How To Craft

How to make crafts out of waste paper

  1. Home
  2. Family Restaurants
  3. How to make crafts out of waste paper
How to make crafts out of waste paper
November 04, 2018 Family Restaurants 4 comments

United Nations figures show that the world produces 2.12 Billion TONS of waste every single year, and the figures are going up!

Luckily, some creative recycling projects at home can help save the planet.

If you’re interested in creative recycling projects you can do at home, then skip the intro and scroll straight down.

Not only that, but you’ll have a lot of fun doing these creative recycling projects – whether on your own or with your family!

Unfortunately, it’s fair to say that, many people have lost sight of the traditional “make and make do” philosophy. Modern life is fast and everything feels disposable.

However, there are considerable benefits to slowing down and thinking of ways to reuse common household items!

Creative recycling is good for the environment, saves money, and can form the basis of an enjoyable and engaging hobby.

Nowadays more and more people are taking this one step further, and turning their recycling ideas into money-making projects, with some even building businesses around upcycling items that would otherwise have been thrown away!

This article provides a host of ideas on how to make creative things from waste material at home. These ideas are a lot of fun, as well as being good for the environment.

Top 10 Reasons to Recycle

There are a host of good reasons for recycling; While the central reason that it’s great for the environment is, of course, perfectly valid, there are plenty of specific reasons too.

  1. It can be an extremely enjoyable way to spend some spare time, on your own or with your family.
  2. While modern landfill sites are now created more safely than they once were, it’s crazy to send materials to landfill unnecessarily.
  3. Recycling reduces global warming and prevents unnecessary greenhouse gasses reaching the atmosphere.
  4. Recycling (and up / downcycling) is good for wildlife; The damage done to ocean life by discarded plastic bottles, for example, is well documented.
  5. Recycling dramatically reduces energy use. For example, producing aluminum cans from “secondary production” uses 92% less energy than doing so from raw materials.
  6. New raw materials are generated from recycled products, providing a way to make new things without the further use of resources that may be finite.
  7. Reusing materials for new purposes can save a considerable amount of money. As this article shows, many useful items can be produced by repurposing items that would otherwise have been thrown away.
  8. When more people become environmentally aware, demand for recycled products increases. This creates a self-perpetuating circle of demand that’s good for the industry and for the planet.
  9. Water pollution is reduced when recycling increases, as producing goods from recycled materials doesn’t pollute as much as using virgin raw materials.
  10. With an average family in the western world producing a ton of waste each year, recycling is one activity where just one family (or one person) can make a genuine difference.

Whether you’re recycling by sending materials for industrial reuse or reusing items by trying out some of the recycling projects here, you’re contributing to a global effort to improve the environment for everybody, and for the future.

What things can be recycled?

If you’re looking to make something useful out of something recycled, you may be surprised by just how many items you can reuse creatively. Even a simple plastic bottle can be turned into a garden sprinkler, a bird feeder or a watering can!

So never assume the only possible destination for an item is the trash. There are creative recycling projects out there for dozens of everyday items, including (but by no way limited to!) the following:

  • Glass bottles
  • Plastic bottles
  • Paper rolls (from kitchen towel and toilet paper)
  • Stale bread
  • Clothes
  • Books
  • Vegetable peelings
  • Plastic Pots
  • Corks
  • Dryer sheets
  • Coffee grounds
  • Egg cartons
  • Shoe boxes
  • Old and damaged tiles
  • Bottle caps
  • Mailing tubes
  • CDs and DVDs
  • Light bulbs
  • Christmas trees
  • Carpets

This is by no means an exhaustive list, but it gives a good idea of just how many things have plenty of uses beyond their original purpose.

Non-Recyclable Items

Unfortunately, there are some non-recyclable items that have to go to the landfill if you can’t find a secondary use for them. One way to reduce the environmental impact of these items, in some cases, is to try to refrain from using them wherever possible, instead choosing items that can be recycled.

  • Plastic wrapping
  • Bubble wrap and packing “donuts”
  • Items tainted by food
  • Ceramics
  • Disposable nappies
  • Laminated paper
  • Wood
  • Garden waste
  • Mirrors
  • Mattresses


Upcycling is a way of recycling creatively, turning items that would otherwise be unused into functional and useful things. An example often seen is when people reuse wooden pallets and turn them into anything from outdoor seating areas to staircases.

Upcycling is also possible with far smaller items than pallets! Wine corks, for example, have myriad uses in upcycling projects, with creative people turning them into anything from kitchen backboards to bathmats and plant labels.

Upcycling can produce striking decorative items, or items that are merely practical, such as an upturned plastic bottle used to irrigate a plant pot while someone is away on holiday. Either way, the items get used again rather than being treated as waste.


Upcycling, as described above, is something we hear a lot about these days, with some people even building businesses around upcycled items. Downcycling is just as useful but involves stripping down items to component parts, usually with less of an inherent value than the original item.

Downcycling usually happens on an industrial scale. However, anyone looking how to make creative things from waste material at home will also find examples of downcycling that work as personal projects, such as using old clothes as dusters or linings for pet beds or turning old CDs and DVDs into drinks coasters.

Creative Recycling for Common Household Items

This section looks at some of the common household items everyone tends to have lying around all the time, and discusses some of the ways they can be reused creatively.

For each item there’s one main suggested project, along with a whole host of other possibilities.

Paper Rolls

Paper rolls from the middle of kitchen paper and toilet paper are something everyone has a constant stream of. While it may seem hard to think of many things to do with these, the abundance of them has caused many people to get really creative, and it turns out there are some really inspiring options!

There are literally hundreds of images on Pinterest showing some of the things people have managed to do with paper rolls.

Whether or not you’re particularly artistic, you should be able to find something to do with them that will keep plenty back from being discarded.

A Toy Garage

You’d struggle to find any parent who wouldn’t welcome an idea that help keep the house tidier, and this toy garage does just that with just a box and a pile of old paper rolls.

All you need to do is use a shoe box or something a bit larger, and fix in a series of used paper rolls in rows. Then, each roll can be used to contain an individual toy car or similar small toy. Not only is this a far tidier way of storing such items, putting the toys in place is a fun activity that even a young toddler may be persuaded to participate in.

More Paper Roll Recycling Ideas

Here are some more ways to recycle your paper rolls:


Toothbrushes are supposed to be replaced at least every three months, according to the recommendations of dentists and manufacturers, so they’re something you’re likely to end up with plenty of.

