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Thread: another money saving tip

  1. #1
    Super Member nanabirdmo's Avatar
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    aren't we all trying to conserve more these days? i love zip lock bags and use them for storing lots of things, but i hate to buy them. i buy lots of produce that comes in zip lock bags, grapes especially. the bags are vented and with a rinse they are brand new. i use them to store small projects and fat q's and anything else that comes to mind. the bags with holes are especially good for longer term storage because moisture can't build up to cause mold.

    anybody have any more money saving tips? i would love to hear.

  2. #2
    Power Poster amma's Avatar
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    When my rotary cutting blade starts to get dull I put it into a cheap cutter I bought and I use it for cutting paper. It is usually amply sharp for this and it "buys" me a little more usage before throwing it out :D

  3. #3

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    I use the 'junk mail', such as the shiny postcards advertising an event,etc that you get in your snail mail to make my templates for applique. You can cut out the shape you want and iron the fabric w/the 1/4" edge. I even use steam to make a sharp press. They will come out perfect over and over again! Skeat

  4. #4
    blu
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    i have a long arm machine so when i finish a large quilt i save the cut of batting strips and then i can use them in a smaller or baby quilt just line them side by side they quilt up nicely and you would never know they were scraps in there

  5. #5

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    In our Guild, there are a few ladies who work at the Animal Adoption Center. We give them our scraps of fabric and batting to stuff doggie or cat beds and toys. Also any larger pieces of fabrics not suitable for quilts can be used for making the beds. ( Our Quilting For Others group in the guild often gets donated fabrics not suitable for quilting) We just pass these things along and not waste anything. The 4-legged fur-balls are so cute playing with their toys and resting on there beds. :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: Pam W.

  6. #6
    Junior Member fabuchicki's Avatar
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    We just went to a system of using power strips in our house to save electricity. They've been running ads in my area saying that anything with a little clock or light in it like the coffee maker or toaster or your TV which turns on by remote and sits on standby all day are wasting power. All our appliances are grouped anyway in the kitchen, computer and TV/Stereo and sewing machine areas so we put them on power strips with the red light up switches and switch them off when we're not using them. I'm eager to see if it saves any money on the bill next month but in the meantime it's not inconvenient and I feel like at least I'm doing my little part to save the planet.

    Also have been using reusable bags (got 35 cents for that from King Soopers yesterday!) and compact flourescents. As for those, they now make them in a color corrected blue light so I like them better now.

  7. #7
    Super Member nanabirdmo's Avatar
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    excellent tips. i love to hear how everyone uses their noggins to save a penny or a dollar, or even just save a few minutes for more quilting.

  8. #8
    Senior Member mrsjdt's Avatar
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    I bought a package of those "green bags" for produce a month or so ago---they work. :thumbup: Can't blieve how much food I'm saving.

  9. #9

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    They really work??? I've been thinking about them.

  10. #10
    Senior Member redrummy's Avatar
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    I use the small long strips of batting that are cut from a quilt to pad hangers, then wrap with leftover material, making the pretty padded hangers that sleeveless shirts stay on better. I hang all my shirts, t's and tanks, and hate when they fall off hangers. I even add buttons on the "shoulder areas" of the hangers to help tanks stay on better. I have several wider neck shirts that this works good for too. and I save money by not having to pay the fancy hanger prices. :lol:

  11. #11
    Super Member nanabirdmo's Avatar
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    excellent idea redrummy, i just hate throwing away bits of batting and i love padded hangers but they are pricey. i will try this one.

  12. #12
    english rose's Avatar
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    Here in the uk we have green bags for storing fruit and veg - they are called "stay fresh longer bags" and are marvelous. I turn off all appliances at the point on the wall, except the cooker because it has a clock and it I turn it of I have to reset the clock before the oven will work. How daft is that.
    Also in the UK there is a strong movement regarding the use pf plastic bags. One village in Devon is a plastic bag free zone. Many of us now carry "a bag for life" and refuse the plastic bags. Composting and recycled stuff are high on the agenda here. There are also many car share schemes and the promotion of walking or getting on your bike.
    Jane

  13. #13
    Super Member Barbm's Avatar
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    I purchased some grocery bags to use and after trying to remember them- I find I like them much better than the plastic bags. It's hard to get a paper bag (we need to put the newpapers in to recycle) for your groceries but I ask for 1 only when I'm ready to do the papers.

