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Recycle, repurpose and go green with these eco-friendly craft ideas
Say goodbye to plastic shopping bags by whipping up your own reusable tote. The sewing is super easy – simply cut two panel pieces for the bag and two long strips for the handles and get to work. Why not delve into your fabric stash and retrieve your favourite print, or make your bag in plain cotton and customise it yourself? Try decorating with fabric pens for a personal touch, such as the colourful Screen Sensation pack.
Rag rugs are made out of leftover fabric scraps or tarnished clothes and sheets, so they’re a fabulous way to recycle. There are many different ways to approach this homesteading tradition, but one of the easiest and quickest is to crochet a rug or bath mat from old t-shirts. Cut each t-shirt into a continuous strip with scissors, roll into a yarn ball and then use a large crochet hook to build up a spiral shape with single crochet.
Who wouldn’t love a stylish bag made out of sweetie wrappers? To make one, you’ll need to use a sewing machine to sandwich the wrappers between a rectangle of self-adhesive interfacing and net fabric, so that they’re held firmly in place. Line and stitch up the bag, and attach folded pieces of ribbon for handles.
There are lots of crafty ways to replace disposable materials – by switching out wrapping paper for fabric gift bags, for example. Use sweet designs, like those in Tilda’s Lazy Days range, and no one will ever want to throw their gift bag away! Hand stamped fabric napkins and fabric storage are also great solutions. Why not eliminate the need for plastic boxes and stitch up a basket for a little one’s growing toy collection?
Instead of picking flowers from nature, crochet your own for everlasting freshness! One option for making a crochet garland is to stitch all of the blooms first, then sew them together at the petal tips. If you prefer a join as you go method, use a one chain join stitch. Remember to stitch some loops at each end for hanging!
Book art projects are a great way to give an old hardback some love, and they certainly look impressive. You can use paper-folding techniques to create a sentiment or shape from the pages, then decorate the book with flowers or other embellishments that match the colour scheme of a room or special event.
Creating a cardboard necklace is easy, fun and leads to a recyclable result! Simply cut out shapes from thick cardboard and decorate with marker pens, paint or both. Next, cut a 20-inch length of brightly coloured twine and secure the plain side of the shapes to the middle section. Ta-dah!