The most usual use for old toothbrushes is in household cleaning; Their bristles mean they are perfect for scrubbing surfaces and their size means they can get into places that are hard to reach. But there are plenty of other uses for old toothbrushes, including some that help with other upcycling projects.

A Toothbrush Bracelet

Making a bracelet out of an old toothbrush may not sound instantly appealing, but you cut off the bristles before doing so! Then, the use of boiling water should be sufficient for the plastic of the toothbrush to bend exactly as you require.

If you use a patterned toothbrush such as those popular with children, you can make an appealing and unique bracelet. And if your child has a character toothbrush featuring a superhero, it can become a superhero bracelet when it needs replacing!

More Toothbrush Recycling Ideas

Here are a few more ways to recycle your old toothbrushes:

Stale bread

Stale bread may seem good for nothing but the bin, but there are actually plenty of uses for it. Many country’s cuisines include recipes that actually work better if the bread is slightly stale, and even if you can’t use it immediately, you can always freeze it.


Fresh bread doesn’t make good breadcrumbs – the bread glues together and the crumbs get sticky. It’s far better to use stale bread for this, and it’s easy to turn the bread into crumbs – all it takes is a whizz in a food processor. If you don’t have access to a food processor, you can toast the bread in the oven and then bash it into crumbs with a rolling pin.

Breadcrumbs that you can’t use straight away will keep in the freezer for several months in a sealed food bag. The crumbs just need defrosting before use. These crumbs will be far better than shop bought, and cost nothing!

More Stale Bread Recycling Ideas

  • Make summer pudding – a fruit pudding that works far better with stale bread
  • Oven bake the stale bread to make crispbreads or bread sticks
  • Make souffles or French toast – both work fine with stale bread
  • Use the bread to feed birds or other animals

While stale bread is fine to use, moldy bread really isn’t. Therefore, be sure to check it’s not deteriorated too much before use.

Plastic Bottle Recycling

Plastic bottles are causing a serious environmental problem at the moment, and there’s lots of pressure to reduce the use of them. Thankfully there are multitudes of things you can do with them to keep them out of your household waste.

Jet Pack Costume

There are dozens of way more practical ways to upcycle plastic bottles, but the jet pack costume is sure to be irresistible to anyone with children and is really easy to make!

A cardboard backboard is all that’s needed to form the center of the costume. Straps are attached to one side, and two downward-facing large plastic bottles attached to the other. With orange tissue paper for flames and a little paint, these are easy to build and customize – and quick enough to make to build several for a party.

More Plastic Bottle Recycling Ideas

Here are some more plastic bottle recycling projects you can try at home:

Some Additional Creative Recycling Ideas

Here is a selection of ideas of ways to upcycle or downcycle some other items:

Creative Recycling Projects Recap

This article gives a mere sneak preview of just how much can be done with the household items so many people throw away.

There are thousands more creative ideas out there. As mentioned above, some people go on to build businesses around the incredible things they make from what would otherwise be waste items.

It is great for the environment to do something creative with these items. Also, it potentially saves money when you can build something that you otherwise would have paid for – in turn creating more clutter and more waste.

Many of these projects are so simple that they don’t even require much creative skill.

So, next time you’re about to pitch something into the trash, have a good think about how you could repurpose it. Hopefully you’ll now come up with plenty of ideas.

If you have any other ideas, let us know in the comments, or even send us photos of the work you have done!

Learn More on ReuseThisBag

Review Bag Options at

Author: Douglas Lober

Douglas Lober grew up in Southern California and is an environmentalist at heart. He donates his time and finances to helping children better understand how they can become fine stewards of the Earth. He is he co-Founder and Chief Sales Professional at with over 15 years experience as an overseas importer and exporter of fine eco-friendly promotional items.

View all posts by Douglas Lober

Sharing is caring!

When it comes to using recycled paper, the possibilities are truly endless. Whether you’re crafting something out of paper or simply swapping out more plastic items for paper items.

Throughout this article, we explore all the different uses for recycled paper and discuss how versatile using recycled paper products actually is. You may be surprised at some of the unique uses of paper and who knows, maybe even become inspired to test out a recyclable experiment on your own!


Disposable Cups

Check It Out Here

With so much attention on the dangers that plastic brings into the environment, changing a simple, everyday item such as a coffee cup from plastic to paper can positively impact the world. With these disposable cups, there is not plastic that will remain in landfills for decades to come, as these nifty cups simple dissolve over time.

Paper Basket

Check It Out Here

This cool DIY tutorial teaches you how to craft you’re very own recyclable paper basket by weaving strips of paper into a basket. This is a super cool activity to try if you have kids and are looking for some fun, at-home activities to try during the summer. This is also a great way to teach kids how to use things to create something else.

Recycled Paper Bowl

Check It Out Here

This recycled bowl is not only a great use for recycled paper, but it looks super cool too. There are ways to construct these types of bowls on your own, but this is a bowl already crafted and ready to purchase if you’re in a time crunch. You can also use brightly colored strips to create a more colorful piece.

Easter Baskets

Check It Out Here 

Think of all the plastic baskets that go to waste each year during Easter. These one-time use only baskets often get discarded, and that harmful plastic takes years and years to dissolve in landfills. Instead, why not try to create your very own Easter basket out of recycled paper? This informative inscrutable article explains how exactly to do it.

Recycled Super Bowl

Check It Out Here 

Although you can’t eat out of it, this recycled paper bowl is still super useful when it comes to storing items or using for decoration. This is a neat instructable that allows the creator to make an actual pulp from recycled paper items and form the pulp around an actual bowl to create another one. This is a super cool item that will definitely draw attention.

Recycled Junk Mail Basket

Check It Out Here

This super cool basket is woven entirely out of junk mail. This is a great use for all that extra mail that clutters up the mailbox. Instead of throwing it all away, turning it into something useful is a great step inbecoming more earth conscious. This basket can be used for decoration or put to use as a functional magazine holder or toilet paper container.

Paper Box

Check It Out Here

This is a cool idea for a gift box. Instead of buying a box already made, why not craft one out of recycled paper? If anything, this will only add to the gift since the box can virtually act as a gift on its own. This is a great way to use up some old paper laying around and create something truly beautiful from it.

