Favorite Tools

Hey guys!

We love sharing our VERY favorite tools with you!  Many of you want to know what you need to get started.  This page is just for you!

These are tools that we recommend.  We use them on an almost daily basis, and LOVE them!

So… In no particular order… Here we go!

What saw do we use?

We are HUGE fans of Home Depot’s Ryobi Brand!


Make sure to check out their amazing site Ryobi Nation!  You can share your projects there and enter to win monthly giveaways… So cool!

Ryobi Nation - boombox1

We use the Ryobi 10″ Sliding Compound Miter Saw

Ryobi Miter Saw

Another GREAT tool that we use all of the time is a brad nailer!  You will use this bad boy ALL the time.

Here is our favorite…

Ryobi AirStrike Cordless Brad Nailer

Ryobi AirStrike Battery Nailer

For those of you looking for a saw to do simple crafts with, we recommend a small hand saw like this one.  This is what I started with!  I still pull it out occasionally for small projects.  It’s great for so many of the projects we have done on our site!

That’s a stocking stuffer gals!  Come on… You will thank me!  This is a perfect ‘craft’ saw, and you would be shocked at how many projects you can do with it!

A Jig Saw is a small hand held saw that is great for cutting more decorative pieces.   This is the jig saw we use!


Ryobi Cordless Jig Saw

Our Favorite Drill

A drill is like a hot glue gun.  You will use it ALL the time.  This is the drill that both Ash and I use it and we LOVE it.  It’s lightweight and so powerful at the same time! Legit.

Don’t forget your drill bits!

Every great drill needs a bunch of drill bits!  I have LOTS of sets.  I use them all the time!  This is a great set below.

Kreg Jig 

Obviously, one of our very favorite tools is the Kreg Jig!  This tool is the best thing ever!  If you are serious about wanting to build furniture like we do, we TOTALLY recommend this tool!


If the entire kit is out of your budget, you can also buy the Kreg Jig by itself below!

Another AMAZING tool that we use almost daily is a finish sander.  This tool is not a must, but saves a ton of time and work.  I use mine on a ton of craft projects.  I like to round my edges when I do photo blocks and other small crafts.  This takes care of it quick!  It’s also great for furniture building!

This is our all time favorite sander!  It’s easy to hold, lightweight and again… So powerful!

Ryobi Corner Cat Sander

Ryobi Corner Cat Finish Sander

 Staple Gun

Ash and I love crafting with our staple guns!

These are cheap, and will get as much use as your hot glue gun.

And let’s not forget about a tape measure!  Seems like a no brainer… BUT… We definitely have a FAV.  We love the smaller size of this tape measure and it’s auto-lock feature! Time Saver!  And cheap!

Our list is short!  You really can do so much with a small investment of tools.  We know for many of you they are intimidating.  We are here to prove just the opposite!  We have made it our goal to prove to you guys that these tools aren’t scary or difficult to use.  Building your own furniture really is easier than assembling prefabricated furniture from big box stores!

Let us know if you have any questions!!

Thanks so much for stopping by!!

Have a great weekend!

~Shanty Sisters

  • Kelly Mason

    Was wondering and thinking about buying a router to add to my collection, do you have any recommendations for a novice like myself? Do you use a router and if so what kind…plung, compact ect…

  • Greener17

    I’m starting out with woodworking and I have to say I love your site and the Free plans from Jays Creations are amazing. I’m getting the Kreg pocket tool and then then nail gun and I can’t wait to start have a go at some of your work plans.

  • Tori L

    What type of safety gear do you use/recommend? I noticed some sort of ear plugs in the drill video.

  • Ellie

    Do you have any videos or tips on which clamps work best for different projects?I know it sounds so simple but I feel like I’m missing something. I have all types of clamps yet I still have trouble trying to decide which to use for which project/angle/etc, and as a beginner I’m really happy with my end products – but always seem to notice myself thinking “if only I had clamped that a better way, it would be straitghter (or the angle would be more exact, etc!!!)” Thank you!!!

  • *golden* shop

    Thank you so much for this post. I have been a dream-builder for YEARS and have always half-assed it with hand saws and an electric screwdriver! I’ve never known where to start and what tools to even buy to create my dream inventions! Your tutorials are amazing and I was hoping I would find a post on your blog to tell me what tools to go out to buy. This is amazing and will be how I spend my birthday money this year! :) Keep on building like a girl!

  • Sheila Wilson

    Thanks for all the advice – I have purchased everything on your list and nothing has let me down. Easy to use and love the safety features. Now I would like to get a table saw to finish out my trim and casing projects…any recommendations?

    • http://www.shanty-2-chic.com/ Shanty2Chic

      Awesome Sheila! So happy to hear! We both have the Ryobi table saw and love it!!!

  • Roxann Strother Byrd

    I have just fell in love with your site! I am finishing up my first project by making a headboard, and I’m hooked on DIY! What would you recommend be the 1st tool to start with?

  • Mallory

    I am so inspired by y’all! I just bought and moved into my first home so I already have a DIY list as long as my arm. As a single- though I prefer the term “independent”- lady, I will be doing as much around the house as possible and will likely be making shelving, tables, and ledges more than anything else. I am convinced I need a Kreg Jig but I was just wondering if you have any insight into differences between the K4 and K5? I assume since they came out with the K5, there must be changes/improvements from the K4, but I wonder if it’s worth the difference in price. Thanks!

