Organizing


Summer Porch Ideas - Moss Wreath, Planters, DIY Sign Post, Painted Cement, Herb Garden, Tabletop S'mores, Porch Curtains and so much more!

Summer is almost here… I can feel it!  (Or maybe I’m just tired of the daily school routine and I’m dreaming of summer!)  Either way, we’ve gathered some of our favorite Summer Porch Ideas for you today.  It’s time to get that porch ready for lazy summer days in the shade and cool summer nights eating your tabletop s’mores!

Summer Porch Ideas

DIY Moss Letters from The Crafting Chicks

Summer Porch Ideas - Moss Wreath, Planters, DIY Sign Post, Painted Cement, Herb Garden, Tabletop S'mores, Porch Curtains and so much more!

DIY Welcome Post from Little Bit of Paint

Summer Porch Ideas - Moss Wreath, Planters, DIY Sign Post, Painted Cement, Herb Garden, Tabletop S'mores, Porch Curtains and so much more!

Children’s Arbor Bench from The Crafting Chicks

Summer Porch Ideas - Moss Wreath, Planters, DIY Sign Post, Painted Cement, Herb Garden, Tabletop S'mores, Porch Curtains and so much more!

Painted Striped Concrete Floor from Lolly Jane

Summer Porch Ideas - Moss Wreath, Planters, DIY Sign Post, Painted Cement, Herb Garden, Tabletop S'mores, Porch Curtains and so much more!

Chandelier Planter Tutorial from DIY Show Off

Summer Porch Ideas - Moss Wreath, Planters, DIY Sign Post, Painted Cement, Herb Garden, Tabletop S'mores, Porch Curtains and so much more!

Table Top S’mores from The Crafting Chicks

Tabletop S'mores - perfect for summer nights!

DIY Summer Banner The Happy Scraps

DIY Summer Banner - Pallet Sign

Drop Cloth Porch Curtains from Old Things New

Drop Cloth Porch Curtains - Love this simple privacy solution!

Mason Jar Herb Garden from Home Remedies

Mason Jar Herb Garden right outside your back door!

Beach Towel & Bathing Suit Rack from The Summery Umbrella

DIY Beach Towel Rack

DIY Magical Lights in your Fairy Garden from Little Tudor on the Prairie

Summer Porch Ideas - Moss Wreath, Planters, DIY Sign Post, Painted Cement, Herb Garden, Tabletop S'mores, Porch Curtains and so much more!

Summer Porch Ideas - Moss Wreath, Planters, DIY Sign Post, Painted Cement, Herb Garden, Tabletop S'mores, Porch Curtains and so much more!


Spring Cleaning Checklist

Hello again Crafting Chicks! I’m Michelle from Michelle Lea Creative. Today I am sharing with you one of my favorite things! You’ll laugh when I tell you that it is a Cleaning Checklist. I love this cleaning checklist and use it each week to keep the house picked up and ready for a knock on the door. I have to be honest though… there are many times when I would die if someone showed up. My house can look like an episode of Hoarders on certain occasions. This cleaning list is meant to encourage you to do a little at a time and stay on top of your calendar for the next day… not to remind you of what you haven’t accomplished. There are far more important things than a spotless house.

My cleaning list doesn’t involve cleaning for hours each day. I believe in breaking things down into 15 minute or less tasks. The cleaning list also targets a different area/task each day. A big helper for me is preparing for the next day at night when the house is calm.

Click image to download your pdf file

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I have also listed 7 deep cleaning items to tackle each month. I typically work on them on the weekend or a day that I have caught up…. or when those dust bunnies on the fans have driven me crazy.

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Cleaning Tips from the not at all great cleaner 🙂

1. Keep your cleaning products in a location that makes sense. I have all of my extra bottles in our laundry room, but I keep the supplies that I need to clean up the kitchen under my kitchen sink. I also keep the supplies needed for the bathroom in one central bathroom. This helps to cut down on my time spent running all around the house for the right cleaning supply.

