RE-Purpose Your Trash into Treasure!

A list of 6 common household items that can be transformed…

I have been so inspired lately by all of the creative ideas out there on the internet! It seems like at least once a week I am wide eyed in wonder at some new idea on how to repurpose a common item that is in every person’s home. Repurposing is of environmental importance because every physical item ever made has an environmental footprint, no matter how “eco-friendly” it is or may seem. But giving it an extended life actually decreases the overall footprint! Good news, right?

No matter where you are at in your waste less journey, we all have items lying around in our home that could be reused in an incredible way that perhaps you have never though of. This post is to simply point you toward some of those ideas, and inspire you to give new life. This post is inspired by a friend who took her empty laundry soap container, and now her kids are using it as a fun outdoor water play dispenser!

So here are 6 common household items that can be turned from trash into a new treasured item:

1. T-shirt

Pillow – do you have a favorite shirt you no longer wear, but you don’t want to throw it away? I think this is a great solution to continue your enjoyment.

Yarn – cut up t-shirts into thin strips to create yarn to be used to crochet a basket, or braid for an area rug. These examples are listed below.

Rug – There are several ways to make a rug out of strips of fabric, and this is one of them.

Basket – crochet a basket to store your sewing supplies, rags, or yarn.

Bag – make a bag that can be used as an every day carrier, or specifically for produce and/or bread when shopping.

Children’s clothes – a large t-shirt can turn into a girls dress, or even a romper.

Headbands – super easy, and requires no sewing.

Bracelet – This is also very easy to make, and a great if your daughter is looking for some friendship bracelets with her friends.

Dog toy

2. Toilet Paper Rolls

Pen holder – As someone who loosing pens often, this is a great idea.

Organizer – organize more than just pens, store scissors or paper clips too.

Seed starter – as paper biodegrades, this is a great way to get extra life and grow the beginning of a yummy food.

Kids crafts – create shapes for “stamps” or a play village, there are a lot of options to make crafts out of these rolls.

Home Decor – there are a lot of surprisingly beautiful wall hangings made out of these rolls, check them out.

Fire starter

Chord holder – keep your chords organized with the ability to label them too.

3. Cardboard Box


Crafts with Kids – nothing more fun to a child then a cardboard box. So versatile, it can become a play house, a car, or something else.

Picture frames

Cat scratcher

Clothing drawer separator – Marie Kondo the crap out of your drawers!

Storage Totes or basket

iPad case

Caddy – for bbq items or bathroom storage.

Shoe Organizer – many different ways to transform cardboard into shoe storage.

4. Plastic Lids

Crafts for Kids – create a bottle cap snake, little bugs, or flowers with your little.

Vase or Clock

Paint Catchers – separate paint colors by using a plastic lid with no home.

Plant Coasters – prevent your plants/seedlings from seeping water onto the surface under it.

Other – Popsicle drip catcher, hamburger separator, coaster, etc.

5. Containers

Storage for bulk food – keep containers you might normally discard and keep them to store your bulk foods. For example, I use my epicure spice jars to fill with bulk store spices.

Planter – if you have a plastic container without a lid, consider using it to grow flowers or get your produce plants started.

Freezing food – instead of throwing your yogurt or peanut butter jars into the recycling bin, keep them and use them instead to freeze food such as broth, baking, fruit, or homemade pesto.

Baby Wipe Container – this is a great container to keep and store your reusable rags in, but can be repurposed in many other ways too.

Vomit Catcher – this may seem weird, but in our home we have kept bowl shaped containers to use for when someone in the home is ill. Don’t want to use the regular mixing bowl for that!

Gum/Mint containers – use for loose change, bobby pins, paper clips, you name it.

Tin cans – consider keeping your tin cans to store your pencil crayons, or as a planter.

Jugs – use your empty jug to use as a watering for your indoor or outdoor plants. Milk jugs can also be used to store bulk items such as rice, beans, or lentils.

6. Egg Cartons

Give Away – if you know someone who raises chickens for their eggs, save your cartons and see if they’d like to reuse them.

Seed Planter – similar to the toilet paper roll above, the carton biodegrades, so it it perfect for planting seeds that can eventually be then planted in the ground.

Organization – the carton can be used for organizing jewelry, small items like screws and paper clips, mustard bottles in the fridge, sewing supplies, Christmas ornaments, nail polish, and paint. The list goes on…

Home Decor – check out this homemade wreath. Or these beautiful light covers.

Furniture – not kidding with this one!

Game Card Holder – if you’re a card player, check this out.

Crafts for Kids – these are amazing, and such fun ideas to create with your littles.

Bulletin Board

Gift Box – make it the size you want, and be creative about how it looks!


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