9 Amazing Uses for Zip TIes

You already know zip ties are great for taming cords​ but have you thought about all the other things they can be used for? If not, it's definitely time to give zip ties another look. Because those cheap little strips of plastic can solve all manner of problems on the cheap. Take a look at these clever uses for them.

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Hang Christmas Lights, Garland and Wreaths with Zip Ties

Christmas Lights
Christmas Lights. Image Source/Getty Images

Use zip ties to hang your Christmas lights, garlands and wreaths. They'll go on straight, and they'll stay put all season long. You can even use them to secure lights around tree branches. Just remember to leave a little room for the trees to move. Zip ties come in lots of colors, so pick something that will blend in with your decorations and their surroundings.

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Make Balloon Sculptures

Balloon Sculpture
Balloon Sculpture. Anthony Harvie/Stone/Getty Images

Create beautiful balloon clusters or sculptures for your next party with the help of zip ties. Just blow up your balloons and tie them off. Then, poke the zip tie through the tail of a balloon, and continue threading balloons onto the zip tie, until you have the look you want, and pull the zip tie tight to secure your balloons. Use a single zip tie to create a simple balloon cluster; use multiple zip ties to create more elaborate balloon designs.

Tip: Search "balloon sculptures" on Pinterest for inspiration.

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Train Vines on a Trellis and Support Heavy Plants

Vines Trained Up a Trellis
Vines Trained Up a Trellis. Linda Burgess/Photolibrary/Getty Images

Train roses and other vining plants up trellises and arbors with zip ties. Attach tomato plants, zucchini plants and other produce-heavy plants to their cages so they don't snap under the weight of their bounty. Just be careful not to pull the zip ties too tight, or you could damage the plants.

  • How to Train Climbing Roses
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Use Zip Ties to Childproof Your Home

Zip Tied Cabinet
Zip Tied Cabinet. © Erin Huffstetler

Expecting young visitors soon? Use zip ties to childproof your cabinets. It's cheaper than buying a bunch of cabinet locks, and just as effective. Plus, when the kids go home, all you have to do is snip the ties off, and toss them in the trash. There's nothing to store. 

  • How to Childproof Your Home
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Tie Dye

Tie Dye
Tie Dye. Melissa Ross/Moment/Getty Images

Use zip ties in place of rubber bands the next time you tie-dye t-shirts. They'll tighten down without all that wrapping, and you'll be rewarded with more professional results.

  • How to Tie Dye
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Use Zip Ties to Hang Tools

Use a Zip Tie to Hang a Broom
Use a Zip Tie to Hang a Broom. © Erin Huffstetler

Loop a zip tie through the hole in the handle of your broom and dust pan, shovels and other hand tools. They'll be easier to hang, and you'll be able to hang multiple tools from each hook or nail.

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Attach Labels to Baskets with Zip Ties

Use Zip Ties to Hang Labels on Baskets
Use Zip Ties to Hang Labels on Baskets. © Erin Huffstetler

Looking for a way to attach labels to baskets? Use two zip ties. They'll stay firmly in place, with zero chance of falling off.

Like the label I used on my basket? It's part of a free, printable set that you can get here. I laminate my labels, so I can write on them with a dry erase marker and wipe them clean to reuse them again and again.

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Secure Your Suitcase When You Travel

Family with Suitcases
Family with Suitcases. Caiaimage/Paul/Bradbury/OJO+/Getty Images

Use a zip tie to cinch the two zippers together on your suitcase whenever you travel to deter would-be thieves. That's not to say someone won't cut the tie, but at least if they do, that broken tie will alert you to check for missing items right away.

Be sure to toss some extra zip ties in your suitcase, so you can secure your bag for your return trip, or whenever you leave your room for the day.

  • 4 Cheap Ways to Secure Your Luggage
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Attach Pants to Hangers for Consignment Sales

Hang Pants with Zip Ties
Hang Pants with Zip Ties. © Erin Huffstetler

If you participate in a kids' consignment sale, you probably already know what a pain it is to safety pin pants and shorts to hangers. It takes for ever, and results in more than one pricked finger. Skip all that hassle by zip tying pants instead. Just loop the tie through a front and back belt loop on each side of the waistband, and pull the ties tight to secure them to the hanger.

This trick also works for securing spaghetti strap shirts and swimsuits.

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More Zip Tie Tips

Zip Ties in a Rainbow of Colors
Zip Ties in a Rainbow of Colors. Cornstock/Stockbytes/Getty Images

Stock up on zip ties in a variety of lengths and colors, so you always have what you need to tackle any job. The dollar store is one of the cheapest sources for clear zip ties. Shop online, if you're looking for a particular color or size.

Need a longer tie than you currently have on hand? Attach two or more zip ties together to create the length you need. Just slip the end of one tie through the loop of another, and pull tight. Continue adding ties in this manner, until you achieve the desired length.