velcro cords

Illustration: Rob Melhuish

Velcro Plugs

Most vacuum cleaners have got it right: push a button and the cord is sucked back into the machine. But clearly the iron, slow cooker, portable hearter, and hair dryer manufacturers didn't get the memo.

Well, I've got a solution up my sleeve and that is Velcro. Stick one side of the Velcro onto the plug, and the other onto the appliance. Then when you wind the cord around the heater or iron, you can stick the plug in place and store your items away tidily. No more loose cords.
wrapping paper storage hack

Illustration: Rob Melhuish

Wrap-Up Hack

Year-round falling over a wrapping paper tube is a common hazard. What with all these events: birthdays, Christmas...just lethal. They are silent rollers that can often creep up on you, catching you unaware and taking you out when you least expect it.

However, these is no need to panic. I have found that securing them in a wardrobe bag and hanging them in a closet keeps them locked away and off the floors!
beer bottle storage hack

Illustration: Rob Melhuish

Bookends for Beer Bottles

In the summertime, my Saturday afternoons feel more like a beer festival than anything else. Barbecues, patio doors open all day; come rain or shine I will be holding a cool bottle and sporting a pair of palm tree shorts and flip-flops.

Of course, I keep my bottles efficiently stacked in the fridge on their sides, all the better to get more in—until disaster strikes. The bottles of beer roll off one another, straight onto the steaks; now they are fizzy or worse, broken.

To stop the madness and preserve the beers simply use a binder clip, like a sort of bottle bookend. Slide the clip onto the shelf, with the top prong lying around the shelf. The clip part will act as a barrier and stop the stacked bottles from moving. You are now free to enjoy summer with total peace of the beer department anyway.
storing pens and pencils trick

Illustration: Rob Melhuish

Desk Hack

If you are a writer or an artist (or just someone with a lot of pens), this hack has your name all over it. (Get it? I made a writing joke!)

To restore order to your desktop, all you need is a shoe box and lots of empty toilet-paper rolls or tin cans (baked beans removed). Wrap your shoe box in fancy wrapping paper and insert your toilet-paper rolls or cans so they create lots of individual containers. You now have a fancy-looking desk hack, all the better for helping you write that bestselling novel or draw your way to fame and fortune.
shoe storage hack

Illustration: Rob Melhuish

Super Storage Hanger

Clearing out the shoe closet? If you don't happen to be doing that, then just throw away your shoes and get started!

These over-the-door shoe racks are really handy for storing almost anything: cleaning equipment, crafty bits and bobs, bathroom clutter, and children's toys. Plus, it's easy too, just put your hanger on the inside of a full-length closet door (the pantry door is ideal) and dump your clutter into the compartments; you'll look like a true tidying professional, and the best news is, you get to close the door so you won't ever have to look at it again!
bracelet organization hack

Illustration: Rob Melhuish

DIY Bracelet Rack

Have you drunk all the wine? Do you need a place to put your large bracelet collection? Perfect!

After draining the last drop, there are actually many uses for that empty bottle. Try shoving on some of your most stylish wrist wear. Wine bottles are tall, so they can fit loads and don't take up much room either. It's a win-win.
christmas lights storage trick

Illustration: Rob Melhuish

Twinkling Lights Up

No more will the month of December be spent disentangling Christmas lights. By looping the wires around coat hangers they will stay knot-free all year round until their unveiling on the tree. You can also hang them up so that they don't get bashed around and are easy to find when you do finally use them; happy decorating!

Excerpted from Tidy Hacks by Dan Marshall. Copyright © Summersdale Publishers Ltd, 2016. Reprinted by Permission of Harper Design, an imprint of Harper Collins Publishers.

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