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dawny75 10-28-2002 08:15 AM

Christmas Trash to Treasure
What's everybody 'recycling' this year for the holidays?

nagymom 10-28-2002 08:54 AM

Do pinecones and magnolia seed pods count? We have a huge magnolia tree with tons of the pods so we plan to do something with those as well as pinecones. Last year we scented pinecones then put them in brown bags with handles and lined them with colored tissue paper then tied the handles together with ribbon. They looked and smelled so pretty. This year I would also liike to make some that are used to make colored fireplace flames.

Dd2 wants to make her own paper for homemade stationary. I think we'd better get started soon. :-P::

raggedymom 10-29-2002 12:55 AM

I have old jars of buttons, and fabrics (taken from clothes) from the thrift shops, which I then turn into cloth dolls, cushions, Christmas ornaments etc. I use the buttons for various embellishments.


dawny75 11-02-2002 12:29 PM

YEP, everything counts! I'm trying to use up my craft supplies that I"ve been collecting over the years. I'd like to get my car in the garage this winter!

The kids are making gifts too this year, so hopefully I can get rid of at least half of my materials. The rest I'll save for girl scout projects, and my own half-finished projects! Dawny

PnutsMama 11-02-2002 03:16 PM

We went on a scavenger hunt the other day and picked up a bunch of cattails. I plan on spraying them with polyurethane and then using them with some silk flowers to make fall arrangements.

I also saved alot of baby food jars and plan on using them to put bath salts in. I've been thinking of making "bath sets" for the ladies in my alot of good information from my web friends. :)

My son has been hoarding old comics from the Sunday paper - says he's going to use them to wrap the Christmas presents he buys so he'll know what's what under the Christmas tree.

Any other neat ideas out there?:worm:


dinsky 11-02-2002 07:00 PM

Old wrapping paper through the shredder makes great packing material. I am using old cardstock and holiday fabric to make Christmas cards. My dd is making sachets using some of the holiday fabric. I have lots and lots of old crafting/sewing supplies that we are going through.


3msmom 11-03-2002 08:43 AM

I've been saving the lids from the frozen juice containers for a couple years now. I made garden markers this summer for our garden. For Christmas, my kids and I are making ornaments for family and friends. Punch a hole in the border somewhere and then glue pictures of the kids on the lid, or old Christmas card parts to make a pretty ornament. Can glue on glitter or other trims to make them pretty too. Tie a ribbon or cord or rope in the top to hang with.

We have lots of ideas of what we are doing. :-)

Old oatmeal boxes into drums. Cut to various heights and cover with paper then cording to resemble drums. Use the lid to put back on for a top.

Paint or tissue old baby food jars as candle holders. Tie a little ribbon or raffia around the outside for a pretty touch.

Get old sweaters or flannel shirts from the thrift stores and make pillows out of them. Or use up some of the shirts in the house that the sleeves are worn out on or some other part, recycle them to pillows. A favorite shirt of a child that they've outgrown but really don't want to give up.

We also have taken the mini juice cans and painted them for ornaments. Cut the bottom out with a can opener, and attach a bell from a string. Use the tab top to hang it. They are really cute.

Last year the kids made pipe cleaner candy canes for the tree, 50 of them! Red and white pipe cleaners twisted together then the top folded over for the crook. Then hang off the tree from the crook, these are really easy and quick for the kids. :-)

I have lots more if you are interested but these should keep anyone busy enough, they sure do us!

NEAVON12 11-03-2002 04:43 PM

Dear Nagymom,
I would love to hear your ideas for Magnolia seed pods, I have a Magnolia tree and bush, please share your ideas! Thanks!

TarainNC 11-04-2002 08:15 AM

servings trays
I helped my mom start our Christmas crafts last night.
She bought a lot of wooden trays on sale at a craft store. We are using up the various left over paints to paint the sides and handles.
Then I tore out recipes from a cookbook (I bought a huge box of cookbooks at a yard sale Saturday for $4.50) and decopaged them to the bottom of the tray!
We plan to do one for my grandmother with a color copy photo of her mom and copies of family recipes.
Another with old christmas cards- The variations of this one are endless!
Another with some wine labels,etc. etc.
Then you can give the tray as a gift alone, or add to it.

