has some extrodinary things you can do with ordinary items!
Ordinary item: Glass baking dish
Extraordinary use: Instant cookbook stand
So you’ve found a new recipe in your favourite cookbook—and it’s a big one with lots of pages, but every time you turn your back to add a new ingredient or stir the pot, the pages flip over and you lose your place. Now, you could
buy a clear plastic cookbook holder designed for the job (which means MORE stuff, and more clutter on your kitchen counter, which is some of the most valuable real estate in the entire home). OR, you could use something you already have: Something like, a clear glass baking dish. All we’re going to do is turn to the page where your recipe is, and flatten the book with the dish. Not only will it keep your cookbook open, but will also give you a crystal-clear view of the type. (AND protect your pages from splatters, to boot!)
Ordinary item: Freezer bag
Extraordinary use: Easy workshop/garage cleanup
Maybe this is just a “me” problem, but how many times have you started building flat-pack furniture, spread out all of the nails, nuts and bolts and allen keys, and then just given up out of sheer frustration. Next time that happens, feel free to steal this hack, which involves an ordinary freezer bag and a few magnets from my tool kit. Just going to pop the magnets into the freezer bag, swipe it over the hardware, and flip the bag inside out. How’s that for a quick cleanup? (It won’t build your flat-pack furniture for you, but it will help get you through that moment of crisis.)
Ordinary item: Dental floss
Extraordinary use: Housekey helper
Everybody loses their keys in their bag—with the dawn of the manpurse, it’s no longer just a girls’ thing. There’s a quick fix to this dilemma, though, and it comes in the form of dental floss. What we’re going to do is measure our manpurse from the bottom to the base of the strap buckle, and then add about 15 centimetres. Cut a piece of dental floss to that length, and tie it onto the strap ring, thread your keys onto the line and knot the end. Toss them in your bag, and whenever you need your keys, just pull out the line. (Brings new meaning to “fishing for your keys”!) Although I’ve used dental floss for this, just because I had it handy, you could also use fishing line, or upgrade to a pretty ribbon if dental floss clashes with your Coach.
Ordinary item: Shoebox
Extraordinary use: Homemade sock organizer
If they’re not holding shoes, most of the shoeboxes in this world just hold love letters and angsty teen poetry. If that’s all you’re doing with your shoeboxes, you’re only tapping a fraction of their potential. With one easy tweak, they can also bring order to a chaotic sock drawer. All you’re going to do is take either scissors or a utility knife, and cut these shoeboxes in half. Then I want you to pop them in your sock drawer so the open ends fit snugly against the front of the drawer. What you’ve just created are drawer dividers so you can separate your socks: sort your smart socks, casual socks and sports socks into their own separate compartments. If you’re the first one up in the morning, and have to rummage for your socks in the dark, you can sort the blacks separate from the navies. There’s nothing worse than getting out into the daylight and realizing you’ve made that fashion faux pas. (If you can’t get the width right for a snug fit, just stuff an old pair of socks along the side of your row of dividers to close up the gap.)
Ordinary item: Pocket comb
Extraordinary use: Preventing crushed fingers
Ever notice that the smaller the nail, the more painful hammering can be? I’ve hung enough gallery walls—and had enough smashed fingers—to make me a really timid tapper. I really wish somebody had been around to show me this hammering hack, which involves an ordinary hair comb. All I’m going to do is slot my nail in between the teeth of the comb, and move my fingers safely out of harm’s way before I hammer it home. Bam!
For more incredible hacks, check out these videos: