Tuesday, February 24, 2009

How to Recycle Glass Food Jars: Decoupaged Flower Vase

This is a moderately easy project. This vase is made from a recycled glass salsa jar, and Ricola wrappers. During the winter, our family suffered a lot of sore throats. Instead of throwing these wrappers out, I cut the ends and decoupaged them onto the glass jar.

1- Glass jar, washed and dried
1 - Bottle of Decoupage or Mod Podge
1 - foam brush or flat edged paint brush
1- pair of scissors
*Ricola (Herb Throat Drops) wrappers

STEP 1: Cut the Ricola wrapper as shown in the photo below. You will not be using the middle portion. Save it for a later craft or use for kindling or packaging material. With your fingers, flatten the wrapper as best as you can.

STEP 2: Brush an even coat of decoupage onto the jar, starting at the top. Place one wrapper onto the jar with the flowers up, and the white portion at the bottom. Brush a second layer of decoupage onto the jar, and continue around, layering the wrappers. Continue to the bottom of the jar. Let dry completely.

JAR CARE: Never immerse directly into water. Wipe the outside with a damp rag.

TIPS: Second layer of decoupage may be brushed on. Fill with flowers, or use as a pencil jar. Give fresh flowers in these creative, recycled vases for gifts, get well gifts, or just to say you care.


Sunday, February 22, 2009

How to Recycle Old Sweatshirts into Crafts ~ Mittens

Recycle your old sweatshirts into warm and cozy mittens. These are great for kids who ride a bus to school. They keep them warm and toasty.

1 - old sweatshirt
*sewing pins
*sewing machine
*coordinating colored thread

STEP 1: Trace your hand onto a piece of paper. Allow about 3/4 inch more around the hand. Cut out pattern.

STEP 2: Pin the paper pattern to the sweatshirt, pinning both layers of the sweatshirt, and the cuff at the waist of the sweatshirt. Cut both pieces out together.

STEP 3: Remove pattern, pin it again to the sweatshirt at in Step 2 for the second mitten.

STEP 3: Turn your pieces inside out for each mitten and pin together.

STEP 4: Starting at the cuff, sew a seam all the way around, leaving about 1/4 inch seam. You may have to lift your sewing machine foot often to create an even, rounded seam. Be careful not to stretch or let it bunch under your sewing machine foot.

STEP 5: Turn them inside out, and you have a new pair of mittens.

TIPS: These are nice stocking stuffer presents. Just trace the persons hand and write their name on the pattern for reference. Don't tell them what it's for and they will be very surprised.


Saturday, February 7, 2009

How to Make a Photo Frame: Recycled Pasta Food Box and Soup Can Lid With Pull Tab

You can create these cute and inexpensive photo frames with items you typically throw away. Well, now you can recycle them and keep kids busy too. They make great gifts and Christmas tree ornaments.

1- pasta box with cellophane window
1- soup can lid with pull back tab attached, washed and dried
1-acyrlic paint color of your choice
1-paint brush
1-glue such as E6000 or other industrial strength glue
1-pair of scissors
1-scotch or other clear tape
1-printed photo or processed photo
optional: markers, stickers

STEP 1: Cut along one seam of the pasta box to open flat. Turn open so you can see where the cellophane is glued to the cardboard box. Cut just outside the glued area (or you will have to re-glue your cellophane). Lay your cut piece onto the inside of the back of the box and trace your first cut piece. Cut out.

STEP 2: Paint the outsides of the cut pasta box pieces. You may have to paint 2-3 coats to cover completely. Let each coat dry before painting the next coat. Paint on a protected surface.

STEP 3: Turn your carboard piece, with the window, upside down and tape your photo to it. Center your photo prior to taping it down. You may have to trim edges of your photo depending on the size you printed.

STEP 4: Glue your soup can lid to the inside, or unpainted side of the second prepared piece of cardboard. You will have to bend your lid tab as shown in the photo below.

Here is a view of the backside, after gluing your can lid onto the unpainted side.

STEP 5: Glue your cardboard pieces together, gluing unpainted sides. Trim edges if needed. Let dry completely.

STEP 6: Write or draw on your new photo frame. Add stickers, plastic gem craft pieces or adorn with other craft items.

Before you throw out your next pasta box and any soup can lids with pull tabs, be sure to consider this craft. It's kid friendly and you can hang your photo frame anywhere, and then when Christmas arrives, hang it on the Christmas tree. Here's what you need to make this recycled craft.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Plastic Spoon Handicrafts ~ How to Make a Spoonful of Sugar Christmas Ornaments

Recycle your leftover abundance of plastic spoons into these cute, vibrant colored Christmas Tree Ornaments.


-white and white sculpey polymer clay
-clay cutting tools
-flat, protected working surface
-glass pan to bake sculpey on
-plastic spoons, white
-red ribbon, 1/8th inch thick
-industrial strength glue
-acrylic spray sealer, glossy
-oven and hot pads

STEP 1: Roll a piece of white sculpey as shown in the picture below. It should be about 3/4 inch in diameter. This is the start of your peppermint candy pieces.

STEP 2: Roll red sculpey into very thin strips, about the diameter of 1-2 toothpicks.

STEP 3: Press the red strips into the sides of the white sculpey, adding them evenly around the white. Press gently, flatening the red, making peppermint stripes.

STEP 4: With a sharp sculpey cutting knife, cut 1/4 sections of the roll for each peppermint you are making. Press the edges inward on the top of each peppermint, creating the finishing touch to your mint and rounding the edges. Add tiny pieces of red to each section if needed.

STEP 5: Bake your scupley pieces in your oven according to sculpey package directions. Cool completely.

STEP 6: Roll red sculpey into small balls, to make your sour cherries. Bake separately from your mints due to the difference in thickness. Cool completely.

STEP 7: Spray your peppermints and sour cherries with a light coat of gloss acrylic sealer (follow directions on the product you use). Let dry completely. To keep the sour cherries from rolling around as you spray with sealer, add a tiny piece of poster putty to the side it baked on, and adhere to the inside of a recycled shoe box lid.

STEP 8: With a versa-tool heating tool, melt a small hole into the top handle of each plastic spoon, from the backside. Be careful not to leave your tool in the handle too long or it will leave a burn mark. Let cool completely. Use caution when using your heating tool and cool completely on a protected surface.

STEP 9: Cut pieces of red ribbon, approximately, 9-10 inches in length. Run one end of ribbon through the hole and tie in a knot for the hanger. Trim. Cut a second piece of ribbon approximately 1-12 inches in length. Tie this piece around the top of the spoon, near the hole in the handle. Tie in a knot and then into a bow. Trim.

STEP 10: Add a dab of glue to the back of your candy piece, one peppermint to a spoon and three sour cherries to a spoon. Let dry completely. If needed, prop the handles up on a plate edge to hold candy in place while the glue is drying.

NOTE: The Photos are not uploading correctly for this craft. Please be patient as I fix this problem with blogger.com.


Handicrafts using plastic spoons


How to host an ornament exchange party

As always - ENJOY!