  • Rebecca

    Okay, ladies! I have been building up my courage to begin woodworking – thanks to you guys! I just made $1000 on a contract project (for work) and am using the check to buy everything you recommend here! Yay! :)
    I don’t see what sawhorse you recommend for the sliding compound miter saw or some of the smaller things (e.g., eye and ear protection) you recommend to build a (currently non-existing) wood shop for a novice like me. If you recommend – I will buy. :)
    Thank you!

    • http://www.shanty-2-chic.com/ Shanty2Chic

      Hi Rebecca!
      This message made our day and we are so excited for you! There is actually a Ryobi saw stand that would work perfectly for your new saw! We like to have both shaded and clear work goggles and we love our Ryobi headphones! Please share some pics of your new wood shop as soon as you get it all set!! Congratulations :)

  • Kayla

    If you were going to buy one of the Ryobi tool combos which one would you recommend?

  • http://conraddesigns-indy.com jonathan

    I noticed in a recent picture one of you upgraded to a Ridgid mitre saw. How would you compare it to the Ryobi? I’ve found that my Ryobi isn’t precise enough. It’s either adjusted for 45 or 90 degree cuts, but not both.

    • http://www.shanty-2-chic.com/ Shanty2Chic

      Hey Jonathan!
      We upgraded simply to cut 4x’s. We never noticed an issue with our cuts. I would reach out to them on their Facebook page and ask!! Hope this help:)

  • Sheila Wilson

    Hi! Any recommendations for a table saw?

  • Melanie Henry Osborn

    Hey! I absolutely love your blog!!! :-) Btw, I was wondering if you wear a face mask when sanding, staining, sealing, and etc.. And if so, what type/brand do you use for each task?

  • Chaka C Terrell

    I love your work. You inspire me. What is your saw sitting on? Do you suggest purchasing a circular saw and a miter saw?

  • Holly Barosh

    Hi girls-
    I just purchased the kreg jig 5. Can you tell me what i else I need that may work with this tool? I’m beginning and would love your input.

    Thanks! Holly

  • Mackenzie

    Love yall’s site! Quick question… what kind of saw would you recommend for a beginner in woodworking? I’m a long time crafter and just got a sander and drill this past Christmas, which I love! I’ve been using them both non-stop. I want to start building some small furniture pieces but have no power tools other than those, and I don’t have experience using any saws. Some say to buy a jigsaw and use it for everything, but that it doesn’t cut straight, and others say to get a circular saw and use an attachment to cut angles instead of buying a miter saw. Any help would be great!!

    • Sheila Wilson

      I am also a beginner and bought the miter saw shown here. It is worth every penny (bought the saw and stand-$200-300). It’s enough to just learn how to build but if you have to come up with complicated ways to work with the wood you will be so frustrated and disappointed. Will take all the pleasure and satisfaction out of it. If you are gonna do it, do it right and get the right tools. Good luck!!!

  • Sharon

    I’m new to your site and let me start off by saying I LOVE what I see so far!! I’m super pumped to try some of your projects as I’ve never built anything myself. I’ve only dabbled in refinishing furniture, so might as well just build my own! Thank you for such an awesome site with such great tutorials, I haven’t seen anything so specific yet and I’m thrilled to have stumbled across it. Question about tools as I’m going to try to build up my stock over the next few months: do you recommend a nail gun? Or is a drill with drill bits enough for simple project? If you do recommend a nail gun, which one? Thank you!

  • Cheryl

    I have been able to acquire many of the tools you all have suggested along with a few Ana suggested over the past few months. I absolutely love them all! I have enjoyed learning to build from your site and have been really inspired by you guys. Thank you!

  • Robbie Hummell

    what about a combination square,utility knife,pencils, straight edge,putty knife etc etc. looked like a ryobi commercial to me by the way ryobi tools are cheap for a reason they are crap, that said they are a good start for beginners. you want good tools stick with dewalt, makita, and milwaukee cant go wrong with any of these. building tradesman 26 years, by the way Im not bashing. I love what you are doing very talented and great eye for esthetics.

    • http://www.shanty-2-chic.com/ Shanty2Chic

      Not a commercial at all, these are the tools that we use on a daily basis (for years) and we love them. BTW, we are beginners and our goal is to encourage other beginners to build. Why pay more for tools when the Ryobi tools that we use work great? We have furnished our homes with furniture made with these tools and we haven’t been let down yet. Not sure exactly what the purpose of your comment was, other than to bash and let us know how “skilled” you are. Thanks:)

      • Ryan

        The only tool i think you should upgrade since you build so much is the jigsaw. Buy a bosch js470. It really is a world of difference for detailed cuts.

    • Nighthawk

      Why should a non trades person buy the most expensive tools out there when they are not going to be used in the actual trade… Ryobi made for the home market and from what I can see exactly what they are being used for here.

      As for can’t go wrong with… BS I have killed two DeWalt and Bosch Drill and now use a cheaper Makita and Ryobi (the ryobi did all my back deck and just as easy as my DeWalt would have if it did’t die after only a year….it gets expensive continuously replacing them. If the tool is used for the market and what it was designed for it will be fine. Again as I can see here. You don’t need to always have the top of the line tool especially if you are only beginning and not in the trade… so get off your high horse.


      • http://www.shanty-2-chic.com/ Shanty2Chic

        Agreed! :-)

  • gale

    I think some of the pictures are missing on this page.