What’s in Your Toolbox: Our Favorites

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Peeking into the these toolboxes is a bit like looking in the host’s medicine cabinet where you’re at a dinner party. (Not that I would know.) But it is quite revealing and it’s fun to see what people consider to be their must-have items. There might even be something that makes its way onto your own wish list. (Click through the name to see more of the studio spaces for each of the artists).  –Amy

*If you want to see more of our What’s in Your Toolbox column, click here.

Image above: Cynthia Warren’s toolbox for her work in hand-lettering, calligraphy and illustration (she did the menu designs for Chez Panisse!).

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Image above: Childhood friends Mark Warren and Chris Pence have converted a 120-year-old farmhouse in the hills of North Carolina into a ceramic studio called Haand. Mark uses his grandfather’s drafting tools whenever he works on a new project.

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Image above: Brooklyn-based jewelry designer Aaron Ruff creates pieces inspired by everything from history to literature for the line “Digby & Iona.”


See more toolboxes after the jump!

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Image above: Ceramicist Michele Michael lives part of the year in Maine and creates pieces with glaze colors and forms that are inspired by nature.

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Image above: Milliner Ashley Lloyd couples delicate materials like flowers and feathers with macabre elements such as insects and animal skulls for her elaborate hat creations in her New York City studio.

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Image above: Blogger Bri Emery has a toolbox filled with little trinkets that inspired her design work.

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Image above: Frances Palmer creates the most gorgeous hand thrown pottery. (We peeked into her Connecticut home and studio a few months ago.)

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Image above: Australian stylist Sibella Court has an amazing prop collection and huge collection of paper. At the top of her paper collecting list? A huge stash of all varieties of brown paper.

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Image above: Keith Johnson, the legendary buyer-at-large for Anthropologie, travels the globe looking for treasures so it’s no wonder that his toolbox is a well-worn passport, his suitcase and camera.

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Image above: Artist and illustrator Emily Cox has a rather diverse toolbox.

  1. Nina says:

    Love looking at people’s tool boxes. So much better than the usual, women’s magazine look into people’s purses. Love Aaron Ruff’s best.

  2. Melissa says:

    I have power tools, A Dremel tool, vintage tools from my dad, not to mention my metalsmithing tools

  3. Liz says:

    I wish I could say my tool box is this beautiful! Mine looks more like a paint-splattered shoe box… Does anyone know of an attractive storage solution for an eclectic mix of small art supplies?

  4. This is great idea! Seeing what people have in their tool boxes really gives you a glimpse of their hobbies and creative proclivities. This way you also have an inkling on how they want to spend their free time.

    I have to admit though, it was the set of pottery tools that got my attention. Pottery is something I have always wanted to learn. One could easily learn patience and gentleness alongside learning the art, which I think adds to the boon. One of these days, I might just get the courage and the time to finally try it

  5. Courtney K says:

    This has always been my favorite column!

  6. Jen Ruhman says:

    I love all these toolboxes, it’s amazing to see what everyone uses to fine tune their crafts.

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