Friday, March 13, 2009

Cheap and pretty pen storage!

Okay. So I am sure I am not the only one who gets in a bit of a mess when they create?! Pens and pencils especially, have a tendancy to get swallowed up. I didn't want to spend a whole lot on storage so I decided to make my own.

Cue the spaghetti/tomato/soup tins...

The key to preparing the tins is a 'safety can opener' - the kind we used for those pop up cans (if you don't know what I am talking about here, don't worry. I will make it my mission to do a pop up can in the not so distant future!) Instead of cutting the tin, the safety opener somehow gets in between the seal, so there are no sharp edges. I have found that the pull top cans can still be a little sharp, so to reuse the can, I take the rim bit off with my trusty safety can opener too.

Eat the contents. Wash out the can, and then I pop it in the oven for a couple of minutes to make sure it is all dry (they tend to rust REALLY quickly if left too long to dry).

And then on to the fun bit - the decorating. Being short on time, these ones were super simple, but I like how they have turned out. I used patterned paper from the Petals and Paisley pack, and attached it to the outside of the cans using sticky strip (1 sheet of paper did all three cans, with leftovers). Because the cans were all different on the inside, I also lined them with a rolled up piece of Taken with Teal card, to match the paper. A little bit of sticky strip to hold the cans together, and then some wide Olive ribbon tied around to make them all pretty.

I wanted to lay them on the side (remember pens should be stored horizontally!) so that is why I used three cans in a pyramid shape - you could use as many as you like - but remember, one on its side will roll away, and that would not be helpful! You might also want to measure what you are going to store in the tins first. These tins are maybe a little short for the stampin' write markers - I discovered that a little late. But never fear, there is a big old soup tin sitting on the bench waiting for some friends, and patterned paper is on a super duper special!

Now I just need to get the pens to put themselves away!

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