Mama Carrie Makes

Friday Craft, Reduce, Reuse, Up-cycle


A couple of months ago, I found myself going through the recyclable trash at my work.

I am interested in reducing the waste I produce through crafting (and working in a paper-full office); in creating treasure from a piece of potential garbage; in making gifts for my co-workers from the recyclable trash they throw away every day.

I’m still hesitant about raiding the recycling while people are around, but there’s so much good stuff in there!

I found a great book at the library (the title of which I cannot remember or find), which included this project. Using envelopes from junk mail, or the return envelopes from credit card offers and bills, and the cardboard from an empty package of labels, to make this sweet accordion file. I decorated the outside with some painter’s tape, the bar code and recycling symbol from the packaging, and a couple of embellishment stickers that I bought on the cheap a while ago.

I’m always eyeballing the packaging we toss into the recycling pile. I try to cut up any hard plastic packaging to use as paint palettes. Cardboard six-packs are cheap organizers (just remember to reinforce the bottom!!) Any and all paper with a blank side is kept and cut up into memo pads or handmade notebooks. Empty cereal boxes are really good for making books or the above mentioned accordion file. Yogurt, cottage cheese and spread containers are perfect for beading supplies. After a coat of white paint, I can label them with a marker. Tic tac boxes are just right for storing chain.

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Plus I am always on the lookout for new project ideas that incorporate recycling. Plastic bottle flowers, berry basket boxes, old t-shirt rugs or bracelets, even TP tube art and toys. The internet is a treasure trove of ingenious, crafty people looking to reduce, reuse, and up-cycle.


How do you reduce, reuse and up-cycle?

Part I   |   Part II   |   Part III   |   Part IV   |   Part V   |   Part VI   |   Part VII   |   Part VIII   |   Part IX   |   Part X   |  Part XI   |    Part XII


Author: mamacarriemakes

Wife, mother, friend, crafter/artist, rad fattie, nerd, administrative superstar, adoptee, caregiver, humanist, tattooed nose-ring bearer.

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