter.
- I use one of those mats that you put in your oven (to protect it from baked-on spills) for my hot glue gun. It keeps anything from getting on my work surface and nothing sticks to it. - Diane Rice
- To keep all my craft tools and scraps organized, I put everything into an old tackle box that used to belong to my dad. - Debra O.
- Soak your paint brushes in warm vinegar to remove old paint and gunk! - Jean M.
- Line a styrofoam tray (with sides) with a sheet of felt - black or white works best. When you are working with beads, needles, or straight pins, anything that drops will be contained in the tray and won't bounce or roll away. It makes clean up much easier, too. - Janet
- Save all of your plastic containers and glass jars. You never know when you will need them for a craft! - Delma L.
- If you put Vaseline on the tip of your glue gun, you will not get those annoying glue strings on your project. - Denise B.
- When painting on cloth items - T-shirts and such - use a embroidery hoop. Embroidery hoops come in various sizes, and you will be able to pull your cloth tight without slippage, which can sometimes occur on a cardboard form. They also are helpful when painting a detailed section. - Martha H.
- Putting a shelf liner under your sewing machine keeps it in place when sewing. - Paula C.
- Silicone baking cups are marvelous for sorting beads and small parts. The best part is, they stack nicely between work sessions and will fit into a plastic zipper bag while stacked, keeping everything secure and dust-free if it will be a while before you can return to work (or if you have curious cats or kids). - Elizabeth S.
- Use binder clips or magnets to hold the edges of fabric together. They're easier to move than pins, won't prick your fingers, and are noticeable so you won't forget about them. - Harley Heaps
- Buy crafting supplies at the end of each season. You'll always have supplies and deep discounts. - Bennie S.
- When using your hot glue gun, use a hair dryer when you're finished. It will melt the hairs of glue left on your project. - Kriss
- Use a damp magic eraser to clean your iron. Use hydrogen peroxide to remove blood spots from fabric. - Barbara Dison
- Always measure twice so you only have to cut something once and not waste! - Melanie M.
- You can easily clean up small beads, sequins, and glitter using a lint roller. - Kathy Hayes
- My crafting tip (which I STILL have to remind myself of almost daily) is to READ THE ENTIRE PATTERN before starting! Seriously, even at almost 60, I cannot believe how many projects I start and then put on hold because I am missing a something that is needed. - Kathy R.
- To store small craft supplies, use an over-the-door hanging organizer. Most come with clear plastic pockets so that you can easily see what is in each. This type of organizer makes use of wasted space, freeing up the crafting area. I use mine to hold thread spools, ribbon rolls, glue sticks, craft wire, and much more! - Irena J.
- A large package of baby wipes is a must-have for cleaning up any craft. It's great for cleaning paint, glitter, glue - you name it! - Linda F.
- My favorite crafting tip is to save all my favorite craft tutorials and ideas in PDF form and build them into a book, which I can print out or save on a disc for future reference. - Tracy R.
- Don't be afraid to mix media. Use clay for beads in your wire work, use knitted patterns or strands in your beaded jewelry, or use quilled charms or make paper beads for your jewelry making. Mixed media always catches the eye and gives you so many more options! - Chrissy Neibarger
- When you are making a project that only needs a specific area glued, take a little petroleum jelly and rub it around that area. The petroleum jelly acts as a barrier so the other parts of the project won't stick! - Christina
- One craft tip that I use pretty often is "recycling" business magnets. You know, the magnets that you get as freebies that you know will never see the fridge door since the first thing we do is stick them in the kitchen "junk" drawer. I take wallet-size school pics or any fun postcards and glue them to the magnets. - Brienne R.
- When hand-sewing a tough material, such as leather or denim, a thimble and a bar of soap are handy to have nearby. Push the tip of your needle into the bar of soap to make it easier to push through the fabric. - Lori S.
- My best crafting tip is to subscribe to the FaveCrafts Quick and Crafty email newsletter! - Cheryl S.
Let us know:
Is there something we missed? What other tips do you have?