Mugful of Craft Tools

Most crafters agree they have too much craft stuff lying around, but share an organizational problem: what to do with it all? A challenge & poll led to netizen crafters' brainstorming & creativity, plus some interesting stats!

The Mugful Story

I recently began using mugs to store smaller, more frequently-accessed craft tools. This puts everything in one place while allowing me to add a fun, but functional, decor item to the room.

As I enjoyed my new crafting organization, I wondered: if all I kept to craft with had to fit in this mug, what would stay? What would go? The mug no longer just said "storage solution" to me, but also "simplify."

I asked online crafters how they would simplify their craftroom (or corner of the living room, or wherever) if they could only keep one mugful of craft tools. By “tools,” I excluded supplies (such as bolts of fabric) as well as equipment (like sewing machines).

Some crafters posted a photo of their mugful:

Poll Results

Crafters at, several groups, and right here at voted on the top 3 tools they’d have to keep.

The Top 3's Top 3:

Scissors (over half the crafters would include scissors), knife or other cutter, and, to my complete surprise (since I never use them in crafting), pliers!

Complete results (by % of crafters who'd include each in their top 3):

58% scissors
39% knife or cutter
32% pliers
25% writing utensil (pen, pencil, chalk)
25% ruler
21% knitting needles
18% tape measure
18% sewing or embroidery needles
14% seam ripper
14% paint brush
11% crochet hook
11% pincushion
7% small torch
4% hammer
4% chopstick
4% glue
4% stitch markers
Of course, responses were biased based on particular trades... I wouldn't suggest building a craft supply emporium based on these numbers! Do enjoy the stats, though; it's fun!

...and you?

Whether you do this as a mental exercise or actually pull out a mug, go through your stash, and try to stock it with just the essentials, it is a helpful activity that aids in simplification priority-making. Do you really need to keep all three size H crochet hooks?

Using the options in the poll results above, comment on this post with your top 3. If you take a photo, post it on our flickr group.