Making the Most of Old Junk

Interested in doing something creative but not sure where to start? Here’s some ideas for turning your junk into treasures! Making the most of old junk doesn’t take alot of money, but it does need some creativity and some time.

Making the most of old junk

Can’t decide whether or not to throw those old magazines away? What about the kids’ clothes that are too worn out to donate? Have a stash of antique hardware you don’t know what to do with? Instead of tossing it into the garbage, use it to create something fun and new! Re-purposing would-be junk to make something different isn’t a new concept- egg cartons and paper towel tubes have been craft staples for years. You’ll be amazed at the uses you can find for almost anything you were thinking of throwing away.

Magazine Bowls

If stacks and stacks of magazines are piling up, why not use them to make magazine bowls? Rip out the pages that have bright colors in them: the ones that are colored all the way to the edges are best. Pick the side you want to show, turn it over, and start folding into slats until you finish with one anywhere from a few millimeters to a half inch wide. Glue the last fold over the end of the slat. Repeat the process with your other pages, making sure each finished slat is the same size. Take one, and coil it like a snail’s shell: this piece will the bottom of your bowl. Add your next slat in a coil around it, but use tape to hold it instead of glue, because you want to be able to draw up the sides to give it depth. Continue this process until you have a disc-shape made of slats that you have coiled around held together by tape. Put your thumbs in the center, and pull the sides up until you reach your desired size. Cover with a layer of white glue to help it keep its shape. These can be used to hold almost anything- just don’t let them get wet.

Recycled Hardware

If you’re remodeling, and aren’t sure what to do with your leftover hardware, hang onto it. Antique keys, cabinet door knobs and some old locks can be made into a fantastic, vintage-looking wind chime. Or, and this is especially useful if you have several of the same piece, attach a row of them to an old door panel to create an key-ring rack or a place to hang hats or coats. Small pieces of hardware can make a beautiful pendant or broach simply by hot-gluing a a pin on the back or hanging from a chain.

Kids Clothing Crafts

Kids’ clothing can be turned into almost anything. Cut up old blue-jeans into patches and save for when the knees get worn out of another pair. Cotton pieces, especially if they have sentimental value, are great for quilting projects. They can also be used to make doll clothes. A “busy-book”, a cloth book for toddlers with working buttons, Velcro, and cloth pockets, are simple to make and can keep kids entertained for hours.

So next time you’re thinking of tossing something you don’t use anymore, put it in your craft box instead. With enough ingenuity, you can turn almost any old junk into a fabulous rainy-day project.

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