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Supplies [Conversation]

Thrifty Things You Use in Your Room

Started on Sep 29, 2012 by imagiNATION
Last post on May 05, 2013

I am leading a workshop at the AR Art Ed Conference on Tips and Tricks for the Low Budget Art Room. I have ideas that I use and some from pinterest but would love to hear if you have any clever things you do in your room to save money or space!


2 Keeps, 1 Likes, 7 Comments

  • imagiNATION 09/29/2012 at 03:07pm
    Some things I am talking about include ways to preserve glue, make sure materials aren't walking away, recycle stuff, etc. Any suggestions would be great!


  • AmyHall 09/29/2012 at 04:00pm
    I use bottle caps and q-tips for glue
    egg crates for paint
    yogurt containers to paint
    glass jars - such as pasta sauce jars for holders for markers, colored pencils, drawing pencils.
    For easy supplies - I have a set of shelves in my room that i put each grade levels current supplies and resources (books) on a shelf.


  • jfrisco 09/29/2012 at 08:06pm
    I use yogurt containers for 2nd grade basket weaving. They love it~! I think it is their favorite project of the year. :) For this same project I also use scraps of tangled yarn.

    I have a recycle station where students can bring in objects they think would help inspire themselves or others to reduce, reuse and recycle. Some of the objects are old broken jewelry for beading, broken erasers, bottle caps and pop tabs, twisty ties, old scrap yarn for weaving (on individual or group looms), old VCR tape for weaving

    I also use milk crates and 2-liter bottles hung from the ceiling for dispensing yarn, cardboard tubes wrapped in duct tape for holding different colored pipe cleaners (a student of mine and I invented that idea)...

    AmyHall... Like you, bottle caps... but instead of Q-tips, I use toothpicks for glue (especially tacky glue). :)

    I also took an old Styrofoam meat tray, measured it out, and use it for plastic needle storage. Wow! I'm not missing any needles!


  • remembertheshadows 10/02/2012 at 11:52am
    .... Wal*Mart stores clear out specialty boxes (Valentines or Halloween?) used in their HUGE displays. FREE always sounds good to me. Containers: unique in size, color, sporting a satin finish. I have class level porfolios within stored within my latest sturdy score.


  • judlebug81 02/02/2013 at 05:07pm
    I use the cardboard cheese boxes from our cafeteria for holding and dispensing yarn. These are just like Velvetta boxes only larger. Each box holds one skein of yarn, and you can pull the yarn from the center of the skein and run it though the side crack of the box. The yarn stays nice and tidy because the kids can only pull from that string. I also use Velvetta boxes to hold glue bottles. Each box can hold up to 7 glue bottles, which makes it nice to just carry one box to each table when setting up.


  • Astabeth 02/28/2013 at 01:15pm
    Ice cream buckets as recycle bins for clay
    Lids to copier paper boxes for bins for students to turn in artwork
    Old towels as aprons for using clay or paint
    Thrift store crock pots for melting wax instead of a double boiler (get one you can set on low so the temp doesn't go too high)
    Old clothes become scrap fabric for students to use
    Also, when the office is almost out of a roll of bulletin board paper, they usually pull it off the dispenser and leave it for anyone - I scavenge those as often as I can.


  • WandaArt 05/05/2013 at 03:28pm
    I use Dixie cups with sharpeners in them for shaving pencils. Then you throw away the little Dixie cup or use them to trace small circles. I cut up paper towels in smaller sizes to last longer. I put glue in small clear storage cups with lids to keep glue fresh. I use pop sticks and Qtips to apply glue. The Dollar Stores usually carry dish pan containers that I use to keep papers in or empty milk cardboard boxes from our cafeteria. The yellow boxes left over from Wal-mart school supply event are super because you can turn them toward the wall to look bright and hide the contents. Silver wear trays are good for paintbrushes. The dollar bins at Target have cute colored pails to hold things in. Contact paper from Wal Mart or dollar stores revive old desk tables or file cabinets. Cool Whip containers hold markers nicely. Upside down locker size bright plastic crates have holes that scissors look great stored in dangling neatly!