I’ve always been a crafter and also have a love of the environment. When you think about it, crafting is a pretty ‘green’ activity – you’re making things yourself and you can use anything you like to make things with!
I know we crafters never throw anything away. Well you never know when it might come in handy! I’ve recently been taking this to the extreme as I’m collecting anything and everything that could possibly be used by a nursery class to make models with. We have a permanent box in the kitchen to collect bottle tops, toilet and kitchen roll tubes, boxes, egg boxes, plastic lids, fruit mesh bags, yoghurt pots etc etc etc.
This collecting is just an extension of my keeping things that might be useful. I always cut off the ribbon tabs from clothes to use on my cards (they make great hand tied bows or can be used on gift tags), I save all our greetings cards and take bits off for gift tags, or to use as toppers.
My favourite time of the year though is Christmas as this gives the most opportunity to collect and reuse bits and pieces. I think my most favourite items to canniblise are Christmas crackers. I always buy my crackers – I like the surprise inside and it’s my one indulgence really. They still hold the childhood magic of Christmas for me. So I choose them with an eye on the decorations on them. The little bits of ribbon are brilliant to reuse on gift tags and cards.
Many of my cards this year have been made using bits of Christmas crackers – the wreaths and berries on my larger Christmas cards were all on crackers from last Christmas. The ribbons on some of my personalised Christmas cards was saved from my wedding presents (6 years ago). It’s such a lovely colour and ribbon can be very expensive bought new, so I’ve saved it from a landfill site and given some of it a new life!
One of my other favourite ways of using up all the left over bits of papers, card and ‘bits’ is collage or mosaic. It’s a great way to reduce what is thrown away and it’s brilliant to do with children. I know my daughter loves it! I use little takeaway pots to store left over bits and I have them split into Christmas, Love and Everyday. That way I don’t have to root through everything I can just take the pot I need, some glue and some plain card shapes to cover. Simple and great fun without lots of mess. My love hearts have proved very popular for Engagements. Anniversary’s and for Valentines’ Day!
Happy Christmas crafting xx