Spiraled Paper Bowl

Check It Out Here

This is a neat tutorial for how to create a paper bowl. Using old newspapers, or really any kind of paper strips, you can roll them into spiral shapes and create a beautiful bowl out of them. You can use this bowl as a unique gift to give to a loved one, or simply use it as decoration within your own apartment or home.

Recyclable Containers

Check It Out Here

Using a basic pulp made from recycled paper bits, you can virtually create all kinds of interesting containers. In this tutorial, for example, you can learn how to construct adorable little pots with lids that can hold anything from makeup to change. You can also paint these little containers and give them as gifts.


Paper Flowers

Check It Out Here 

I’m sure you’ve seen those beautiful paper wall decorations before, but instead of paying the hefty price for them, why not try to craft them for yourself? Using anything from newspaper to old books, you can easily learn how to weave and construct these types of flowers and spray paint them to match any sort of décor or theme.

Tissue Box Cover

Check It Out Here

Maybe buying a tissue box cover for your box of tissues may seem like a silly, needless purchase, but if you make it yourself it can really add some personality into a space. This cover is really cool because it uses the bright, glossy pages of magazines in order to create the shiny tissue box cover you see here. Try it for yourself!

Paper Starfish

Check It Out Here

This paper starfish is a great example on the types of décor or gifts you can make from recycled paper. This starfish is constructed entirely out of recycled paper pulp, which is then molded into the starfish shape and then painted over. This would be a fun project toadd some décor into a bathroom or spare bedroom.

Paper Hearts

These paper hearts can be used for pretty much anything, from basic room décor to gift tags on presents. The possibilities are endless with décor like this, and better yet, you can easily paint them to match any type of décor you have throughout any given space.

Toy Robots

Here’s a super cute and fun idea for children or the young at heart. Why not recycle some cardboard and create some cute little robot figurines? You can either use already-built boxes or simply use pieces of cardboard to construct your own robot friends. This would be a great project for kids.

Paper Basket

Instead of going out to buy a decorative or functional basket, why not create your own? Using recycled paper, you can easily create your own one-of-a-kind basket that you can fill with almost anything you want – just as long as it isn’t too heavy.

Recycled Paper Angels

This is a great idea for the holidays. Instead of buying expensive Christmas décor, why not recycle some paper products and create your own decorations? This is not only a great way to save money, but you can feel proud about being so environmentally friendly as well.

 Newspaper Box

Check It Out Here

Here’s another funky idea for a gift. Instead of throwing away all those old newspapers, why not create something useful out of them? This adorable little box is made up of old newspapers and material. You can weave the newspaper together in order to give it this unique shape. This is a great gift idea!

Honeycomb Bunny Figure

Check It Out Here 

This would be the perfect decorative piece to set out around Easter or spring time. The paper is honeycombed from either newspaper or book paper. It doesn’t really matter what kind of paper you use, as each type of paper can give you that honeycomb shape if you cut it the right way.

Paper Desktop Lamp

Check It Out Here 

This adorable desktop recycled paper lamp would make a great gift for anyone who is in college living in a dorm room or even anyone who lives in a smaller apartment. This lamp adds so much character to the space due to the brightly colored lamp shade and it’s a major plus that it’s using recycled paper!

Music Page Wreath

Check It Out Here 

Ideal for the music lover in your life, this wreath is entirely made up of sheets of music. You can easily find music books from old school libraries or even public libraries, and most of these places have a recycle bin or pile anyways. You may even be able to get old music books for free or pay a minimal fee.

Beaver Piñata

Check It Out Here 

This piñata is in the shape of a beaver, but you could really construct a recycled paper piñata into just about any shape you want to. In this case, the beaver looks adorable with his buck teeth and tiny paper birch. This would be a cost-effective way to add some entertainment to a kid’s party.

Paper Vases

Check It Out Here 

These decorative vases are made entirely out of paper. The different colored paper throughout these vases give them their distinct texture and shape, but if you preferred to keep everything one color, you could easily spray paint them in order to match any décor. This would also make a great gift item.

Recycled Paper Art

Check It Out Here 

If you don’t feel like creating any type of functional recycled paper item for the home, you can create your own unique piece of art. Just like this piece of art hanging on this wall, the varying textures and colors in the paper make this piece a truly remarkable artwork to look at.

Spun Paper Art

Check It Out Here 

This unique artwork features plenty of spun paper that forms a larger piece. This would be an ideal piece for a living room wall or even a guest bedroom that has the appropriately sized wall for the piece. If you’re making it yourself, you can easily scale up or down depending on the size.

Recycled Paper Murals

Check It Out Here

These recycled paper murals feature beautiful citrus trees with plenty of ripe fruit. You can even construct the canvas with recycled paper, but keep in mind the texture will be messier than your typical canvas. There are also plenty of ideas online when it comes to creating your own recycled paper work of art.

Recycled Paper Leis

Check It Out Here 

Instead of buying silk or plastic flowers for your next luau party, you can easily create your own using recycled paper. This may seem like something only an expert could do, but the process is really quite easy. It’s a simple as cutting and tying in this case. Use colored paper for an even brighter lei.

Recycled Paper Bowl

Check It Out Here 

Create your own wide, paper bowl with recycled paper! This would make the perfect addition as decoration to the kitchen table or dining room table. You could even create your own paper flowers like the ones in the picture to add some color into the mix.

Book Wreath

Check It Out Here 

Another great gift idea for the reader in your life, this wreath consists entirely of book pages. You could find the person’s favorite book and easily roll up the pages to construct this literary dream of a wreath. This would make an especially great gift for a teacher or an editor.

Recycled Magazine Snowflakes

Check It Out Here 

This DIY gives you a step-by-step process in making your very own homemade snowflake ornaments. Rolling up and gluing strips of magazines results in these gorgeous, sparkling snowflakes that can either be turned into ornaments or used to decorate a wreath or tree within the home.

 Party Decorations

Check It Out Here 

Using old, recyclable magazines, you can easily create some fun party decorations. You know, the fun types that hang from the ceiling and sparkle in the light. These can actually be pretty expensive if you try to buy them in stores. With this method, you’re saving so much money and creating unique pieces.

Recycled Piñata Heart

Check It Out Here 

This recycled heart piñata will be the best thing at the party for sure. Not only is it gorgeous in that bright red color, but it’s entirely constructed from recycled materials. This would make a great party extra if you’re having a bachelorette party or just feel like beating a heart around.

