Most-Pinned New Uses
Muffin Tin as Large Ice Cube Tray
The cold, hard truth: Small ice cubes melt fast, leaving a pitcher of lemonade watery. To make long-lasting jumbo cubes, use a muffin tin. Pop them out by running the back of the tin under hot water for 30 seconds.
Contact Lens Case as Travel Spice Holder
Pack small amounts of salt, pepper, and spices for a camping trip.
Citrus Peel as Brown Sugar Softener
Avoid rock-hard brown sugar and preserve the moisture by dropping a three inch-long orange peel into the bag.
Flat Iron as Ribbon Smoother
Get the kinks out of wrinkled wrapping ribbons that were tied around your birthday presents for recycled bows without the telltale creases from the previous gift box.
Button as Earring Holder
Travel is best done in pairs (think of Lewis and Clark or Thelma and Louise). To keep a set of earrings together on your next overnight jaunt, fasten them to a button so they won’t get lost in your suitcase pocket.
Pillowcase as Ceiling Fan Duster
Slide an old case over a fan's blade then pull the fabric back, keeping all the dust and dirt contained.
Rubbing Alcohol as Hairspray Remover
Lift off hair-spray residue from bathroom walls. Spray a mixture of one part rubbing alcohol, two parts water, and a dash of dishwashing liquid onto vinyl wallpaper or semigloss (not flat) paint. Wipe clean.
Newspaper as Food-Container Deodorizer
Stuff a balled-up piece of newspaper into a plastic container that has developed a funk, and let it sit overnight. By morning the paper will have absorbed the offending smell.
Baby Wipe Container as Yarn Holder
Don’t let your yarn get crossed. Use an empty baby wipes container to keep yarn clean and tangle-free.
Nail Polish as Button Securer
Apply a thin coat of clear polish to the center of a button to keep the thread from coming loose.
Cornstarch as Makeup Protector
Balance the oiliness of moisturizing makeup. Brush on a thin layer as a finishing touch.
Cupcake Liner as Drip Catcher
Before serving that Popsicle, slip the stick through a foil liner to catch drips and keep hands from getting sticky.
Deodorant as Blister Preventer
Make breaking shoes in less of a pain. Rub clear-gel deodorant on spots prone to blistering before you step out in a stiff new pair.
Bundt Pan as Vertical Roaster
For a juicy bird that’s crispy all the way around, first layer potatoes, carrots, and onions on the bottom of the pan. Then season the chicken and place in the pan with the cavity over the center hole. Set the dish on a cookie sheet to collect any drippings and roast as usual.
CD as Invitation
Make jazzy (or rockin’) invitations. Jot down party details on the shiny side and mail the CD out in a cushioned envelope (postage: about a dollar).
Cereal Box as Drawer Organizer
If you're the flaky type, cereal boxes (including the single-serving minis) can corral desk-drawer chaos. Slice off the tops and the bottoms and fill them with loose odds and ends.
Aluminum Foil as Wrinkle Remover
To get wrinkles out of silk, wool, and rayon clothes that can't take direct heat, place a piece of foil on your ironing board, then lay the garment flat over it. With the steam button down, pass the iron three to four inches over the fabric several times. Wet heat radiating from the foil helps smooth out wrinkles.
Ketchup Bottle as Pancake Batter Dispenser
Portion pancake batter with precision―without the usual mess of transferring batter from the bowl. Squeeze out baby-size or plate-size rounds, or add Mickey Mouse ears to a batch of silver dollars.
Salt as Iron Cleaner
Eliminate sticky residue from an iron. Run the hot iron (no steam) over plain paper sprinkled with salt.
Ice Cube Tray as Sunburn Soother
Freeze cubes of aloe vera for instant sunburn relief when you forget the SPF.
LifeSavers as Birthday-Candle Holders
These sweet treats are perfect for holding birthday candles. Make sure you buy the original rolls of candy for a snug fit. (The LifeSavers sold in big bags are slightly larger and don't work as well.) Secure the candles inside the candies, then place on top of the frosting, all without making holes in the cake.
Tea Bag as Bug Bite Soother
A smart way to soothe itchy mosquito bites: Place a cold, used tea bag on the sting and let it sit for five minutes. Tea will help ease sunburn, too: Brew a pot and pour it into a bath of lukewarm water. Soak until you feel relief.
Ice Cube Tray as Sundae Bar
Set up a self-serve sundae bar and let guests dish out cherries, sprinkles, crushed nuts, and other dessert toppings to their liking.
Lollipops as Cocktail Stirrers
Look for traditional lollipops in colors that complement your drinks. Lime-flavored stirrers give vodka tonics an extra burst of flavor. It's an inner-child twist to a distinctly grown-up beverage (and fodder for cocktail-party small talk).
Desk Organizer as Cupboard Divider
Sort cookie sheets, cutting boards, and jelly-roll pans in the kitchen for easy access (and no more cymbal-crashing sounds) in an overstuffed cabinet.