2. Limit yourself to cleaners that do double and triple duty. I know that there are some cleaners that you just have to have, like stainless steel cleaner. But I use my window cleaner for way more surfaces than just windows and mirrors.

3. Have an area just inside the door you use to enter the house to drop your shoes, backpacks, etc. Leaving shoes at the door cuts down drastically on the dirt, mud and icky stuff that ends up all over your floors. I also use this area for keys and all of the mountain of things that I transfer to and from my car.

4. 15 minutes. When areas are getting out of control or you just don’t feel up to cleaning. Set a timer for 15 minutes and get everything done that you can and then give yourself a break and relax. You will be amazed at how relaxed you are after and how willing you are to finish cleaning and tidying up the rest beyond that 15 minutes.

5. Amazon Subscribe and Save. This probably sounds funny to some people. But I order my toilet paper, paper towels, detergents (dish, washer, and dishwasher), and cat food from Amazon Subscribe and Save. It automatically sends out another shipment at the interval that you choose and you typically get a discounted price for your larger quantity order. I’m also an Amazon Prime member so I get free 2 day shipping which is soooo awesome!

Years ago, I had tons of cleaners for every little situation. And I still have a few unusual cleaners in the back of my cabinet, but these are my everyday messy tacklers. I also really don’t like chemical smells, so many of the cleaners I use are more natural… at least to my nose.

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– Sprayway Glass Cleaner

– Method Granite Cleaner

– Method Bathroom Cleaner

– Method Wood Floor Cleaner

– Weiman Stainless Steel Cleaner

– Mrs. Meyers Dish Soap

– Cascade Complete Dishwasher pacs

– Tide Pods and All Free and Clear for laundry

– Swiffer Dusters

– Magic Erasers

– Scotch Kitchen Sponges

– Bounty Select a Size paper towels

– Dust Pan and Broom

– Bona Microfiber Wood Floor Mop

Thank you so much for spending a few minutes with me today! Stop by Michelle Lea Creative and say hi!

If you liked this post check out:

Spring Cleaning Motivation Tips

spring cleaning

Six Steps to a Spotless Kitchen

5 steps to a spotless kitchen in 30 minutes

The Top Cleaning Tips and Tricks

the top 15 cleaning tips and tricks


Hello! My name is Crystal Wilkerson & I’m so excited to have this opportunity to guest post for the Crafting Chicks!  I’m a stay-at-home mom, graphic designer, scrapbooker & organizational enthusiast. I’m also just trying to make it through the daily maze of home, work, & family responsibilities like the rest of you. In my constant effort to try to stay on top of the chaos (always a work in progress), I’ve discovered a binding system that I absolutely love. Today I’m excited to share that system with you!

This system is often referred to as the “rollabind” system, however it can actually be found under several different names/brands. You may have heard of a few of them: Martha Stewart’s Discbound SystemStaple’s ArcLevenger’s Circa, & Rollabind. While I am not affiliated with any of these brands, I’ve experimented with all of them & definitely have my favorites that I’ll be sharing with you.

My Favorite Binding System

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This is made possible through the combination of their unique punch & circular discs. You can easily add, remove, or rearrange your papers at any time!

One of my favorite punches is the Arc Desktop Punch (pictured above) from Staples. You can easily punch up to 8 pages at a time.

If you’re looking for something that can punch through laminated material or plastic, then you’ll want to go with Levenger’s Circa Leverage Punch (15-page capacity). I recently purchased this & have loved using it to create laminated covers like the ones seen below.

Levenger also has a slim Portable Punch that is great for traveling (1-3 page capacity).

My Favorite Binding System

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The reason for this is because you add the discs individually. This gives you the ability to make it as big or small as you’d like depending on how many discs you use. I have made binders of all sizes for all kinds of purposes!

You can find ready-made covers in a variety of colors & materials. One of the most popular covers seen all over Pinterest (and one of my personal favorites) is the Martha Stewart Discbound Notebook in Faux Leather (pictured below on the top right). It comes in a beautiful light turquoise color. It was unavailable for a while but is finally back in stock again! Staples & Levenger also have a variety of quality covers to choose from called Arc Notebooks & Circa Notebooks.