Recycled Newspaper Boxes

Check It Out Here 

These recycled newspaper boxes are a great way to utilize some extra counter space, especially around the TV area. These cool boxes not only look great, but they are highly functional and come complete with a hidden drawer that you can store remotes or paper in.

Toilet Roll Advent Calendar

Check It Out Here 

Here’s a great idea in how to use old toilet paper rolls. Often items like these get tossed away with little to no thought on how wasteful it is. If you start to collect rolls of toilet paper, you could easily turn them into this neat Advent calendar. This would also make a good project to do with kids.

Spiral Lamp

Check It Out Here 

Using recycled paper, you could easily construct this paper lamp. This DIY tells you exactly how to do it, step by step. This creates a really unique lamp that will surely draw plenty of attention. What’s great about using recycled paper is that you’re making something out of what would have been trash.

 Paper Boutonnieres

Check It Out Here 

These paper rose boutonnieres are fantastic. These would make great accessories for high school dances or even a cost-effective way to add more elements to a wedding without having to spend too much. These are creative and a great way to add some intrigue into decorations.

Paper Trees

How to Make and Recycle Paper: We all know that recycling paper is one way how paper is actually recycled, or even how much of the items they put out in recycl nicely home made paper to write on, print on, and make all sorts of crafts!.

[Updated 10/29/2019]  Making recycled Christmas decorations at home is a fantastic opportunity to slow down and savor the holiday season.

It gives us a chance to spend some quality time with our family and friends, not to mention avoiding the ever-increasing consumerist trappings of the holiday season.

Using waste materials for our homemade holiday crafts is even better. It means that we aren’t producing more garbage in the course of our celebration, nor are we spending money to buy Christmas decorations we could easily make ourselves. But still, we’re fully embracing the festive spirit of the season.

When we give our DIY Christmas crafts as gifts, it means that much more, because– to paraphrase Dr. Seuss– it comes from our hearts and minds rather than some big box store.

From an environmental perspective, the following homemade Christmas decor ideas help us demonstrate our respect for the planet.

Rather than treating its resources as if they’re disposable, we’re upcycling them to create something perfectly in the spirit of the season.

And if we’re being honest, isn’t it just as important that the process of making these Christmas crafts is just plain fun, and fills our holidays with joy?

READ MORE:75 Christmas Traditions Around the World

Recycled Christmas Decorations & DIY Christmas Crafts Ideas TOC

  1. Sheet Music Angels
  2. Christmas Paper Chains
  3. Holiday Signs
  4. Suspended Snowflakes
  5. Memory Wreath
  6. DIY Nativity Scene
  7. Wine Bottle Crafts for Christmas
  8. Natural DIY Christmas Decor
  9. DIY Christmas Crafts: Mason Jars
  10. DIY Christmas Collage
  11. Christmas Bottle Cap Pins
  12. DIY Advent Calendar Ideas
  13. Snowman Craft from Tin Cans
  14. Santas made from Toilet Paper Rolls
  15. DIY Christmas Gift Tags
  16. Christmas Postcards
  17. Sock Crafts for Christmas
  18. Homemade Snow Globes
  19. Family Christmas Games
  20. Custom Made Wrapping Paper
  21. Christmas Wine Cork Crafts
  22. Recycled CD Craft Ideas
  23. Recycled Paper Beads for Christmas
  24. Rustic Christmas Stockings from Sweaters
  25. Tomato Cage Christmas Tree
  26. DIY Christmas Garland Ideas
  27. Homemade Gingerbread Playdough Men
  28. Christmas Crafts from Old Games
  29. DIY Christmas Cracker
  30. DIY Gingerbread House

Recycled Christmas Decorations

No other holiday decoration is as common and beloved around the world as the Christmas tree. And no Christmas tree is complete without ornaments.

The most treasured ornaments are usually those that come with personal memories attached. Whether it’s a photo of baby’s first Christmas, a casting mold someone made in kindergarten, or a project from high school art class, these snapshots in time often become family heirlooms.

These time-honored traditions don’t have to stop just because the kids have grown up. Making DIY Christmas ornaments together as a family is fun, free, and full of home grown holiday cheer.

There are a host of things that most of us already have around the house that you can use to make recycled Christmas ornaments. Scraps of yarn or thread come in handy. Old lids from jars or bottles can be painted and transformed into ornaments.

Cookie cutters, puzzle pieces, and board game parts that probably haven’t seen the light of day in years can all make cool Christmas ornaments. Even old light bulbs can be quickly converted into glass baubles.

READ MORE: The History & Names of Santa Claus Around The World

1. How To Make Sheet Music Angels

There are many different ways to make Sheet Music Angels, which you can hang on your tree or give as homemade Christmas gifts to your friends and family.

There are tons of instructional how-to videos available to watch for free on YouTube, but this is one of the easiest methods we’ve found.

  • Take one piece of sheet music (you get bonus points if it’s for a traditional Christmas song!) and fold it back and forth in accordion-like pleats.
  • Hold the folded sheet music on its side while tying a thin, 12-inch piece of string around it approximately two-thirds of the way down.
  • On the larger portion of the sheet music, use scissors to cut out small diamonds or other shapes, like you would when making a cut paper snowflake.
  • Cut a wedge in the edge of the sheet music to make a decorative fringe-like edge for your angel’s dress.
  • Take the shorter portion of the sheet music and cut it down the middle to make two wings.
  • Pull the ends of the string through the middle of the wings. Thread it through a bead for the head and a button for the halo, then make a knot to secure it.
  • Use any remaining string to make a loop so that you can hang your angel on a Christmas Tree… or anywhere that needs a little holiday magic!

READ MORE: Eco-Friendly Ways to Decorate For Christmas

2. Christmas Paper Chains

Some craft projects are easy to do. The materials are easy to come by. And when they’re done to a silly extent, somehow they come off looking amazing.

Paper chains are among the simplest recycled Christmas decor you can make at home. One paper chain looks a bit sad and anemic. But when a dozen long, colorful chains are strung around a room, it somehow magically transforms the space into a holiday wonderland.

Paper chains can be made from all sorts of recycled stuff. Materials we’ve used in the past include newspapers, old coloring books, comics, magazines, junk mail, paper bags, spent wrapping paper, old maps and so on.

Looking to entertain children? Have them color pictures on the paper before the chains are linked together. This is a great family activity, and it’s a Christmas craft project that’s hard to mess up.

