I wonder if Thomas & Betts understood the sheer brilliance of their creation when they invented cable-ties in 1958. Initially intended for the maintenance of aircraft wires these simple strips of plastic have since proved effective for a variety of different tasks. Their genius is spreading rapidly on the internet. Search ‘cable ties’ into google and expect hundreds of videos with new tips and creations on how to utilise them for the most mundane tasks, to the most unexpected. Sixty-two years after Thomas and Betts’ bright idea and this invention is still proving invaluable. We want to highlight some of the ways cable ties can be used around the home creatively to aid your DIY projects.
Now let’s start slow - cable ties help clean up wiring around your home. The TV area looks slicker and the cable tie can rest easy knowing it has delivered exactly what it says on the tin. Nevertheless, it’s not overly creative, is it? Well, if it’s pure practicality you’re after, then they work brilliantly in a pinch if something is broken. As a temporary repair where you need to secure something in place, then it’s essential to own cable ties. When you finally get around to repairing properly you need only snip the tie with a pair of scissors and work your magic. Although, something tells me you might not be reading this to simply gauge an understanding of the routine tasks a cable tie can help you with? Well, fear not, they also help organise, secure, decorate and create.
Decking ‘the halls with boughs of holly’ becomes an awful lot simpler with the help of a cable tie. In fact, whether inside or outside of your home, they hold lights and festive decorations in place without issue. Even in extreme temperatures and windy conditions, all reasonable ties will withstand nature’s pressure and keep your decorations looking as intended.
There are certain times where cabinets and cupboards need to be locked; however, your standard kitchen and bathroom units rarely will have this function. To overcome this, quickly loop a cable tie through a pair of handles to keep the doors safely shut. Even if for only a few hours, this simple tip may release some stress if you have inquisitive and hyperactive children running around.
Keep losing or misplacing your keys? One cable tie through the key handles creates a key ring sturdier than found elsewhere. Stay organised in the garden too, maintaining upright and tall plants by securing them loosely to a stake with your tie. Don’t pay over the odds for home or garden equipment that do the same job at ten times the cost.
Repair and reinforce fencing where a patch or hole has worn over time. Zip ties can be attached to each other and the fencing to not only get rid of the hole, but to closely match the pattern too. Tip: this is a reliable way to keep on top of any wear and tear to chicken coups or rabbit hutches.
Build your own greenhouse from scratch with the help of cable ties. Homemade greenhouses are popular for those looking to be one step ahead of the planting season and cable ties will securely hold the frame and plastic covering to PVC support arches. With such a project, especially with beautiful plants and vegetation inside, it’s safest to use heavy duty cable ties that can withstand all weather conditions.
These ideas are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to uses for your cable tie. Use them enough and you’ll no doubt start inventing your very own ways to utilise their brilliance.