Everyone likes to stock their office with the stuff they need — but from time to time you find yourself caught off guard and just need to make the best of a bad situation. We rounded up 10 other uses for office supplies a loooong time ago, but I thought we’d expand on the topic and discuss today!
First up: ways to repurpose office supplies to help with fashion emergencies:
CLOTHING HACKS WITH OFFICE SUPPLIES
- If you need a lint brush, try a Fed Ex mailing label or packing tape.
- If you need to stop a run in your hose and don’t have nail polish, try using a glue stick or white out (obviously best if the run starts somewhere hidden).
- If you need to reduce static cling with pantyhose/skirt, try rubbing hand lotion on your hands and then smoothing it on your pantyhose.
- If you need to fix a fallen hem, try double-sided tape or packing tape folded double, or try stapling your clothes with the solid bar on the inside — many readers noted the holes rubbed right out when the staple was removed later in the day.
- If your pants are too tight after lunch (and/or you’re pregnant), try a rubber band or hairband to help extend the waistband.
- If you need to fix a broken zipper pull, try a paperclip.
- If you need to fix a broken bra strap or shoe strap, try a teeny tiny binder clip.
- If you’re going desk to dinner and forgot to wear or pack a racerback bra, try a paperclip to make your regular bra a racerback.
- If you need to remove a stain, try hairspray (for ink), or wet paper towels beneath your shirt with dry ones on top (especially for coffee stains).
ACCESSORY HELP WITH REPURPOSED OFFICE SUPPLIES
- If you need to hide scuffs in dark leather or even small tears, try a black Sharpie.
- If need to replace a lost earring back, try a pencil eraser.
- If you’re removing a delicate necklace at any point in the day (to switch outfits, go to the gym, etc.) and don’t want it to get tangled in your bag, cut slits in a business card and wrap your necklace around it. (I love this trick for general necklace organization anyway!)
- If you need to get scuffs out of patent leather or light colored leather, try a traditional pencil eraser.
- No hair tie? Try a pencil bun.
SUBSTITUTE OFFICE SUPPLIES FOR DRUGSTORE PRODUCTS
- If you need dental floss, try post-it tape flags, a business card, or a folded post-it note.
- If you need blotting papers, try toilet seat covers.
- If you need a mirror at your desk, turn your phone camera to selfie mode.
- If you need to remove regular nail polish from a chipped manicure, try Scotch tape — just lay it across the manicure and lift up.
OTHER USES FOR COFFEE ROOM SUPPLIES
- If you need to cover funny smells in the office, get a cup of mint tea.
- If you need to amplify your iPhone speaker volume (perhaps if you find yourself working in a conference room all day), try putting your phone in an empty plastic cup or getting crafty with an empty toilet paper roll.
- Get a cup of hot tea or coffee to defrost food. (It works great for Vitatops.)
- If you feel like cooking at the office, try these recipes for mug cakes or other mug snacks.
RAINY DAY USES FOR OFFICE SUPPLIES
- If you’re surprised by a rainy day and you find your pants too long, try a binder clip as a temporary hem – it’s not pretty but it will work, particularly on dry clean only fabrics that don’t stay while folded, like triacetate.
- If you don’t have an umbrella, try a file folder if you’re making a quick dash — they’re more durable and less floppy than a newspaper.
- If you already keep a wrap or blanket in your office, use it to cover your hair or business suit during a rainy-day dash — it may not be super-fashionable but it will work.