First up, the tools I use:
- Screw punch: I use this to start the holes. It's a now discontinued scrapbooking tool which punches a circle into whatever. After 3 boned bodices, 2 versions of the Elizabethan, and two waist corsets it's still pretty sharp. A whole lot of people say an awl should be used to avoid cutting the threads ... YMMV.
- The eyelets themselves, which come in two parts. Dritz usually puts more "tops" than bottoms in their packs, so don't freak out if you have more of the inner rings (like I did the first couple times). They also come in silvertone and antiqued brass, but I am partial to the shiny goldtone ones.
- The two Dritz setting tools. Not much to look at: a plastic ring with an impression to hold the bottom ring and a metal spindle-like thing to fit over the top ring then smack with a hammer. Some folks use the pliers tool, but I haven't tried that one myself. I get much more satisfaction out of whacking it with a hammer (except when I miss the top of the spindle and hit my thumb ...)
- Magic seam gauge: This is how I determine where to put the holes in with the screw punch. I've heard about a tool that stretches or retracts to figure eyelet/grommet spacing, but haven't seen it yet.
- Handy dandy standard issue home hammer ... also useful when threatening fabric or machines that don't want to behave themselves! LOL
- Two parts of one wooden cutting board, retired from food prep to crafting ... maybe hammering eyelets on it wasn't the smartest thing I've done, but if you squint at the pic you might see all the circles from using it with the screw punch.
- Cutting mat - hopefully this will absorb the shock of my hammering ...