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What’s in a Home Decorator’s Bag of Tricks?

By Katharine Kaye McMillan, Patricia Hart McMillan

Part of Home Decorating For Dummies Cheat Sheet

As a home decorator, you never know when you’ll need to create some magic. Take a tip from professional home decorators: Pack a portable carry-all filled with all the must-haves of the trade — suggestions are in the following list — and you’ll have decorating magic to go!

Glue gun: Use this for a variety of decorating and
crafts projects.
Pins: Keep straight pins and safety pins for draping and
shaping.
Hammer: Choose one that lets you hammer in nails and pry
them up, too. Pick a size that fits comfortably in your hand.
Plate hangers: Look for these in different sizes for
both small and large plates.
Magic Hem: Iron-on Magic Hem creates seams without
sewing. It’s available at grocery stores and craft or sewing
shops.
Screwdriver set: Pick a pack that includes several sizes
of both standard and Phillips head (cross-shaped head)
screwdrivers. Don’t use the wrong size or style driver —
you’ll destroy the screw.
Measuring tape: A 25-foot retractable steel tape works
best.
Screws: Choose a variety pack of styles and sizes.
Nail kit: Look for a set that includes a variety of
sizes for various jobs. Or assemble your own, including fine nails,
long nails, short nails, and finishing nails.
Tool kit, tackle box, bucket, or basket: Use this for
storing your gear. Keep it handy for quick fix-its and instant
decorating.
Notebook: Pick one that has unlined sheets (for
sketching and note-taking) and is small enough to fit inside your
tool kit.
Velcro: This comes in handy for making items such as
easy-to-remove slipcovers.
Picture hangers: Use these to make hanging art
easier.
Wire: Use wire for hanging, fixing, and holding
things.