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Tips & Techniques > No Cost Containers

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Posted by: Clev

About Clev
Member since: 3/26/05
Reviews: 20 (tips: 3)
Skill level:Intermediate
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Posted on: 6/10/05 10:06 AM
Review Rating: Helpful by 2 people   Very Helpful by 6 people   
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"A Place for Everything" is the well-known saying but it would appear that many companies would love to profit from our desire to be organized. It can be very expensive to purchase one storage container after another, so I stopped. There seems to be "no cost" containers all around my house if I have at least one eye out for them.

Among the frequently used around my home are:

Hickory Farms boxes, with or without the green foam-y thing that comes with it. I seem to get one of these each Christmas and they are very helpful storage boxes. They are sturdy and have neat closing lids.

Cosmetics such as face powder are sold in long-lasting boxes of all different shapes. I store sewing stuff and small jewelery in these.

Gum and Breath mints are marketed in a variety of little containers. Star Bucks has one that holds my used sewing needles perfectly. I spotted a friend throwing hers away and asked for it.

Lots of things are sold in flexible yet kind of firm plastic. I recently bought an eye-lash curler and the plastic bit glued to the cardboard was still laying around. I grabbed the scissors and the hot glue gun. After easily cutting it in half I glued it to a piece of cardboard and had myself yet another container for small things.

I keep all tin boxes and watch the local cigar store too. They have many metal & heavy cardboard cigar boxes available, some they charge a couple of dollars for and some that are free. Love them and store buttons and little pieces of trim in them.

I watch the antique stores too. For a dollar or two you can buy a large Christmas Cookie Tin for larger things. I even bought a 1940's ashtray that works as a drawer organizer in my sewing area.

Recently I made an attractive thread storage wall mounted shelf for around $10.00--check for that tip on my page to see a photograph.

The point is this. Sometimes folks throw a little too much money at their problems, including their clutter problems. It's very possible to save money in this area with a little ingenuity.

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Clev said... (7/21/05 9:00 AM) Reply
Wow Zinna, that's really smart and clever and I'm impressed. I can see this in my head but do you think you could refer me to a picture of this?
zinna said... (7/8/05 3:27 AM) Reply
I use discarded dishwasher lower rolling racks mounted on the wall for thread storage. If you take off 2 of the wheels, and mount it so the other 2 wheels are on the bottom, this will keep the rack on a slant, so the spools don't fall off. Just watch for trash pick up day for large household items. That's how I found 3 of them!
Clev said... (6/28/05 8:54 AM) Reply
Esmer, contact paper comes in colours and patterns or clear. It's like shelf paper that you might lay in a kitchen cupboard but it is very, very sticky on one side. The clear stuff is thicker than celophane tape and in some ways more pliable. It comes on a roll like gift wrap paper and I've used it to cover wall posters, cover playing cards and all other kinds of things because it looks as if you had the object lamenated. For covering a shoe box or something you'd probably want a pattern/coloured one. Look for it wherever you buy shelf paper or at the office store.
esmer said... (6/24/05 8:23 PM) Reply
nickel if you don't mind me asking what is contact paper? Thank you for your help. I love this review.
Clev said... (6/14/05 9:42 AM) Reply
Nickle, I love contact paper--it's so useful. Thanks for reminding me, it's been years since I bought any.
Nickle said... (6/14/05 6:34 AM) Reply
Great tips- I use shoe boxes that I cover with contact paper and label. I'm all for anything to save money.
Clev said... (6/11/05 11:34 AM) Reply
Good Stuff Beth Pierce, really good. I think a message board thread would be good for this, we could gather even more ideas.
Miss Fairchild said... (6/11/05 7:24 AM) Reply
Thanks so much for your wonderful reminder! It would be interesting to see it as a thread on the message boards to see how others respond and what they use. After I read it, I realized I do the same. I have: 1) A cookie tin for my embroidery supplies 2) An old Tupperware crafter's box (sans lid) I found at a yard sale to store my sewing stuff in my sewing desk drawer. 3) Avon boxes for my sewing patterns. 4) Several shoeboxes to store shoulder pads, velcro, fabric weights, and quilting yarn (The greatest thing about cardboard is that you can decorate it with wallpaper, stencils or paint to fit your decor.) 5) Another old cookie tin with a hinge, for my buttons. 6) A beautiful purple Cadbury chocolates tin with a hinge for my scissors and things I take to my cutting table. 7) Pocket size peppermint tins for bobbins and snaps 8) Bamboo hat and coat rack to hold sewing and quilting rulers on the wall 9) Vitamin bottle to hold long saftety pins 10) Small Whitman's chocolate boxes to hold my straight pins 11) And my favorite: Guterman thread spools to hold sewing machine needles. (The smallest ones hold six). You can also put hand needles in there, wrap thread around the outside and you have a mini sewing kit. Even my sewing desk didn't start out as a sewing desk but was an old rolltop (without the cubicles) I had no use for and was thinking of getting rid of when I had an "A-ha!" moment and cut a hole in the top for my machines. The drawers are great with lots of room and the top of the desk is large enough for quilting. Reusing things we would normally toss out is wonderful as it inspires our creativity. Thank you for reminding me of that.
PattiK said... (6/10/05 11:55 PM) Reply
Great tips! I feel the same I've taken to using gladware etc for organizing bathroom and sewing room.
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