With Plastic-Free July at an end, I’m beginning to see not only how much plastic use and waste is in our everyday lives, but also what I can do to reduce it. I’m finding there are more options for compostable materials including nailpolish bottles from Habit Cosmetics at HELPSY with bamboo lids in replace of plastic tops and bamboo single-use cutlery I found at World Market. These are only small steps, but definitely worth noting and being aware of for future use. What can we do about the plastic we currently do have? If it’s not an item that’s easily recyclable, is there something that can be done? Looking for answers, I did some digging on Pinterest, and found my answer in an abundance of DIY projects that turn plastic items into décor and storage. To see what I’ve found, take a look at the following links for some inspiration for your next DIY project:
- Aunt Peaches’ Recyle/Upcycle Crafts section has tons of inspiration, but one of my favorite tutorials is “Earth Day Upcycling: Bird Feeder Bottles.” This transforms a plastic Califia Farms bottle into the perfect birdfeeder and looks like the fun idea for those who love wildlife and nature.
- One of the most interesting projects I ran across was Rust and Sunshine’s “Shrinky Bracelet.” Using plastic from a food container, which is made of Number 6 plastic that usually isn’t recyclable, this project involves baking the plastic for 30 seconds. Since I haven’t tried this project yet, I would definitely follow the instructions closely just in case. Another tutorial, “DIY suncatcher/Wind chime” from Stay.At.Home.Life. also suggests trying this on the BBQ in case the smell is too much.
- Home-Dzine’s Candy Stand from plastic bottles is another craft project that shows how a little use of power tools, glue, paint, and other decorative items can make a great table piece.
- If you’re a crocheter, a tutorial on Etsy from Clair Baker, “How-Tuesday: How to Make Plarn and Crochet an Eco-Friendly Tote Bag” is one way of making plastic bags into a much stronger re-useable tote. Of course, fabric bags are always the much better way to go, but for those plastic bags that might have found their way into your groceries, this is a great way to use them instead of throwing them out. “Project 15 Week 19-Recycled Plastic Bag Pendant Light” from The 3 R’s blog looks like an interesting way of using plastic bags by cutting them into pieces to make a lighting décor. Even though I’m not certain about lights and plastic together, the whole blog is one I’ll be looking into more since it takes items we usually throw out and makes them into useable design pieces.
- One blog post I was inspired by is “Eco-friendly Kids Craft-Recycle Plastic Bags to Make Jewelry Beads” from Planet Forward. Just like paper beads, this post seems to take the method of paper beads to transform a plastic bag cut into strips to make beads.
- I found “30 Best Creative Plastic Spoon Projects” from Craftionary to be a great inspiration for future home décor. Who knew you could transform plastic spoons into a mirror frame or an artichoke vase?
I’m sure there’s plenty of other DIY projects out there, but these were just a few that caught my eye, mostly because the final products are items you could find multiple use for. I haven’t tried them yet, but I’m excited to find options for plastic instead of creating more waste. Although these DIY projects are great ideas to use plastic in other ways, I still find it necessary to use less plastic. Just because Plastic-Free July is over doesn’t mean my interest in living a Plastic-Free life has ended. I’m always eager to learn about new products and think more about how to reduce plastic waste.
Have you tried any of these projects? What DIY craft projects have you done that you have enjoyed and found useful?