AnnaInOhio 11-04-2002 08:17 AM

gum ball tree
My mil has a tree next door that drops off these little spiky balls, she says she thinks they are called gum balls? I saw in a magazine a few years ago someone had spray painted them gold and silver and put in a pretty clear glass bowl for Christmas decoration. I have been meaning to do this, we have thousands off this one tree-they only fall about every other year. Will have to check with her if this is the year for them. They are indestructible, you can roll over them with your car, lawn mower and they don't squish. Anyways, they would make a nice Christmas ornament or put in a bowl with maybe some cinnamon sticks, or a few pedals of potpouri.


buputheclown 11-04-2002 11:05 AM

All year I have been saving those free CDs that you get in the mail (for internet startup) or you can pick them up at the store for free too. I will glue them together, with the paper sides together so the silver sides show. I once saw how to hook them together somehow in a Christmas tree shape, and it looked pretty. I'll have to look up the plans for that now. Perhaps someone out there knows how? You use "Coin-struction " fasteners, I think. If not, I'll hang them to decorate the trees outside.

hapiladi 11-04-2002 04:35 PM

Gum Ball Tree
Reading of wanting to spray paint the spiky 'gum balls' from the tree for Christmas reminds me of the time I was going to make something from them. My friend and I went out and picked two lg. grocery bags full, and I left mine outside on the patio. My friend took hers indoors; and the next day, I got a desperate phone call from her. It seems, there was thousands of tiny worms:worm: in her kitchen that was in those gumballs! I sure was glad I left mine outside! :eek:
So, please beware this doesn't happen to you. Bringing anything in from outside you need to be cautious.....never know what kind of little critters might be lurking in that pretty outdoor find!
Phillipians 4:13

MrsManiac 11-05-2002 09:16 AM

Okay--I gues I can make a list here lol!

Bath salts and candles and hm potpourri in old baby food jars. Also hm candies and those layered mixes in decorative jars I got for FREE from the thrift store:). I have a few old x-mas printed shirts that are going to be cut into squares and tied on the tops with ribbon. The kids will be making "bird treats"(penut butter on a pinecone, rolled in birdseed) for some of our friends who love their birdie friends. Paper mache ornaments. Ds1 wants to fingerpaint paper bags as wrapping paper, and we're making new cards from old ones.(cut out pictures, glue on card stock--even the 2 yr-old loves this one!!).

sheilaanderson 11-05-2002 10:19 AM

hi to all -i've got a couple ideas
hello to everyone.:-D

i have been saving babyfood jars i am going to paint as snowmen. i will use a liquid laundry soap cap for the hat.
i am also going to make snowmen with 3 jars high-wrapped with quilt batting on the outside for a different look-suppose you could fill the inside of the jars w/ cotton balls too.
i also have been saving frozen o.j. can lids for ornaments. i am going to punch holes in mine in various shapes & patterns for the light to shine through.
and my other item i have been saving is vitamin bottles & lids.
i plan on decorating into snowmen and santas for ornaments. i may wrap these in fabric ribbon w/ hot glue and embellish with buttons,shells,cotton balls,etc.
happy christmas crafting everyone- we are saving money and helping the environment at the same time.:angel:

sincerely-sheila ann anderson:) :) :) :) :) :)

AnnaInOhio 11-05-2002 12:57 PM

Oh My
We have never brought them in the house, although I did bring one to work to show some of the older guys who didn't know what I was talking about. I must have gotten really lucky in that I didn't get any creepy crawlies-eew:eek: I guess I had better experiment and put one in a jar with a lid and see what happens first:p thanks for the tip, I surely never would have thought of that.


MrsManiac 11-06-2002 04:06 AM

I forgot one--and it's the cutest, too. I got the idea from a tv show--can't think of the woman's name right now, but she's been on forever.

I'm making little "doll heads" to attach to the tops of mason jars--old knee-high stockings for the head(cut down to size), yarn for the hair, misc scraps of fabric for the collars, etc. Also, for my mom and mil, I'm making "dammit dolls", and for a few of my neighbors, "fit dolls".

