If you are making oboe reeds at a small desk, chances are you are feeling short on space. This list has 8 oboe reed desk hacks that will speed up your oboe reed making process and help organize your reed making supplies.
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- Reed Knife Holder Magnetic Wall Strip
- Table Stand (Computer Monitor Stand for More Table Space)
- Sturdy Multi-Instrument Oboe and English Horn Stand
- Music Stand Shelf
- Hold Stuff with Oboe Mugs
- Expand Vertically with Shelves
- Plastic Organizers & Oboe Reed Drying Stands
- Mini-Plastic Shot Glasses
- Reed Making Lamp
- Adhesive Magnet Strips for Your Plaque
- Frequently Asked Questions About Reed Making Supplies
Reed Knife Holder Magnetic Wall Strip
You’d be amazed what sticks to this thing! I bought the 16” Knife Magnetic Strip from Amazon and it’s perfect. It will hold knives, a metal ruler, metal plaques, shaper tips, scissors, and more. This one strip helped clear up about 25% of my desk space. It comes with a double-sided adhesive backing so you can install it with or without drilling. You can also make your own magnetic strip by placing magnetic tape on a favorite piece of wood, or on any surface.
In the photo below also features my wide leather sharpening strop. I originally bought this from RDG Woodwinds, but they don’t currently sell the wide version anymore. However, there is a similar 3″ double-sided leather strop on Amazon that is the same size. I don’t use the included polishing compound.
Table Stand (Computer Monitor Stand for More Table Space)
This one desk addition may provide the most additional space of any hack on this blog. I purchased a computer monitor stand from Amazon and it completely changed my desk. The 42″ would have been ideal because it would have given me a ton more desk space across the entire width of my desk. However, I went with the 16″ because my “instrument tower” was too wide to fit on top of it. See the images below for a before and after.
Even this little bit of extra desk space made all the difference. If you are working with a small desk space, this computer monitor stand is a must-have. You can use it, as I have, to lift up desk materials for more space, or use it to put your computer monitor on top. I used to use one desk for both my computer and reed making and I wish I had known about this then!
Sturdy Multi-Instrument Oboe and English Horn Stand
If you play oboe and English horn (and/or other instruments) this multi-instrument stand is a game changer. It is incredibly sturdy and has removable and interchangeable pegs. The image above features the oboe and English horn peg. However, I find the English horn peg works great for both oboe and English horn.
I also have a flute peg and piccolo peg (that I use for my whistle and Irish flute). The pegs easily screw and unscrew and the base itself can be folded down for easy transportation to gigs. Unless you play just one instrument, this stand will not only save you space, it will provide a sturdy stand for your instruments.
You can buy the oboe and English horn pegs + base from Hodge Music.
Music Stand Shelf
I originally bought this shelf stand for doubling in the pit on oboe and English horn. It works great for any kind of performance. You can place your knives, water, swab, reeds, blotting paper, etc on the shelf for easy and quick access during rehearsals and performances.
What I discovered recently is that this music shelf stand also doubles as extra “table” space in my office. I’ve been using it to place my Bose speaker and iPad while practicing which has freed up space on my desk.
Hold Stuff with Oboe Mugs
Oboe mugs and fun ceramics are a great way to organize the small items on your desk. There are so many to choose from! I’ve designed a few of my own (shameless plug!). The mug featured in this image is just an ordinary white ceramic mug. For a while I drank tea out of it, but now it lives on my desk holding various reed making tools.
Expand Vertically with Shelves
If you don’t have space to expand horizontally, go up! There are many desk shelf tops that expand your desk vertically. This will give you a ton more space to store several items. The shelf I use is something I found lying around the house, but you can find several desk top shelving options on Amazon!
Plastic Organizers & Oboe Reed Drying Stands
If you don’t have a ton of desk space, a reed drying rack can save space and keep your reeds from rolling around into other reed tools and objects. This will prevent damange. The reed drying rack pictured is one I special ordered from oboe-shop.de (I think?). There are a number of reed drying stands available, but you can purchase something similar at Oboe Shop.
Also pictured in this photo are some plastic organizers I used Velcro to stick to my stand. This keeps both items in place, and it ensures the plastic stand remains upright. If you want something like this to organize some small items such as gouged cane, shaper tips, etc, you can buy a set of Clip Rite paper clips. Use the clips or toss them out, but keep the plastic holder! I originally bought these to organize a paper planner I was using but ended up getting more use out of the plastic container.
Mini-Plastic Shot Glasses
Are your students always leaving their water at home? I received this tip from an oboe friend, Caitlin Kramer. You can buy mini-plastic shot glass (cups) on Amazon and keep them around for such occasions. These ones are great for students of all ages.
If you want to go the environmental route, I bought some disposable bathroom cups. They are great for high school and adult students, but probably not sturdy enough for middle schoolers!
Reed Making Lamp
This is one of the most essential items on your reed desk. If you are at your reed desk there are of course many options to choose from. If you are short on space, you could try a clip lamp.
For traveling, one of the best decisions I made was a travel lamp. I use the Foldable LED USB lamp from Amazon. It is plenty bright, folds for easy storage, and holds a charge for days.
Adhesive Magnet Strips for Your Plaque
If you are always losing your plaques, you can place a small magnetic strip inside your reed case to hold an extra plaque. I bought these adhesive magnetic strips on Amazon and cut a small piece. Place the magnetic piece at the top of the case so it folds over on top of the staples, not the cane (as pictured).
I recommend the Scotch Magnetic Tape from Amazon because it can double as a knife or reed tool holder in other places too. To use this in your reed case, just cut a small piece with a pair of sissors.