    I switched to washing in cold water for everything and using the line to dry. Waiting to see if my little effort pays off on the electric bill.

    Haven't purchased the "green" bags for storing fruit and veggies, the food doesn't stay long enough to begin with. :)

    I don't think my driving has changed- we live in a rural area and have to travel. I've always consolidated trips- I make a list of what I have to do on the right side of the road and then the return trip, again on the right. Then I don't have to cross traffic. Once I go home, I don't usually go back out.

    Barb

  14. #14

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    Here are several things we have done to save money:
    (1) Only wash FULL loads of clothes and dishes ( I seen someone else is doing this too)
    (2) Only run the central when needed. Which is not a lot right now, its nice out so were leaving our windows open and it helps freshen up the house too.
    (3) We use steam to clean. We purchased a Shark Steamer and now are saving at least $10 a week on cleaners alone. Our steamer has many attachments and we can not only mop with it, but can also clean ANYTHING! And its sanitary.
    (4) We joined our local FreeCycle Group on yahoo and give and recive many useable items. People are forever giving away clothes and you can recycle clothing for all kinds of sewing needs. Jeans make cute purses, rag quilts, placemats, you name it. Old shirts made great scraps.
    (5) We use our crockpot a lot ( seen someone else is doing this too! )
    (6) We use a pressure cooker to cook beans. You can have a great pot of beans in no time. Pressure cooking saves a ton of energy.
    (7) We print postage at home so we do not have to drive to the post office. The post office will pick up your mail and packages upon request.
    (8) We grow our own veggies and can and freeze a lot of food items.
    (9) We purchase meat in bulk and slice it at home with the help of a slicer we purchased at Cabela's we vacuum seal them and label them with thermal labels
    (10) We make our own cold cuts in the smoker.
    (11) We use a thermal printer as to not spend money on ink.
    (12) There are many factories here that make furniture and one that makes clothing, they throw their scraps out, I ask for them and they give them to me for free. They were just going to throw them away to start with. So they dont mind calling you and letting you have them.
    (13) We only grocery shop once a month. We still have to go once a week for bread and milk locally, but when we go we only get whats in bulk, on sale or we have coupons for.
    (14) We do not purchase soda's unless in 2 liter bottles so we can use them to start seeds.
    (15) We do not purchase snack type foods, we make our own snacks.

  15. #15

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    A thermal printer uses special paper and no ink. You cant use regular paper with it. I am sure you have seen the labels that are on boxes that come from say UPS or are on boxes you get from other places and they have a barcode on them and information on them about the shipping or whats inside? Almost always those are thermal printed. If you have ever gone inside a plant that ships items via truck, rail or other methods they will use a thermal printed label to identify the objects inside.

  16. #16
    Power Poster amma's Avatar
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    About a year ago I found an awesome sale on thread for piecing and general sewing. They are BIG cones that should last me a loooong time, but I heard if I store them correctly they should be fine. I got tired of paying $$$ for thread and each cone with shipping cost the same as 4 small spools of thread :D I also found by doing some internet searching equally good prices on embroidery thread, metallics, varigated, glow in the dark, etc.... each averaging about one dollar a spool, shipping included.

  17. #17

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    You can vacuum seal your large thread cones and put them into your freezer, they will last forever that way. My neighbor who is passed on now, used to swear by this and she was a wonderful hand quilter. I have done this with my embroidery threads which are too light to quilt with but this does work wonderful with those as well because I buy entire sets of those threads at a time.

  18. #18
    Super Member blahel's Avatar
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    c2cd2008 great tips! i have been considering buying a steam cleaner for a while so i was wondering how happy are you with yours and what features you like and use and what dont you like? are you happy with your shark brand? or would you buy a different one if you were to buy one now?

