Brilliant Idea Gone Awry

A couple weeks ago I bought this tube for carrying my slopers back and forth from office to class. Smart, right? I can’t take all the credit, AJ in Scotland suggested it. It’s got a handy strap so I just sling it over my shoulder and off I go. Thursday, I rolled up my entire oaktag dress sloper, extra tracing paper and extra oak tag (so I can make my pants sloper) and put them in the tube. I felt very smart walking back to work today. Tres chic, no?

This morning, I am at my wits end because this $%^ will NOT come out of the *#@% tube. 

Wont. Come. Out.


I have banged, I have pushed, I have pulled, I have swung with great force, I have begged, pleaded and cried. It’s stuck like a cheating husband caught with his girlfriend. I went at it for over an hour. I even went at it with grill tongs.


No, I was not thinking and should have rolled it all up and used a rubber band before placing in the tube. Grrrrr. I think. Sigh. I think I’m going to have to cut open the tube.  It is really annoying because I got it on sale for just $8. Sigh. I’m going to spring for the telescoping tube next time and take a minute to use a rubberband.



  1. How frustrating! I’ve had a similar thing happen. What I did was grab the inner edge of the paper (in the very middle) with my finger nails and roll the paper more. Into a tighter roll. This makes it’s smaller than the tube and the rolling action releases the suction between the paper and the tube. HTH.

    And if all else fails throw it on the floor and stamp on it really hard, all the while throwing a tantrum like a two year old. No it won’t get the paper out but it sure feels good. 🙂

  2. I forgot to add. If you can’t grab the paper edge (it can be hard) use tweezers. Good luck.

  3. I concur with Belinda. I used to work at a shop that kept rolls of designs in tubes, that were in a large cabinet. You just need to twist the inner roll to loosen the pressure (usually there’s enough tack to your fingers to take one or two fingers to the inside of the tube and press and twist). Be careful of paper cuts in the webbing of your fingers! They hurt like the Dickens!!

  4. I work with plans all day and sometimes we recieve them in small tubes. Try rolling from the center -tighter and tighter and then pull out. Hope it work.s

  5. What everyone else said. 🙂 I work at a job where I have to unpack maps and posters, and this is the ONLY way I will remove them from the tubes because it’s the least likely to tear the paper. And I’ve never had it not work.

  6. Oops. Hope the advice already given works. That’s what I would have said, too.

    In my defence, the type of tube I suggested was the telescopic kind, so I never had this problem – I just collapsed the height so the patterns were sticking out!

    Mind you, mine is boring black and yours is funky orange.

    AJ (in SCOTland wrong Celts 😉 )

    • Whoops. My bad AJ. I’ve made a correction. I like Scotland better anyway 🙂

  7. I had this happen too..besides reaching in and rolling up the insides into a tighter roll with your fingers, I tried wearing my quilting finger gloves for a better grip. Good luck!

  8. I want to see video of you extracting this! Has dramatic potential…

  9. Well… I would have suggested the tighter rolling thing that everyone ese is suggesting so I’m curious to see if it works!

    I know you’re a new knitter (how is that cabled scarf coming?), but I wondered if you were going to the Maryland Sheep and Wool this weekend? I’ll be at the Ravelry meet up on Sunday… maybe I’ll see you there?

  10. Can you take the cap off the other end to maybe release the vacumn?

  11. I too had the exact same advice. I have some art prints in tubes and I always have to start at the inside and roll them tighter, therefor smaller. It’s always worked for me. But at least you got some excercise!

  12. Hey everyone,

    I tried to to reach in, too narrow. So, I went back with the grill tongs and tried to twist. I think the two sheets of oaktag make it all too thick to twist smaller 😦

    Lory, I tried to take the other end off and that’s how I got those four inches out.

  13. Do you have a long metal ruler that you can slide between the plastic and oak tag? Maybe that will release some of the suction enough to twist tighter or get a better grip. I hope you’re able to get it out without damage to your sloper. Good luck!

  14. Good ol’ Murphy’s Law! I don’t have any suggestions, just compassion and hope that everything works out.

  15. I think the problem you have is with static friction. The tube is plastic, and plastic tends to be very prone to static electricity. I can’t think of a way to decrease the static friction though. Increase the humidity? Steam up the bathroom and see if you have any better luck removing the paper in there. I asked my husband and he suggested trying to reduce the static on the outside with a dryer sheet – but I don’t know if the outside static electricity would have an effect on the inside static electricity. It’s worth a try.

  16. Try spraying the inside with fabric/static cling? it removes static from clothes. Again I think you have to twist as you’re pulling, make sure you twist in the direction of the roll…..:) good luck!

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