Unique Crafts You Can Make With Recycled Materials

The call for environmental sustainability resonates louder with each passing day. An enjoyable and creative way to join this movement is through crafting with recycled materials. By giving new life to items often seen as waste, we can express our creativity while promoting sustainability.

Plastic Bottle Planters

Plastic bottles, generally a pollution concern, can be transformed into inviting planters. Cut the bottle in half, fill it with potting soil, and plant your seeds. Besides being eco-friendly, these planters can be an interesting activity for children who can observe the process of germination and root growth.

To add aesthetic appeal to these functional pieces, you can decorate them with paints, threads, or any other crafting material. Now, your plastic bottle planters aren’t just useful but a piece of art that adds charm to your space.

Tin Can Lanterns

Turn the ordinary tin cans from your pantry into enchanting lanterns. You can punch out holes to create beautiful patterns that shine when lit from within. This can provide a new perspective on what would otherwise be considered waste.

Paint these cans in vibrant colors or cover them in fabric, lace, or anything you fancy. These lanterns, placed indoors or outdoors, can create a cozy ambiance and double as beautiful décor pieces that advocate recycling.

Cardboard Picture Frames

Why buy expensive picture frames when you can make your own using cardboard? Cut out the cardboard to your preferred frame size, secure your photograph, and voila! You’ve got a photo frame that’s as eco-friendly as it is personal.

Decorate these frames with paints, stickers, or any other embellishments to give them a unique touch. With this craft, you’re not just reusing materials but also giving your cherished memories a special home.

Wine Cork Bulletin Board

Don’t dispose of those wine corks; instead, turn them into a functional bulletin board. Attach the corks to a sturdy base, and you have a unique spot for your sticky notes, grocery lists, or photographs.

Beyond its functionality, this craft also serves as a visual testament to your commitment to recycling. Each cork can trigger a memory of a good time spent, making the bulletin board a beautiful collection of memories.

Newspaper Baskets

Newspapers can be more than just yesterday’s news. By folding and weaving together newspaper strips, you can create sturdy, visually pleasing baskets. These can be used to store small items and can contribute to an organized and aesthetic space.

Creating newspaper baskets is not just a great recycling exercise, but it can also be a fun, meditative activity. Plus, these handcrafted baskets add a personal touch to your home décor and make excellent conversation starters.

CD Mosaic Art

Old, scratched CDs no longer in use can be converted into radiant mosaic art. Break the CDs into pieces and glue them onto a surface to create shimmering patterns.

Painting the pieces in different hues before gluing them can add another layer of beauty to your mosaics. This art project not only gives a new lease of life to discarded CDs but also contributes a unique decorative piece to your space.

Glass Bottle Vases

Glass bottles, often disregarded after use, can become elegant vases. With a bit of cleaning and maybe some decoration, they’re ready to house your favorite flowers. This craft serves as a beautiful representation of recycling and repurposing.

Decorating these bottles with paint, decoupage, or even just a string tied around the neck can further enhance their charm. Place these upcycled vases in your living room or bedroom to add a splash of color and personality.

Egg Carton Flowers

Egg cartons are a versatile material for crafting. One fun way to use them is by creating attractive egg carton flowers. These flowers can be painted in any color and used as a centerpiece, ornament, or even given as a gift.

Not only is this craft project an excellent recycling exercise, but it’s also a great activity for kids. The egg carton flowers can add a pop of color and charm to any space, all while reminding us of the importance of reusing materials.

Paper Roll Art

Don’t throw away those paper towel rolls! They can be turned into amazing works of art. Cut the rolls into various shapes, paint them, and arrange them into your desired design for an attractive wall decoration.

With your creativity at play, these simple paper rolls can be transformed into intricate and interesting pieces of art. This project showcases how recycling can be fun, inventive, and result in some truly eye-catching décor.

Bottle Cap Magnets

Turn bottle caps into attractive fridge magnets. Just add a small magnet to the back, and you’ve got a custom, functional item. This can also be a great way to display your artistic flair right on your refrigerator.

You can take this craft a step further by decorating the inside of the caps. Paint miniature scenes, place small photos, or simply color them to create unique, personalized magnets that also promote recycling.