READ MORE:The Best Christmas Light Displays in Georgia

3. Holiday Signs

For those who don’t mind doing a little carpentry (or who have become hip to the DIY pallet projects scene), scrap wood can fuel creative ideas for perfect DIY Christmas decorations.

Pallet planks are the perfect size for your source materials. But old scraps of plywood, one-by-fours, poster board, or even cardboard can also work well. Using actual wood makes the decoration look a bit classier, but kids could work on cardboard to decorate their own rooms.

The process is simple. You take a scrap of wood (varying the sizes has a nice effect), sand it, and paint it with holiday sayings or lyrics from your favorite Christmas carols.

If lettering isn’t your specialty, try simple pictures, such as a tree, a gift, or a candy cane. Otherwise, the wood can simply be Christmas colors: red and green stripes, solid red or green or white, or an abstract blend.

Dot them around the house or stake them in the yard for a splash of holiday cheer.

READ MORE: Atlanta Christmas Events: 50 Things to Do for Christmas in Georgia

4. Suspended Paper Snowflakes

The traditional vision of a snowy white Christmas still feels as heartwarming as ever. But with the world gradually getting increasingly warmer due to climate change, these days those snowy winter wonderland days are in increasingly short supply.

Making paper Christmas decorations is a wonderful pastime many of us may remember from grade school (or the modern holiday classic about Buddy the Elf). As with paper chains, when a dozen or more snowflakes are hanging down from the ceiling, they look amazing!

Even in an increasingly paperless world, many of us find ourselves knee deep in old paper. There are flyers, bills, newspapers, magazines, junk mail, and any number of other ways paper can worm its way into our trash heap.

So instead, why not recycle your unwanted paper and use it to make snowflakes? Check out this link for instructions on how to make awesome 3-D snowflakes, but try using homemade glue instead of tape.

READ MORE: NYC Christmas Window Displays

5. Memory Wreath

In the world of upcycling, any DIY craft project that can take lots of small things and turn them into one striking item is a project worth doing.

When it comes to recycled Christmas decorations, making holiday wreaths made from repurposed materials is easy, and the results can be amazing. These wreaths can transform a lifetime of memories into  joyous holiday decor you can hang on the door.

These are the best kinds of homemade Christmas decorations, because the only limit is your imagination. Old toys, knickknacks, ornaments, puzzle pieces, board game pieces, cookie cutters, and all manner of Christmas-themed keepsakes can be nestled together in the form of a wreath.

By attaching all of your upcycled trinkets to a themed memory wreath, you’ll be creating something new that can be proudly displayed and appreciated in an entirely different way.

READ MORE:Real Christmas Trees vs. Fake: Which is Better?

6. DIY Nativity Scene

When most people think about making Christmas decorations, nativity scenes probably aren’t the first craft project that comes to mind. But making a nativity scene, from the stable and the animals to little baby Jesus, can lead to a series of fun DIY Christmas decoration projects.

Nativity scenes start with the stable, which is as easy as finding a box you can decorate. With Christmas coming up, boxes will likely be arriving in the mail regularly, so the source material should be an easy find. With some craft materials, twigs, and dried grass clippings, this part is easy to make.

Next, it’s a matter of creating Joseph, Mary, Jesus, the Wise Men, and whoever/whatever else you’d like the scene to include. These figurines can be made from toilet rolls, match boxes, simple cardboard cutouts or even wine corks. Some people like to use army men, plastic animals, wind-up toys, or even LEGO figures. It’s your holiday, so have fun with it!

Making a nativity scene as a recycled Christmas decoration has the added benefit of being a fun way for kids to be reminder that the holiday season isn’t only about wish lists and candy canes.

READ MORE: Countries That Do Not Celebrate Christmas

7. Wine Bottle Crafts for Christmas

Before we go off to our holiday parties and other events, before we sit down for our dinners and deserts, why not make a recycled Christmas decoration to serve as a centerpiece for the feast?

With friends and/or family coming to visit, most of us will undoubtedly serve (and/or drink) a few glasses of wine to add extra holiday cheer. This will likely leave at least one empty wine bottle lying around.

Wine bottles are a versatile recycling material for making Christmas decorations. They stand tall and proud, already have an attractive shape, and can hold things inside like a vase. Here are some cool options for what to do with the wine bottle itself:

  1. Paint it. Red, green, white, silver  all seem fitting colors for the holiday. Or drink several bottles of wine and have one of each color!
  2. Put a letter (or word) on each bottle to spell out something. “Joy” and “Noel” are classics for this.
  3. If painting doesn’t suit you, try putting a string of lights into the empty bottle and making it into a cheerful lamp.
  4. Convert the bottles into a holiday character by painting them a solid color and embellishing that with a belt (Santa), buttons (snowman), or jingle bells (reindeer).

Once the bottle is decorated, it can also be adorned with things:

  1. Bare twigs interspersed with sprigs of red berries look yule-rific sticking out of the top.
  2. The bottles can be given little top hats, or beanies and a scarf.
  3. Branches of holly or conifer work well when careening out of the top.
  4. Use the wine bottle to hold a candle in your favorite color.

This kind of holiday centerpiece definitely ties the room together, and it’s the sort of detail that moves the table from feeling humdrum to full-on festive, even without the feast and roast beast.

READ MORE: The 25 Best Places to Spend Christmas in Europe

8. Natural DIY Christmas Decor

As the chill of winter fills the air, a lot of natural debris tends to accumulate in the yard. There are a host of twigs, pine cones, and fallen branches and logs to contend with.

Don’t send this detritus to the dump! That’s crazy, because they’re good for both the garden and for making recycled Christmas decor. So are pine needles, and clippings from the rosemary bush.

Going natural with homemade Christmas decorations adds a simple rustic touch around the holidays. Fasten twigs together in the shape of a tree, or bind them at the ends to make stars. Fill a wooden bowl with pine cones and tufts of pine needles. Take a cool looking piece of wood and make it into a yule log.

To create a wonderful smelling wreath, snip lengths of rosemary and fold them into a circle. These miniature wreaths can be hung around the house, or use them around candle votives for an extra touch of greenery. No waste, all natural!

READ MORE:The 20 Best Environmental Charities & Animal Charities for Holiday Donations

9. DIY Christmas Crafts: Mason Jars

Those of us who have learned to avoid plastic packaging, and instead buy stuff in glass jars, inevitably build up a collection beyond anything we’ll ever need.

