It doesn’t matter what time of year it is, there always seems to be gifts to wrap for one occasion or another! I know that I happen to enjoy when I’m given a gift and I can tell the gift giver spent a little bit of time making the wrapped gift look beautiful. Interesting wrap does two things:
- It gives the recipient of a gift the feeling that the giver went the extra mile.
- Even though wrapping paper generally gets ripped to shreds, it add more suspense to the surprise.
So when it comes to your loved ones, friends, or even business associates on any special occasion throughout the year, think twice before you settle for some cheap wrap from the dollar store. Think outside the box!
The truth is, there are plenty of recyclable materials around that make crafting your own wrap easy with barely any cost. Wrapping can even become great projects for kids. Take a look at these recyclable ways to wrap gifts:
- Flowers or flower petals. How awesome and sweet smelling would this be!
- Old family photos you don’t want anymore.
- Photos printed out from a digital camera.
- Old posters are great for wrapping.
- Leaves. New or just fallen there’s no cost, no problem finding them (depending on the time of year), and they are biodegradable.
- Old mail: Most of it goes into the recycling bin but there could be some great pieces to cover a gift. For example, make an envelope for a check out of old bills!
- A collage from newspapers and magazines.
- Cereal boxes: remember the prize in the box when you were a kid!
- Old fabrics, cloths or clothes the recipient of the gift can reuse or donate.
- Toilet and paper towel rolls. Cut up and paint them creating an unusual texture with their cylindrical shape.
- Tea bag wrappers. Tape them over the box of a new kettle.
- Carpet samples or leftovers from an installation make a furrier presentation.
- Old cassettes: stack and glue them together making a box for a gift.
- Reuse old greeting cards.
- Egg cartons. Need I say more? Paint them, glitter them, just go wild with them.
- Old sheet music for a musical surprise. You could even write out a song as part of the gift.
- Paper bags can go a long way when wrapping.
- Milk or juice cartons: wash out, decorate and use them as a gift box.
- Maps. These can be great for travel related gifts like a new bike helmet or backpack.
- Scraps from a wood shop, metal shop, or printing company. There’s usually a lot of waste at these venues that can easily be converted into something useful like wrapping up a gift.
While some items listed above are simple to use as the main wrapping material others may need some help being attached. If you’ve chosen one of the latter here’s a suggestion:
- First use newsprint or other recyclable material to encase a gift. Older used wrapping paper will also do and it’s the perfect time to recycle it.
- Apply the chosen material such as flower petals, leaves, or photos with, glue, tape, or string, as you see fit.
Good luck gifting, wrapping, and making others happy! Do you have any other creative wrapping ideas to share?
Frugal Fall Bangles
If you are looking to warm up your wardrobe this fall, these frugal fall bangles are perfect. Easy to make and inexpensive too, they are fun to make on girl’s night or when you are just in the mood for a fun DIY. Here is how a trip to the craft store and a few basic crafting supplies can help you get the job done!
- Assorted bangles (plastic, metal, wood all work well)
- Assorted twine, ribbon, yard, or even burlap strips
- Hot glue, glue gun
1. Cut a long length of ribbon/twine/burlap of your choice.
2. Add a tiny dab of hot glue to the end. Press it to the inside of the bangle. Hold in place until secure.
3. Start wrapping the piece around the bangle. Pull tightly as you do to avoid wrinkles or bulkiness. Lightly overlap as you wrap.
4. Once the bangle is covered, cut the ribbon/twine/burlap to fit. Add a dab of glue and press to the inside of the bangle. Hold in place until dry.
If you wish, you can cover the entire bangle. Or, like we did with the gold bangle, leave part of it exposed. The contrast in colors and textures is actually quite pleasing!
Gather your supplies and give these easy frugal fall bangles a try. They are simple to make and easy to enjoy!
5 Creative Ways to Use Those Fallen Leaves
Are you up to your ears in leaves? If your yard is wooded or home to numerous trees, you might find yourself overwhelmed this fall season. So what exactly can you do with all of those leaves beside rake them? Well the good news is they do have a few fun uses! Take a peek at these 5 creative ways to use those fall leaves, in ways that are both fun and frugal!
