A few years ago, I picked up a box of plastic toothpicks from the grocery store. I don't remember why I wanted them originally, but since then they've become an indispensable tool in my work box. I don't use them all the time, but they're my go-to tool for any project involving really tiny dots of glue or paint.
1. They can be carved into a sharp point. Wooden toothpicks (top) normally come with a slightly sharper point than plastic toothpicks (middle). However, the plastic picks can easily be carved to apply pinpricks of glue (bottom).
2. They can be cleaned. When glue or paint builds up on the tip of a wooden toothpicks, it's time to change toothpicks. When this happens with the plastic toothpicks, I just scrape the glue off with a fingernail, and keep on going! I find this especially helpful when I'm working with dots of glue about 1mm. The tiny amounts of glue dry almost immediately. One plastic toothpick saves me about half a box of wooden toothpicks when I'm working on a complex beaded handbag design!
3. They are disposable.Unlike more elaborate tools, the plastic toothpicks don't need to last more than one project. If I use them for super glue, I can just throw the glue-covered toothpick away when I'm done.
Have I convinced you? What's your favorite way to apply tiny dots of glue? Do you use toothpicks, fine tipped squeeze bottles or syringes, a corsage pin, or some other tool?
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