Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Using Washi Tape to Decorate Binder Clips + Holder

Binder clips have a ton of uses. I personally use them all around the house, so it's definitely not just for binders! But the binder clips that are decorated and pretty tend to be quite a bit more expensive than the generic, black ones. That's why I decided to take matters into my own hands. Using washi tape.

I'm using medium sized binder clips and am also making a holder for them. For the holder, I am re-purposing a chewing gum pack (Ice Breakers Ice Cubes). These taste great and come in cute packaging meant for car cup holders.

I use double layer on black backgrounds and single layer on white ones. Here's the after:

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Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Folding Plastic Bags into Triangles for Maximum Space

I have lost count of the number of times I've needed plastic bags suddenly in cars, malls, parks and other random places. They're always good to keep on hand, especially with little ones. I've found that folding them into triangles really enables you to maximize the space you have so that you don't need to keep refilling your bag of...bags. Target bags are the way to go for me. Proven to tear less. 

I saw how to do this on a YouTube video, and thought I'd share it in a blog post. Let's get started!

Flatten out a plastic bag:

 Fold it in half:

Fold that in half:

And half again, if need be:

Take the top corner of the bottom of the bag and fold it down to make a triangle.

Flip that triangle to the right, then up, then right, then down

Until you reach the handles of the bag:

Tuck the handle inside the flap which has been created. Le voilĂ  !

I keep a snack-sized Ziploc bag of these in the car, in my purse and in the diaper bag. Always comes in handy! Hope this post was of some help to you :)

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Monday, October 21, 2013

Re-purposing Makeup Case for Sewing Kit

I love re-purposing makeup bags. They're so perfectly compartmentalized, with zippers and pockets for small objects. The possibilities are endless. You may remember I have already done a post about re-purposing them for stationery back in this post:

This specific makeup case I use is for a small sewing kit used mainly for mending. It has some basic supplies. The brand name of the case is Modella. I couldn't find a website for it but I purchased it at Walmart for around $5. I have also seen this brand at Walgreens. 

Here are the contents:

The pictures are self-explanatory! Hope this post inspires some of you to re-purpose more affordable products rather than buying specialty products for everything like a sewing kit caddy, which is usually almost 5 times the price of this! Here's an example:

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Thursday, October 17, 2013

Functional Apartment Entryway

We know how it is in apartments...you are provided with a somewhat long, narrow hallway with bare walls on both sides. Sound nonfunctional? We can change that! Here's the reveal of the entryway I just updated in my apartment, (it used to be completely empty):

 This is the view from when you enter the apartment.

And the view from inside. Let's get into the details!

This cute little stool works great for holding my son's diaper bag and is of course also meant for sitting on while taking off and putting on shoes. I moved the diaper bag to the side and it's only half on the stool and half just leaning against the wall with empty space in between so that there's more space to sit on. You can't really tell unless you look closely. Shh, don't tell anyone! ;)

The stool is on clearance at Target right now for $29.98, originally $59.99. I thought that was a great price for this valuable piece that will last a long time. 

On the far right, I hung up a mail sorter I got from overseas. It holds coupons, takeout menus and other paperwork I need to take a look at. 

In the center, I have some calligraphy artwork and a key holder.

I hung up my purse using a command hook. I just put this up a day ago and am worried about how long it will last up. If it ever falls, I will update this post right under this picture.

I also nailed in a clipboard with a to do list on it. The intention is to write up all the errands which are outside related so we can just glance up and see what we have to get done outside. I just placed a pen on top of it which had bold black ink so it's easily visible. This clipboard was from Marshalls.

The last section of the wall has this mirror and organizer set, also from Target. Unfortunately I couldn't find a link for it...might be because I bought it a few months ago.

So on top of the shelf I keep our sunglasses and a small bag to decrease the clutter. The bag holds stuff like my husband's wallet, my son's socks which we need quickly when we're heading out, and stuff like that. It helps to keep the place looking tidy.

This is what the shelf pictures looked like when we bought it.

I used the same scrapbook paper and stickers that I used in my Family Binder to match my style.

Hanging are my son's items: a baby carrier, his 
cap and a jacket.

Moving further along, I placed a shoe shelf on the other side. One tip for organizing shoes is that if you place them in alternating directions, it will offer more space.

I also have a coin cup on the kitchen counter, which is just a few steps away.  The coat closet holds the remaining necessities.

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Thursday, October 10, 2013

Manual Binder

Dealing with manuals, warranties and receipts can be quite a hassle. We had our manuals all over the house: in product boxes, drawers, and a filing box. I decided to collect all of them and put them in a binder for easy access.

Organizing these papers not only saves time, it also saves money. How many times have there been that you couldn't return an item because you couldn't find the warranty or receipt? I know it's happened to me. 

So, here it is, a Martha Stewart binder from Staples:

I categorized the papers using these handy paper clip tabs. I just stuck on some some sticky tabs to add color. I put the tabs on top because the side tabs which were on the dividers were covered by the clear pocket folder which hold the manuals. I stuck the tabs to the back of the dividers with some clear scotch tape to keep them in place.

 Here's an example of a page from the binder. It holds all of the papers for this 3-piece luggage system, including the 5 year warranty.

So here's the question: if we keep every thing related to a product in this one binder, wouldn't some things fall out? In the example given above, I have a CD for our printer. It's also included in the binder so that everything is in one place. To ensure that it doesn't fall out of the binder if someone quickly picks it up or something, I simply added a paper clip on top of the sheet protector. A quick fix!

Finally, what about those products that we have more than one of, and take a while to figure out what it is? For example, I have 3 pieces of jewelry from the same store, Kay Jewelers. All of the warranties have the same exact cover, and I have to go through the paperwork every time to figure out which one is which so I can send it for inspection and cleaning every 6 months. A simple solution: Post-it notes!

It's so much easier this way! Also, I shortened my necklace from Kay, and kept the extra parts of the chain in this same pouch in case I want them to solder it together again later on. It makes it much more organized than the system I had before of everything all over the house!

So that's it from me...tell me about your manual storage system! :)

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Freshen up Sink Garbage Disposal

Start with a disposal filled with gunk. Yuck.

Step 1: Drain some ice with kosher salt. The ice cleans the food off the blade while the salt scrubs it. 

 Step 2: Scrub the rubber part with a scrubbing brush. So much food was flying everywhere when I did this...never realized there was so much gunk around the rims till I cleaned it real well!

Step 3: Citrus really freshens up the disposal in the grinder. I thought I'd also add some ginger to check what the fragrance is like. I liked it, smelled like ginger tea, but the lemon fragrance was definitely over-powering. Other citrus fruits can also be used. I tried grapefruit last time and it smelled wonderful!

 Run the water when you turn on the disposal switch

 And revealing the after!

Caution! Warning!:
You will need to stick the ice and the lemon etc down the sink using something (I used the end of a bottle brush). Do NOT attempt to do this while the switch is on. Hands should be away from the sink while the grinder is running!

(Hey, I could've gotten sued or something. Just sayin')

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