You can also make your own covers by laminating your own design or you can use a cute piece of scrapbook paper! Below are some notebooks I made to keep on my desk while I’m working. I’m including the download for you to make your own! Just print out on a piece of white cardstock, laminate, bind, & enjoy!

DOWNLOAD HERE

My Favorite Binding System

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The smallest discs can hold up to 50 papers, while the largest discs can hold up to 450 papers! There is also a variety of styles & colors to choose from. My favorite discs are from the ones pictured below from Levenger. They are made out of 100% lightweight aluminum & look beautiful!! You can find them HERE. They are a little pricey, but keep in mind that you will never need to throw these away. You can literally keep reusing them for years to come.

Martha Stewart & Arc have more affordable discs that come in a variety of colors. The quality isn’t as good as Levenger as they are made out of plastic, but they still work great & look good too! Hobby Lobby has also recently come out with a fun line of discs & planner accessories called Create 365 by “Me & My Big Ideas”.

You can also find lots of accessories that work with your binders like tabs, page protectors, rulers, notebook paper, etc! The possibilities really are endless!

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Last year I created my life planner utilizing this binding system. I’ve been working on a new version for 2016, but have yet to finish it due to the craziness of my life lately.  However, If you’d like to try out my planner from last year, I’m doing something I’ve never done before & it’s just for Crafting Chicks readers! From now until my new planner becomes available (which should be very soon), you can grab last year’s version for 90% off! And the best part is, 90% of the pages are not dated, so you can use them forever! I’ll post a picture of the cover of my planner below, but you can see it in it’s entirety by clicking HERE & HERE. And you can purchase it HERE. Be sure to enter the coupon code: CRAFTINGCHICKS to get it for only $3.99!

My Favorite Binding System


One of my New Year’s resolution is to plan better. To take control. To be proactive and not reactive.

In order to be proactive at home I know that I’ll need to have a plan. I used do pretty well at flying by the seat of my pants, but have recently realized that there might be a better way for me. So I’m going to give planning a chance. I made up this simple chart to help me. There is so much packed into this bad boy that I’m actually giddy over it! I’ve taken some ideas I know will work and some I think may work for me and combined them on one sheet of paper to hang on my fridge. The idea is that Sunday mornings I’ll print a new one and start plotting out my week.

Week at a Glance

week at a glance scheduling help

There’s a box for every day of the week, duh. And a box for notes. Right now it is being used as my shopping list.

There’s a line for me to plan a menu in advance. I’ve never been a meal planner and I know even trying to plan a week at a time is setting myself up for failure, so as long as I have the next day filled out before I go to bed it will be doing its job. By having a dinner plan before 3 pm will put me in control of that situation.

The next line is for housework. This is my take on the FlyLady system. Everyday I’ll pick an area to spend 10 minutes working on and eventually my house will be immaculate (ha!). Even if it isn’t immaculate it will be better than it was before. Its all about the baby steps!

The dots at the bottom are to keep me accountable to myself. The top 2 are for exercise. Each dot represents a half hour, The next line of 5 is for my servings of fruits and vegetables and the bottom 8 are for glasses of water. I’ll put a check mark in the bubble to keep track. Hopefully there are no empty bubbles at the end of the day.

calendar

So there it is, my effort to plan ahead while still allowing the flexibility I know I need. Feel free to download your own weekly planner and join me in being proactive in 2016!

Download Black


Bathroom Organization - Storage ideas, diy shelves, shower organization, medicine cabinets... love these ideas!

Christmas decorations are down and it’s time to get organized!  The bathroom is one of the easiest rooms to organize.  We’ve got some great ideas for you!  Storage, DIY shelves, even ideas for kids bathrooms.

Bathroom Organization

Quick and Easy Tips for Kids Bathrooms from The Crafting Chicks

Bathroom Organization - Storage ideas, diy shelves, shower organization, medicine cabinets... love these ideas!

