We’re asked pretty regularly for a list of our must-have tools and while we’re sure we’re forgetting something, here’s a rundown of our all-time favorites (most of which we store in the kitchen cabinet to the left of the stove- yes, we know we’re weird).
- Hammer and crowbar (no explanation required)
- Flat head screwdriver (for using with screws but also with a hammer as a makeshift chisel to pop off baseboards and trim)
- Tape measure (we have a huge beat up old Stanley one that we love)
- Phillips head screwdriver (another self-explanatory item)
- Plumber’s Putty, Liquid Nails and plumber’s tape (three major problem solvers that are always nice to have on hand)
- Box cutter, Exacto knife, straight razors (for everything from cutting vinyl tile to scraping paint off of a window or mirror)
- Channel lock pliers (we have a big one and a small one- they’re amazing for turning old rusted believed-to-be-unturnable nuts and bolts)
- Wrenches of all sizes (although we usually reach for the channel lock first since it’s such an all star)
- Needle nosed pliers (good for detail work and also handy since they have the wire cutting thing in the middle of the… uh, nose? mouth?)
- Level (because wonky is never a good look)
- Cordless drill (we have a little one for smaller jobs and a big manly battery operated one for the major stuff)
- Sandpaper (we like our electric sander but use regular old sandpaper and elbow grease far more- and we haven’t found sanding blocks that we like better than cheap sheets of sandpaper, so we stick to those… and save a few bucks while we’re at it).
- Caulk, a caulk gun, spackle and a putty knife (because it’s all about fixing those holes and cracks before painting- remember paint magnifies flaws instead of hiding them)
- Painter’s tape, high quality angled paint brushes (we love this one), paint trays, a roller extension rod, and high quality not-foam rollers (foam riles up paint and leaves you with more bubbles than the good quality wool and poly ones)
- An assortment of nails and screws (these are just things you should always have on stand-by so you don’t have to drive to Lowe’s or Home Depot fifty times per project thereby looking lame to the people at the cash register- we speak from experience here)
So there it is. A handy breakdown of our favorite tools. And since we know we’re forgetting something (or have yet to discover some life-changing tool) definitely let us know what you can’t live without when it comes to getting ‘er done.
Updated due to reader feedback: Respectful, constructive disagreement is welcome, but comments made to provoke others, be malicious, or distract from the purpose of this site will be removed.