Many everyday items like boxes, newspaper, and packages enter the house, serve their purpose and are thrown out. Unfortunately, this causes many people to miss out on some great opportunities to get crafty at home with the kids or reuse some inexpensive items for great gain in the home. Below are some fun and useful ideas for recycling packing supplies for DIY arts and crafts.
Reuse Packing Peanuts
Biodegradable packing peanuts are a great way to provide endless fun for the kids. By adding a little moisture to the packing peanuts, they will stick together allowing you and your kids to create your very own sculptures. Use a damp paper towel to moisten them and to avoid getting the peanuts too wet, which will cause them to fall apart. You can also use markers to add a little pop of color to your creations!
If you simply have too many peanuts and not enough sculpting ideas, there are lots of fun experiments you can do to show your kids the importance of recycling. To show your kids the difference between the biodegradable and regular peanuts, you can fill two jars with water and put the biodegradable peanuts in one and the regular peanuts in the other. Your kids will begin to see the biodegradable peanuts dissolve much quicker than their regular counterparts.
Nate Tarin from Staples Industrial says this is because biodegradable peanuts are made mostly out of cornstarch, while regular packing peanuts are made from Styrofoam.
Repurpose Cardboard Boxes
Cardboard boxes don’t simply have to be broken down and thrown out. Instead, you could build some storage boxes to hold all your supplies for the next time you and your kids get crafty (and what mom wouldn’t love a craft project that helps her stay organized?).
1. Start with some sturdy pieces of cardboard or glue a couple pieces together to get a thicker piece, about half an inch. Decide which measurements will help you create the size of storage box that works for you.
2. Glue the bottom piece to the inside of the front and back piece with a hot glue gun. Then glue the side pieces on.
3. Cover the outside facing cardboard with a moderate layer of Mod Podge and smooth a piece of fabric that is slightly bigger than the cardboard over the front and side pieces.
4. If you want a handle on your storage box, cut a small, rectangular hole, Mod Podge the edges and smooth the fabric into the hole. Allow the whole thing to dry and then trim the edges of the fabric. Now you can fill your bins up and put them on a shelf!
Recycle Old Newspaper
Newspapers don’t need to be thrown out after you’ve finished moving. Keep a few to make some origami shapes with the kiddos. Newspaper holds creases well, but is prone to tearing so be gentle. Origami is great to do with any age range of kids, as there are easier projects and more difficult folds, like flowers, for the more ambitious crafters.
If you still have leftover newspaper after origami crafting, it can also be used to line the bottom of your produce drawer in the fridge to absorb liquid and odors. And you can loosely wrap paper around avocados to help them ripen more quickly.
Being crafty doesn’t always require an expensive trip to the craft store. As you can see, the materials you need are likely some you acquired during your last move. So grab your creativity and see what kind of adventure you can find while recycling your packing supplies!