IKEA spice racks for storage from Suite Revival

Bathroom Organization - Storage ideas, diy shelves, shower organization, medicine cabinets... love these ideas!

Custom Vanity from The Crafting Chicks

Bathroom Organization - Storage ideas, diy shelves, shower organization, medicine cabinets... love these ideas!

 

Full Length Mirror Sliding Storage Cabinet from Ana White

Sliding Mirror Shelves

10 Ways to Take a Bathroom from Drab to Fab from The Crafting Chicks

Take a bathroom from drab to fab

Shelf above the door from My So-Called Home

Bathroom storage

Medicine Cabinet & First Aid Organization from Simply Kierste

Medicine cabinet organization

Organizing the shower from The Crafting Chicks

Shower organization

DIY Bathroom Cabinet from Liz Marie Blog

DIY Bathroom Cabinet

Gabriel Wall System from Ana White

DIY Bathroom Wall System


organization challenge Happy January 1st! Our Michael’s Makers challenge this month was to organize an area of our home. So, naturally I picked the absolute worst area of our house to tackle. This closet serves as the drop zone for pretty much everything. It holds coats, backpacks, cookbooks, art supplies and anything else that we want out of site. It has gotten so bad that you had to kinda lean into it to get the door to shut. Know what I’m talking about? It was high time for a coat closet makeover.

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My husband is so embarrassed I’m sharing this photo. But here it is guys! The shoe organizer on the door started out as a great way to hold pens, pencils, crayons, markers, etc. But the etc. has gotten out of control. The coat hangers are too high for our kids to reach, so they just toss all of their stuff on the ground. It’s one of the places I hope the door never gets opened to when we have company.

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First, we moved the adults coats/jackets to a different closet and got rid of everything that didn’t belong in here, so this is only holding the kids stuff. Hooks on either side hold their coats and backpacks and the baskets keep lunchboxes contained. We added 2 more shelves to help corral the art supplies and more bins for things like hats and gloves and snowpants and even their sunglasses and headphones. The black bag holds my reusable bags. Notice how the door is completely empty, no more clutter hanging out here!

There is now room for snowboots and shoes to live in the closet too. I’m so happy with this transformation that now I want to leave the closet door open for all to see!

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The next shelf holds the contents of that messy shoe organizer. On the left, sliding drawers limit the search for pencils when it is homework time and those cute pull out bins in the middle house random things like chalk and super glue and even dice. Apparently we have quite the dice collection. I added vinyl labels so the whole family knows what is where and where to put things away when they are finished.

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My favorite are the totes on the right. They have a top insert, so on the bottom we have our crayons.

artcaddy

And the top holds are colored pencils, erasers, some washi and a pencil sharpener. Every thing has a place and everything is in its place!

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Likewise, the Play-doh is in the bottom and all the Play-Doh tools are on the top. Which means we don’t have to dump out the entire bin of Play-Doh to find the right color or the pair of Play-Doh scissors!

organizers

Michaels just launched a new line of storage and organization product called Cre8ted Spaces available in stores now and it has tons of different colors, bins and office supplies – with more than 300 new items in 4 coordinating colors, you have to check it out!

If you don’t know where to begin, you can always take a look at some of the fun storage projects on Michaels.com or the other 49 makers’ ideas on The Glue String for tips on designing, organizing and decorating their favorite places!



New Year's Eve Printables - party favors, gift tags, goals, banner, and so much more!

We’ve got a great roundup of our favorite New Year’s Eve Printables for you.  Another year is almost over.  Time to celebrate!  Banners, gift tags, party favors, scavenger hunts for the kids, midnight kisses for the adults… and so much more!

New Year’s Eve Printables

 

Scavenger Hunt for Kids from Reasons to Skip the Housework

New Year's Eve Printables - party favors, gift tags, goals, banner, and so much more!

Out with the old and in with the new from Moritz Fine Designs

New Year's Eve Printables - party favors, gift tags, goals, banner, and so much more!

