Thursday, February 2, 2012


The right tools are such an important part of creating.  Paper, glue, scissors, paint, brushes....we all have favorite pieces that we turn to when inspiration hits.  I have to admit that one of my absolute favorites is the stapler.

Emily and I both love to craft with found objects, things like grocery lists, old discarded photos, leaves scooped off the ground on walks, bottle caps, scraps of paper, etc.  I was tearing up some old business cards the other day--the address was out of date, but I was saving the portion that just had my name and cell phone number--and in the part I was discarding were these pretty swirls of flowers that I hated to waste, so I ripped those off and put them in my scrap pile.  I wanted to share some of them with Em, but it's messy to hand over a fistful of scrap paper. Plus, even scraps feel a little more special if packaged right, so I quickly threw together a make-shift envelope.

I grabbed one of the shipping tags I keep in a cubby on my desk,

folded up the bottom third and stapled the edges.  I stuck the scraps in the pocket it formed and glued one to the front as decoration.  Done.

Cute, functional, and took maybe 30 seconds.  THAT is why I love my stapler.  It's the lazy efficient way to create.

Okay, maybe it is lazy but it is also valid.  In fact, I love the look that staples make.  I often include them in my crafts, just a bunch of random staples clustered together, sometimes attaching things, and sometimes not, just adding interest and texture.  I call them my mosh pits.

There's nothing wrong with taking shortcuts sometimes.  Part of what I love about staples is that they are so mundane, part of any office desk.  Their function is not hidden, like glue is.  They bring things together, and they do their job and are obvious and functional and everyday about it.  I love displaying the inner workings, celebrating the ugly ordinary metal, and I especially love the convenience.

What tool is a staple of your routine?  Any to which you are particularly attached?

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