Handy Household Helpers

Open it
Peter Ardito
The right tools make all the difference when working on home improvements. Check out our picks.
Peter Ardito
Peter Ardito

Trendy Toolbox

Make room in the junk drawer by stashing tools in Alice Supply Co.'s striped metal caddy. The removable plastic tray is the perfect place to store small screws and nails. $82; alicesupplyco.com

Peter Ardito
Peter Ardito

Lightweight Lift

The Kikkerland EZ Fold step stool stores flat so you can keep it in the closet or cabinet until you need a lift to change the lightbulb or dust the ceiling. $15.50; amazon.com

If your kid's clothing is no longer fitting in her closet, don't fret. There may be more storage in there than you think. Learn how to make the most of the closet space your child's bedroom offers.

Peter Ardito
Peter Ardito

Flexible Light

Attach the GorillaTorch Flare to any work surface with its magnetic, malleable tripod legs to shine white or red LEDs on the project at hand. $35; joby.com

Peter Ardito
Peter Ardito

Multi Mallet

The stainless steel Sheffield 14-in-1 Hammer can handle banging in nails -- and then some. It has a built-in pair of pliers, metal file, can opener, and more. $15; amazon.com

Peter Ardito
Peter Ardito

Savvy Scissors

A built-in bottle opener, awl tip, tape cutter, and blade sharpener, make Fiskars' Cuts+More scissors the pair to keep in the kitchen. $20; fiskars.com

Peter Ardito
Peter Ardito

Safe Fire Starter

Zippo's refillable Candle Lighter has an ergonomic design and a child-safety button so you keep it within reach -- without the worry. $20; zippo.com

Peter Ardito
Peter Ardito

Garden Guru

The rust-resistant Planter's Pal digs; weeds; cuts sod, twine, and soil bags; tamps down stakes; and has measurements on the side so you don't have to switch tools. $10; homedepot.com

Peter Ardito
Peter Ardito

Pretty Plug

Save time searching the garage for an extension cord by choosing a standout style, like this Coleman 25-foot, weather-resistant punchy purple one. $24; cableorganizer.com

Peter Ardito
Peter Ardito

Battery Buddy

Juice up your kids' toys using Oxo Tot's 4-inch Battery Screwdriver. A nonslip handle and four different heads will get the job done fast. $5; onestepahead.com

Peter Ardito
Peter Ardito

Measuring Mate

This Molecule soft tape measure can determine the width of a bookshelf or the size of your child's waist. $8.50; pylones-usa.com

Peter Ardito
Peter Ardito

Hands-Off Hammer

No room to swing a hammer? Pull the trigger of the Craftsman NEXTEC 12-Volt Lithium-Ion Hammerhead Auto Hammer to drive a nail into the wall or surface instead. $90; ACE Hardware

Peter Ardito
Peter Ardito

Good Wrench

Tighten loose nuts and bolts on the swing set or raise the seat on your child's two-wheeler using Kobalt's socket-style Mulit Drive Wrench. $25; lowes.com

Peter Ardito
Peter Ardito

Clever Cutters

It's easy to cut through even the toughest plastic toy packaging and superstrong zip ties with the Open It. $20; buyopenit.com

Originally published in the April 2011 issue of Parents magazine.

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