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Brain Break: How to Put a Stapler in Jello

November 6th, 2009 admin

We’re big Office fans at my place, which of course meant we were pretty excited about the premiere episode in September. To celebrate, I surprised my sweetie with the smashing dessert you see above–office supplies (including a small stapler because my big one wouldn’t fit in the bowl) suspended in Jello.

And because you’re in college and need to know this kind of thing, I thought I would pass the how-to on to you.

So without further adieu…

How to Suspend a Stapler (and other things) in Jello

(Please forgive the bad lighting in my pics–this was my first try and I should have used a lighter Jello flavor!)

1. Gather Your Supplies.

You will need:

  • 5 packages of light colored Jello (or only 2 packs if you are doing a small bowl with small objects.)
  • Large bowl
  • Floss
  • Tape (the stronger the better… I only had invisible tape and it wasn’t so great)
  • Things to suspend (I used paper clips and a stapler)

2. Begin prepping Jello by boiling water.

Follow the directions on the package… I don’t think you need a picture of this.

3. While water boils, suspend your items in the glass bowl.

To do this, tape down one side of a string of floss to the outside of the bowl. Thread it through some portion of your object. Adjust the tension of the floss so the item is floating somewhere around the middle, then tape down the other side. Keep in mind that heavy objects sometimes take a couple pieces of floss.

4. When water has boiled, stir in Jello powder.

Like so.

5. Pour hot Jello mixture gently into your bowl, then add cool water according to package directions.

Be careful not to just dump the liquid in as it can mess up your floating-office-supply placement. Also, fill it as close to the brim of the bowl as you can!

6. Refrigerate for 4 hours.

You don’t have to put yours next to the yogurt like I did.

7. Remove floss.

When the Jello has… uh… jelled… take the tape off the floss. Slowly slide the floss out of the Jello, pulling gently from one side so it will slip out like a thread through a needle. Don’t pull directly up, or you’ll get lines where the floss was and you could mess up your object placement.

8. Remove Jello from bowl…

This part is a little tricky, so take your time. You’re going to want to fill a larger bowl, or the sink, with warm water. Hold the Jello bowl in the water (without letting water spill over the brim!) for about a minute to help loosen the Jello mold. Remove from water.

Terrible picture of my jello masterpiece, but can you see the stapler?!

Now put a plate on top of your bowl, and while holding the plate in place, flip the whole thing over. Just lift the top off (you may have to wiggle it just a little) and your Jello mold is complete!


* I suggest using yellow Jello, because you can see things better through it. I chose Strawberry because it’s my favorite flavor, but as you have noticed, it is harder to admire the stapler and paper clips.

* Do NOT put your roommate’s iPod in Jello. Or anything else you can’t afford to have replaced or repaired. 😉

* For more details, and a huge collection of photos of things in Jello, check out

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2 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Allison McDonough  |  November 30th, 2009 at 7:56 pm

    I did this my junior year of high school. It works really well if you have one of those silicon pans that you can just pop the jello out of easily.

    Also, don’t steal your teacher’s stapler and then leave it on his desk (jello-ified) two days later with a spoon in the jello that says “quick! you must rescue your stapler from the fiery belly of GELATIN HELL!” You might get detention. Or maybe have to buy him a new stapler. That’s how you can get out of detention.

  • 2. Allison McDonough  |  November 30th, 2009 at 7:58 pm

    Also, instead of doing the floss trick. You can just make a layer of jello, refrigerate it so it solidifies, and then put the stapler on that layer and cover the whole thing with somewhat cooled jello liquid.

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