Vase as Toilet Paper Storage
The perfect arrangement for helping toilet paper hide in plain sight. Guests don't have to root around for a new roll in your not absolutely, positively tidy vanity, and you always know when you're running low.
Nail Polish as Key Coder
Differentiate your keys by color-coding them with your favorite nail hues. Lay keys flat and apply a thick coat of a different shade to the top of each one.
Laundry Bag as Dishwashing Aid
Keep mini Tupperware lids, baby-bottle caps, and other small items from falling through the dishwasher rack. You'll save time by no longer diving for treasure on the floor of the dishwasher.
Storybook Pages as Placemats
Add some character(s) to a table setting by sandwiching favorite storybook pages between lamination sheets (available at office-supply stores). Catchy text and colorful pictures (think Dr. Seuss and nursery rhymes) are especially attention-grabbing.
Dryer Sheet as Scum Buster
Remove obstinate soap buildup from glass shower doors by sprinkling a few drops of water onto a used fabric-softener sheet and scrubbing.
Spaghetti as Candle-Lighter
If you don't have extra-long matches, use an uncooked piece of spaghetti to light multiple or hard to reach candles.
Muffin Tin as Cooling Rack
Increase your baking capacity by using an upside-down pan as an extra cooling rack. The space between the molds lets the cool air flow freely.
Salt as Homemade Drain Cleaner
Get a slow-moving drain flowing again and pour a solution of ½ cup of salt for every quart of hot water down the pipe.
Accordion Folder as a Glove Compartment Organizer
Store your car insurance, registration, manuals, and maps in a neatly bound holder to avoid an avalanche of papers every time you reach in for your sunglasses. It's the first step to getting your car chaos under control.
Earrings as Pushpins
Face it: That long-lost earring is probably gallivanting with a wayward sock in Ye Olde Land of Misplaced Items. (What a stud!) Let its lonely, abandoned mate rebound as a pretty thumbtack on a bulletin board.
Courtesy of reader Bailey Mulholland of Appleton, Wisconsin
Lemon as Cutting Board Cleaner
To remove tough food stains from light wood and plastic cutting boards, slice a lemon in half, squeeze onto the soiled surface, rub, and let sit for 20 minutes before rinsing. The best part? You'll have a house that smells like a lemon grove rather than chemicals.
Toilet Paper Roll as Cord Holder
Contain extra extension cords by wrapping the length of one around your hand then sliding the whole thing inside the tube.
Rubber Band as Glass Gripper
For more OJ in your child’s belly (and less on the kitchen floor) use rubber bands to provide some grip around a chilly glass so it doesn’t slip through a child’s small hands.
Sugar Dispenser as Kitchen Twine Holder
Keep kitchen twine from tangling and jamming your drawers by using a glass sugar dispenser as a spool. Simply place the twine in the jar and thread through the open hole.
Flat Iron as Touch-Up Iron
No time to drag out your iron and ironing board? A straightening iron works perfectly between buttons where a regular iron doesn’t fit. And it smooths collar creases and minor wrinkles. So you can look perfectly pressed when you're pressed for time.
Aluminum Foil as Fixture Protector
Protect doorknobs and hardware in the kitchen and bathroom when you're painting by wrapping foil around them to catch dribbles. The foil molds to the shape of whatever it's covering and stays firmly in place until the job is complete.
Binder Clip as a Wallet
Make a clip-on key chain/money holder that's ideal for your morning walk. Take a 1¼-inch binder clip and pinch one of the wire arms toward the center to release it from its hinge. Slide on your key and refasten. Clamp to your waistband with a few bucks for coffee and a paper. No more wondering where to stash your key and cash.
Rubber Bands as Strap Securers
Keep your camisoles and sundresses from slipping off their hangers by wrapping a band (or two if you use skinny ones) around each end of a hanger.
Soap Case as Camera Carrier
Protect your picture taker from getting knocked around in your carry-on by placing it in a hard plastic travel soap case.
Tissue Box as Plastic Bag Holder
Dispense plastic grocery bags with ease. Stuff your empties into and old tissue box and store under the sink. Then pull out one at a time when you need it.
Shower Cap as Shoe Bag
Prevent dirt or sand-covered shoes from mingling (and soiling) neatly packed clothes in your suitcase.
Drink Carrier as Condiment Kit
Cart condiments to a backyard barbecue. Slot flatware, ketchup and mustard in the compartments for easy transport.
Colander as Ice Bucket
Make ice cubes last longer at your next cocktail party: Put them in a colander set into a bowl. As they melt, the water will drain through the holes instead of sitting and turning the ice to slush.
Eyeglasses Case as Manicure Kit
An unused glasses case makes a convenient storage spot for nail files, clippers and other manicure essentials while on the go.
Picture Frame as Vanity Tray
A fresh perspective changes everything. Here, a gilt frame, laid flat, creates a romantic setting for perfumes and powders. Place a piece of colored paper or fabric inside as a finishing touch.