But instead of sending them off to be recycled, why not consider turning them into homemade Christmas gifts everyone will love? It may take a little more time than buying tiny junk gifts for acquaintances and co-workers. But old jars can easily be upcycled to make nice DIY Christmas crafts they’ll actually appreciate.

With a little decorative creativity, glass jars can be turned into awesome gift containers. They can be stuffed with food, such as Christmas cookies or hot drink mixes. They can be filled with holiday snacks—nuts and dried cranberries, chocolates, or other sweets—and put out on the coffee table for holiday guests to enjoy.

They can also be used as containers for sewing or shaving kits. They can be made into candle jars. Add a bit of ribbon and a homemade name tag, and an old jar quickly becomes a memorable Christmas gift with a personal touch.

Check out this great cookie mix recipe and other great mason jar Christmas gift ideas from The Frugal Girls…

READ MORE:The History of Chocolate (& How Chocolate is Made)

Peppermint Crunch Dark Chocolate Cookie Mix in a Jar


  • 1 box Betty Crocker Dark Chocolate Cake Mix {15.25 oz.}
  • 1 bag Andes Peppermint Crunch Baking Chips {10 oz.}
  • 1 quart size jar
  • Scrap ribbon, felt, left-over wrapping paper, glue, etc. for decoration


  • Pour cake mix package into your quart-sized wide mouth Mason Jar, and gently pat down the top.
  • Next add the Peppermint Crunch Baking Chips on top of the cake mix.
  • Before you put the lid on the jar, add some festive decoration like a circle cut from leftover holiday wrapping paper, then screw on the lid.
  • For an additional holiday touch, add some scrap ribbon to the middle of the jar and attach with glue dots.


Attach a label or add these instructions to the top of the jar’s lid.

  • Beat together 2 eggs and 1/2 cup Vegetable or Canola Oil in medium bowl.
  • Pour in entire contents of jar, and stir well with spoon.
  • Chill dough for 20 minutes in the refrigerator prior to baking.
  • Drop onto un-greased, non-stick cookie sheet in rounded balls.
  • Bake for approx. 8 – 9 minutes {or until done} at 350 degrees.

READ MORE:How to Avoid Products With Palm Oil

10. DIY Christmas Collage

The images of Christmas time are a many-splendored thing, and seemingly no one decoration could contain them all. Or, so one would think.

A homemade Christmas collage is a magnificent way to combine many of the special symbols of the holiday season into one thematic work of art. And when it comes to making DIY collages, most of us have a whole host of waste materials on hand we can use.

Check out the YouTube video above of a homemade Christmas Collage that recycles wrapping paper, gift tags, and magazine clippings to create artful Christmas memories your family will treasure forever.

Christmas cards are a fantastic sentiment to send to friends and family each year, but they usually just end up in the garbage. The same can be said for wrapping paper. There are also lots of Christmas ads in the newspaper and magazines.

All of these items can be upcycled for making festive DIY Christmas collages. And these collages can be more than just something to hang. Consider covering the table with one, or even decorating an entire wall or door.

READ MORE: 15 Ways To Reduce Waste & Move Towards Waste-Free Living


When it comes to Christmas, sometimes even the smallest gifts can make the biggest splash. Pins (a.k.a. buttons) are a perfect case in point.

Wearing a simple festive pin on your lapel or sweater has the power to bring about a smile, spread the holiday spirit, and maybe even garner a compliment or two. Homemade holiday pins are perfect to wear yourself or give as small gifts. They’re easy to create and can be made from all sorts of stuff.

With bottle cap pins, the possibilities for DIY Christmas decorations are endless. Making them only requires a safety pin and glue, and you can put the image on the outside or inside of the cap.

It can be as easy a gluing a photo of Santa (or a snowman, or a reindeer) from wrapping paper or a magazine ad. Old ornaments and Christmas decorations are another good source for inspiration, and Pinterest is littered with free-to-download images that you can use.

Artistic folks might like to paint their own seasonally appropriate images on the inside of a bottle cap. Since bottle caps can’t be recycled, you’re giving both your friends and the earth a great gift!

How To Make A Bottle Cap Pin


  • Bottle caps
  • Recycled Christmas images, cut to size of the cap
  • Large Safety pins
  • Hammer and a small nail (like one used for hanging pictures)
  • Glue or Mod Pod
  • Dimensional adhesive (to create a raised surface and lasting protection for your pin)


  • Put a bottle cap on a piece of scrap wood (not your kitchen table!)
  • Position your nail on the inside of the bottle cap.
  • Hammer the nail through until you get a clean hole that a safety pin will fit through.
  • Repeat for a second hole on the other side, but don’t put the nail hole directly across from the first nail hole. Move the 2nd nail hole several millimeters closer, which will make it easier to thread your safety pin through.
  • Use glue or Mod Pod to add fun Christmas images.
  • Place your recycled Christmas image on your bottle cap, making sure it’s centered correctly between the two holes that you made in the top of your bottle cap.
  • After your caps have dried, thread your safety pin through the back.
  • If using dimensional adhesive, outline your holiday image with the adhesive first and then fill in the middle. If bubbles appear, you can use a lighter to burst them. Set your pins aside to dry.

READ MORE: 20 Ways to Celebrate the New Year Around the World


Advent calendars are a beloved holiday tradition in many homes, counting down to Christmas Day. But they’re typically a one-use item that just creates more waste.

Instead, why not make them at home, from garbage you already have on hand? That way, the advent calendar can be themed however you like—whether it’s Santa Claus or Frozen or the Nativity—and filled with homemade treats and prizes. For  some fun DIY Advent Calendar ideas check out these suggestions below:

  1. Recycled cardboard boxes
  2. Take-out containers
  3. Toilet paper rolls
  4. Reusable tea bags
  5. Glass jars
  6. Jar lids
  7. Paper grocery bags
  8. Scrap fabric bundles
  9. Mittens
  10. Shoe organizer
  11. Small flower pots
  12. Muffin tin

Decorate them with some holiday cheer using recycled wrapping paper, ribbon, etc. Then number the containers from one to 25.

Finally, fill your upcycled advent calendar with fun stuff like hand-written jokes, holiday treats, Bible scriptures, or whatever suits your fancy. It makes the whole project more personal.

READ MORE: Mary’s Oatmeal Fruitcake Christmas Cookies


The holiday season is filled with big-time food for big crowds of people. And that means there will probably be an abundance of tin cans around, of varying sizes.

