I don’t craft. I’m not against it, really, it just seems like so much extra effort, compared to coming home and watching Law and Order: SVU on Netflix. Pretty much like how being a con artist seems so much harder than just working a shitty job. Like, yeah, maybe eventually there’s a big payoff and you don’t hate yourself at the end of the day, but what a lot of work it is when you could just collect your paycheck and watch LaO: SVU already.
So anyway, when you spend as much time watching police procedurals as I do, there’s just no time for the world of arts and crafts and creativity and personally rewarding hobbies. The problem with this stance which I’m usually pretty comfortable with and not at all ashamed of, is that I don’t have some of the normal arts/crafts tools that can occasionally come in handy (needle, thread, fabric paint). And being both cheap and lazy (see again: hobby of Netflix watching) I’m not about to run out and buy these things on my own free time with my own hard-won funds, just because I happen to have a hole in my sleeve. Luckily, I am forced to spend the majority of my time at work, where there is an abundance of pre-purchased supplies of the craft variety. You just have to be a little creative about it (arts and crafts, remember) and you too can manage to live as an adult woman who doesn’t own an emergency sewing kit.
Herewith, nontraditional uses of office supplies. You can call them life hacks, but really they’re too lazy for that term.
The item: binder clips
- Hair clips (like a goth version of butterfly clips from middle school)
- Hide cleavage in a low-cut shirt
- Closing chip bags
- Closing anything. Embrace your artistic side!
The item: rubber bands
- Hair bands. Just…I know it’s bad. But sometimes you’ve had a rough night and you don’t know it until you make it unshowered to work the next day and you just…something just…ughhhhh…something has to be done
- Turning long, loose sleeves that are a little too short into three-quarter length sleeves. Rubber-band the end of the sleeve just under your elbow and blouse the extra fabric over to hide. Not recommended with pants, unless you’re super into the genie-pant thing
- Taking in too-big pants and skirts
The item: packing tape
I’m not really going to go into this one, as it’s pretty much been covered by duct tape/Internet. However, I have been very successful closing skirt slits that go too high and “darning” socks with this method. Also removing blackheads if you’re alone in the office. I also like to use little strips of it to keep my bra straps from showing.
The item: Scotch tape
See above, but less impact-resistant. If you’re removing your blackheads with scotch tape, they aren’t actually bad enough to require removal.
The item: black sharpie
- Disguising bleach spots on dark clothes
- Fixing runs in dark tights—just color a swath of skin larger than the run. Make sure you remember to warm any significant others before disrobing that night
- Filling in chips in dark nail polish
- Concealing small pimples on your face. Note: these should be small and in standard beauty mark locations. Big, fat, Sharpie-d pimple on your cheek/nose/forehead = wart
- Filling in scuffs on dark shoes
The item: black sharpie, fine tip
- Fixing holes in fishnets. This only really works if you anticipate not moving around very much. If you’re going to be doing anything except channeling “sexy secretary” just embrace the trashiness and channel teenage hooker
The item: White-Out
- Filling in chips in light nail polish. As most chipping happens on the tips (especially if you are an office computer monkey) a full-hand fake French manicure is your best bet here
The item: paper clips
- Removing nail polish from cuticles. Unbend half of the paper clip to create a piece of wire with a little handle. Apply lotion to your cuticles and gently scrape off the errant polish with the straight end of the wire
The item: staples/stapler
- Hemming pants
- Mom-ifying high slits and low-cut shirts. NEVER QUESTION why so much of your office wear is slutty. Just embrace it and make non-permanent modifications
The item: Post-Its
- Faking a camisole (best when used with packing tape) if you’re tired of stapling all your slutty clothes
The item: staple remover
- Straight remover: pushing back cuticles, cleaning under nails
- Regular "jaws" remover: Un-momifying office clothes. Happy hour, ahoy!