Today’s offices are so efficient that most of them don’t even use paper anymore. Everything is digital, and some are even moving away from CD’s and moving to online cloud storage to communicate with other businesses and clients. USB flash drives have become so inexpensive that they are now the portable storage of choice.
Who remembers typewriters? I remember the sound of an office in full swing, the clickety-clack of typing echoing throughout. Then there were the whispered curses when a mistake was made and the Wite-Out was needed or the correction tape. Oh, and the awesome sound of a dot-matrix printer, slowly going back and forth, printing in black and white dots.
Computers were room sized until the bulky desktops were introduced that used floppy disks and had a whopping 20 megs (MB) of hard drive space! We had copiers that needed their own rooms, that were so intimidating with all their trays and doors. I always hated making copies on them.
Fax machines were equally confounding, and I avoided them at all costs. The loud screeching noise was annoying, and then the machine would beep loudly if I did something wrong (which was usually all the time) and I would walk away, embarrassed that I couldn’t master a stupid machine. I do, however, miss the simple desk phones that were common. This multi-line, many-buttoned phone that we use now never works right for me. I think it hates me. What retro office supplies do you remember?
It’s no secret we at ReStockIt love office supplies – we work for an office supply company! Binder, file folders, pens, organizers, printers…we love it all. We love to personalize our desks too, with toys and figurines and funny posters or magnets. Sometimes though, we have to break from the ReStockIt inventory and find funky stuff on our brethren sites.
Today, I’m going to showcase the top 10 items I’ve found mining on other websites; some of them are fun, some are functional, and some are fun AND functional. And they will all probably end up on my desk in the near future. Enjoy the selection, and have fun today! It’s Friday!
How much fun are these? You can find them here, and turn anything on your desk into an inanimate object of expression, and you too can be Tom Hanks and Wilson, without all the hair and not eating.
File Folders that speak volumes, sold at one of my favorite sites. And a *little* bit of the truth, admit it.
Whimsical and fun, these bird clips are a conversation starter worth squawking about. Sorry, I had to. Find them here.
Another great find at Paper Source.It’s Panic Pete, need I say more? Squish him and his eyes and ears bug out! How is that NOT stress relieving??
Yes, I am fond of file folders, especially those with words of wisdom and wit. It just makes it fun to actually use them. Buy them here.
A stapler with a “meh” face? Perfect. I think Urban Office is going to be a fave of mine.
Yes, yes more file folders, but aren’t they pretty?? I love this site!
Okay, this is one of my favorites, because its gremlins and steam-punky all in one. And its a neat little game to play when you have those rare moments of office boredom…you can find it here.
Magnets are just fun, period. And functional. And these encompass those qualities and more, along with nostalgia for some vinyl. You can find more retro items here.
A miniaturized Skee Ball game. ‘Nuff said. There’s more desk top games to be found at this site though, if Skee Ball isn’t your game. Weirdo.
I love phones. It’s one of those collectible things, I guess, but I love them. I hate answering them, and I am not one of those people that could talk for hours on a phone, but still, I love them. I was going to do a retro office supply blog today, and I will still do one possibly next week, but today I am devoting the blog to something we can’t live without: the telephone.
Telephones have come a long way, even in my time. When I was a kid, I was excited when we got our first push button phone, and I no longer had to use the annoying rotary dial one. It always scared me; I thought I was going to get my finger stuck in it. Our first push button phone was an ugly almond phone on the kitchen wall, and it had a really long cord that we all tripped on, especially when my sister would be on it because she would pull the cord as far as it would go and talk on the patio. Navigating out of the kitchen became a limbo game.
When we got our first cordless phone, with the metal extendable antenna that always broke, I was in heaven. That’s when I spent hours on the phone with my best friend, and I could walk all over the house while we talked and not be stuck in the kitchen. That was also around the time that second lines became popular in homes, along with the advent of call waiting, and I begged for those features! My mom eventually caved because she actually wanted to use the phone as well, and it was usually glued to my ear from the time I came home from school till I went to bed.
