Greetings and welcome to a new Flute Friday/Saturday.
Sometimes in these colder winter months, I like to curl up with a cup of tea, laptop in hand, and do some online shopping. Gone are the days when we had to schlep out into the cold to our nearest Woodwind/Brasswind or other mega music store to find fun, useful, or beautiful items to add to our gig bags. In researching for today’s blog, I found a number of flute accessories that can be ordered from the comfort of your own home. Today’s blog is devoted to those of us in need of a bit of retail therapy to freshen up our daily practice environment. Go ahead! Order that wonderful new gadget or beautiful new silk cleaning cloth. Even the smallest item can bring a smile to your face (and some zip to your routine).
Flute World is the best place on the internet to purchase anything having to do with the flute. I have been a Flute World customer for well over 20 years now. Most of my music library has been purchased directly from Flute World, and I often find myself perusing the accessories section whenever I am in the mood for some retail therapy. Show them support and check out the flute swag on their site!
Finger Position Corrector
I needed something like this 20 years ago! My wild, flying flute fingers always got the best of me during tricky, technical runs. This is a great helper for your students (or yourself) if you find that flying fingers often slow down technical passages. This will also save your fingers from undue strain that could lead to larger problems down the road such as tendonitis.
Anfree Swab for C Flute
Admit it – You’ve always been a bit fascinated by those swabs oboists use that just seem to glide magically through the instrument using the weight of a heavier end piece. Now, you can have the same style swab for the flute! The only drawback to this swab is that it will not work very well on the headjoint, so using the standard silk swab will still be required. The payoff, though, is that the body and foot joint will be much cleaner through the use of the microfiber material.
I’ve always had a weakness for those traditional, timeless band and orchestra folders made with the durable pressboard shells and rough and tough inner pockets. I was always sad to hand these back at the end of an academic year or orchestral season. Standard paper folders just don’t seem to cut it for me. Now you can have your own leatherette folder forever! These are great for the stage and hold a ton of music. The pencil holder is also very handy (and a good reminder to always bring a pencil to rehearsal).
Valentino ClearView Flute Stand
The black, plastic, fold-up flute stands have become a staple due to their portability, however over the years many flutists have been opting for more beautiful, yet bulkier, wooden flute stands. I think this is a great compromise, providing both portability and a little bit of class. This stand looks far better on stage than the traditional fold-up stands and is more secure than stands using the standard moveable wooden pegs.
BG Pad Dryer
Are you sick of buying cigarette paper or ordering expensive pad cleaning paper (or, heaven forbid, using the side of your music..)? Save the Earth by switching to a reusable pad cleaner like this one! Each strip lasts over one year and is washable. Save the planet while you are saving your pads.
Copper Headjoint Fitting Strips
These are great if you have a headjoint that is just a bit smaller than the body of your instrument. Keep in mind, though, that these are only a temporary solution. Take your headjoint in to your local flute tech guru for a proper fitting.
Did you also know that Amazon sells flute accessories!!??!?! (This was news to me when I was shopping researching for today’s blog). If you want to make good use of your Amazon Prime membership this year, check out some of the flute goodies offered below.
Bo-Pep Flute Thumb Guide
These have been around forever and, although I prefer to use Flute Gels for the side of the left index finger, I really like the Bo-Pep thumb guide for proper right-hand thumb placement. These are great for your students who may have a wandering thumb. Correcting your right-hand thumb will provide a better foundation for your fingers to move faster with greater ease. Make 2018 the year that you correct those bad thumb habits.
Beaumont Damson Lace Microfiber Cleaning Cloth
Who says you have to use those ugly blue polishing cloths from yesteryear to polish your flute before the show? These are all the rage right now as they are not only beautiful (and come in a wide array of styles), but the microfiber fabric will shine up your instrument gently and effectively with a few easy swipes. I am a fan!
ANKO Music Stand Kit
I love that this kit comes with everything and fits into a discrete and practical carrying case. This is perfect for those flute choir performances where stands are not necessarily provided, and the lighting may be less than perfect (although the venue is gorgeous). In this kit, you will get a collapsible music stand, music book clip, LED music stand lamp, and a carrying case. This is all the gear you need for your next performance!
Flute Fingerings & Flute Parts Flashcard Set
Studio masterclasses do not have to consists only of performances. These flashcards are great to use with your beginning students as a fun masterclass game activity. You could also use this as a warm up for your beginners during their initial flute lessons. I really like the idea of adding a game to the studio environment to make learning fun for younger students. These will definitely be a hit.
Yamaha Flute Lip Plate Patches
I have featured these on my blog in the past and during the summer months, these babies are my go-to for keeping my flute from sliding all over my face. They attach to your lip plate just like simple, paper stickers. Simple but very effective. I also like to use these to guard against any potentially embarrassing fluter’s chin moment during important performances.
Comica CVM-VS08 Condenser Microphone
This is a great purchase for those of you who are wanting to set up a YouTube channel or who may be preparing an audition CD for one of the upcoming NFA competitions. This handy dandy microphone plugs directly into your smartphone and keeps any wild, screaming high notes from creating unflattering feedback on your recordings. Use this mic with the Garage Band app and your recordings will sound as if you had been performing in a large empty church (when in reality you were recording in your garage).
Which flute accessories do you love? What is currently on your shopping list? What types of products are you looking to splurge on? Comment below and share the results of your own flute retail therapy.