T-Shirt Yarn

Your old, unused t-shirts can find a new life as homemade yarn. By cutting your t-shirt into strips and stretching them, you can create a sturdy and versatile yarn for your knitting or crochet projects.

This not only gives your old t-shirts a second life but also adds a personal touch to your craft projects. It’s a simple and effective way to reduce waste while exploring your creative side.

Toilet Paper Roll Bird Feeders

Don’t throw away your toilet paper rolls. Instead, use them to make bird feeders. Simply coat the roll in peanut butter and then roll it in birdseed. You can then hang it on a tree and watch as birds come to feast.

This craft is not just a great way to recycle but also an excellent way to interact with nature. It’s a simple, enjoyable craft that even children can join in on, teaching them about both nature and recycling.

Jar Lid Magnets

Jar lids are perfect for creating personalized magnets. You can paint them, glue pictures inside, or even use them to frame mini artworks. Just add a magnet to the back, and you’ve got a custom, functional piece.

These crafts serve a dual purpose – they’re not just great for recycling, but also for adding a personal touch to your home decor. Each one can be unique and express your personal style, all while promoting sustainability.

Denim Pocket Organizers

Old jeans can find a new purpose as handy organizers. Cut out the pockets, attach them to a sturdy material like a wooden plank or a strip of fabric, and you have a functional, stylish wall organizer.

This craft not only reduces waste but also helps to keep your space tidy. It’s a creative and practical way to make use of materials that would otherwise be thrown away.

Magazine Bead Jewelry

Old magazines can be transformed into colorful beads for making jewelry. By cutting the pages into triangles and rolling them around a skewer, you can create unique beads that can be strung together to create necklaces, bracelets, and more.

This craft is a great way to reuse materials and create a unique piece of jewelry. It’s a fun and creative way to recycle and can also be a great project to do with children.

Light Bulb Terrariums

Don’t throw away those old light bulbs. Instead, transform them into mini terrariums. Clean out the inside of the bulb, add some small plants and stones, and you’ve got a tiny, self-contained garden.

This craft not only repurposes old light bulbs but also brings a bit of nature into your home. It’s a beautiful and creative way to recycle.

Soda Can Tabs Bracelet

Soda can tabs, often overlooked, can be transformed into a stylish bracelet. Thread a ribbon or string through the tabs, and you’ve got a fashionable piece of jewelry that’s also a statement of sustainability.

This is a creative and fun way to reuse materials that often get discarded. Not only does it encourage recycling, but it also allows you to express your personal style in a unique way.

Cereal Box Notebooks

Old cereal boxes can be given a new life as homemade notebooks. Cut the boxes to your preferred size, add some paper, and you have a personalized notebook perfect for jotting down notes or sketching.

This craft is a great way to reduce waste and create a useful item. Plus, it gives your notebook a unique and personal touch that store-bought notebooks can’t match.

Bottle Cap Mosaic

Collect bottle caps to create a vibrant mosaic. Arrange the caps on a surface in your desired pattern, and then glue them down. This craft creates a colorful, textured piece that can be a unique addition to your home decor.

Not only does this craft repurpose bottle caps, but it also allows you to explore your creativity and create a one-of-a-kind art piece.

Coffee Ground Candles

Don’t throw away those used coffee grounds. They can be used to make fragrant candles. Mix the grounds with melted wax, pour into a mold or container with a wick, and allow to set. You now have a beautiful, coffee-scented candle.

This craft not only recycles used coffee grounds but also creates a warm, welcoming ambiance in your home. It’s a creative and enjoyable way to reuse what would otherwise be waste.


Recycling and crafting go hand in hand, both fostering creativity and promoting sustainability. These twenty crafts illustrate how everyday materials can be transformed into beautiful and functional items, demonstrating the potential within items we often consider waste. Through crafting with recycled materials, we take small but significant steps towards a greener planet, creating unique items while reducing waste. The joy of crafting combined with the satisfaction of promoting sustainability makes these projects worthwhile endeavors, embodying creativity, resourcefulness, and environmental responsibility.

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