  19. #19
    MCH
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    BUY THE STEAM CLEANER!!! :D

    One of those, combined with the "Miracle Cloths" that are on the market (available at hardware stores or L&T or BBB, etc.) and you're all set!

    The two most dramatic examples I have of what a fantastic cleaning job that steamer does are:
    a) all those knobs, buttons, and everything else on your stove that collects grease, which you can never get completely clean...spray 'em with the steamer and all that stuff wipes away effortlessly.
    b) grout on between ceramic tile kitchen counter tops...be prepared to be grossed out by what you find on the cloth. I was...enough said.

    I've even found that if I moisten the cloth with the steam and then use it as a dust cloth on wooden furniture, it works great. The furniture is cleaned and dusted at the same time. Don't spray the steam directly on the furniture, however.

    I used to use lemon oil, and all the other cleaners ever invented, to clean house. Not so much anymore. (I was a world-class whiner about how hard it was to keep surfaces dust free...that happens when one spreads oil all over them!) The steamer and the cloths, along with a natural bristle clean / new paint brush to clean crevises, etc., pretty much describes the contents of my "cleaning caddy".

    I also have a floor steamer...I haven't used a mop on the floor in years! If you have a "Swiffer" -- TOSS IT! I have a large amount of ceramic tile...oh, my gosh! The mopping / rinsing was a MESS! Now, I just fill up my steamer, run it over the swept floor, and toss the cleaning pad into the laundry! The cool thing is that in less than 5 min. the areas steamed are dry...and streak-free.

    I've used the floor steamer on ceramic tile, Pergo, and vinyl floor covering for years. No problems.

    I use the steam-moistened cloths on windows, mirrors, and any other surface where I would have used the other expensive stuff.

    You can also use the hand-held steamer to remove wrinkles from clothes, drapes, etc.

    It's a great all-purpose tool. Just be careful of the tip...it can be very hot.

    Speaking of those miracle cloths...buy some. I love 'em. I use them wet and dry. If I'm just dusting stuff, I'll wet the cloth, wring it almost dry and use it as a dust cloth. When it's dirty, just toss it into the laundry.

    I found some miracle cloths in the car care section of the hardware store. Those seem to be a bit heftier than the ones sold in the housecleaning section.

    In conclusion: :roll:
    If you can, purchase a hand-held steamer and a floor steamer.
    Always use distilled water, no matter what the manufacturer's instructions say.
    Purchase a supply of "Miracle Cloths"
    Purchase a couple of extra cleaning pads for the floor steamer.
    Toss all those multiple / redundant household cleaners you have. ( I confess to having a couple of the all-purpose ones for those "in-between times" when I don't use the steamer)

    Benefits:
    In the long run, you save $$$ because don't need to use a different product for each cleaning task
    In the short run, your time spent cleaning is much more productive because you're truly cleaning, not just moving stuff around
    You save $$$ with the Miracle Cloths (I still have my "rag" stash...but the Miracle Cloths trump the rags for cleaning)
    When you're finished cleaning with steam, there is no lingering "manufactured fragrance", i.e. "lemon fresh"
    You are relieved of having to find a safe place to store the steamer(s), out of reach of children.
    Pets who walk on floors that are steam cleaned don't pick up residual cleaner...and then lick their paws, literally injesting the cleaner you used.


    Oh, one last tip:
    The steamer does a fanatastic job on the interior of the microwave. Alternatively, to clean gunk and goo off the interior of the microwave (especially the top), just put a cup of water into glass cup or dish, set the microwave on "HI" and let it go for 5 minutes. Carefully remove the hot water and use the Miracle Cloth to wipe clean the microwave. It's that easy.

    madolyn


  20. #20
    english rose's Avatar
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    Miracle cloths - excellent. Just one tip, when washing them DO NOT USE FABRIC CONDITIONER
    Jane