Now, with cell phones being our predominant phone method of communication, a lot of homes have done away with the lowly land line. Gone are the days of kitchen wall phones with 20 foot cords and cordless phones with no reception because the metal antenna broke off. Collectors try to hold on for nostalgia’s sake, and buy princess phones, old-fashioned wall phones, novelty phones, and the ones I lovingly refer to as tanks – the squat, square ones that were commonly found in offices but people had them at home too. What weird items do you like to collect? Are you a retro phone lover too?
With the invention of Liquid Paper in the 50’s (originally called Mistake Out), we have been correcting our typing and writing mistakes with alacrity, and thanking Bette Nesmith Graham (Liquid Paper’s inventor) for her bad typing skills and inventiveness. Granted, with our technology today, correction fluid use is becoming obsolete, but I still use it around the house for notes and forms.
I started thinking about something though the last time I used my little correction pen. What would I use correction fluid for in my life? Bad mistakes, bad decisions, that terrible perm in 1989? So I decided to ask around and see what everyone else would Wite-Out, and I brought their answers to you. What would you erase, if you had the inclination?
1) The first digit of the mortgage balance – this one is kind of self-explanatory. Who wouldn’t want to owe less on their mortgage?
2) Excess inches on the waistline – again, pretty self-explanatory.
3) Excess monthly payments – car payment, house payment, credit card payments, etc. Yeah, this is one of my favorites!
4) The years between age 18-23 – I didn’t ask, and they didn’t specify…
5) Exes – boyfriends, girlfriends, friends, spouses…whether its hurt or extreme dislike, people want to forget certain relationships.
6) Bad habits – smoking, gambling, over-eating, spending. Basically, fun things that are no good for you.
7) Bad Hair – That perm I mentioned in 1989, the blunt bangs that no one should wear, the really bad magenta dye job…
8) Body imperfections – Double chins, big noses, droopy eyes, bad complexions all made the list.
9) Negativity – From road rage to rudeness, one of the biggest things people wanted to erase was negative attitudes and feelings.
10) Debt – not current debt, but past debt. Bad credit decisions, equity loss in the real estate crash, etc.
And one last candidate, a late-comer to the poll -
11) What happened in Vegas – need I say more?
There is nothing more exasperating than to reach for your stapler and find that it has grown legs and walked right off your desk. Or your tape dispenser. Or your hidden stash of sticky notes, which were obviously not as well hidden as you thought. Or, holy nightmare, your favorite pen is gone!
I’ve compiled a list of the top five most often “borrowed” office supplies that we, and apparently other people, can’t live without. Maybe it’s time to glue things in place…
#5 – Stapler
Red Swingline Stapler. Cubicle dwellers everywhere are familiar with the cult movie Office Space, and Milton’s love of his red Swingline. Even with the popularity of paperless offices, a stapler is a linchpin in an office. We might not use them that much anymore, but we sure don’t like for ours to go missing from our desk.
#4 – Scissors
How many of you actually use your scissors on a daily basis? I don’t use mine except once in a blue moon, but I’m not a happy camper when I do need to use them and find them mysteriously missing. Did they rush off for a real-live rock-paper-scissors game?
Same thing as the staplers, a lot of offices are trying to go paperless, so we tend not to use these as much. However, with the influx of cutesy, stylish binder clips and paper clips, we tend to personalize what we do have…and get angry when someone else has the same sense of style and flair and walk off with our own stash.
#2 – Paper and Post-it Notes
Post-it notes will never become obsolete, even in paperless offices. People live and die by their sticky notes. I have more sticky notes than one person can go through in a lifetime, and when they walk off with the scissors to compete in the office rock-paper-scissors game, I get very perturbed.
Pens and other writing instruments need to be totally off limits. Really. Its like using someone else’s toothbrush. Writing tools are personal, and people are highly territorial about their pens, especially. I’ve seen people Hulk out over their pens going missing. People namely being me.
