My {Five} Must Have Tools | Live Pretty on a Penny

My {Five} Must Have Tools

One of the most frequently asked questions that I receive has to be about my aresnal of tools. DIY'ing would be a lot harder, or nearly impossible without these trusted items below.  I am one of those girls that sometimes heads to The Home Depot or Lowes just to take a look at a particular tool on my wishlist in person. As of now, I've invested in some of the larger ones that I have received more than a return on, based on the amount of times that I have used it vs. how much it would have cost if I rented it each time. Some are tools that I have listed don't require a big investment, but still provide a big bang for the buck.

1) Hot Glue Gun

My hot glue gun is my go-to for projects that would normally require the skill of a seamstress, but work for people like me :) with a lack of hand/eye coordination . Hot glue guns are great for gluing fabrics, stones, crystals or whatever to hard or soft surfaces, hemming curtains, or creating no-sew pillows. For more ideas on hot glue gun uses, click here.

2)  Tile Saw


During our fireplace makeover, this tile saw was our best friend, helping us to cut our tile to fit where needed. Its main uses are creating clean cuts for ceramic and porcelain tile. It works for tile projects big or small, and at an $89 investment, it was totally worth the money.   We will be putting this baby to use during our kitchen backsplash update as well. Be sure to keep your hands away from the blade and wear protective facial gear (eyes and nose).

3)  Tape Measure

Tackling pretty much any project requires usage of this item. Rather I am looking measure for new curtains, crown molding, fabric, flooring, countertops, or WHATEVER, this little guy comes in handy. It measures in a straight line or on a curve.  If you don't own one, I highly recommend getting one:) Dollar Tree has them for a buck!

4)  Mitre Saw


I know by looking at the picture, this seems pretty complicated to use, but really it's not. I have used it on several occasions to wood and molding for my bookshelves. I got my first tutorial in using this from my hall closet project, cutting the wood pieces. The great thing about this tool is that if you ever want to cut wood, or MDF at various angles, or just cut a clean line on a 2x4, this tool is for you. Again, be sure to keep your hands away from the blade and wear protective facial gear (eyes and nose).  At first my husband was scared to let me use it on my own out of fear that I would cut my fingers off, but he got over it. I believe we paid $100 for it. Renting over time or at different times would have been waay more. 

5)  Power Drill & Stud Finder


These two for me go hand in hand.  In order to know where I should drill on a wall, I use my stud finder to locate the stud.  Assuming that everyone may not knows what a stud is, click here:) Drilling in the stud allows the screw to be more secure than just drilling through straight drywall.  I rarely use a screw driver. Why should I? My drill gets the job done in seconds, and works on adjustable speed for more delicate uses.  They both work great if you are putting up curtains, hanging floating shelves, etc.

So there you have it my fine folks! Now you know how I complete most of my projects. I have other things that I use, but these are my staples. If you have any questions, drop me a line!

Until next time!

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  1. I so need a lesson from you on that Mitre and Tile saw! Ive turned into a glue gun maniac recently too!

  2. I just read your post about your fireplace, it turned out lovely!! I want to DIY a backslash in our laundry room - so thank you for all the tips & making it look easy :)

  3. great tools and i have a couple of these too!


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