PANTY HOSE: Slip panty hose over the end of a vacuum cleaner to clean drawer contents or small delicate items. The dirt will be picked up but the items will be undisturbed.
Cut panty hose in rings and use as stuffing for pillows or toys. They are washable and can be poked into small corners.
Cut panty hose into strips and use for tying plants to stakes in garden.
Use pieces of panty hose to buff shoes after polishing.
Cut panty portion off; dab rest of hose in baby oil; shine shoes.
Cut panty and toe portion off; cut into strips to tie up tomato plants in garden.
Use leg portion for travel shoe bags.
Cut into pieces and use for stuffing homemade toys.
SOCKS: Cut off the foot of old knee-high socks; slip the remaining tubes over arms when weeding for protection from thorns or poison ivy.
When traveling, slide a sock over each shoe to keep clothes in a suitcase clean.
Slip socks over sneakers when washing in the machine to muffle the thumping noise.
When moving furniture, pull socks over legs for easy sliding and to prevent
scratching the floor.
HAIR CLAW: Use plastic hair claws to keep the cords of curling irons, hair
dryers, and small appliances in place. Fold the cord back and forth a few times; clamp the hair claw around it to keep it neat.
BOTTLE CAPS: Use plastic bottle caps, like the larger ones from laundry
detergent, to hold paint when doing small touch ups or for kids art projects.
SODA BOTTLES: Put empty one-liter soda bottles inside tall leather boots as
Cut off the top off of a large bottle and use the bottom as a countertop garbage
or compost container.
Punch holes in a small bottle top and use as a sprinkler when ironing.
SOAP PIECES: Place soap pieces in a saucepan, cover with water and soak overnight. Bring to a boil and stir in two Tablespoons olive oil. Pour mixture into greased muffin tins. When hardened you will have new bars of soap.
Use thin slivers of soap as a marking tool when sewing. Use a sharp edge of a sliver of soap to
trace the outline of a pattern when you are sewing. It will wash out of most fabrics.
Put soap pieces into an old clean sock, tie with a string about half way up and
use as a body scrubber.
Save scented soap slivers inside an old sock or panty hose leg; place in an
empty suitcase to keep musty odors at bay while in storage.
Rub screws or nails with soap before driving them into hardwood. They will go in
If a window is sticking, rub the tracks with a soap sliver.
Instead of mothballs, take leftover soap slivers and put them in a vented plastic bag. Place the bag with seasonal clothes before packing them away. Not only will the scent prevent them from moths but they’ll smell great when you pull them out; especially good for sweaters to have a clean smell instead of a mothball smell which is difficult to remove.
WATER BOTTLE: Fill an empty water bottle three-quarters full with water; label
it ‘cooler; freeze for use in picnic coolers. Do not drink the water after thawing; refreeze
and keep bottle in freezer for cooler use only.
Keep an old Styrofoam cooler in your car trunk to carry groceries on warm days.
Fill 1 or 2 empty plastic water bottles 3/4 full with water; label as ‘cooler’; freeze to as
cooler packs; do thaw and drink water.
EMPTY TOILET PAPER ROLLS: Make knife blade covers; fold in half, close one end with masking tape or duct tape or staples; insert knife blade.
Make Christmas crackers with crepe paper; add small toys, candies. Use to keep cords tidy; fold cords back and forth and insert into toilet paper roll. Use empty paper towel roll for longer knives. (tp_rolls.jpg)
FOAM TRAYS: Wash plastic foam trays thoroughly and use as plant saucers. Line foam trays with paper towels to use as drip catchers under oily bottles in cupboards. Use as canvas for kids to paint on.
PLASTIC SHOWER CURTAIN: Use old plastic shower curtains to cover lawn furniture,
air conditioner, or the barbecue grill to protect them from weather. Use plastic shower curtains as a drop cloth when painting or washing walls. Spread plastic shower curtains on the ground and rake leaves or grass cuttings into it; gather the corners together and drag or lift it to the trash or compost pile. Put shower curtains under a tent or sleeping bag when camping.
RUBBER GLOVES: Cut off a fingertip from old rubber gloves; slip it over your index finger when
sorting through papers or mail; instant fingerstall.
With kitchen shears, cut the rubber cuffs from old rubber gloves and all remaining glove portions into rubber bands. These are very handy for many things that require an elastic band, or for use on small packages instead of tying with string.
Slip a cut-off finger over a broom handle to keep it from slipping when leaning against a wall. Put on rubber gloves for extra grip when opening a stubborn jar lid. Wear rubber gloves outside when gardening to keep hands clean and to keep hands
warm on cool days.
SHAMPOO: Put liquid laundry detergent, or shampoo, in an empty hand soap dispenser. Pump a small amount onto the dirty area of clothing or linen before washing.
OLD TABLECLOTHS: Cover items in closet or in storage with old tablecloths. Use a
good part of an old flannel back table cloth to make a shower cap.
Use step-on wastebaskets for dry pet food or to sort out recycle items; paper, plastic, cans.
EMPTY PERFUME BOTTLES: Remove top; place bottle in your lingerie or sock drawer instead of purchasing expensive drawer liners.
SPONGES: Dampen make-up sponges to moisten glue on envelopes or use a piece of a
JEANS: Sew a skirt or vest from old jeans. Make a shoe bag or purse. Glue magnet to back of a jean pocket to hold coupons on refrigerator. Sew several jean pockets to a sturdy background fabric and hang for storage in sewing room or workshop or garage.
