Find lost small objects
Have you ever spent hours on your hands and knees searching through a carpet for a lost gemstone, contact lens, or some other tiny, precious item? If not, count yourself among the lucky few. Should you ever be faced with this situation, try this: Cut a leg off an old pair of pantyhose, make sure the toe section is intact, and pull it up over the nozzle of your vacuum cleaner hose. (If you want additional security, you can even cut off the other leg and slip that over as well.) Secure the stocking in place with a tightly wound rubber band. Turn on the vacuum, carefully move the nozzle over the carpet, and you’ll soon find your lost valuable attached to the pantyhose filter.
Vacuum your fish tank
If you have a wet-dry shop vacuum, you can change the water in your fish tank without disturbing the gravel and tank accessories. (You’ll still have to relocate the fish, of course.) Just pull the foot of an old nylon stocking over the end of the vacuum’s nozzle, secure it with a rubber band, and you are ready to suck out the water.
Buff your shoes
Bring out the shine in your freshly polished shoes by buffing them with a medium-length strip of pantyhose. It works so well, you may retire that chamois cloth for good.
Keep your hairbrush clean
If you dread the prospect of cleaning out your hairbrush, here’s a way to make the job much easier. Cut a 2-inch (5-centimeter) strip from the leg section of a pair of pantyhose, and stretch it over and around the bristles of your new (or newly cleaned) hairbrush. If necessary, use a bobby pin or a comb to push the hose down over the bristles. The next time your brush needs cleaning, simply lift up and remove the pantyhose layer — along with all the dead hair, lint, etc. on top — and replace it with a fresh strip.
Keep spray bottles clog-free
If you recycle your spray bottles to use with homemade cleaners or furniture polishes, you can prevent any potential clogs by covering the open end of the tube — the part that goes inside the bottle — with a small, square-cut piece of pantyhose held in place with a small rubber band. This works especially well for filtering garden sprays that are mixed from concentrates.
Substitute for stuffing
Is your kid’s teddy bear or doll losing its stuffing? Get out a needle and thread and prepare the patient for an emergency “stuffing transplant.” Replace the lost filler with narrow strips of clean, worn-out pantyhose (ball them up, if possible). Stitch the hole up well, and a complete recovery is guaranteed. This works well with throw pillows and seat cushions too.
Organize your suitcase
As any seasoned traveler knows, you can squeeze more of your belongings into any piece of luggage by rolling up your clothes. To keep your bulkier rolls from unwrapping, cover them in flexible nylon tubes. Simply cut the legs off a pair of old pantyhose, snip off the foot sections, and stretch the stockings over your rolled-up garments. Happy travels!
Hold mothballs or potpourri
Looking for an easy way to store mothballs in your closet or to make sachets of potpourri to keep in your dresser drawers? Pour either ingredient into the toe section of your recycled nylons. Knot off the contents, then cut off the remaining hose. If you plan to hang up the mothballs, leave several inches of material before cutting.
Bundle blankets for storage
For an effortless and foolproof way to keep blankets and quilts securely bundled before they go into temporary storage, wrap them up in large “rubber bands” made from the waistbands from your used pantyhose. You can reuse the bands year after year if needed.
Tie up boxes, newspapers, magazines
If you run out of twine (or need something stronger — say, for a large stack of glossy magazines), tie up your bundles of boxes, newspapers, and other types of recyclable paper goods using an old pair of pantyhose. Cut off the legs and waistband, and you’ll be able to get everything curbside without any snags.