Sunday, 29 March 2015

Not all Glues are Equal

My husband is always amazed by the amount of different things I need for my craft room. Seldom do we go out window shopping without me saying 'I could do with..'.  Luckily he has his own hobbies so he is not immune to doing the same thing himself and can't really complain at me doing it. People in glass houses and all  that.

However, he does get to use my stuff sometimes and he often comes in my craft room and asks if I have a glue that can stick something odd together. At which point I just raise an eyebrow in the style of  Roger Moore and say 'Of course I have!'  Glues and tapes are stock in trade of any crafter.

So why do we need so many? Won't one thing do it all? Well, no. No one product will do it all. Some will do most things, some are specialised, some are good and some are next to useless.

Let me start with glue guns, those nifty tools that can be heaven or hell, depending on what you have and what you are using it for and the glue you buy for it.


This is my favourite glue gun for fine work. It's tiny, very light and has a detachable cable so you can use it without being plugged in for a minute or two. It also has a very fine point as you can see, which makes it great for getting into small places and delicate sticking jobs.
Now, when it comes to the glue sticks, they all seem to do the job but there is a difference. In colour. I'm not talking about coloured sticks per se, rather that they seem to be slightly different in tint or opacity. 

The ones on the left are ever so slightly milky, while the ones on the right have a blue/white tint.  If anyone knows of a brand of 7mm sticks that comes out like glass, I'd love to know about it! Why? Because I like to use glue for embellishments like this (normally done much better than that one, it was just a test piece). I use a Pilot gold pen to highlight shapes. It adds another dimension.


The problem with glue guns is what makes them work in the first place. Hot glue. I know from experience what it feels like to get a spurt of that stuff up your forearm and I don't recommend it. (Hubby was trying to free his blocked one and accidentally got it over me.) So, if you are clumsy, maybe it is best to avoid them.

Here are some of the glues I use.


Top left is a silicone glue. Cheap, good for sticking card and paper, it doesn't make paper wet like some glues do. However, in a bottle form it lacks good control.
The Tesa (back horizontal in pic) is a similar formula, only it has one pointed end and one spreader end, so the best of both worlds. I got that one from Aldi.
Sakura Quickie Glue (horizontal front) is like a ball point pen only glue comes out. The downfall is that it is not very strong, so has a limited use.
The Zig 2 Way Glue is wonderful. It is like a felt tip, is available in different nib sizes. The glue comes out pale blue but dries clear and it will stick most things, including metal backed stones to paper. I love it. It can be used two ways - normal and a temporary stick if you let it dry a bit first.
Bostick do a similar version only it is not tinted. This chunky one has not really been tested by me yet, so I reserve judgement.
Lastly there is Gem Tac. This is a permanent adhesive suitable for putting gems on clothing that will be washed by machine. It takes 24 hours to cure fully but after that you're ready to go.
You may wonder why I have not included general purpose white glue. It is because I just don't use it much. It makes paper and card buckle, takes a long while to cure and is therefore, not a favourite.

What is your favourite glue and what do you use it for? Are there any that you regret buying? Use the comment box to let me know!

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