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Monday, October 5, 2009

10 Creative and Frugal hacks

I get inspired by many blogs/articles and people around me, which keeps me learning new things and makes my life easier, frugal and better.

Betsy Bargain at Talk Thrifty to me is author of the one of the blog that inspires me, she wrote a recent article about Tweak your routine to sneak in savings . It has many wonderful ideas and suggestions, please check it out this and other articles there, if you have not done so already.

It made me think of some ideas/hacks I use at everyday. Here are some of the creative hacks I use in my house, instead of buying new items, use what I have at home;

1. Instead of buying new plastic or other types storage boxes, use unused luggage bags to store winter or summer clothes or extra stuff. Use shoe box to fill up smaller items such as crafts, glue, pens etc. One can glue or wrap used wrapping paper to make it unify and make it easy on eye

2. After using canned food, wash and unwrap can and wash it with soap, use it to store small pens, crayons, pencil holder. Use larger can to hold serving utensils. Larger used cans can be used for small pots outside or inside plants. It can also be used as a flower holder, straws holder.

3. Reusing gift wrapping paper is popular with most frugal people already. Another great idea is to use extra colorful cloth with raffia tied as a wrapping gift. Sunday comic page also make a good wrapping paper for kid's gifts. Gift basket and gift bags can be made with simple things from home. Used brown bags from groceries can be used as a gift wrap, one can stencil some nice stencil design made out of cut apples or cut potatoes and stamp with colorful pattern.

4. Reuse leftover food in soup or veggie burger, it hides and holds better. Use tired and over-ripe fruits and vegetable in to chutneys or soup instead of throwing it out. Blacked out mushy banana makes a wonderful bread or muffins.

5. Use old plastic bags cut to tie up plants that need support. Make craft out of used plastic bag such as parachute or kite for kids. Cut up 4 plastic bags and join them with tape on edges to make a large plastic catch all for kid's messy games.

6. Use old yogurt container for storing leftover or freezing items. It can be used to make also home made yogurt. I use small individual yogurt size container for juice Popsicles, it is also perfect for seed starter too in spring time.

7. Use old and unusable CD to make craft mobile, CD curtain on strings, frame or toss game for younger kids.

8. Use cheap/free baskets and plastic tote bags to store kid's toys, arts/craft supply.

9. Use old T-shirts, towels as a Rag, cleaning clothes. Use newer, small pieces of clothes to make small and simple quilt napkins. Join various pieces of small carpet pieces to make a larger size rug, using duct tape to seal joints on bottom.

10. Reuse old calendars for art pieces in your house, laundry or garage. One can decoupage Calendar or old magazine pictures on glass coffee table or room door to personalized and unique art in your home.

What other creative ways you use reuse items you have at hand, instead of buying it? Please share your ideas.



Betsy Bargain said...

Lots of great ideas, Zengirl. Some of these I already do on a regular basis, some I can't wait to try. I was particularly intrigued by the thought of decoupaging on the glass coffee table. I once did this on a wooden table for a friend, using photos and words from a Persian magazine. It looked really cool when it was done!

zengirl said...

I am sure it looked great! I have done one on glass coffee table, with photo copies of personal family and friends pictures, it looked great and made an great conversation piece as well. I got new table for little time and effort.