Here are a few different ideas to keep your keys organized and stylish at the same time, many needing only basic supplies and simple diy skills:
Wooden Hotel Version: Frame assembled planks, add a bit of stain, metal label frames, a few cup hooks and voila! you have a lovely piece that is sure to be admired.
Crafty Bird House Hooks: A sweet little project made with wooden craft birdhouses, paint, picture hooks, Japanese washi tape, PVA glue and more.
(Originally published September 9, 2008) Your day will start with a hectic pace if you find yourself running from room to room digging in pockets or emptying purses and totes in a panic trying to find your keys.
Try using a keeper so you always know just where they are right when you need them. The system is so simple to implement that if you don’t already have one in place, you’ll wonder why you resisted against setting this up for your household!
If you do have a system in place but aren’t having much success using it consistently, I have a few tips below that may help:
- Never put them in your pocket or bag or set them down just anywhere when you enter your home, hold them in your hand until you put them in your chosen keeper. By doing this, you’ll get into the habit of going directly to the place they are kept without thinking twice about it.
- Have it as close to the most used entrance as possible. Some like to have a little table at the entrance to set a dish on, others may choose to hang a cabinet on the wall. You want the location to be as convenient as possible so an excuse for resistance is removed. **Remember burglars can be wily, store keys out of reach (by hand or gadget) of any opening to the outside (pet doors, mail slots, etc.).
- Don’t allow the spot you choose to become a clutter “hot spot”. It’s a hassle pushing piles of receipts or papers around trying to find the dish, this just makes it easier “not to bother”.
- Choose the most simplest device possible to store them. We use a cabinet with hooks to hang spares and those that aren’t needed on a day-to-day basis, but we also have a dish right by to toss them into. No hanging on hooks, no cabinet doors to open and close. This works because you’ll have moments when you’ll be tempted to skip the effort of hanging the ring by putting them in your pocket or setting them down somewhere (examples: you’re rushing in with your hands full or the phone’s ringing just as you walk in the door). With an open dish, it’s easy to toss them into it while running.
- Set it high enough out of reach so little hands can’t get at them. Trust me, this one’s a biggy!
- There are so many different containers you can use: recycle a margarine tub, rescue an old piece of tupperware or choose a pretty piece of porcelain or even a vintage refrigerator dish. Choose something that has a large opening and not too deep so you can put your hand in easily to grab the ring.
Once you’ve developed the habit of using a keeper ALWAYS, you’ll never again be in a panic looking for keys–they’ll be exactly where they should be.
(Originally published December 8, 2006) You need a thin, sturdy piece of metal with teeth or a hook of some kind to do this.
piece of coping saw blade
scroll saw blade
Any piece of thin metal with a ‘hook’ on the end that can grab the broken piece
- First give a quick spray of wd40 into keyway so it’s as easy as possible for broken piece to slide out.
- Insert the blade of your tool into keyway. Make sure the teeth of the tool are facing out and towards you.
- Try grabbing the broken piece with your blade–work with the grooved edge of the key, not the smooth edge. Once your tool grabs it, try sliding the piece out.
- If it won’t slide out, try a quick tug with your tool–you may get lucky and pop it out.
If you can fiddle and move the piece out far enough, try grabbing it with needle nose pliers, tweezers, nail clippers, anything that will grab the edge allowing you to pull out the rest of the piece.
Potential problem: if piece just won’t budge, look closely and check that the lock cylinder is in neutral position and not turned slightly. If so, adjust and retry.