I wish I was one of those cool, super-perfect DIY moms who grab a tape measure and level every time they hang a picture frame or a shelf. As my husband would testify with a roll of the eyes, I am more of an “eye-baller” kind of gal. 🙂 I do all our decorating — furniture arranging, wall decor, etc. And we’re always pretty pleased with the end results, but I would not fall into the “professionally trained” category. I have a simple tip for hanging pictures and shelves that takes all the intimidation out of it for me. Hopefully, it will get you started, filling up all your blank wall space with great confidence, too. I use toothpaste. Whaaaa? No, the hot, humid July weather hasn’t completely toasted my brain cells. I really do use toothpaste. It’s inexpensive and I always have it on hand.
Holding a picture or a shelf up against the wall, I have a knack for “seeing” that it’s level. Believe me, David has tested this several times, because he was convinced it simply wasn’t possible. The problem is that “seeing” it level, as it is being held against the wall, is NOT the same as inserting nails or screws into the area you want them and keeping THEM level. As I mentioned before, you can definitely track down the tape measure and a level and draw a line on your wall with a pencil or some other tool you hope won’t scratch the wall or leave a mark, but my quick and inexpensive solution is toothpaste. It saves me both time and money!
I dab toothpaste in the center of the hangers of whatever piece of decor I am mounting to the wall. Then I “eye-ball” where I want it, pressing against the wall. This leaves toothpaste dollops right where I need to place my mounting hardware and when I’m done, I just wipe it away — no marks, no scratches.
Remember our empty front room from my first summertime DIY post? I decided to put something on the wall, even if I don’t have any furniture for it to accent, yet. I had a small shelf, stashed in a box in the garage, that will be a nice complement to the wood floors and the pretty china hutch that my dad built. So, I brought it in and dusted it off, pulled out my tube of Arm and Hammer Advance White Brilliant Sparkle toothpaste, and the rest is history. In five minutes, I had the shelf on the wall and was rummaging through the house for things to set on it. You will go back to this simple DIY trick, time and time, again. It’s simple AND it works!
Believe it or not, there are tons of other reasons to reach for that tube of Arm and Hammer toothpaste, besides just giving you the perfect polished smile. And when one product can do many jobs, it always saves money. I haven’t had a chance to try these, yet, but a quick search of the world-wide web netted me this list of tips and ideas:
- Put toothpaste on bug bites. (I had never heard of this, but one of my older daughters confirms that not only has she tried it, it worked, taking away the itch.)
- Crayon off of walls – I found this across multiple sites, so my guess is that it must be pretty effective. Use a damp cloth and rub toothpaste over the crayon marks to remove them. Rinse with a clean, damp cloth.
- Clean scuffs off of shoes. Apparently it is especially effective on the rubber soles and uppers of running shoes.
- Remove water rings from wood furniture. Rub toothpaste into the mark with a soft cloth and then wipe clean with a clean, damp cloth.
- Use toothpaste to polish chrome faucets and knobs. If your bathroom sink seems to manage to end up with globs of toothpaste clinging to the sides, (If it doesn’t, I want to meet the elves that clean up after the kids in your bathroom. 🙂 ), use a damp cloth and turn that gloppy mess into sparkling clean faucets.
I’d love to hear any unique tips or ideas you have for using toothpaste or for DIY shelf and picture hanging! I accomplished my decorating task incredibly frugally, by using items I already had at home, including toothpaste from the medicine cabinet. As a matter of fact, I didn’t have to spend an extra penny!
This is a sponsored post for Church & Dwight Co., Inc, the maker of ARM & HAMMER branded products, who is paying me to try different products. Sign up for a free sample of Advance White Brilliant Sparkle Toothpaste. And then head over to The Switch & Save Challenge to keep up with all of the bloggers and enter to win $25,000.