Ever looked at something and thought “That is so clever – it’s so simple!” or “That is so cute, what could I use it for?” At Bookmans we have those thoughts daily, it is actually part of our job. Bookmans is a treasure trove of interesting items that you just can’t resist, so we want to help you find a use for these amazing finds and get organized while doing it, plus, its March which means it’s All Things Art and we think that making cool things from other cool things absolutely counts.

We know that everyone can benefit from organization but being tidy doesn’t have to come at the expense of style. You can organize your world and still have it look incredible. We also strongly believe in the transformative power of recycling and re-puposing, using existing items to spare our planet the burden of more stuff. That idea suits our creative tendencies as well – why use something boring (or worse, ugly) when you can get the same result from an interesting beautiful object?

artWe went through our store and pulled a few items to see if we could find a new use for them. We wanted to keep it simple, like taking a unique plate that has lost it’s mates and using it under a house plant. Two issues were solved: one, what do with this amazing plate that we can’t part with and two; now our house plants won’t leak on the floor. Best part is that it looks great, unique and quirky.

Here are a few other finds and the uses we thought of for them:

Scarf Display – because #whynot
We found a beautiful vintage hand painted ceramic serving dish that would look amazing on a counter, so we took all of our brightly colored scarves that would normally sit in a drawer, rolled them and arranged them in the dish. Voila! Now we can see all of our scarves at once while displaying them for added enjoyment. This could also be done with dish or wash towels in the kitchen or bathroom.

Wine rack turned organizational invention
Speaking of fabrics, we found a brightly colored wine rack, again we rolled up our bath towels and laid them in the rack. This idea could be particularly useful for college students or anyone with limited space. Maybe your dresser drawers are full and chaotic, grab a vintage tin, basket or make up bag to hold smaller items within a drawer.

Jazzed up T.P.
A single prong candle holder can become a toilet paper roll stand, and while we’re at it: agate slabs became coasters and a small ceramic pitcher can be used to hold paint brushes. Who would have thought that paint spotted brushes could be part of your decor? Once dried and placed a container they add interest to your space, are easily put away and accessible.

Shine bight like a diamond.
We came across a Parmesan cheese shaker that now spends it’s life dispensing glitter for crafting projects. Now two items that would normally be relegated to obscurity in a dark cabinet get center stage as both useful and decorative objects. In case you never knew, glitter looks so good in a clear glass shaker that you will never stash a plastic bottle of it in a cabinet again. The same can be done with many crafting supplies like buttons, stickers, ribbon or origami paper. These items are so attractive once they are properly displayed.

A small brass flower or elephant can double as ring holders or simple band rings can be used to hold stone or crystal eggs. One of our favorite finds was a vintage child’s sand pail that can be lined and used either as a bedside trash can or for magazines in the living room.

Taking the concept a bit further you can ask yourself, “what can I turn this into?” Imagination and a few simple supplies (which are handily available)  can turn modest or forgettable objects into “WOW” items. Arm yourself with a hot glue gun, ribbon and some Mod Podge and you will rule the world. The key is to imagine what an item can be used for – other than it’s original use. You can grab even the most mundane items and re-purpose them into up-cycled wonders of home decor and organization. So take a spin through our stores, enjoy the variety of items available knowing that that amazing thing you found can have many uses so go ahead and use your trade credit to take it home!