9 Helpful Uses for Clothespins

Fasten Christmas lights Keep your outdoor Christmas lights in place and ready to withstand the elements. As you affix your

Fasten Christmas lights
Keep your outdoor Christmas lights in place and ready to withstand the elements. As you affix your lights to gutters, trees, bushes (or even your spouse!) fasten them securely with clip-on clothespins.

Make a clothespin clipboard
Organize your workshop, kitchen, or bathroom with a homemade rack made with straight clothespins. Space several clothespins evenly apart on a piece of wood, and screw them on with screws coming through from the back of the board (pre-drill the holes so you don’t split the clothespin). Now your rack is ready to hang.

Keep snacks fresh
Tired of biting into stale potato chips from a previously opened bag? Use clip-on clothespins to reseal bags of chips and other snacks, cereal, crackers, and seeds. The foods will stay fresh longer and you won’t have as many spills in the pantry, either. Use a clothespin for added freshness insurance when you store food in a freezer bag too.

Make clothespin puppets
Traditional straight clothespins without the metal springs are ideal for making little puppets. Using the knob as a head, have kids paste on bits of yarn for hair, and scraps of cloth or colored paper for clothes to give each one its own personality.

Hold leaf bag open
Ever try filling a large leaf bag all by your lonesome, only to see half the leaves fall to the ground because the bag won’t stay open? Next time enlist a couple of clip-on clothespins as helpers. After you shake open the bag and spread it wide, use the clothespins to clip one side of the bag to a chain-link fence or other convenient site. The bag will stay open for easy filling.

Mark a bulb spot
What to do when a flower that blooms in the spring … doesn’t? Just push a straight clothespin into the soil at the spot where it didn’t grow. In the fall you will know exactly where to plant new bulbs to avoid gaps.

Grip a nail
Hammer the nail and not your fingers. Just remember to use a clip-on clothespin to hold nails when hammering in hard-to-reach places.

Clamp thin objects
Use clip-on clothespins as clamps when you’re gluing two thin objects together. Let the clothespin hold them in place until the glue sets.

Keep paintbrush afloat
Keep your paintbrush from sinking into the solvent residue when you soak it. Clamp the brush to the container with a clothespin.

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Originally Published in Reader's Digest