For most of us, it’s the first full work week in 2013. A lot of companies and businesses were closed on the 1st, and maybe got out of work a little early on the 31st, or were completely lucky and had a full four-day weekend! Regardless, last week was a short, chopped-up week for a lot of us, and now it’s time to suit up and go back to work!
It’s also time to replenish supplies for your office, such as toners, copy paper, calendars, new sticky notes, etc. It’s time to go shopping! Shopping is shopping, whether its clothes or office supplies, and it should be fun, not a chore. If you’re like those of us here at ReStockIt, we love shopping for office supplies, and use any excuse to do so!
Need new pens? Fancy ones, plain ones, roller ball or gel, we have them! Is your New Year resolution to organize your desk? We can help! Do you stock the mail room? Check out all our mail room supplies! Is it time to finally replace that white board? We have a huge selection of them, for every budget! No matter what you need, we can help you restock your office with the right supplies.
With the holidays in full swing, many offices are having gift exchanges and there is usually a monetary amount to adhere to, so what to buy? Especially if you don’t know who is going to get the gift! Why buy a bottle of wine when there is a chance that it’ll go to the office teetotaler? How awkward would THAT be? I’m facing that same dilemma, and found some really great gift ideas at sortingwithstyle.com, in the interest of brotherly eCommerce love. I’m especially fond of the Executive Decision Maker and the Genius Paperweight. The Hulk Flash Drive, however, is all ours!
On desk calendars everywhere, there is a little notification on the last date block in November on the calendar, reminding you that it’s time to buy your calendars for next year. Nothing like a reminder that another year is over and a new one is just beginning. But New Year’s brings a new beginning, and who doesn’t love a do-over?
House of Doolittle has a great selection of desk calendars, appointment books, and planners. You can have dated, undated, lined, unlined, by hour…well, you get the picture. No matter what your need, House of Doolittle has the calendar that you need. Did I mention how stylish they are?
Well, they are! They come in different colors, with different photos, or you can go plain, or support one of the most successful charities in operation today. They have a calendar to suit every taste. I personally can’t live without a calendar. It’s like time – I have to have something on my person that can tell me the time. Back in the day it was a watch, now it’s my cell phone. And I still wish I had my watch, which I got rid of.
Calendars are indispensable to success. Sure, I use my Outlook calendar, and Siri on my phone to set reminders, but there is nothing like being able to quickly look down at my desk calendar and see at a glance what my schedule is, what I have to pick up at the grocery store, what bills I have to pay…I even use it as my notepad, because I get the one with a note section. So, that being said, get yourself a calendar! Now’s the time to do it!
It’s no secret that I love to organize. My desk at work, my desk at home, my drawers, my car…I’m just organized. Well, it’s more like I have an addiction to organizers and files…it’s sad, really. I’m always looking for better, smarter ways to organize. Then someone pointed out to me Smead’s website. And they created a monster.
Smead products are awesome, first off. I use a lot of them on a daily basis, and they never let me down. I never realized their website would be just like their products – useful and amazing! They have so many options on the site to help you get organized! I never knew, and am very excited about it.
They have an Organomics calculator which can calculate what you or your company loses due to disorganization, including lost wages, lost sales opportunities, and document replacement, along with other instances where you can lose money because you’re not organized. I used it and it floored me!
Also, they have a forum where you can share ideas and get updates with other organization fiends, and My Organomics which creates a personalized solution based on projects, meetings, and to-do items. This was really cool. They also have one for Team Organomics for your work to make your workplace more efficient.
One of my favorite parts of the site though was the One Minute Answers section, which gives tips and ideas based on what you’re organizing, whether its home or office. The BEST part though is their Solutions page, which gives you wonderful ideas on whether its work related, home office, or you can even narrow it down by problems, like lack of space, color coding, or project management. You really should check out the site, because even for someone like me who thought she was organized, it showed that I’m not as organized as I could be.