  21. #21

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    Great Ideas!!!
    G

  22. #22

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    Quote Originally Posted by blahel
    c2cd2008 great tips! i have been considering buying a steam cleaner for a while so i was wondering how happy are you with yours and what features you like and use and what dont you like? are you happy with your shark brand? or would you buy a different one if you were to buy one now?
    I LOVE the Shark. I first seen it on TV late at night. (I sleep with a TV on for noise becuase my hubby works away from home) I woke up in the middle of the night and there it was on TV. I started watching it and never went back to sleep! LOL I next went online and read a lot of reviews on the Shark and other products as well. Some were good, some were bad, but that was with all brands. Now keep in mind we are all different people with different ideas on what we want it to do. BUT... I got mine and I was so happy! It took almost two months for it to arrive, I was irritated about that but happy the day it arrived. I dropped everything I was doing and played all day long. It is really easy to use and has attachments for just about anything you can think of. I used it for hours and hours. It will last about an hour or a little less on a tank of water. It takes 10-15 minutes to be hot enough to use which I do not think is a huge ordeal some of the reviews were complaining about the time it took to heat up, but to me not a biggie.

    When it is ready you just turn on the hose like you do the vacuum and start to clean! For the floors you use the floor attachment. It come with one cleaning pad and they recomend that you purchase more but I will tell you, it is nothing more than a good towel sewn to wrap around the fixture and has velcro, I made some more! Too easy, I just took a cheap towel from Fred's Dollar store cut to fit, serged it and added some velcro, it works the same as the ones they want you to purchase and I got 4 of them from one $3.00 towel.

    There is a brass attachment that you can use for a lot of stuff. I used it to clean the grill, worked like a charm, you just scrub a little andn wipe and that grill looks like new. I also used the same attachment on the metal things at the door entry's.

    There is a concentrated nose you can use to get into small places, once again works like a charm.

    Now there is a little elbow grease and you have to have towels to wipe up as you go but I feel its well worth it. I have a rag bucket I keep handy and it takes all week to use them all up. I just wash in the washer at the end of the week and hang out to dry and the cost to do that is less than what it cost to purchase cleaners.

    You cant go wrong. Now some who have other brands may tell you theirs is better, I wold not know. But I wished I had gotten mine years earlier! Its my best friend during the day. We had a stain in the carpet and nothing would take it up, we did apply a little degreaser to it, steamed away at it for a couple of minutes and wiped at it, repeated a couple of times and the carpet is perfect again!

    I have used this thing to clean windows, the car, you name it!

    I totally endorse it!

  23. #23

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    I dont sweep floors anymore either, I use the attachment on my vacuum cleaner, have for years. I have tile and no matter how much I sweep
    I still find dust and stuff when I am done. I even use the attachment to vacuum my walls. Mine has a soft edge so I use it to dust with and it makes the heavy duty duting easier when its time because you do not have build-up.

    And you are right, when you use a steamer, you will be sick at the stuff you see come up. Where I found the most ick was on the doors. I always wiped mine down and felt they were clean, that was until I got the shark, OMG the stuff that rolled off the doors, and I am talking INSIDE doors made me sick! LOL Same with grout. I ended up on my hands and knees cleaning the grout now its under control but you never really know what is in your house. Get those baseboards too!

  24. #24

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    I also would like to know what a thermal printer is. I make a lot of quilts with pictures. Could I print pictures with a thermal printer? The ink is so expensive when I am printing lots of pictures, I would love to find another, less expensive way of doing this. Thanks

  25. #25

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    I also would like to know what a thermal printer is. I make a lot of quilts with pictures. Could I print pictures with a thermal printer? The ink is so expensive when I am printing lots of pictures, I would love to find another, less expensive way of doing this. Thanks
    You can not use a thermal printer for your quilting photo's. Thermal printers are only black and white. How they work is the paper is heat activated.

    For printing on fabric I use my Kodak all in one printer. Color cartidges are only $14.95 for color and $9.99 for black and last longer than the ones I used to use in my HP printer. The HP printer is really good for pictures as the colors print better than any other printer I have tried to print photo's on as well. I purchased mine at best buy but you can get them online and at Wal Mart too. I like to get mine at Best buy because everytime I purchase its either 2 or 3 things of ink I get a free ream of premium Kodak paper with my members rewards card plus I get points.

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