30 New Ways to Use Your Old Stuff

Learn how to repurpose common everyday items — like ladders, tin cans and rakes — and turn them into clever household storage solutions. Here are 30 ideas you’ll be dying to try.

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Raise the (Shoe) Bar

Shoe clutter and closet disarray is an all-too-common problem for those of us with shoe addictions. Janet Lee conquered the dilemma of storing her abundance of shoes in a New York City apartment by creating a chic shoe bar that puts her favorite pairs on display and offers a vertical space-saving solution. The best part? No hammering or drilling required. To make, Janet found a lightweight polyurethane decorative molding cut into 24-inch-long strips. She then painted them in a cool blue hue to match her bedroom’s palette. To attach to the wall, she added removable picture-hanging strips to the back (six on each piece of molding). Each bar can hold three or four pairs of heels.
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Rustic Jewelry Display

To keep your bracelets and necklaces nice and tidy, look no further than the garage. You would be surprised at how well a vintage rake head keeps necklaces untangled and hanging beautifully on the wall. Kevi Zupancic detached the handle and simply nailed the rake head to the wall to create a unique and rustic jewelry holder — for free!
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Ice-Cube Tray Munchies

These days, ice-cube trays aren’t just for freezing water. They make excellent drawer organizers for housing tiny odds and ends, and, interestingly enough, they are perfect food separators for picky little ones. Jennifer Bishop decided to integrate this colorful and creative idea at toddler birthday parties where all the kids, picky or not, would be happy with the variety of food choices in front of them. Plus, the trays are stackable, making a cute and colorful statement on the food buffet.
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Flynnside Out Productions 

Mobile and Mess-Free Storage

Don’t throw out an old plastic bin just when it starts to show some wear and tear. Instead, cover it with durable jute rope and add metal casters to create your own mobile toy box. It’s never been easier or more fun for kids to clean up after themselves!
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New Home for Magazines

As babies transition to toddler beds, the cribs inevitably make their way to the attic or garage to take up space and collect dust. Nikki McBride thought of a new use for her child’s crib railing that would be functional, space-saving and stylish, too: a clean-looking vertical magazine rack. Not only can she use the rail for magazines, but also for quilts, towels and wet laundry. It has become an instant organizing accessory in her household, but if it ever needs to convert back into a crib railing, it can in a snap.

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