Good Fortune treat bags from No Biggie

New Year's gift bag

New Year’s Eve Gift Basket from The Crafting Chicks

New Year's Gift Basket

Have a Sparkling New Year labels from Salt and Pepper Moms

Have a Sparkling New Year - Gift Tag

Confetti party favors with printable tag from A Pumpkin and a Princess

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Sparkling New Year Tag from The Crafting Chicks

Sparkling New Year Tag

Ring in the New Year from Chickabug

Ring in the New Year gift tag

New Year’s Game from Alice & Lois

New Year's Game

New Year’s Eve Countdown Number Banner from The Crafting Chicks

New Year's countdown banner

Midnight Kisses from Glitter N Spice

New Year's Eve midnight kisses

Kiss Me Kit from The Dating Divas

New Year's Eve Kiss Me Kit

Sparkler Favour Tag from TOMFO

New Year's Sparkler favour

Photo Booth Props from The Crafted Sparrow

New Year's Eve Photo booth props

Quick New Year’s Banner from The Crafting Chicks

New Year's Eve Banner

Happy New Year!  May 2016 bring you and your family lots of happiness and joy!


Top 5 Decorating Tips

Over the years I have learned, studied and pick up tips on decorating. I have a few of my own top 5 decorating tips and suggestions that I am excited to share with you today!  Really… decorating can be a lot of trial and error, but for the most part if you develop tips and tricks that can define your personal taste and style, it makes decorating not as overwhelming! rugs Rugs have always played a huge role in my decorating. I use rugs for that fun pop of color. Today’s trends seem to be very neutral, which I LOVE, but I don’t want to forgo what defines my own personal style, which for me is COLOR. I just can’t live without it! So by neutralizing the room and adding fun patterns and a pop of color, it creates warmth and defines my personal style! Another tip about rugs is the size. If you go too small you can make a room look smaller.  Interesting enough, by going large you actually open up the space. In dining rooms in particular it always looks a lot better to have a large rug to cover the legs of the chairs, even when they are pushed out. Another space is in the living room; the ideal size is usually big enough that all legs of the furniture are on top of the rug.

Here is a fun rug I added in my boys’ room! BLOG8 wasll I adore wall decor…clocks, pictures, shelves the list goes on. The biggest thing to watch for when hanging wall decor is the height. The mistake I see happen a lot is pictures and clocks are hung too high. The rule of thumb is to hang items at eye level.  The pictures become more personal and you won’t find yourself straining your neck to find out what time it is:)  One more tip I personally use when it comes to wall decor. Don’t be afraid to use big items in small spaces. One big bold item on the wall can sometimes be all you need to finish the space.

Here is a perfect example from my office; the big clock was all the wall needed! OFFICE3 light Lighting is a big one for me! I like to find affordable ways to get great lights in our home. I know that lights can be PRICEY!!! I found by using outdoor lights (from Lowes and Home Depot), even online that you can get a really great look for a lot cheaper. I would have to say the majority of the lights in my home are outdoor lights. I feel like they add that farm house, industrial look I love so much!

Another tip for lighting: don’t settle. If you have your heart set on a light. Just wait and save ’til you can get it. Lights are something you see and walk by EVERYDAY. I like to put my lighting budget into the main room rather than the rest of the house. Anyone that steps into your home will see these lights and you definitely want them to make a statement, along side your furniture and decor!

Untitled I have a weakness for pillows. I very well have TOO MANY pillows. But pillows are the jewelry to your furniture. Pillows bring in character, color and pattern. I love to play with color and go as bold as my heart allows. Don’t be afraid of pillows and don’t limit yourself to all the same size pillows either; have fun and show your personality! I love to mix high-end pillows with low-end. Target is such an affordable place to pick up a great pillow if you want to change it up. I also love to switch out my pillows for the holidays. It’s great to have certain pillows for certain holidays. Makes seeing them again all the more special!

Here is a picture of my friend’s sofa. I love how she mixed all kinds of colors and shapes! IMG_1959.JPG trim I know… I know…Trimwork is pricey, especially if you hire it out. But hear me out… sometimes it REALLY is worth the price! It can TRANSFORM the space and by the time you buy decor to cover that one wall…you might want to put a pencil to paper and just see? There are so many GREAT trim tutorials out there, and the transformation is amazing!  What trim does to a space is makes it go from flat to 3D. It adds warmth, depth and interest.  Even a little bit of trim can add sooo much!!!

