Sunday, January 13, 2013

Start at the beginning...

I've always said that if I lived my life the way I travel I'd be the most organized, well balanced person around. That may be a bit overambitious, or even dramatic. However, the basic ideas behind that statement are feasible... well, so I hope. You see, when I travel I plan and prepare, I'm much more willing to accept roadblocks and I get to figuring out crafty ways around those roadblocks rather well (most of the time anyway). 

So... why am I telling you all of this? Glad you asked! The Crafty Explorer page is here to share successes and failures in getting crafty in everyday life.

I guess a first posting should have some of life's most basic crafting skills...

Top 10 Ways to Make People Think You are MacGyver...
Using a Safety Pin

10. Wardrobe Malfunction
Ok, so this is probably the most obvious, but seriously, lost button, zipper snafu, hem comes undone, etc. These are all things that could make for an embarrassing situation in the office & all can be temporarily fixed with the aid of a single safety pin.

9. Emergency Zipper Repair
Busted zipper on bag or suitcase? No problem. Take a couple of safety pins and use them to close the two sides of the bag together. Zipper pull breaks? Most zippers have a little loop on top that will allow you to attach a safety pin to use in place of the pull. Add a pretty bead and consider it a fashion statement.

8. Drawstring and Shoe Lace Stringing (or Restringing)
Have a bag, hoodie or sweatpants where the all mighty drawstring has come out in the laundry? Need to guide old shoelaces back into those little holes? You can struggle with either of these tasks forever or just use a safety pin to guide those drawstrings and laces back into place.

7. Coat Check Gloves and Scarves
I used to hate putting my winter coat into a coat check with my scarf and gloves stashed in the pockets. Getting all of those items back always seems like a gambling bet. However, if you string your scarf through the sleeves and pin it to the back of the coat and then, using the same pin attach your gloves or using a second pin attach the gloves to the inside of a pocket (my preference) I think you'll see you've put the odds in your favor. 

6. Jewelry Repair
If the clasp on your necklace or bracelet breaks you can join both ends of most jewelry with a safety pin to get you through the day. The pointy tip is also great for trying to get knots out of chains too.

5. Fashion Design
A quick search on or Pinterest will show you a plethora of ways to turn safety pins and beads into jewelry ranging from necklaces, earrings, broaches and even a watch band.

A great how-to for a snazzy watch band can be found on this blogger's page:
Those sites also have some great t-shirt and blazer design ideas using safety pins. 

4. Computer Keyboard Cleaner
The gunk that can build up in between the keys of a computer keyboard is gross, especially on a computer that is shared by many users. Get those stuck keys moving again by scraping the gunk out using the safety pin. And then go wash your hands, only goodness knows what that gunk actually is.

3. First Aid Kit Helper 
I've found two nifty uses for the almighty safety pin in my first aid kit. First, I've disinfected it and then used the pointy bit to help remove a splinter or two. Even better, I use a safety pin to keep Ace bandages in place.
***Disclaimer: By no means am I a medical authority in any way shape or form. Follow advice at your own risk.***

2. Stapler Stand-In
I work in an office where you are more likely to find Sasquatch than a stapler. Be careful not to stab yourself and just poke a safety pin through the pages you need to keep together. Leave the stapler hunting to the rest of the office. 

1. Secure Important Documents / Items
When you need to carry important items and / or documents, particularly in crowded areas you can put them in a small zipper pouch or even a zip-lock bag. Then you can use a safety pin to secure the pouch or bag to the inside of your pocket. This is particularly useful for places like concerts and amusement parks. I've put my license, debit card and some cash in a pouch and did this for Six Flags, Disney and even some kayaking trips.

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