With a little paint and some imagination, these cans can make cool Christmas decorations. One of our favorites is the tin can snowman. It starts with three tin cans of different sizes and some white paint. Minimalists might stop there, but a lot more can be done to make your Frosty feel fancy.

Make a quick sojourn into the sewing kit and you might find be a few colorful buttons to make a face and coat. A spare piece of ribbon from the present-wrapping stash could be turned into a scarf. A bit of felt or construction paper could make a carrot nose and a top hat.

These homemade Christmas decorations are a great project for the kids to do. Then they can set their recycled holiday décor out on display for grandma and grandpa to admire.



Santas made from the insides of toilet paper rolls are one of the easiest Christmas decorations to make, possible for toddlers and entertaining enough for adults.

Plus, all the trimmings the kids will need in order to make a nice toilet roll Santa are already lying around the house.

The toilet roll is the perfect rotund, jolly shape necessary for making St. Nick’s body. It’s just a matter of painting or drawing the red suit onto the toilet roll and creating a simple hat out of construction paper or some ribbon. Then you add a bit of fluffy cotton in the appropriate spots to form the beard, the hat, and the fur-lined coat.

But if you’re someone who always recycles your old toilet paper rolls, then don’t let the fun stop there. Toilet paper rolls are the ultimate medium for making Christmas decorations. They can be used to construct dainty wreaths, festive utensil holders, and all sorts of fun Christmas characters.

If this article inspires your Christmas craft-making spirit, check out these 20 ideas for more Christmas crafts made out of toilet rolls.

READ MORE: 10 Natural Travel Toiletries You Can Make at Home


The crux of making our Christmas memories more special is often in the little details that seem to go unnoticed at the time. One of those tidbits is the gift tag.

Sure, there are plenty of options to buy them cheaply at the store, but they’re also quite easy to make out of old cereal boxes.

This simple DIY Christmas craft is definitely not one that requires a lot of concentration or talent. Anyone who can work scissors, even rudimentarily, can cut a box into a handful of rectangles. This is also a great way for reusing last year’s Christmas cards.

For parents who are really looking to keep their little elves busy around the holidays, the picture side of these homemade gift tags could be painted with solid colors, stripes, snowmen or whatever else comes to mind. Adding a splash of artistic flair would only make the tags even more special for the recipient.

Rather than going out to buy bits of paper or cardboard to make gift tags, just use what’s already around. Then, afterwards, what’s left can go into the recycling bin.

READ MORE:125+ Best Gifts for Travelers (& Every Travel Style)


My wife, Emma, is British. One thing I’ve learned over the last 15 years is that Brits just love exchanging cards, and especially at Christmas. Across the pond, it seems like everyone is displaying this year’s Christmas card collection.

The sentiment is fantastic. It’s a lovely thing to let someone know you’re thinking of them, and a card is but a simple holiday gesture for doing so. The problem is that, at the end of it all, everyone is left with dozens of Christmas cards. That’s a lot of rubbish!

One interesting way to avoid tossing all those cards into the recycling bin is to turn them into next year’s Christmas postcards. Most of the time these cards have a front cover with a seasonal picture on it, but the back part of it is left blank.

To make it into a homemade card, simply cut off the picture portion and reuse the blank part to create your own Christmas postcard the following year. This reduces waste and saves money, yet still gets the sentiment of good holiday cheer across.

READ MORE:NYC Christmas Window Displays (Free Walking Tour)


Getting new socks for Christmas is a tradition that dates back to a time when people actually had to make their own socks. It may not be the flashiest of gifts, but sometimes gifts are practical and perfect.

If this happens in your home, it’s likely that a lot of old socks are ready to be tossed right around Christmas time. But rather than throwing them away, old socks can be easily transformed into recycled Christmas décor.

The obvious and simplest example would be a sock snowman. That’s just a white sock stuffed with rice at the bottom (a little weight in the bottom helps to keep it upright), and then filled at the top with whatever is light, fluffy, and handy. Use white string to form it all into a couple of snowballs.

Of course, your snowmen can be much more creative than that. They can have little crocheted hats and scarves, buttons for eyes, and a tiny piece of carrot for the nose. You can also use old socks of different colors to make craftier creatures such as penguins, reindeer, or even Santa himself.

Just a head’s up: Whatever you do, don’t throw old socks away. Spread the word that used clothing (even dirty old socks) can be recycled, just as we would bottles and cans. It’s important!

READ MORE: The Best Travel Clothing


Those with a backlog of jars and lids on hand have the basic materials for my favorite recycled Christmas decoration, the snow globe.

Snow globes are a surprisingly easy Christmas gift to make at home, and they can entertain some recipients for hours.

It starts with finding an empty jar with a lid, then some old Christmas tree ornaments to create your mini winter wonderland. Use a hot glue gun to affix the ornament(s) artfully to the lid, and then fill the jar with water, glitter, and just a bit of glycerin.

Once your homemade snow globe looks just the way you want it to, simply screw the lid back on and glue it to keep it shut permanently. Then turn it over and watch the snow swirl!

This is a perfect way to use up old ornaments or recycle Christmas decorations from the past. It breathes some new life into them, and makes a perfect homemade gift for the folks you love.

READ MORE: Going Green: 60 Simple Tips For Earth Day & Every Day


With each passing Christmas, it seems like we find more and more reasons to tune into our tiny screens and out of the family scene. A surefire fix for that is to make a fun DIY Christmas game to play together.

Family Christmas games don’t have to be anything new. They just have to be themed appropriately.

A few crayons and some paper are all you need to make Christmas bingo cards. Rather than printing something off from the internet, have everyone draw their own bingo cards on cardboard boxes. Use chestnuts or chocolate kisses to cover what’s been called.

Christmas bowling is another great game that’s easy to make at home. Old tin cans can be painted to depict Christmas characters such as Santa, Mrs. Claus, Rudolph, Frosty, elves, and so on. Then they can be set up like bowling pins.

Or, using those same painted cans, we make a pyramid. Then we ball up a sock to make a “snowball” and see who can knock them all down in one toss.

These DIY family Christmas games are simple, but sweet. And they provide the sort of homespun fun that  people will remember for years to come.

READ MORE: 40 Fun Facts about Thanksgiving Around the World


Wrapping paper is something that, for the most part, only moms really care about. Everyone else is usually just itching to rip that paper off and get to the present. Unfortunately, that used wrapping paper cannot be recycled.

