Now that most schools and colleges have had their first day of classes, the end of July seems like a long time ago. That’s when we first asked you to share your back-to-school ideas for furniture, organization and food. You have been generous to post or pin your ideas over the last month, and let us just say your ideas are awesome! In this post, we want to pass along some of the best ideas we have received.
Until August 31, you can still participate in the back-to-school contest by re-pinning any of the back-to-school ideas on Hooker’s Pinterest back-to-school board or posting your back to school ideas on the Hooker Furniture Facebook page. You can enter the sweepstakes by visiting the back-to-school contest landing page.
Now let’s get to the good part and pass along some of the ideas that you have shared:
1. A drop-zone at the door. Designer and author Patricia Hart McMillian posted this idea: “Dedicate a hall-type living room table, shelf or cubby designed to receive back packs and after-school stuff. Kids barely make it inside their home doorways before unloading and heading to the refrigerator. Take it from this grandmother, I know!” This is a wonderful idea, Pat, and for this purpose we’d like to suggest the Wendover bunching bookcase pedestal.
Each of these pedestals contains six compartments with removable vertical partitions and 2 drawers—a dynamo of both closed and open storage. And, you can bunch together as many of these pedestals as you like, depending on the size and length of your hall or mud room.
2. Rain- gutter shelves. One of the ideas that several of you liked and re-pinned from our back-to-school ideas Pinterest board is a brilliant idea to recycle rain gutters and use them as thin book shelves! Did you know that kids are far more likely to read a book if they can see the cover?
Not only are these rain-gutter shelves functional, they make a colorful and intriguing focal point in the room that help engage children and teens with their books.
3. Corner bookmarkers. Another Pinterest idea was this “how to” pin on creating your own colorful corner book markers. These would be great gifts as well!
4. Window-sash chalkboard. Another brilliant recycling idea posted by Jessica Bernard on our Facebook page was to “take a free window sash someone is giving away. Sand it down, re-finish it and paint the window panels with chalkboard paint. Hang it in a hallway, office, mudroom or child’s bedroom and you have a fun way for kids to express themselves and a neat way to organize thoughts, reminders and notes to each other.” How creative!
5. Salon-style nail polish display. From college student Sarah McQuaid comes this idea, “I was just telling my roommate that I wish I had a salon-inspired display for my large nail polish collection. Then I thought that re-purposing a spice rack would be just the trick!”
6. Designated cubbies. Cubbies with specific purposes are a fail-proof idea for students of every age, from preschool to college. Holly DeMano posted the idea of designating two cubbies for each child, one for papers that stay home and the other for homework and papers that need to be looked at and returned to school. This idea has lots of legs as students mature. During the high school years, a cubby can be designated for various activity folders, college information and applications, transcripts and the like. And of course, the uses for cubbies in college dorms are endless!
7. New acquaintances journal. Perhaps the best back-to-school perk is the opportunity for new friendships. This is especially true as young adults go off to college for the first time or for a new year. Sharon Owen posted a brilliant idea on our Facebook page to help keep up with new people you meet and hit the ground running with new relationships. “Get a journal-type book or address book to record the names of the people you meet. After a conversation, record their name, area of study and any other info you found out. It wouldn’t be a bad idea to jot down characteristics of the people you’ve just met so that you can refer to it later to make sure you know them when you meet again. This journal could prove priceless in making the connections you need to enrich your life in your new location…Everyone, including professors, likes to hear their names and will be so impressed with you for remembering.”