On my instagram feed I just posted this “before and after” of my front room. hhjfhk Well there they are… my top 5 decorating tips.

Happy Decorating!


 

This post may contain affiliate links. Olaf Book Box

We love working with Michaels. We are able to find out the best upcoming products and let you all know about them

Michaels recently released a brand new Cricut – the Cricut Explore One, which I used to create this fun Frozen-inspired project. The machine comes with the free Cricut Design Space software that allows you to cut printable images, upload your own images and fonts, and has 25+ free 1-click projects and 50+ free images built in.  And if you already have cartridges then you are able to upload them into your Cricut Design Space and save them there.  These cartridges paired with the Cricut Explore One is ideal for cards, party decorations, wall decals and even home décor!

cricut-explore-one-machine

My two youngest kids are beginning readers.  They are getting so excited about books, now that they can read some sight words and sound out other words.  They are both off to kindergarten this fall and I thought it would be so fun to make a special box to hold their new beginning reader books.  This box would also make a great “library” book holder (so hopefully they won’t get lost at home).

We love Olaf at our house…he’s hilarious!  That’s why we were so excited about the new Frozen Cricut Cartridge and the Olaf images.

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To Make an Olaf Book Box…you will need:

Cricut Explore One

Iron on Vinyl (I used the color teal)

A linen photo box

-Cricut Design Space

Cricut tools

-An Iron

An Olaf Image

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In Design Space, I created a “melted” Olaf,  with the quote “A GOOD BOOK IS WORTH MELTING FOR.” -OLAF

Such a fun quote to go with books!’ sm olaf book box 1

And last…I ironed my Olaf and quote onto the top of the linen box.  Such a quick and fun project.

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What would you make with the Frozen cartridge?  Such a fun movie with dynamic characters.  My kids love anything Frozen right now…especially Olaf.  This would also be great to iron onto a canvas/cotton book tote.  Happy Reading!


This post is sponsored by Kandoo and may contain affiliate links but all opinions are my own.

Summer-Survival-Hair-Kit-for-Girls

Summer Survival Hair Kit for Girls

Summer is almost here for me and as a mom of three girls the need to get hair done each day doesn’t stop!  My girls love to swim and we have passes to a local water park so I plan on being there tons.  I always know that I need to plan ahead and make sure that we can be ready to go at a moments notice to keep the girls busy and me sane. One of the worst problems I have is with hair supplies being strung all over the house and throughout each bathroom.  So I decided to put together a Summer Survival Hair Kit for us!

Here’s what I included so you can make your own.

Summer-Survival-Hair-Kit-Container

  • A container with a carrying handle.  I searched for the perfect container and love this Small Sterilite one.  This one might not work for you but look around and get what would be best to suit your needs.

Summer-Survival-Hair

  • Mini Round Food Storage Containers are a great option for me to store all the hair supplies.  Seems like we are always losing something and I hope these containers serve as a good home for these bits and pieces.

Summer-Survival-Hair-Kit

  • You’ll also want to throw in essentials like a brush and comb, bobby pins and elastics, and my personal favorite, hair detangler.  I just found the Kandoo brand detangler and I sure love it.  Smells yummy and leave my girl’s hair so soft and smooth. And lucky for us this Kandoo has a coupon so print this out and save when you try it.

Hair-Kit-for-Girls
Survival-Hair-Kit-for-Girls

Place all of the necessities in your container and just wait for the next time you have to do hair.

Survival-Hair-Ki  I sure enjoyed grabbing mine this past week and using it and tucking everything back away.  My girl’s loved it too.  They each had to put everything away and get it out for their turn. I’m sure that will wear off, but my joy of having it all contained in one place will last a while.

 

So leave a comment and tell me what your best Summer Survival trick is. We’ve got to help each other out!



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