A Creative Mind by Hannah Greer

Hello everyone and Happy 2012! Now that it’s the New Year you may be thinking, how could I have eaten that whole package of sweet Hawaiian rolls!? Why did I keep popping those Christmas m&ms? And how did I let my house become cluttered with piles of stuff. There is no better time than the beginning of the year to clean out, organize, and start your way on a healthy, relaxing path. If you’re looking for some easy ways to clean up your house and start the year off creatively, here are some easy projects to work on that can keep you inspired, organized, and in good health all year long. After making a fabric coffee sleeve this Christmas, I fell in love with the sewing machine and sewing projects. This year, let’s play with fabric!

Stylize Your Filing Cabinet

This idea almost makes me want to go buy a filing cabinet to decorate. With some sophisticated and/or pretty fabric, you can cover the front of your filing cabinet drawers. You can even paint the cabinet itself. If you don’t feel like using fabric, or if you can’t find a print that you want to use, you can also do the same thing with scrapbooking sheets. This may be a faster option. In my opinion though, while the scrapbooking paper will create the same effect, it will tear easily and it will not create the warmer more delicate look of fabric. To see how this cabinet was put together, go to http://wastenotwkshp.blogspot.com/2010/12/fabric-covered-filing-cabinet.html. There are many other examples of this all over the web.

Make Your Own Zipper Pouch

Who doesn’t need cute pouches? In the picture, this is used to hold office and/or school supplies, but you could use this for anything you need. Use it for holding makeup, coupons, jewelry, or as an overnight bag…anyone would love having a homemade bag. If you’re thinking,” I would never use this,” I’d be willing to bet someone in your life would. To see all of the directions, go to http://www.designsponge.com/2010/09/sewing-101-zippered-case.html.

Make A Key Ring

Ever have problems keeping up with your keys? I know plenty of people that do, myself included. Part of being organized means always knowing where everything is. Your keys might be the smallest thing you have to worry about, but we all know how panicked we can quickly become when you’re running late and suddenly they are nowhere to be found. A handmade key ring would be a good idea for everyone. Keep it by your door, or maybe take it to your office at work. To see how to make this paper flower key ring, go to http://www2.fiskars.com/Activities/Crafting/Project-Gallery/Guest-Designers/Mark-Montano/Paper-Flower-Key-Holder/.

Make Yourself a Rice Heat Therapy Bag

Everyone gets those aches and cramps that need attention. This year, make sure you take time to take care of yourself. I’m not sure why but this rice heat pad just seems so wonderful. Go to http://sewmamasew.com/blog2/2007/11/rice-heat-therapy-bag-tutorial/, to learn how to make this bag and to see the three items that went into the “Wellness Bag.”

Personalize Your Utensil Crock

Almost everyone has one of these utensil holders, but not everyone has one like this. After the holidays you may want a few recipes from your friends and family so that you can recreate a dish. Or you may just want to put a simple recipe for homemade cookies on your jar, like the one shown in the picture. Either way, this would make your kitchen much more personalized, and make your favorite recipe much easier to find! No more flipping through a recipe book! To see how to make one, go to http://cally-cruze.blogspot.com/2010/05/favorite-recipe-utensil-crock_20.html.

NCLAC is supported in part by a grant from the Louisiana Division of the Arts, Office of Cultural Development, Department of Culture, Recreation & Tourism, in cooperation with the Louisiana State Arts Council, Funding has also been provided by the National Endowment for the Arts, a Federal agency.