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Beware of the sock monster. It lives in clothes dryers, under dressers, and behind furniture. And it's a vindictive monster, because it likes to bereave you of just one sock; it has no desire for pairs.
Where does this leave you? With a whole pile of mismatched socks of course (many of which are still in good condition)!
Fill that mismatched sock with baking soda, tie off the end, and you have a perfect shoe deodorizer. Leave it in your smelly shoes overnight, and come morning you can inhale without passing out.
Having moths eat holes in your clothes is bad, but the pervasive stink of moth balls is more than many people (myself included) can handle. Believe it or not, pencil shavings are your ticket to a moth-free life; stuff your mismatched sock with these pencil shavings and chuck it in with your clothes for a hole-free existence. This technique has the added benefit of re-using pencil shavings as well, which would otherwise be tossed.
Have you ever tried to use a bar of soap through to its bitter end? At some point I usually tire of prying small wet soap slivers from the dish and constantly dropping them in the shower.
The solution: simply chuck the soap slivers (or even a full bar if you wish) into a mismatched sock, and you have an instant self-soaping washcloth!
Mismatched knee socks are the best candidates for draft dodgers, which, when stuffed with dryer lint, scraps of material, or even (uncooked) rice, make an excellent barrier against drafts coming in under doors. Lay the stuffed sock along the bottom of your door, and you'll save money on heating expenses while staying cozy warm.
Okay, so this isn't the most fashionable way to cradle your can or bottle, but it still works; cut the foot off a mismatched tube sock, and presto: you have a drink cozy.
By tying a mismatched sock to the end of a broom or mop handle, you have a stealthy duster that can reach underneath and behind furniture, up high, and other hard-to-reach places where dust and cobwebs like to congregate. Then just toss the sock in the wash, and (assuming the sock monster doesn't have its way with your sock), you're off to the races again.
This technique allows your kids to get creative and expand their doll's wardrobes on the cheap. Cut the foot off a mismatched sock and tailor your cylindrical template into a dolly dress. You can cut holes for the arms, use yarn for a belt, and decorate it with fabric paint, markers, buttons, sequins, and anything else your child can dream up.
This is my all-time favorite way to reuse mismatched socks. Stuff the longest mismatched sock you can find with uncooked rice, and tie off or sew the end closed. Microwave for one to two minutes, and you have an instant hot pack which is great for aches and pains. Even better: add some fresh lavender or any essential oil you like and you have an aromatherapy masterpiece.
Do you have any creative uses for mismatched socks? Reply in the comments!
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Nora Dunn is The Professional Hobo: a full-time traveler and freelance writer. She is a contributing writer under our Life Balance blog. Having sold her business and belongings to travel, she has been on the road since 2007. She travels in a financially sustainable manner, taking advantage of creative volunteering positions. As a former certified Financial Planner, she is financially responsible for her actions along the way. She believes there is a fine balance between planning for tomorrow, and living for today. Compensated CareOne Blogger. You can follow Nora on Twitter @hobonora
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9. PUPPETS, PUPPETS, PUPPETS!!!!
@Jody - Ha Ha! It's just like me not to mention the obvious..... :-)
Fill the sock up with SnoMelt or Ice Melt or whatever you call Calcium Chloride, and tie it shut. Throw it (several if you've got them) up on the roof when you get an ice dam or before a heavy snow turns into an ice dam. The sun will melt the snow under the sock first, and the run off will create channels through the ice dam, so the water runs into the gutters more than under the shingles. You can leave them up there till spring.
@Sidney - Wow; what a great idea! Thanks! Very ingenious.
Put a couple of spoonsful of catnip in the toe, tie off the top, and you've got a catnip sock (for your own pet, or to donate to a local shelter once you have accumulated a few of them.
If you have a dog that loves chasing tennis balls, shove the ball down in the toe of the sock and tie it off. Hold it by the leg of the sock, swing it around a few times, and you can really get it to go a good distance. This also works for a good game of tug-o-war.
@Kathryn & Hannah - FABULOUS suggestions! There's lots of creative ways to use mismatched socks for pets!
Cut the toe off then thread 4 to 8 socks onto a Styrofoam wreath. You have put one slice through the wreath to thread the socks on but you can sure get creative after they are on there. Be sure to place one sock over the slice to cover it up.