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12 Thrifty Trash to Treasure Crafts

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26 Great Trash-to-Treasure Crafts


(11 Votes)


These 26 unique trash-to-treasure crafts are great ways to take things that are old and make them new. Before you throw something out, like an empty glass bottle or an old pair of jeans, take a moment to consider what else you could possibly make with it. Besides being eco-friendly, recycled crafts are also cheaper to make than craft projects that require all-new materials. 

Green crafting is an easy way to be kind to the earth and be creative at the same time. Check out the list below and see which of these recyclable materials you already have in your house, and start working on your next project.

Trash-to-Treasure Crafts

26 Great Trash-to-Treasure Crafts

Table of Contents

Glass Bottles and Soda Can Crafts

Cardboard and Paper Crafts

DIY Organizers and Containers

Crafts With Fabric Scraps


Glass Bottles and Soda Can Crafts

  1. Bottle Cap Crosses - These homemade crafts will recycle your old bottle caps and make something meaningful and beautiful for you to wear. Make one for your friend so that you can wear them together!

  2. Mason Jar Vase - Use some old mason jars to give your plants a new home. The best part is that you can see the roots and soil right through the glass container, so you'll know exactly how your plants are doing. NEW!

  3. bottle lid art

    Bottle Cap Wine Glass Charms - These adorable wine glass charms will help you to know which glass of wine is yours. Plus, it's a great conversation starter. People will be amazed that you made them yourself out of recycled bottle caps!

  4. Soda Can Butterfly Pin - Attach this stunning butterfly craft to your best friend's birthday present to give it a bit of class. She'll never be able to guess that it was made from a soda can! NEVER SEEN BEFORE

  5. Plastic Bottle Lid Art (pictured) - This tasteful bit of art is made with recycled plastic bottle tops. It's wonderful to make something beautiful out of what would otherwise just be garbage.

  6. Smashed Soda Can Animals - Cute and easy, these soda can animals are a great craft for kids and adults alike. Decorate your house with these funny animals and know that you are making use of a can that would otherwise probably end up in a landfill.

  7. Soda Can Coasters - These easily recognizable coasters will make guests smile. Show off your love for your favorite soda brands with these homemade coasters. Because soda companies change their logos, you can make multiple ones over time to show your longtime devotion to your soda of choice.


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Find even more recycled crafts with our free 
"12 Thrifty Trash to Treasure Crafts" eBook!




Cardboard and Paper Crafts

  1. Brown Bag Place Mat - Finally make use of your brown paper bags from the grocery store with this creative trash to treasure craft! It guides you through every step to make your old brown paper bags into attractive homemade place mats.

  2. Colorful Paper Pens - Use old paper to decorate otherwise boring pens.  Use your creativity to make each pen a little different. Before long, you'll have a favorite for every day of the week!

    Recycled Magazine Cork Board

  3. Recycled Magazine Cork Board (pictured) - This may be one of the easiest crafts you've ever done. All you need is a cork panel from the craft store and some old colorful magazines. So easy!

  4. Green Crafting Gift Wrap Bow - Tired of buying holiday bows every single year?  Well break the cycle once and for all. These attractive gift wrap bows are made completely out of old magazine paper.  Save money, demonstrate your creativity, and get the job done all at the same time!

  5. Pizza Box Art - Pizza boxes have no real use after they are thrown away, so rescue them with this artistic craft. Turn your pizza boxes into canvases that will hold your creative thoughts. Even use scraps of old paper to make a collage!


DIY Organizers and Containers

  1. Daisy Container - This adorable container is made from an old plastic container. Make use of what would usually be thrown away by transforming it into something beautiful!

    yogurt cup bud vase

  2. Oatmeal Box Pencil Holder - Enjoy your oatmeal every morning? Well use that container after you are done to make a great pencil holder. Decorate it in your own unique way to make it 100% yours.

  3. Tin Can DIY Organizer - If you live in a tiny apartment or just want to save on space in your kitchen, grab some old tin cans and give this unique craft a try. NEW! 

  4. Recycled Yogurt Cup Bud Vase (pictured) - There is nothing like the feeling of nurturing new life. Take an old yogurt cup and make a bud vase out of it. Not only will it look attractive and be fun to make, but it also saves the yogurt container from spending an eternity in a landfill.

  5. Altered Cookie Tin - Make use of an old cookie tin to make this neat container for whatever treasures you may want to keep. Decorate it any way you want! It's all up to you, the artist!

  6. Burlap DIY Storage Boxes - Reuse the boxes from your last Amazon order to make these cute storage containers. Why spend $20 on a container from Target when you can make one for free? Seriously though.

Crafts With Fabric Scraps

  1. Reusable Feminine Pads - Yes, we're serious. You can use old scraps and some cotton filling to create your own DIY pads. This is a great idea to try if you want to be more eco-friendly - and also save money. NEW!

  2. Upcycled Denim Tote Bag - If you can't bear to part with those ill-fitting jeans, use them to create something completely new. Scrap fabric crafts are a great way to save on fabric and breathe new life into old or sentimental items. Carry this tote to the mall or grocery store - it's big enough to hold all of your essentials.
  3. Place Mat Purse - Bought one too many place mats? Save it and use it to create a pretty purse. This sewing pattern shows that crafts from recycled materials can be just as stylish as their store-bought counterparts.
    Rags-to-Rugs Craft
  4. Rags-to-Rugs Craft (pictured) - Make your own floor covering with some old T-shirts or leftover pieces of fabric that you have in your craft room. It's easy, and best of all, it's free! You'll love this
  5. Place Mat Travel Jewelry Case - Never lose an expensive piece of jewelry again. This case will help you stay organized when traveling. If you are looking for quick and easy trash to treasure ideas, you'll love this fun project.
  6. Easy Shirt Necklace - No yarn? No problem. Kids and adults alike love these easy recycled crafts and this one is super easy. In fact, you can make this project in just minutes, making it the afternoon project. If you have old shirts, you can make all kinds of trash to treasure crafts.
  7. Repurposed Fabric Tote - For these scrap fabric crafts, you won't need to buy anything. Use what you already have and create this delightful bag. This is also a great gift idea for a fashionable friend.
  8. Denim Needle Case - Looking for crafts from recycled materials? You're sure to love this eco-friendly and frugal craft idea. In fact, you can store all of your sewing essentials in this case, making organization a snap.

1000+ Recycled Crafts: Crafting with Recyclable Items




If you loved this list, just wait! There's plenty more where that came from. Check out our massive list of 1000+ Recycled Crafts: Crafting with Recyclable Items.




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