3 Upcycle craft ideas to turn your trash into treasure

Celebrate Earth Day by getting crafty with the whole family!

Upcycle trash in to treasure with Michelle Oliver on Live in the D

Egg cartons, tin cans, old boxes... these are all things you should recycle, but why not upcycle them into items you will use again and again?! Let’s get crafty and turn your trash into treasure with these fun ideas!

Tin Can Lanterns

Tin Can Lanterns (WDIV-TV 2020)

Age: Adults

Skill Level: Moderate, must be able to work a drill

What you will need: Tin Cans, Drill with a metal drill bit, protective glove or vice, sharpie, spray paint that will work on metal.

Tin Cans, Drill with Metal Drill bit, Spray Paint that sticks to metal, sharpie (WDIV-TV 2020)

Method: First, clean your tin cans completely so there is nothing on them. Then, plan out the design you want to drill into your tin cans. It may be easier to first draw it out on a sheet of paper before marking it on the cans with a sharpie. While planning, consider where the ridges in the can are, you will want your drill points to be in the crevices because your drill will be less likely to slip. After marking them out on your can, use the drill and a metal drill bit to drill your designs into the can. Practice safety first and wear a thick, protective glove on whatever hand you are holding the can with, or better yet, use a vice to hold the can. After drilling out your designs, you can check what they look like by looking at the inside of the can. Take the cans to a well-ventilated area, put something protective down to cover the ground, and then spray paint them with whatever color you would like. Once dry, place a tea light candle in each of them and light them up for a beautiful set of lanterns.

Box Lid Catch-All Tray

Box Lid Catch-All Tray (WDIV-TV 2020)

Age: Adults

Skill Level: Easy

What you will need: A box with a lid, decorative paper (wrapping paper works well), scissors, paint, glue, a pen

Box with a lid, glue, scissors, pen, paint, decorative paper (WDIV-TV 2020)

Method: Separate the lid from the bottom of the box and trace the bottom of the box on the decorative paper. Though you will be making the catch-all tray out of the lid, you want to trace the bottom of the box because it is slightly smaller. After tracing, cut out the shape, the decorative paper should fit perfectly into the base of the lid. Next, paint the lid whatever color you’d like. Acrylic paints will work, but spray paint is a bit easier to use. If using spray paint, make sure you take precautions to protect the ground, and your clothes, and do it in a well-ventilated area. Once the lid is dry, glue the decorative paper into the base of the lid, and you will have a chic catch-all tray.

Egg Carton Flowers

Egg Carton Flower Craft (WDIV-TV 2020)

Age: Kids

Skill Level: Easy

What you will need: Egg cartons, acrylic paints, paintbrushes, straws, glue, scissors, fun things to decorate with

Method: First, remove the lid from the base of the egg carton, save the lid to later be used as your paint pallet. Then you will cut up the bottom part of the carton based on what kind of flowers you want to make. If you want to make sunflower-looking flowers, cut out square sections of 4. If you want tulip-looking flowers, cut out individual cartons. Once they are roughly cut out, you can trim them up to look a bit more like flower petals. Now, let the kids paint the flowers! Once the flowers are all dry, use glue to attach the straws which will act as the flower stems. Kids can also decorate the flowers more with pom-poms, glitter, or whatever else you’d like. Stick them in a vase and you will have a fun, handmade flower arrangement.


About the Author:

Michelle Oliver is a multimedia Journalist for the 10 a.m. lifestyle show, "Live in the D." She is known as "the food girl" because of her two popular food franchises, Dine in the D and Find Your Fix. Michelle also covers stories on homegrown businesses, style, and other fun things happening in the D.