Having lived in a small efficiency apartment for the better part of 12 years, I have a great appreciation for any object that can serve more than one purpose. And when it comes to living in a tight space on an even tighter budget, finding multiple uses for everyday items is a necessity. So when I happened upon Real Simple: 869 New Uses for Old Things: An Encyclopedia of Innovative Ideas for Everyday Items, ($27.95) I danced a happy dance.
Here are a few wonderfully Real Simple ideas with a an A la Mode twist after the jump…
Real Simple: “Elevate tea lights or plain votives. For romantic lighting that may go with your table decor better than those old brass candlesticks, place candles in a thick-walled wine glasses. Set the candles in a thin layer of sand or small pebbles, both to anchor them and to make wax cleanup a snap.”
A little A la Mode: Flip the wine glasses on their head and use the flat bottoms as a place for the candles.
Real Simple: “Pump up your pancake presentation. Pour syrup from a small teapot instead of a plastic bottle the next time you treat someone to breakfast in bed.”
A little A la mode: Warm up the syrup before pouring into the teapot. Next, steep the teapot with boiling water to warm the syrup up. To steep the pot just bring water to a boil, pour a cup or two of the water into the teapot and swirl it around the inside of the pot. Pour the hot water out before pouring the syrup in.
Real Simple: “Create a festive, disposable table runner in minutes. Cut a sheet to the desired length from a roll and make zigzag edges with pinking shears. Secure the paper to a tablecloth or a table with pieces of double-sided tape.”
A little A la Mode: Save wrapping from gifts (or even previous disposable table runners) and cut the paper into equal sized squares. Tape them together using double-sided tape and make a festive disposable runner or place mats in a diamond-shaped patchwork pattern.)