Monday, October 14, 2013

A Month of Small Fixes: Organized Recipes

Last summer, Kate at Centsational Girl had a post about taking her huge collection of magazines and pasting the dog eared pages into bound sketchbooks, so as to save only the meaningful images and articles and declutter the rest. It sounded like a great idea -- I'm a magazine hoarder too! And like all great ideas, it got filed away in my brain...and the magazines kept piling up.

But this summer with Sean wanting to cook more, he kept coming to me and asking if we had a good recipe for this or that, and I just knew there was one somewhere on that shelf where all the cooking magazines are...But who wants to thumb through the recipe index at the back of each magazine on an entire shelf? So, I finally decided to tear out the recipes we want to try and organize them into books.

I started with just three books, though I know I'll need at least three more! I got white canvas covered sketchbooks from Michael's (actually the same ones Kate used for her project, though I didn't know it until I went back to her article when writing this post!) One has breakfast recipes, one has desserts and one has slow cooker recipes.

Living Design: Organized Recipe Books

Living Design: Organized Recipe Books

For pages that had recipes I want to keep on both sides, I just hand copied the recipe onto the page. Minimizing the extra paper glued into the book helps keep it flat.

I'm very happy with how these books turned out, and I can't wait to use a coupon to get more sketchbooks -- I'm thinking one for vegetables, one for main dishes...

Do you have any tricks to organizing recipes from magazines? I'd love to hear your ideas!

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

A Month of Small Fixes: Calendar Art

I admit, I hoard craft supplies.

Anything that looks like it could be useful for a project down the road HAS to be kept. Sometimes this leads to drawers full of old calendars...

And sometimes this leads to old calendars becoming art.

And who doesn't love free or cheap art?

Living Design Calendar Art

I recently hung this in the bathroom.

And remember these from my living room? They're also photos from an old calendar!

Living Design Calendar Art

Living Design Calendar Art

Using calendar pictures to decorate is very simple. Just find an image you like, and place the frame over it to figure out your crop (if needed). Trim (if needed) and frame! It's an excellent way to personalize your walls without spending much, and the perfect excuse to keep on hoarding those craft supplies!


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Monday, October 7, 2013

A Month of Small Fixes: Kitchen Light

The next mini project in our "Month of Small Fixes" series took very little time, and cost only about $4! I can't believe it took a year to get around to this one...

When we first moved into our condo, the ceiling fan in the kitchen had an exposed CFL bulb and was missing whatever cover it originally had. We put getting a new globe for it on our to-do list, but somehow every time we went to the hardware store we never made it to the right aisle to pick one out. It looked like this for over a year:

Well, in a spree of taking care of the little things around the house, I finally picked up a new globe. It's not completely perfect (anything that fits around a light bulb makes the cords bend around it...makes me wonder what originally was there) but it's certainly an improvement over a bare bulb!

What a difference this simple globe makes!

Thursday, October 3, 2013

A Month of Small Fixes: Office Closet

First up in the "Month of Small Fixes" is a mini-makeover I did to the closet in our office at the end of summer.

Since we don't keep any clothes in the office closet, the part with two levels of hanging bars was not proving very useful. We had basically put the file cabinet in there, then shoved boxes and bags of stuff on top. It was a mess and didn't help us organize anything. Below is a picture of the closet how it was (with much of the junk moved out already, you can see some of it in the vanity area)

Living Design: Office Closet

In order to make the closet work for us, I decided to install a shelf. I had 3' of space to work with, and luckily on my trip to Orchard that day, they had a wire shelf that was 3' long! Score! It's a bracket shelf rather than a standards system, which was incredibly easy for me to install by myself. Here's the shelf installed in the closet:

Living Design: Office Closet

And here is how we have started organizing our stuff on the shelf:

Living Design: Office Closet

The plastic bins on the right hold my model making supplies. The currently mis-matched bins hold other craft supplies (stickers, stamps, etc). The set of tiny drawers currently holds Sean's electronic components, but we're going to share those drawers so that model people and furniture have a safe and organized place to go. I'm hoping to borrow my parents' label maker soon so that we can truly get this shelf working for us!

Living Design: Office Closet Organization

We're also considering adding another shelf halfway between this one and the top hanging bar, so that we're not tempted to just stack things incredibly high. Maybe a project for Thanksgiving break?

Stay tuned for the rest of my "Month of Small Fixes"!

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

A Month of Small Fixes

Happy October! I'm heading into a very busy month at school, with tech rehearsals and a show opening, so I've queued up a number of posts showing small projects around the house that can make a big difference. Here's a quick preview of some of the things I'll be showing you:

Living Design: A Month of Small Fixes

I hope you enjoy the posts over the next few weeks, and please chime in if you have any quick and easy projects you'd like to share!