How to upcycle soup cans for storage and organization

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Instead of throwing away or recycling soup cans, save them for storage and organization. Old soup cans can be used for organizing and storing supplies for the office, crafts, art, you name it! Whether you choose  to display them, or use them in a box or drawer is up to you. Make sure the cans are clean and dry, without any sharp edges.

Supplies:                                                                                                                                                   IMG_2113

soup cans

craft paint

ribbon, yarn or twine

paint brushes

decorative paper

glue

IMG_2116Step 1:

I covered one of the soup cans in decorative paper. This was quick and easy! Choose the paper you would like to use and lightly trace the size of the can onto the paper with a pencil. It is also helpful to wrap the paper around the can to make sure you have enough to go around. Cut the paper to fit the can.

Step 2:

Next, I used a paint brush to paint tacky glue onto the can. Carefully place the paper onto the can and press or smooth lightly to adhere the paper to the can. Allow to dry.

IMG_2115Step 1:

For the other two cans, I used white craft paint on one, and bronze on another. Feel free to choose any color you would like. I needed two coats of the white paint and three coats of the bronze to make sure there weren’t any see-through spots on the can. Allow to dry between coats.

IMG_2118Step 2:

For a finishing touch, I wrapped a silver/white piece of twine around the bronze can and a deep purple twine around the white can. Just measure out enough to wrap around the can several times, and then tie in a bow. You’re finished!

How to make shoe boxes into decorative storage boxes

 

 

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Save those shoe boxes taking up space in your closet and upcycle them into something useful! Empty shoe boxes can be great for organizing clutter, and with just a little paper and glue, they can made into decorative storage boxes. I bought wrapping paper from a dollar store for two of the boxes shown above. For the third box, I clipped my favorite pictures from old magazines for a tropical theme.

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Supplies:

wrapping paper, magazine clippings, or other paper

glue stick

scissors

shoe box

 

 

 

 

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Step 1:

Measure out and cut enough wrapping paper to wrap just the bottom of the box. Set the top of the box aside for now. Keep in mind that you won’t need to wrap all the way around the box. Leave about 1″ to 2″ extra paper around the top of the box so you can fold the paper and glue the edges on the inside of the box.

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Step 2: 

Apply glue to the sides of the box one at a time and firmly and evenly press the paper to the side of the box.

 

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Step 3:

Glue and fold in the ends of the paper as you would if you were wrapping a present.

 

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Step 4:

Fold the top edges into the box and glue.

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Step 5:

Repeat the same instructions to wrap and glue the top of the box.

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To decorate your box with magazine clippings, you will need the same supplies. For this one, I used Mod Podge instead of a glue stick. You can decide to carefully lay out each piece, or you can make a collage.

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How to organize cluttered shelves

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When shelves are cluttered and disorganized, finding what you need can be time-consuming. By eliminating useless books and papers and leaving room for what you need, your shelves will be easier to use and more visually pleasing. If your shelves are just a pile of messy papers, books and odd things, it’s time to organize!

Keep in mind that when you’re clearing off the shelves, that you’re starting at the top, leaving the heaviest shelf on the bottom to anchor the shelf. It also helps to determine the use of the shelf. Is it only for books? Do you use it for CDs or DVDs? Is it something you use or is it more for looks?

1. Start by removing what is on the shelf one thing at a time. Is it something that can be thrown out, something you want to keep, or something that needs to stay on the shelf? Make piles as you go along for each category. I had one pile for garbage, one for things that I will put away in a box, and one for things that I use and will keep on the shelf.

2. Once the shelf is empty, you will need to stand the books, folders, and other things that you will be keeping on the shelf on their ends, starting with the largest first. This not only keeps the books from falling over, but it’s easier to find smaller things that way. You can also organize books and magazines alphabetically, or by category.

3. After all books are back on the shelf, you might need book ends to keep the books from falling over. One idea is to stack smaller or heavier books on the shelf to use as book ends.

4. Objects other than books can be stacked on the shelf, or placed in bins for more organization. Shoeboxes, plastic totes and tins can be used for storage.

5. Throw out the left over garbage and store away other things you plan to keep.