This isn't recycling, but I got the stuff from the dollar store--two towels for a buck and a package of 6 wooden spoons for a buck--very cheap!! I'm making dishtowel bunnies holding wooden spoons, along with a layered mix.

I was saving juice lids, but my sis swiped them for my nephew's knight costume lol!!

nagymom 11-08-2002 06:49 AM

ROFLMAO I laughed when I read the story aobut the critters all over the kitchen! Dd2 and I scented pinecones last year and fortunately read a tip just days before we collected them. You should spread anything from nature (i.e. pinecones, sticky balls, etc.) on a cookie sheet and cook at 250 for about an hour to be sure to kill them all. I was surprised at the icky things I found on the pan afterwards. :worm:

NEAVON12 I apologize for not answering your question sooner. We will probably paint our pods like we did the sticky gum balls last year. We took dowels and stuck them on pieces of wood, hung the balls from string and painted them either red, green, silver or gold. I'll probably put them in a clear vase or bowl with some scented pinecones.
If you have any other ideas for decorating with them I'd love to hear them!


PS I want to post a warning here too: Last year when my dd and I scented the pinecones, we used a scented oil that we bought in a craft section. I set the bottle down on my laquered dining room table between uses and was horrified to find some rings where the oil had completely eaten through the laquer. I now have 2 or 3 rings all the way to wood. It smells wonderful but if you use some please be sure to set it on absorbent material while using!

dawny75 12-21-2002 02:45 AM

glass jars
DH laughs at me because I save so many jars. Olive jars, jelly jars, spaghetti sauce jars, all of them. Especially if they have a unique shape. I keep them in a very large box in the garage.

They sure came in handy for Christmas gifts this year. We've filled two dozen of them with bath salts, dipped pretzels, and bean soup mix so far. We're planning to try bath gel too in some small salsa jars.

Sometimes it seems silly to be saving them all year long, but we sure saved on gift containers this year!


Minny 01-03-2003 09:59 PM

Bells from Pop bottles
:daisy: This year I crocheted Christmas bells using plastic pop bottles as the form. I cut the bottle off just about where the top of the label is. If anyone is interested in the instructions, you can pm me with your e mail address & I'd be happy to send it to you. I think it would be too much to post it on here, since you can only use a cetain amount of letters. I didn't really have a pattern for it... I just kind of made it up as I went.

newcrafts 09-28-2006 02:36 PM

I enjoyed reading this.
Some good ideas here and I am always looking for new craft projects

Haleys grandmom 09-28-2006 03:01 PM

Haley's grandmom
I have a bunch of ceramic floor tiles left over from our shelving project( I won't even get into that one auuugh) I'm gooing to paint different things on the tiles and seal them , then put wooden balls on the bottom for legs, There I will have a hot plate , or what ever they want to use them for. I'm alos, using 2 Liter pop bottles and making Sunbonnet Sue door stops for my step kids and my daughter.We have a huge family but, are never together for the holidays.:fallleaf:

AnnaInOhio 09-29-2006 05:29 AM

Haleys Grandmom

You could also be a bit frugal and use Sculpey II clay for the balls on the "trivets".

What a neat idea.


Candy 09-29-2006 09:48 AM


Originally Posted by Haley's grandmom
I have a bunch of ceramic floor tiles left over from our shelving project( I won't even get into that one auuugh) I'm gooing to paint different things on the tiles and seal them , then put wooden balls on the bottom for legs, There I will have a hot plate , or what ever they want to use them for. I'm alos, using 2 Liter pop bottles and making Sunbonnet Sue door stops for my step kids and my daughter.We have a huge family but, are never together for the holidays.:fallleaf:

I would like to see a pic of the door stops. Sound beautiful.
I have painted on ceramic tile and used old mouse pads for the back so they don't scratch anyything.

scoutmama 10-31-2008 11:04 AM

I am making flavored coffee baskets as gifts this year. I plan on taking apart an old Halloween costume that looks like red velvet and "wrapping" the baskets in this fabric. I will then tie it off with some pretty ribbon.

mom 11-08-2008 07:54 PM

Very interesting ideas ladies. Anyone else have any frugal Christmas ideas this year?


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