Does anyone have a crafty way to manage your earbuds and cord for an iPhone/iPad?
February 23, 2012 11:33 AM   Subscribe

Does anyone have a crafty way to manage your earbuds and cord for an iPhone/iPad?

I'm sure one of you has developed a method to manage your earbuds and cord for which you've patted yourself on the back. Share it with me, please. I have a few different Apple devices and use the standard white earbuds, and I am thoroughly tired of throwing them in a bag, briefcase, drawer, or what-have-you to find them tangled.

I can't wrap them in perpetuity around the device, although that is what I do from gym to car from time to time. I don't use the earbuds every day, so they do spend most of their time away from their devices.
posted by starkraven to Computers & Internet (30 answers total) 13 users marked this as a favorite
 
Altoids tin.
posted by FAMOUS MONSTER at 11:33 AM on February 23, 2012 [3 favorites]


Clip 'em with a binder clip?
posted by Madamina at 11:34 AM on February 23, 2012


Hang 'em over a door knob.
posted by mannequito at 11:44 AM on February 23, 2012


Boing Boing featured a (literally) crafty cord management technique today: macramé!
posted by JerryCornelius at 11:45 AM on February 23, 2012 [3 favorites]


They live neatly coiled in a pocket in my purse or in a small jewelry bag (the kind you get with almost any online jewelry purchase) or together with other electronic accessories in a small Tom Bihn accessory pouch. Also, I much prefer Snuggbuds, not only because the sound is great, but because I love the no-tangle fabric cords.
posted by bearwife at 11:46 AM on February 23, 2012


My headphones came with a little zippered pouch that they more than fit in coiled loosely, and it keeps them from getting tangled. Maybe you could find/make something like that?
posted by helicomatic at 11:46 AM on February 23, 2012


I have a little piece of cardboard that I ripped off of a box top. I cut a small notch in it. I wrap my ear buds (buds going on first) around and around the cardboard, ending with the jack wedged into that notch.

No tangles. Not pretty, but no tangles.
posted by mudpuppie at 11:47 AM on February 23, 2012 [3 favorites]


I have multiple sets (work, home, etc) so I don't need to bring them home each day and they spend less time in my purse getting tangled. When I travel they go in a small bag or container.
posted by randomgirl at 11:47 AM on February 23, 2012


at the end of the headphones by the plug, i have a twist tie anchored, like so. i use three fingers to wrap them around themselves, and then use the twist tie around the lot, like so. effective and cheap, also easy to release with one hand when needed. i tried some of the winding bobbins by various companies, and this has been the easiest to deal with so far.
posted by koroshiya at 11:49 AM on February 23, 2012 [1 favorite]


Simply flip-coiling my earbud cord has cut down a lot on tangles for me. (After coiling, I stuff them in my front pants pocket.)
posted by BrashTech at 11:52 AM on February 23, 2012 [1 favorite]


I have tried so many techniques and only one has really worked for me long-term: dedicate a pocket to your earbuds (bag, jacket, pantsfront, it doesn't matter, so long as it's ONLY for earbuds) and keep a twist tie in there.

Bundle the cord with the twist tie and put them in your dedicated, clean pocket when the 'buds are not in use.

Way easier than little pouches/tins/fancy wrapping/binder clips for the frequent user of earbuds.
posted by quarterframer at 11:54 AM on February 23, 2012


bobino!
posted by maybeandroid at 11:55 AM on February 23, 2012 [2 favorites]




Make a heavy metal sign with one hand, holding the earbuds themselves against your palm with your middle and ring fingers.

Wrap the cord around your pointer and pinky in a figure-eight motion. Leave a six inch tail.

Remove the wrap from your fingers, keeping care to pinch the middle of the figure-eight. Wrap the remaining tail about the middle to secure.

End result - a quick and easy bundle that stays tangle free nine times out of ten in my pants pocket.
posted by m@f at 12:01 PM on February 23, 2012 [8 favorites]


I use the Lifehacker binder clip method for my earbuds.
posted by jabberjaw at 12:03 PM on February 23, 2012 [8 favorites]


I sometimes use one of those little bobs for winding up yarn scraps. See this pic. If you don't have yarn bobs kicking around, you could probably make something similar out of cardboard with a knife.
posted by rmd1023 at 12:16 PM on February 23, 2012


Fantastic input. Thank you. I'm going with the Lifehacker binder clip method posted by @jabberjaw.
posted by starkraven at 12:23 PM on February 23, 2012


I'm in a rush, or I'd post the link, but I just saw something similar to the macrame...but crochet. Go to Ravelry.com, then patterns, and do a search for earbuds, or something OR just browse the "cozy" category.
posted by hollyanderbody at 1:05 PM on February 23, 2012


Nobody I know does this so it must be wrong.

One of the ear buds will fail before the other. When it does I just clip it off. voila', no more tangles.
posted by notned at 1:18 PM on February 23, 2012


Small rubber band, dedicated pocket. Coil by wrapping around four fingers of one hand, secure with rubber band (goes around the bundle 3-5 times), stuff in pocket. Not so hard.
posted by Scientist at 1:36 PM on February 23, 2012


This method requires no office supplies, keeps your buds tangle-free, and has the added benefit of praising Satan.
posted by Rock Steady at 1:48 PM on February 23, 2012 [1 favorite]


And I see m@f beat me to it.
posted by Rock Steady at 1:49 PM on February 23, 2012


Rock Steady - I think that's where I got it from. Thanks for the link!
posted by m@f at 1:53 PM on February 23, 2012


Snag a free gift card or use an old credit card.
Cut the card lengthwise and keep the portion with the magnetic strip.
Punch a hole in the middle of one end then cut from the hole to the edge of the card.
Punch a hole in the other end
Feed the plug end into this hole
Wrap the around the card and slip the loose bud end into the hole with the slit.
There's also this method which is what I was going to try but I don't have an exacto knife. My method is faster and easier.

(bonus: I used an expired version of a current credit card and now have the contact phone number right on hand in case I lose the actual card.)
posted by jaimystery at 5:57 PM on February 23, 2012 [1 favorite]


Nobody I know does this so it must be wrong.

One of the ear buds will fail before the other. When it does I just clip it off. voila', no more tangles.


I've got a (former) pair like this. I need to keep one ear free anyway so I can hear what's going on around me.
posted by Serene Empress Dork at 6:50 PM on February 23, 2012


Just like any piece of rope: I hold the earbuds, wrap the cable around three fingers till there's about a foot left, wrap that tightly around the bundle four or five turns, and then tuck a loop of the last bit under the last turn as you tighten it. Just pull the plug end to release it.
posted by nicwolff at 8:41 PM on February 23, 2012


I keep mine (and all my white electronic accessories that I need day-to-day) in a bitch bag.
posted by bendy at 9:43 PM on February 23, 2012


Earbud yo yo
posted by mamaquita at 9:45 PM on February 23, 2012


I like the binder clip trick. Otherwise, I use a 3 inch gear tie from GearTie.com combined with either a small soft pouch or an old Altoids Gum tin. The latter are roughly 1/2 the size of an Altoids tin. They don't make them any more, so here's a link to a project maker that had equivalent sized tins made. You can see how big they are. If you have some around, they could be useful.
posted by ZeusHumms at 10:26 PM on February 23, 2012


Sew the leads into a cheap plastic zipper and then sew the zipper into a bag to carry your celphone around in: like so.
posted by Orb2069 at 1:02 PM on February 25, 2012


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