The editors at Real Simple magazine have put together a hardcover collection of multi-tasking equipment and suggestions to honor their 10th anniversary. The book, Real Simple: 869 New Uses for Old Things, is an alphabetical listing of unexpected uses for wine corks, olive oil, old jump ropes, Q-tips, salt, soap and hundreds of other common household items.
The retail listing for the book is $27.95 (it’s 180 pages, and like a coffee table book it is mostly images and a lot of white space), but it is selling for a more reasonable $16.34 on Amazon. It’s a nice resource, but I’m looking forward to it being available digitally, so it can be more portable (on a cell phone, iPad, or Kindle) and more easily searched.
Here are some helpful tips I learned from reading the book:
- Baking Soda / Rub tub stains with a paste of equal parts baking soda and cream of tartar and a little lemon juice. Let sit for 30 minutes, then rinse. (Green, non-toxic, and economical!)
- Bobby Pin / Keep pleats folded while ironing tricky pieces.
- Floss (unwaxed) / Safely loosen a photograph stuck to an album page or another photo by sliding a piece of floss between the two.
- Penny / Prevent algae from growing in a birtdbath by tossing a few pre-1982 coins into the water. The copper keeps the organisms from multiplying.
- Soap / Take the grit out of gardening. Scrape your nails along a bar so the soap gets under them and keeps everything else out.
I love the New Uses for Old Things column in Real Simple magazine, and the book is full of many ideas that have been featured in this column and hundreds of new ones. Like I explained earlier, it’s a good resource in book form, but it will be a great resource when it’s available digitally.