The Hairpin

Staff Writer
Columbus Parent

Got a baby ballerina in the house? Then chances are you've also got hairpins just about any place a hairpin can hide. But that's not necessarily a bad thing because that also means you've got a handy tool under your seat cushions, carpets and kitchen appliances, just waiting to be used for all sorts of everyday tasks!

The double-point hairpin (also called the bobby pin) is believed to have originated in China in the third century A.D. Besides securing hair, some other handy uses for this ingenious, bent-over bit of metal include:

Lock pick: Possibly the best-known "other" use for hairpins. Just unbend, insert and wiggle around (and then call a locksmith because, if you're like Handy Mom, this never works).

Page marker: Keep your local librarian happy by not dog-earing the pages of books to mark them. Instead use a hairpin to mark your spot.

Chip-bag clip: Instead of paying for one of those fancy plastic clips, just use a hairpin or two to close an open bag of chips.

Straight-pin substitute: If you're like Handy Mom, then you have definitely pricked your fingers on straight pins when you're hemming or hand-sewing. Use hairpins instead to secure the fabric.

Mini-screwdriver: Scrape off the little bulbs of plastic at the points, and then use the flat end as a screwdriver to tighten eyeglass frames or open those tiny battery packs on electronic gadgets.