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I’m so clever

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Use drill to tighten that Christmas tree stand

I'm So Clever
What a smart stocking stuffer! More than 450 thrifty tips from readers are compiled in our 'I'm So Clever' book that is on sale now.

I'm So Clever
I'm So Clever is compiled by Observer assistant features editor Roland Wilkerson. Send your tip, name, address and phone by email or mail to Home Section, Charlotte Observer, P.O Box 30308, Charlotte, N.C. 28230.
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I had two clever holiday table decorating ideas. First was to make napkin rings from pre-made ribbon bows. They come on a card of 10 and have covered wire which can be twisted together to make a circle. Then you slip your napkins through the ring! My second idea: Use gift tags as place cards. Nina Lynch, Lake Wylie

More Information

  • ‘I’m So Clever’ book for sale

    We’ve collected more than 450 of your smart, thrifty tips and published it as a handy book, which you can order for just $5.99, plus shipping. It’s packed with money-saving ideas, helpful photos and other tips for saving time and getting organized. Order at charlotteobserver.com/clever. It will be available soon at Park Road Books. Come back next week for an update.


The winner: I have a Christmas tree stand with eyebolts that are tightened into the tree trunk. Sometimes it can be difficult to get the screws to dig in deep enough. This year I attached the long end of an allen wrench to the chuck of my cordless drill. I inserted the shorter “L” into the hole in the bolt and slowly tightened. Easy!

Chris Brucciani, Charlotte

Bows make great napkin rings

I had two clever holiday table decorating ideas. First was to make napkin rings from pre-made ribbon bows. They come on a card of 10 and have covered wire which can be twisted together to make a circle. Then you slip your napkins through the ring. My second idea: Use gift tags as place cards.

Nina Lynch, Lake Wylie

Take photos of Christmas photos

The arrival of Christmas cards with photos of friends and family bring a lot of cheer. What do you do with all those precious pictures after the holidays? Just grab your smart phone or camera and take a photo of the entire display of Christmas cards. You'll have the memories preserved and reduced clutter in the new year.

Debbie Isaacs,Statesville

Win ‘I’m So Clever’ book

Send your clever tip, address and phone to clever@charlotteobserver.com or Home Section, Charlotte Observer, P.O Box 30308, Charlotte, NC 28230-0308. Each week the best idea wins an “I’m So Clever” book.

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