1. Craft a scarecrow.
Fallen leaves are perfect for stuffing and filling scarecrows. Save leaves so when you are ready to craft your scarecrow, you have plenty to create the body, legs, arms, and of course head. Leaves make perfect stuffing material and fill up the scarecrow nicely.
2. Make giant yard pumpkins.
Buy orange yard waste bags found at your local home improvement store. Some are plain orange while others might have the pumpkin faces already on them. No worries if you can’t find one with faces, you can always add your own with black marker. Simply fill the bags up with leaves, then tie the top for yard pumpkins that make the perfect outdoor fall décor.
3. Craft spooky ghosts.
Take white trash bags and fill the bottom with a handful of leaves. Twist the bag and tie it to create a round head shape. You can use a black marker to craft a face of a ghost directly onto the bag, and then add string for hanging. Place the ghost in a tree or porch for a spooky effect.
4. Make spooky yard spiders.
Take a black trash bag and fill it with fallen leaves. You can then use white paper to craft eyes and attach them with craft glue. Painted PVC piping can make legs as can long cardboard tubes or even pool noodles. These don’t hold up well outdoors and are best used indoors for décor.
5. Create a leaf fort.
Find a large cardboard box that can be used as the fort’s main foundation. Cut a square to enter. Spray the box with spray adhesive and apply the leaves to the outside of the box. One or two layers is sufficient. When you are done you should not be able to see the box and it will look like the entire piece is made from leaves.
Did you ever think that leaves could provide so much fun? Start raking up those fall leaves and then give these fun ideas a try and see all the ways you can put those fallen leaves to use. You are sure to enjoy lots of family fun with very little cost to you. Happy soon to be fall!
When Tanya from Dans Le Lakehouse found a pretty (but broken) brooch for 25 cents at a yard sale, she knew she could do something with it. With some chain, two split rings and needle nosed pliers, the broken brooch became a pretty necklace!
Check out her simple thrifty project here!
Have you got a frugal DIY idea that you’d love to share with others? Submit your idea here!
6 Ways to Turn Your Trash into Cash
Did you know you could be throwing away money each month, right into your own trash can? There are many items tossed into trash cans each month that are worth cash and can help put a little extra change into your pocket. Take a look below at 6 ways to turn your trash into cash and make a little money off of items you would normally throw away.
1. Wine corks.
Wine corks have become quite popular with crafters lately. If you drink wine, set your wine corks aside. You can sell them on eBay or Etsy, where crafters are paying around .25 and up per cork. If you host a party or have been collecting corks over time, you could enjoy a real pay day!
Don’t pitch aluminum cans. They’re worth cash! Take it to your nearest recycling center where they will count your cans and pay you the going rate. It is a quick way to get rid of the aluminum and make some cash in the process. With the money I get from bringing in our old cans, I like to put the balance into my daughter’s piggy bank.
Back issues of magazines are quite popular on eBay. If you have magazine subscriptions, sell your back issues on eBay to buyers in need. Niche topics are especially hot (crafting, hobby, fashion) and bring in a great price. So don’t toss those old magazines, sell them.
Don’t toss those old newspapers before checking them for coupons. When you toss coupons, it is like tossing money. Instead, check each page one more time and make sure there aren’t any savings you want to clip and take advantage of.
5. Glass bottles.
Glass bottles are another hot item with crafters. If you have glass bottles, especially colored glass, wine bottles, or especially decorative bottles, see about selling them first. Etsy or the hobby section on Craigslist or Facebook Buy & Sell groups are perfect for getting a few bucks per bottle.
6. Scrap metal.
Most things that are metal (including cars, bikes, appliances, cans, file cabinets, BBQ grills, etc.) can be recycled for cash. To find out how much you can make, google “Scrap Metal Pickup” for your local city to find someone that will pick up your scraps.
See how easy it can be to turn your own trash into cash? Keep these tips in mind and you can make a little money off of the items you normally just toss away. So, how much cash is lurking in your trash? Take a peek and see which items you can weed out and get a few dollars for.
Do you have any “trash” items that you regularly like to turn into cash?