Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Tip of the Morning Tuesday: Recycling (or is it Up-cycling?) Tins & Containers

I am never quite sure about the difference between recycling, up-cycling and re-purposing items. Well whatever you want to call it I have turned some tins and plastic containers into other more useful items instead of throwing them into the landfill.

I also have thought about doing a tip section once in a while. My first thought was to do one on Tuesdays and call it Tip of the Morning Tuesdays.  For some weird reason a little Irish voice popped into my head saying "Top of the morning to you" and I thought about a play on that with Tip of the Morning. But I knew I wouldn't be able to do a tip every morning, so I thought Tuesday sounded better with Tip of the Morning. However, I wondered if I would even be able to keep up with a weekly tip? So I don't want to hold myself to every Tuesday, but when I post a new tip or simple project, I thought I would do it on a Tuesday and call it Tip of the Morning Tuesday. What do you think about that? Please leave me a comment below or email me or use the contact form on the right side bar and let me know what you think about this idea. Okay so here is my first Tip of the morning Tuesday for you~
I had this empty plastic container (actually I have 2 of these containers) and thought this was too nice to just throw away, so I thought of different ways in which I could use it.
The lid flips up like this. You can also unscrew the entire top off as well.
I also have a lot of these and other similar tins.
I like how these have a hinge so the lid is attached.
Another tin, but this one is round.
This one the lid is separate.
This is what I did to the plastic container. I used Mod Podge in a matte finish to glue and seal this decorative paper on the lid. I printed out an address label on the computer using a fun font and added more Mod Podge on top. 
I also added a pretty paper inside the lid. Inside are my assorted hand sewing needles. You could make one for machine sewing needles too.
Here I had a fabric scrap book page that I bought several years ago. It's fabric, but made stiff somehow to act like paper. I did the same method of applying it to the lid as above.
Inside is a mini pincushion I made using a lid from a coconut milk container (another up-cycled project) and some felt. I can add other items to this sewing kit as I need them. (oops I see a bubble in the lid...well to fix that I can prick it with a pin and add some more Mod Podge).
Here are 3 tins I converted to various uses using the same method as above. 
Inside are the items. Another tip here for the pin (or the safety pin) container is to add a magnet to the bottom of the tin. The magnet sticks to the tin and the pins stick to the magnet, so if you happen to accidentally drop it, the pins won't all go flying in a thousand directions. It acts like one of those magnetic pincushions too.
 There are so many things you can choose to put in small (or large) containers besides these I have shown. For example I will up-cycle a few more containers to hold:

  • Bandages (makes a great little first aid kit to keep with you)
  • Knitting stitch markers
  • Knitting stitch holders
  • Pencil refills for mechanical pencils
  • Erasers
  • Buttons
  • Beads
  • Thimbles
  • Tea bags to bring along with me in my bag
  • Sweetener (I use Stevia) packets to take along with me in my bag
  • Hair pins or barrettes
  • Coins 
Also you can add trim, buttons, beads or other embellishments to the outside of your containers if you want to really make them fancy. You could paint them instead of using pretty paper or do both. You can also up-cycle those magazines and catalogs by making collage containers using the Mod Podge too. Maybe a pinch of glitter for some bling. So many creative ideas you can come up with, so have fun!

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  1. I love the idea of "tip of the morning" or "tip of the week" or "tip when you feel like it". You gave some great ideas and I like how you used the edge of the lid to border your pretty paper. It reminded me of the double lids of canning jars. You are always full of great ideas and you take the time to describe things well so its easy to follow.
    thanks Tara
    PS I love the topper you made, the veggie and fruit theme fabric is adorable.

  2. Just tip when you want. We certainly aren't going to hold you to a regular schedule. I love the idea of the magnet at the bottom of the pin tin.

  3. These are really great ideas for re-using containers. Now I will have to start saving some of my containers instead of throwing them away.

  4. Great Tuesday Tip this morning ! I like your idea. I love spinach and buy it in clear plastic box like containers...when empty, I put fat quarters or small folds of fabric in them, stack um in the closet and I can see what's in there.

  5. Love the idea of a tip every Tuesday - and your title is perfect! I have several of those tins that I just couldn't bring myself to throw away. Thanks for ideas of what to do with them!

  6. Love your containers. Loads of good ideas and love the idea of a tip for Tuesday. Even if you can't do one every Tuesday I'm sure you'll have loads of good tips for us to learn from.

  7. This is a fantastic idea! Thank you so much for sharing!

  8. Thanks for sharing on your blog and for the tips innovation! Love to gather new ideas! I am a native New Mexican transported to NJ and I always feel a connection to Abq whenever I read your postings. ;). Thanks!

    1. Thank you for your sweet comment. Glad you feel connected to ABQ when I post, lol. I do hope you come back to read my reply here because you are a no-reply and I cannot contact you through email. So if you read this you can fix that (leave me your email and I'll show you how), or leave your email each time you comment or you can fill out the contact form on the right side bar too.
      It's chile roasting time here in NM now...I'll bet you really miss chile?

  9. I love when I see projects with recycled items, I have to try that Coconut Body Butter:) I love to shop at Trader Joes so I will have to look for this one since I love anything coconut LOL!!! TFS


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