I'm So Clever

Observer bags come in handy for painting

The winner: When using latex paint, the brush can be kept soft between coats if it is wrapped tightly in a Charlotte Observer plastic sleeve. It will also last overnight if then placed with a wet cloth wrapped around the sleeve and brush and placed in the refrigerator. No need to clean the brush between coats. Charles R. Kern, Charlotte

Rack organizes cutting boards

I have several different cutting boards, which I use a lot. Previously they were kept in a drawer, which was inconvenient. At a dollar store, I bought a couple of simple, inexpensive plate racks with room for several boards. They now sit on my counter, making them both handy and decorative.

Patti Tryson, Sherrills Ford

New use for old World Books

I make good use of our 1970s World Book Encyclopedias. When I have a sewing project that requires cutting out several garments or costumes, I make four stacks of books 7 1/2 inches tall and slide a stack under each of the legs of my dining room table. I add a cardboard cutting board on the top of the table to protect it. I can cut fabric without having to bend over the table and hurt my back. The same books go under the legs of a card table to make it a convenient height to serve as a Christmas present wrapping station. Frances F. Pollock, Charlotte

Win an ‘I’m So Clever’ book

Send your 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. You can order a copy at www.charlotteobserver.com/clever for just $5.99, plus shipping. Also available at Park Road Books, Blackhawk hardware and the General Store in Belmont.