Dear Readers: Closets are never big enough to hold everything we want to put in them. Of course, culling through stuff is always a way to create more room, and so is better organization. To help, you can create extra storage space with these six ideas:
Take advantage of storage boxes and color-coded hangers. Use the space in the tops of closets by installing additional shelves or hanging racks. Put boxes on top of shelves for more organization space.
Place hooks or over-the-door hangers on the door, and use multilayered storage gadgets to hang pants, suits and ties.
Hang matching outfits (slacks and shirts) on one sturdy hanger. Use multiple pants-and-shirts hangers.
Get plastic crates and storage bins from container or department stores. Plastic milk crates can be stacked on their sides to hold sweaters, shoes or handbags, and then stacked on top of each other.
Put old bookcases in closets for ready-made shelving.
Store out-of-season or infrequently used items in seldom-used suitcases. Heloise
Dear Heloise: When we are traveling with our small child, we like to bring along a (lightweight) stroller. However, it is difficult to deal with at the airport. In order to make this easier, we put the stroller in the zippered bag from our collapsible chairs and check it at the baggage window. This makes a handy carrier in the airport and also on vacation, because our child likes to walk, but then gets tired. Janet Ford, via e-mail
Dear Heloise: I keep a small piece of colored electrical tape on the shelf above my washer. Whenever I change the size of the load (from large) or temperature (from cold), I put the tape directly over the main control to remind me to change the settings back to normal. This way, I don't accidentally wash a large load on the small setting or use hot water when I need to use cold. Deb Leonard, via e-mail
Dear Heloise: Being from a flood-prone section of New Orleans, I have had to repaint my whole house several times. We discovered two things that saved us time: First, if installing new floorboard/trim, paint all of it at once, then cut it to size and touch up. Second, paint all doors at the same time (assuming they are the same color as the trim). Separately lean them to dry (leave some space for airflow). We were able to get all of the trim and doors painted in an hour (one coat), and the "touch-up" took less than 20 minutes for a 1,000-square-foot house. A Reader, via e-mail
Dear Heloise: I drive a minivan, which means no trunk. I keep an old shower curtain folded and tucked under the back seat. It is very handy if I stop to buy potted plants or anything else that will get the carpet dirty. I simply unfold the shower curtain to put the pots on. Margie Smith, Sparta, Tenn.
Send a money-saving or timesaving hint to Heloise, P.O. Box 795000, San Antonio, TX 78279-5000, or you can fax it to (210) HELOISE or e-mail it to Heloise@Heloise.com.
King Features Syndicate