Here's an easy way to give new life to old terra-cotta pots you have around the shed: Paint them to create coordinating stripes. Using masking tape in various widths, mark a simple striped design on the pot. In a well-ventilated area, spray the exterior and the rim (and any accompanying saucers) with weatherproof spray paint; let dry completely. Peel off tape.
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In summer, the mere mention of chores can evoke reactions usually reserved for dentist appointments and haircuts. To make tasks less tedious for everyone, print them on strips of paper, color-coding to distinguish "grown-up jobs" from "kid jobs." On chore day, have everyone draw and complete a job.
SourceMartha Stewart Kids, Volume 1 2001
Hard-to-reach areas are a closet's no-man's-land. A spring-loaded pull-down rack, which you can install yourself, solves the problem. A light tug on a handle positioned in the center of the rod brings clothes to you.
SourceMartha Stewart Living, January 2009
After pruning trees and shrubs in the yard, save the trimmed branches to support returning perennials, such as lilies. They'll be free and plentiful, not to mention more natural looking than metal or plastic spikes. Look for branches with lots of little twigs, and stake three to five of them around each plant. As the plant grows, its foliage will gradually wind around the network of twigs.
SourceMartha Stewart Living, July 2006
Sometimes the perfect thread for a sewing project comes on a spool that's imperfectly sized for your sewing machine. The solution: Place the spool in a heavy mug, and position it on your work surface directly underneath the spool pin. Take hold of the thread end, and hook it over the spool pin before threading it into the machine as usual (the thread should form a 90-degree angle); the thread will unravel smoothly as you work.
SourceMartha Stewart Living, March 2008
Keep newspaper "logs" on hand and you'll always have kindling. To make rolling easier, wet newspaper, one section at a time, under a faucet. Spread the section on a flat surface. (Use a garbage bag to protect the surface from ink.) Tightly roll the paper into a log, and secure with twine. Prop the tube against a wall (protect it, too); let dry overnight.
SourceMartha Stewart Living, February 2008
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