Thread a needle quickly by spraying the string’s end to prevent it from fraying and raising your frustration level.
2 of 13Antonis Achilleos
Dryer Sheet as Thread Detangler
To prevent tangles, run a threaded needle through a sheet before you begin stitching.
3 of 13Photo: Philip Friedman; Styling: Linden Elstran
Button as Necklace Pendant
Have one special button? Thread it onto a thin chain or a delicate piece of ribbon for a standout necklace.
4 of 13Monica Buck
Dental Floss as Thread Substitute
Rely on waxed dental floss for temporary but durable clothing repairs, such as sewing on a button or reattaching a strap.
5 of 13Kirsten Strecker
Toothpick as Sewing Aid
Sew buttons more skillfully: Hold a stick under the center of a button so you don’t stitch it on too tightly.
6 of 13James Wojick
Cork as Sewing Kit
Make a compact sewing kit by sticking needles and pins in a cork. For a little zip, wrap it with a few lengths of thread.
7 of 13Philip Friedman; Styling: Linden Elstran
Buttons as Appetizer Stand
Here's a fanciful and fun way to serve cubed cheese, cherry tomatoes, and more: Place large buttons on a tray, spear the hors d'oeuvres with toothpicks, then anchor the toothpick ends in the buttons' holes.
8 of 13James Wojcik
Nail Polish as Button Securer
Apply a thin coat of clear polish to the center of a button to keep the thread from coming loose.
9 of 13Alexandra Rowley
Double-Sided Tape as Hem Securer
Fix a fallen hem when there’s no time for a trip to the tailor.
10 of 13Levi Brown
Button as Earring Holder
Travel is best done in pairs (think of Lewis and Clark or Thelma and Louise). To keep a set of earrings together on your next overnight jaunt, fasten them to a button so they won’t get lost in your suitcase pocket.
11 of 13Jose Picayo
Bar of Soap as Pretty Pincushion
Stick needles and pins in a wrapped bar of soap. The soap’s oils make the pointy ends glide through fabric “sew” easily.
12 of 13James Wojcik
Button as Board Game Piece
Is your Monopoly game missing its top hat? Replace wayward board-game pieces without missing a beat (or a turn).
13 of 13David Prince
Button Bag as Pill Carrier
When you’re on the go, leave the bulky pill bottles in the medicine cabinet and place only what you need in a plastic bag. You can keep your daily dose all buttoned up.
Laura Graham Stockton, California
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