This time of the year means two very important things to me. Food and Decorations. While I wouldn’t suggest upcycling food in any way other than leftovers. YUM! Decorations are definitely something that can be made out of recycled materials. Don’t believe me? Well, I’ll just have to show you then. Being that Thanksgiving is only a week away at this point, let’s start there.
Book Pumpkins: This craft is cool and surprisingly easy. All you need is an old book you don’t want anymore and some glue. Additional materials such as paint can be used to increase appearance. First, remove the cover of your book, then cut your pages in a half circle shape. To keep your pumpkin standing don’t cut the bottom part of the book, leave it flat. Finally glue your pages together, you can simply glue the first and last pages together. For a stronger pumpkin glue more pages together as demonstrated in the video below. Add paint or other decorations if you want.
For a how-to video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_u5v5f6hiPs
Paper Bag Wreath: Wreaths are a very fun and simple craft you can make both by yourself and even with children as a fun activity. Take some old paper grocery bags and find some leftover cardboard or Styrofoam. Use the cardboard or Styrofoam to make a donut shape for the base of your wreath. Paint some pieces different colors, brown, red, orange, yellow, etc. Then it’s simply a matter of arranging and gluing.
For step by step direction, see this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=erRdiwVeZYg
Tree Tealight Candle Holders: If you’re like me, you love having candles lit during the cold fall/winter days. If you want a beautiful, rustic candle holder, it’s really quite simple. Just take a thick sturdy branch from a tree (I suggest on that has already broken off) and drill tea light sized holes in them. For some examples, see the photos below.
Glass and Wine Bottle Decorations: This is a very simple process. Simple take old glass bottles, clean them, and decorate them. You can use anything as decorations, from paint to fallen leaves. Maybe write some holiday messages in the paint. See image below for ideas.
For more Great thanksgiving decoration ideas, Check out this site: http://earth911.com/living-well-being/events-entertainement/upcycled-thanksgiving-decorations/
Now that we have thanksgiving is covered, let’s move on to Christmas! It doesn’t really matter what you celebrate this time of year, any of these decorations can be personalized to your holiday and your tastes.
This one is a big one because there are so many opportunities, options, possibilities that can come from this. Several are listed below…
Cookie Cutter Ornaments: Take old or cheap cookie cutters and glue a back to them. For instructions follow this link: http://www.marthastewart.com/270783/cookie-cutter-ornaments#slide_24
Remake Your Old or Damaged Christmas Ornaments: Use glitter, paint, ribbons, etc. to take your old ornaments and give them a new life.
Clear Ornaments: Take clear ornament balls and fill them with whatever you can find (old newspaper, ribbon, etc.) to create a fun new look.
Old Keyboard/Scrabble Letters: Glue old keyboard keys or scrabble letters together to make fun holiday words for your tree.
Ornament ideas for children to make:
Glue Snowmen: On wax paper pour a puddle of glue then use beads, paper, and glitter to decorate it and make it look like a melting snowman.
Puzzle Piece Ornaments: Paint puzzle pieces to fit whatever shape you are trying to make. Whether it’s a Christmas tree, wreath, candy cane, reindeer, or snowflake, and then glue them together.
Christmas Wreaths: Creating Holiday wreaths or any wreaths for that matter is very easy. All you need is some form of base, cardboard or Styrofoam usually works as long as the materials you are using are not too heavy. Then you simply arrange and glue your materials down. You can use literally anything for materials. Paper, leaves, paint brushes, pages from books, flowers, etc. Need help with ideas?
Check out this site full of unique and out of the box wreaths: http://dishfunctionaldesigns.blogspot.com/2012/11/upcycled-christmas-wreaths-that-you-can.html
Possibilities are endless. The best part of these wreaths is that, depending on what you use, they can be up all year long.
For more fun Christmas upcycles, check out the following link: http://craftingagreenworld.com/2015/12/16/26-upcycled-christmas-crafts/