Make washable shopping bags; use jean pockets for holding a pen, shopping list; add larger pockets made from legs for flyers. Cut jeans into squares; make a jean quilt. Sew the leg bottoms of old blue jeans closed; hang the jeans on a nail from one of the belt loops to store long gift wrap tubes.
Cut off worn out knees to wear as shorts. Cover worn areas with decorative patches for work clothes.
PILLOWCASES: cut a tiny hole in the center of the seamed end; place over a hanger for
Cover shoes at home or for travel.
Use a pillow case as
laundry bag for travel.
Insert framed photos, pictures, and any items for storage in pillow cases.
Cover crock pots, thermos, electric fry pans, and other seldom used items to keep them clean when not in use.
Sew shopping bags from pillow cases; shorten seamed end; add handles to the
hemmed area, allowing room for grocery flyers; add pockets for pen, shopping list, and
Cut one large hole in the center of the seam end for a head opening, and two arm
holes on the sides, to use as smocks for the kids when they paint.
PLACEMATS: Sew two place mats together, with heatproof fabric or old toweling in
the middle, for a large pot holder to protect counters from larger hot baking dishes.
Sew a travel curling iron caddy; line with heatproof fabric.
Sew a purse or tote bag; add pockets andhandles.
SHEETS/TABLECLOTHS: Use old sheets as drop cloths for painting. Cover off-season
clothing, bedding, and seasonal items. Fold in half leaving a flap at the top; sew two
sides together; use to cover blankets and other larger items for storage. Drape over clothes on hangers in closet for a dust cover.
When moving, tie a bunch of clothing on hangers together at the neck of the hanger. Lay a sheet on a bed; bring up the sheet and tie it around the neck of the hanger. Sew aprons, shopping bags and tank tops from unworn portions.
CURTAINS: Use yellowed or torn lace curtains to cover strawberry plants or raspberry bushes to protect them from birds.
CLOTHING: Sew a shopping bag or purse. Sew tank tops, aprons, travel bags, shoe
bags. Sew children’s clothing from unworn parts of adult clothing.
WORN TEE SHIRTS, TEA TOWELS, DISH CLOTHS: Use for cleaning rags, washing the
car, cleaning house, covering storage items.
Use worn tee-shirts to cover clothing in closet. Slip over hanger; use safety pins to close neck opening if necessary.
LEFTOVER FABRICS: Cut into squares; sew into a quilt or coverlet, wall hanging, place mats, or pot holders.
If you don’t need your old blankets or towels you can donate them to the SPCA
(Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals) or to your local veterinarian.
Dab perfume on a cotton ball and rub it on cold light bulbs. When you turn the
light on the heat will emit a lovely scent instead of buying those air fresheners in a can.
Light a candle that is in a deep candle holder by lighting the end of a dry
strand of spaghetti.
SCRATCH PADS: Cut the blank portions of misprinted items on your computer into
notes. Cut some into 3-1/2″ squares for a plastic container you can get at a Dollar Store.
Or cut into strips such as 5″ x 8″ for grocery or shopping lists. The size depends on the blank portion of the document.
HOW TO SAVE MONEY ON GROCERIES
- Prepare an inventory of all canned, packaged, and freezer items with a column for purchased date and expiry dates if given on item. If you have a computer you can put the inventory in a table document to organize them.
- Plan meals with this inventory, along with the specials of the week in grocery flyers.
- Clean out the refrigerator and check your pantry before you make your grocery list. Be sure to stick to your list.
- Once a week make soup from the leftover bits of vegetables and cooked meat in the refrigerator; add canned broth or homemade stock. Or make a casserole with cooked noodles or sliced potatoes, adding the cooked vegetables you have on hand to the layers.
- Use the weekly grocery ads and flyers, and/or go online for grocery and other household supplies coupons.
- Stock up on items you use on a consistent basis if it is on sale for a good price. Check the expiry dates; add to your inventory.
- Focus your menus on seasonal foods and vegetables that are on sale as you plan your weekly menu.
- Never go grocery shopping when you’re hungry.
- Consider buying store brands or generic products.
- Buy a whole chicken and cut it up as you like rather than buying separate portions. Freeze pieces in a single layer on a cookie sheet lined with wax paper or parchment paper; bag, labeland date; add to your freezer inventory.
- Buy roasts on sale that can be cut into multiple uses:- A beef roast can be cut into a roast, steaks, kebabs or stew.
– A pork roast can be cut into a roast, pork chops, kebabs or stew.
– Freeze pieces in a single layer on a cookie sheet lined with wax paper or parchment paper; bag, label and date; add to your freezer inventory.
- Buy three-bags of milk rather than 1 or 2 liter containers. You can freeze the milk bags; thaw milk bags in the refrigerator.
- Switch to tap water or tea or fruit juices on sale. Soft drinks are expensive. Make your own juices when fruit is plentiful in the summer.
- Cook once; eat twice. Double recipes and freeze one for busy days. Thaw in
refrigerator before cooking or according to recipe.Examples; chili, spaghetti sauce, soup, stew, cooked ground beef or chicken.
- Use leftovers in appetizers, sandwiches, soups, and casseroles.
- Brown bag it for lunch to use up leftovers.
- Take your own coffee/tea/beverages in a thermos or cooler.
- Invest in a thermos for hot lunches such as soup, casseroles or leftovers.