Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Easy DIY Dry Erase Shopping List

Like most people with kids, I can never seem to keep both a scribble free pad of paper and pen near the fridge.  Plus I have a memory like a sieve, and I only ever think of adding things to the list when I'm in the middle of cooking...  So I wanted something I could mark down quickly and not have to waste a lot of paper.  

Original list right, New list on left.
I had the idea of making a dry-erase shopping list several months ago, and I thought it was worth prototyping to see if it worked for us.  My first list was a simple typed 3-column sheet of paper, organized (slightly) by a combination of the isle grouping in our usual grocery store and food types.  I didn't have a laminator, and didn't want to pay for the service, so I decided to hijack  a photo sheet protector from a photo album and use that.  I did end up buying some sweet magnetic dry-erase markers from Target.  

The list worked well, I was able to add things quick as I wanted, but I found it was hard to take with me (didn't fit in my purse), so it was getting crease marks all over which made it not lie as flat to the paper inside. Also, the sheet could slide around enough to occasionally 'shift' the list if I wasn't paying attention. Unfortunately, I left both the first list and the black marker at the store (I liked the black one ::sadface:: ), so I was forced to make a new one.  I'm glad I did.


The second was wasn't much harder to make, but it fixes all the problems I had before and it's AWESOME.  I grabbed one of those 4x6" photo holders I had and spent some time rearranging the list to be able to cram into the size and shape I wanted.

 It's easy to DIY.  Just needs some 4x6" photo protectors, paper (or index cards), and scissors.

 Print off your shopping list, cut it to size and slide it into the photo slots. (If first developing a list, just jot down your typical list on index cards. Type it up when your list is set.)

Trim off the edges with the paper.  Then move the paper out about 1/8" more and trim that down so the paper doesn't go right to the edge.

Done!  Leave the edges open so you can slide the paper out to jot down any missed items.

I really do like it, everything is neat and secure and it folds really nice.  I'm careful to tri-fold it so that all the marks are to the inside when it goes in my purse so all the newly circled items don't get wiped off.  I'll probably start stashing a clothespin in my purse to be able to hold it up on the cart a little better, and grocery shopping will be slightly more organized.

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