Money saving tip No2- “Unscrew your screws”

Whenever I am doing any DIY jobs around the home I always seem to spend haf the time looking for the correct screw, bolt, drill bit or rawplug. I recently priced up one of those sectioned boxes with a lid and also a small set of craft drawers to keep all the DIY fixings in and decided that as good as they are, I would need several of them to keep all the bits I needed, separate and sorted. Then I remembered back to my childhood and a trick I came up with to help my Dad keep his home workshop tidy.

Glass Jars

You might say..” obvious!” but the idea doesn’t end there, The important thing is to collect the jars that have metal lids. The lids are stronger than the plastic ones and won’t buckle under the weight of the jar when filled with screws.

Once you have your jars unscrew the lids and, using an appropriately sized screw, fix the lid underneath a cupboard or shelf. Then it is a simple matter of screwing the jar back onto the fixed lid.

Presto instant free, adaptable storage. The bonus is that you can see what is inside, you can label the jar with the screw sizes, and it is a simple job to remove the jar to take it to the DIY task you are doing, in the full knowledge that you have the correct size screws.

A friend of mine adapted this to a slightly different use….

Instant shelf mounted vase.

Have fun and see what uses you can come up with for your old jars.

Recycle, re-use, adapt……save money by being creative.

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Money saving tip No1- “From bed to flower bed……”

I was going to post this in my space-saving series….but decided to start a new category, “Money Saving” series. All we hear at the moment is how much everything is increasing in cost, food seems like it’s increasing by the minute…..well there are many ways to save money, create money and make things just plain cheaper than the shops can do it. This series of blogs will look at ways to recycle, alter, make, change the use of all sorts of things from the home.

This first blog in this series is entitled “from bed to flower bed….”

I recently came to the conclusion that my long-suffering sofa bed was probably coming to the end of its life, after several years of good service. A few of the slats had broken, leaving gaps under the mattress that could cause you to slip down between the good slats. I won’t go into the reasons behind the broken slats, needless to say some of them are down to the passions of my new relationship. Also the foam mattress, which was only meant for occasional use has been squashed and compacted to the point of no return.

I had looked up alternative sofa beds on the internet, ones that were modern when in sofa form, and provided a nice comfy double bed when deployed……nothing less that the £400 mark could be found anywhere.

Then a friend said she was getting rid of her double bed in her spare room so she could turn it into a full-time office for her photography business: . She had already removed the bed base, was selling the mattress and was preparing to use the slats on the garden fire. When she heard my plight, she offered me the replacement slats, which were greatly received.

I spent a day removing the old slats and rather flimsy fixings. Then fitted the new wooden slats to the metal frame using a drill and self-tapping screws. The bed has been fixed and is stronger, and a lot quieter lol.

The old slats were going to take the place of the new ones on the garden fire….until I had a brainwave……WOVEN FENCE panels!

I had enough slats to make two panels, they even have the legs which will easily slot down into the ground for support. I just need to add a retaining screw in each corner and they are done. They should last a good while in the garden because of the gluing process used when they were laminated.

FREE: newly revitalised sofa bed frame.

FREE: new ornamental garden fence panels.

The new fence panels will be on their way back to Chriss as a thankyou for the fixed bed, as well as some tasty yellow courgettes she gave me from her beautiful garden. Thanks Chriss,hope you like the new fencing XXXX

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Ikebana – the art of Japanese flower arranging




Perfection picked,

The beauty of nature laid before kimono clad figure.

Creation blooming from within,

A mirror of inner peace.

Dexterity guiding life, yet

Contemplation and “wholeness” moulding form.

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Well its nearly that time of year again when the attic is pulled apart to find all the camping gear ready for a weekend away with 20+ friends in Yorkshire. It should be fun this year, some old friends from bygone times are coming along, plus I’m taking my lovely boyfriend. He has been camping before, roughing it as I would view it. He has never been glamping before, so this should be a new experience for him.

The double airbed has been checked, I’ll be taking my duvet and pillows as usual. The Bedouin rugs for the floor are being cleaned ready to be spread out on the floor. My extra large sheepskin will be coming with us again. I have the flat pack bedside tables ready, as well as the bedside lamps. Musn’t forget to get new batteries for the i-pod speaker.

The kitchen unit will be a nice addition this year, never put it together before, nice that it has storage space for the food, out of the way.

Just need to remember to pack all the cooking stuff, the decking for the outside the front door as well as the front awning. 

Mmmmmm should I take the plastic picket fence this year and the silk flowers for the garden front? We’ll have to see.

I love Glamping

Try it xx

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Personal medical emergency!

I was admitted to hospital yesterday after having phone sex!

The doctors managed to remove: 2 Nokias; 3 Motorolas; an I-phone 3, but found no Seimens


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Space saving tips: Number 2

 I love entertaining in the home. As I mentioned in a Space Saving Tips number 1, I have a small flat, so entertaining friends by having a dinner party could be problematic. Especially when it comes to storage of dining furniture, namely table and chairs. My table solution I will share with you in SST3, for now I want to offer you a solution to storing those dining chairs when not in use.

Firstly its a little obvious, but choose folding chairs,
I opted for some strong, metal folding chairs, 6 to be exact. My table can seat 7 easily, or 8 at a push. I usually cater for 6.

Every room in my flat is totally multi-functional, they need to be. This has given me the chance to come up with novel solutions to storage. The “dead space” I mentioned in SST1 is easily found if you look upwards. I have created storage for my dining chairs above door height in my hallway.

The space above door height is often wasted space. My chairs are held on the wall by cheap, simple shelf brackets.

I painted them black so they wouldn’t be seen against the black wallpaper, when I was using the chairs. The chairs simply hook over the brackets, one by one, 3 chairs on each set of brackets, simples. It is an added bonus that the chairs cannot be seen from my front door due to a structural obstruction across the hallway ceiling.

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Space saving tips: Number 1

I don’t usually post anything on here but humour, for once, on advice from a friend I thought I’d pass on some space saving tips I’ve developed.

I live in a small flat….a very small flat, but it doesn’t seem small because I’ve really thought about design and how to use of all the space I have, especially what could be termed “dead space”. Dead space are those areas of your home that don’t have a function, don’t do anything yet could be useful if a little thought is applied.
First of all a little tip about laundry. I have just finished a long project re-fitting my kitchen. Only to realise that I had not got any storage for a wash basket to take my wet laundry from the washer to dry the airer. A lightbulb moment hit me: The folding storage basket solution! It cost only a few pound from a well known high street discounted chain store. It is sturdy when upright and folds flat when not in use.

Problem solved. The collapsed basket goes nicely in the bottom of a cupboard till next time.

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