stack of recycled newspaper

Upcycling Paper Craft: What Can You Do to Reuse Paper?

While most paper products are compostable and biodegradable, some people would still be hesitant to throw them out with abandon. This is because clean paper can still be reused in many ways. For example, brown paper bags can wrap gifts or pack fragile items during a move. Old magazines and newspapers can be used for art projects and other practical uses. Perhaps, this is one of the reasons a lot of people hoard paper.

But if you’re getting tired of seeing heaps of paper scraps lying around in your house, why not use them for upcycling projects? The beauty behind upcycling projects is that you’re turning scrap paper into something more functional and beautiful, further expanding its life cycle. So open the craft box you get monthly and try making these awesome scrap paper upcycling crafts.

Map coasters

Printed maps have become obsolete due to GPS apps and the internet. If you still have your old paper maps, you can make unique coasters out of them instead of throwing them into the bin. Get yourself a bottle of biodegradable resin, coaster molds in your preferred shape, and submerge the map cutouts in the resin. Allow them to dry for 24 hours and remove the resin-coated map from the mold, and voila, you have fun little map coasters. If you don’t want to use resin, you can try this easy and quick map coaster craft.

Magazine or scrapbook paper canvas art

If you’re looking to add a splash of color to your home, gather all the colored paper scraps you can find and transform them into canvas art. You can roll them up, glue them together, or cut them into different shapes to create a collage. Let your imagination run wild!

Newspaper bowl or basket

Did you know that you can use newspaper scraps to create woven crafts like baskets, bowls, and planters? All you need to do is fold them into durable one-inch strips and weave them into patterns you like. You can also roll up the newspapers to mimic the appearance of wicker. You can also do the braided style, but this may take some practice. You can use the finished product to store light items like keys, accessories, fruits, and even eggs.

stack of newspaper

Scrap paper memo boxes

If you use a lot of paper to write down memos, to-do lists, and shopping lists, instead of writing them on fresh new leaves, why not write them down on scrap paper cutouts? Gather as much paper as you can, be it used textbooks, scrapbook paper, envelopes, or even thin cereal boxes, cut them out into identical shapes and sizes. Then, store them nicely in a recycled memo box and place them on your desk.

Rolled paper picture frame

Another functional thing you can make with rolled colored paper is a picture frame. Use a plain wooden frame or old picture frame as your base. Then roll your scrap paper into strips or circles. After that, glue them to the wooden frame. Fill up empty spaces with smaller rolled paper rolls or use colored stones instead. If you want the paper rolls to be sturdier, slather some water and glue mixture on the surface and allow them to dry for 24 hours on a flat surface.

Newspaper lamps

Paper is a fun material to make lamps and lanterns with. It’s easy to work with and is translucent enough to diffuse light. Plus, if you want to create interesting shadows, you can just cut out shapes and patterns from your paper lamp. There are endless styles you can make; the only limit is your imagination.

Handmade paper from scraps

Don’t know what to do with paper scraps like receipts, invoices, junk mail, copy paper, and wraps? You can use these to make handmade paper at home. First, shred them into pieces and blend them with water. Then strain the pulp using a papermaking mold tray. Remove the settled pulp from the tray and place it on an absorbent surface. Then get a sponge and dab it on the other side until you remove most of the water. Once dry, you can start using your homemade paper for letters and school art projects.

Cereal box organizer

Cereal boxes are great materials for paper upcycling. You can transform them into organizers, storage boxes for knick-knacks, pencil holders, and the list goes on. Save a few boxes and cut them into your desired shape. Then wrap them using scrapbook paper, gift wrap, or extra wallpaper if you have any. Make your sturdier by coating it with a glue and water mixture, allowing it to dry for 24 hours.

With these ideas, you can reduce the piles of paper you have at home. Don’t let this chance pass and upcycle them. Not only can you reduce the clutter, but you can also help the environment.

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