Some creative uses for your rubbish
We all know of the phrase “reduce, reuse, recycle” Here are some creative ideas to help make your rubbish work for you before consigning it to landfill where it will likely remain for hundreds of years.
Before you throw something away … think “what could I use this for in a different way before I consign it to landfill”
Some examples of how I make my rubbish work for me for again and again before I chuck it out.
- Old wellies – plant some pretty flowers or herbs into them. Don’t forget to drill or cut some holes and add some pebbles in the bottom for drainage.
- Toilet rolls. Can be used for plating seedlings directly in to the ground as they will decompose. They can also be used to help store cables and keep them tidy in a storage box. A bit like a honeycomb design.
- Yogurt pots – use these for seedlings or as paint holders.
- Egg shells – wash, and blend – add to compost or sprinkle on top of the soil to nourish your plants and also deter snails.
- Banana skins – dry them out in the bottom of your oven, blend and add to your plants. A great source of potassium- especially good for tomatoes.
- Water from fish tank – use to water your garden. A great source of nitrogen.
- Old stained clothes – cut them up and use as cleaning cloths
- Pretty / sentimental clothes. Cut them up and sue as craft projects – turn them into scrunchies, blankets, rugs, cushions – the possibilities are endless.
- Christmas / birthday cards – cut them up and use as gift tags
- Ribbons inside new clothes – use these for craft projects or for tying gift tags to presents
- Baby feeding bottles – are excellent for making salad dressings or measuring our smaller amounts of liquids for cooking. They have smaller increments marked than a jug. They also benefit from the screw top lid which can be helpful for storing things.
- Plastic fruit trays are great for planting seedlings in as well as storage dividers in the fridge.
- Net vegetable / fruit bags. I stuff these inside one another until I have a big firm ball and then tie it at each end and use as a scourer for washing up or cleaning with.
- Envelopes – old envelopes can be cut into strips and used for shopping lists and to-do lists.
- Cereal boxes – can be flat packed and used for many craft projects. I also find they make excellent liners form y cat litter tray. They don’t get too soggy and can be removed from the tray easily. Also, the cats don’t shred card like they do with newspaper.
- Milk bottles and washing up bottles – rinse and dry out. Use to store your homemade garden fertiliser or cut off the bottoms, and remove the lid, turn upside down and insert the neck of the bottle into the ground near to a plant – add a few pebbles to stop the bottle from getting clogged. Use this as a vessel to drip feed water to your plants – especially helpful if your plants are surrounded by a weed membrane which can make watering difficult.
- Lemon skins – add to white vinegar and steep for a few weeks – use as a cleaning product.
- Bread bags – use these as tiny bin liners for the bathroom pedal bins.
- Old toothbrushes – an excellent cleaning tool!
- Jam jars can be reused for tea light candles indoors or outdoors, they can be used to store herbs and spices, pens, pickles, sugar, beads, buttons, sweets, chocolates, treats, soaps, bath salts, decorated and filled as gifts, water for painting with – the list is endless – I never chuck our jars.
I hope you’ve found some inspiration here, I’d love to hear more ideas on how you make your rubbish work for you. Please share so that I can add to my arsenal !
For more ideas on affordable changes you can make, head over to my new eco-friendly one stop shop to help you make changes that won’t cost the earth.