I have so many markers and colored pencils lying around here. Because I enjoying drawing (and coloring) I’ve always tried to keep some kind of coloring agent in each room of the house in case inspiration strikes.
I decided I wanted to have a little “art center” area near the living room. I have a table in there all ready but I didn’t want to crowd the table with art supplies. My solution was a pencil/marker organizer using a strip of wood and empty Pepsi Bottles.
Empty Pepsi Bottles
I started with a strip of wood I bought from Hobby Lobby. They had several lengths and widths to chose from. I went with the one I thought would best fit my space. I painted it a turquoise color.
Painting The Wood Strip
Then I removed the labels from the Pepsi bottles. I cut out strips of colored paper (green paper for the green markers and pencils, etc) and covered each one with clear contact paper. Then I glued each one onto a bottle. I covered two bottles with patterned paper. These would be used for regular pencils and pens.
Once the paper was on each bottle I stuck a piece of Velcro on the back of each one. I also put one long strip of Velcro down the entire length of my painted wooden board. This is how my bottles would be attached to the board. This makes it easy for the kids to remove a bottle if they need to and easily return it to it’s place on the board.
Covered Bottles With Velcro Box
This can simply be nailed to the wall with a nail at each end. Now I have a great place, that’s off of the table, to store pens, pencils and markers!
Today we went to Target to get our school supplies. I homeschool my kids so I don’t need much – a few folders, notebooks, binders and pencils (we always seem to need pencils). While I walked up and down the aisle of super cheap school supplies, I thought about all the projects I plan on doing with my daughter this school year. We do a lot of science projects (we love science) and I try to incorporate art into everything I possibly can (art is my favorite). Now is the time to be purchasing all of the items I’ll need through out the school year.
I have the advantage of knowing what projects to buy for, public or private school parents probably don’t. Even if you don’t know what projects are in your kids’ future, you can bet it will probably involve markers or colored pencils, glue sticks and poster board. By thinking ahead (and buying ahead), you can save money and frustration in your future. Buy up these things now and keep them in a cabinet or closet so when you’re kids need them in 2 weeks, or 2 months, you’ll be prepared. Look at what’s on your kids’ school supply list and buy extra of the things you’ll know they’ll run out of before the school year is out (notebook paper, index cards, erasers, etc).
It doesn’t take much room to store these items throughout the school year. Everything but the poster board can fit into a basket or small bucket that your kids can retrieve whenever they need it. Poster board is easily stashed upright in a closet next to something that will keep it upright. I have a cabinet in a desk my husband made (I’ll write about that in a future post) that I store all of our extra school supplies in. Before the amazing desk was built, I kept everything in a basket in a closet.
School Supply Cabinet
On a side note – did you know that glue expires? This came directly from the Elmer’s Glue website:
“If stored properly and capped tightly, Elmer’s school glues and wood glues have an average shelf life of 2 years; Krazy Glue, also known as a cyanoacrylate, has a shelf life of approximately 12 – 18 months.”
I needed something to keep my pens and pencils in but didn’t want to spend much money…or any money if I could get by with it. I came up with this super simple (and inexpensive) idea.
Things you need:
Cans (mine had enchilada sauce in them…Yum!)
*The first thing I did was to use a drill to make two holes in the can (one on one side of the can, and one on the other side directly across from each other). Even though I used a drill, you could a screw (or something else that is sturdy and sharp) and hammer it through the can.
*I then cut the paper to fit around the can and glued it on. If you’re impatient and don’t want to hold onto the can while the paper dries you could wrap a rubber band around it (just don’t wrap it too tightly or it could crinkle the paper).
*Use a nail (or ink pen) and poke a hole through the paper where the holes in the can are.
*Thread a piece of ribbon in one of the holes and tie a knot on the inside so the ribbon won’t come out of the hole.
*Thread the other end of the ribbon into the other hole on the opposite side (starting from the outside of the can). Before you tie it in a knot, decide how long you want the ribbon to be. I marked a spot on the ribbon where my knot should go. Once you’ve decided on your length, tie the ribbon on the inside of the can. I put a little bit of glue on each of the knots to help it hold a little better.
Now I have super cute pen/pencil holders and I made them from things I had in my home! I love them so much I think I might make some more!