However, we could swaddle our homemade Christmas gifts in homemade wrapping paper. Rather than buying fancy stuff, why not use out-of-date newspapers, recycled paper bags, or the plain brown paper that comes with Amazon shipments to wrap the presents?

You (and/or your children) can paint, stamp, or draw seasonally appropriate pictures all over the paper before the gift is wrapped. Who isn’t going to love that? In fact, the paper might just get more attention than the present you wrapped it with!

For the just-so people who are worried about appearances, a well-placed bow or ribbon can go a long way towards making a Christmas present wrapped in newspaper look classy.

READ MORE:Green Global Travel’s Amazon Shop

21. Christmas Wine Cork Crafts

As the holiday season progresses, many of us will have gone through several bottles of wine. With each cork popped, we get a crafty little morsel we can work with. Wine corks are great craft material for recycled Christmas decorations.

Corks are easy to transform into all sorts of things. They’ve been used to make cutting boards, pot rests, bulletin boards, bathmats, stamps and, of course, holiday decorations.

The easiest way to create wine cork Reindeer is to use two corks– one for the head and another for the body.

Then use two multi-pronged twigs to work as antlers, four single-pronged twigs to work as legs, one to be the neck, and another short one for the tail. Some folks also like to add a tuft of red at the nose or a jingle bell collar.

Other wine cork Christmas crafts include painting the cork like Santa, then adding colorful accoutrements— cotton buds, buttons, etc.— to complete the festive look.

Also, try gluing a big collection of corks together into three circles to make a snowman.

READ MORE: Winter Adventures (& Reindeer!) in Finnish Lapland

22. Recycled CD Craft Ideas for Christmas

Many of us Gen X and Gen Y folks have steadfastly held on to our CDs and DVDs. We worked so hard to amass a collection, only to see technology breeze by us with on-demand movies, tv, and music. It’s a difficult step to bid those discs goodbye once and for all.

However, when the time is right, they can be used for recycled Christmas décor. One easy way is to simply cut them up into festive shapes (oh, the agony!) and hang them as shimmery Christmas tree ornaments.

For those more inclined to get into a craft project, CD letter chains are easy-to-make Christmas decorations. Either paint the CDs or cover them with glued-on bits of leftover wrapping paper, and either paint or craft some letters to go on them.

Spell out seasonal words and phrases to hang on the wall, along banisters, beneath door jambs, or wherever else might need some sprucing up.

For those with massive collections, recycling CDS (and cases) is a thing, so please go that route if and when you do choose to throw them out.


DIY Recycled Paper Baskets

how to make crafts out of waste paper

how to add crafting table 3 to tekkit 3 1 2 server
How to make a fountain craft
how to deduct craft show fees
How to craft dayz
how to use cake craft lace
How to play fantasy craft
how to make flower art and craft
How to make a snowman out of crafts

Alright, so the first thing we need to make is the frame with the mesh. This will be used to scoop up the pulp in the tub, ultimately forming the paper. This meshed frame is called "mold".

To do this, get one of the frames and put it on a table, with the smooth side facing up (the side without the grooves where you attach the back of the picture frame). Get your mesh/netting and put it on top of the picture frame. Cut up a piece that roughly matches the size of the picture frame.

Align the mesh so that it covers the whole picture frame, then nail it down. Make sure the net is *straight*, if it's wrinkly it won't work properly. I used a stapler because it's easier. If you use a normal stapler, slowly staple the mesh down to avoid bending the staples.

After the net is in place, hammer down the nails/staples to make sure they are "in" the wood, you don't want any spiky nails or staples sticking out.

(see pic)

Cut out any extra mesh you have (whatever is not on top of the frame) and duct tape the sides of the frames. Do not go over the "middle" of the frame, only tape the sides.

(see pics)

Your mold is now ready. The other frame remains unnetted, and is called the "deckle".

Now cut out the blanket in pieces that cover one of the frames entirely. After you've done that, it's time to shred paper.

(see pic)

This page features craft projects that are made from at least one recycled item. Handmade Paper from Recycled Scraps - In this project, learn how to make paper by Just cut out images from old greeting cards, calendars or magazines that.

69 of The Best Uses for Recycled Paper

Hi Aswin, Thank you for this A2A. DIY from waste paper is an awesome way to not just recycle the trashed paper but also help creating beautiful decor items as well as craft pieces to flaunt.

Mostly Newspaper and Magazines went into trash. Indeed my love for DIY crafts started from transforming such trash into decor pieces. It used to break my heart, when someone trash tons of magazine. I started bringing all those piece to my home and started creating something or the other. Pinterest, Youtube and Couple of Personal Blogging sites have hugely inspired me towards contributing my time for this special form of art.

Something as cool as Waste Paper Seats :) You may need newspaper bunches from whole neighborhood to create this :P

Please find my suggestions below:

(P.S. Below tutorials are time consuming but totally worth the time)

  1. Baskets out of News Paper (Image: Pinterest):

News papers works the best.

Check out:

2) Paper Cone Wreath

This one works better if you have an old book or books which you are anyways going to trash.

Check out:

Below blog post may also help you with wonderful ideas:

10 Best out of waste Newspaper crafts - BOOW

3) Newspaper wall hanging or wind chime:

Check out the tutorial:

4) Newspaper Wall Art

Check out the tutorial for something similar:

5) Canvas Artwork using newspaper

Check out its tutorial here:

Hope all the above inspires you with some or the other ideas, as per your inclination towards the craft.

Happy Crafting! :)

how to make crafts out of waste paper

WATCH THE VIDEO ON THEME: Newspaper Jar -Newspaper craft ideas - best out of waste - parul pawar

Looking for the creative ideas of making waste material crafts for kids? Trace and cut out the mouth, fins and tail from the colored paper and.

how to make crafts out of waste paper
Written by Kazikora
  • Aragor

    AragorNovember 12, 2018 9:42 PM

    In my opinion you are mistaken. Let's discuss. Write to me in PM, we will communicate.

  • Arazshura

    ArazshuraNovember 13, 2018 4:25 PM

    In my opinion you commit an error. I suggest it to discuss. Write to me in PM, we will talk.

  • Dougul

    DougulNovember 12, 2018 10:52 PM

    Bravo, this remarkable phrase is necessary just by the way

  • Mabei

    MabeiNovember 11, 2018 1:46 PM

    Very curious topic

Write a comment