Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Gill the recycled holiday fish

Happy upcycling holidays everyone!

I trekked back to see my family in mid-Michigan this Christmas with many-a-handmade gift to give. My 9 year old niece and 4 year old nephew excitedly took me to see their neighborhood fish. I wondered why this particular fish lived in the parking lot of some nearby stores, but since you should never question the enthusiasm of kids, I went along with it and assumed they wouldn't be that excited if his health of living in a parking lot was questioned. When we pulled up it all made sense - Gill was constructed completely from recycled plastics. He was created mostly from laundry detergent bottles, but there were also pieces of plastic plates and an old wading pool in there, too. He also had holiday lights strung throughout him, making him a recycled aquatic Christmas tree of sorts. There's certainly more than one way to spread holiday cheer.

Monday, December 13, 2010

ReMake your holiday gifts!

Hey there RePlay readers! Looking for a last-minute gift that's handmade, but doesn't take you a lot of your own time to make? Gift the gift of ReMake It kits! There are five to choose from - wine cork trivet, glass bottle lamp, magazine stationery kit, bottle cap magnets, and the newest addition is the plastic bag trash can! If you live in the New York City area, you can pick any of these up at the Union Square Holiday market in the Karma Kiss booth. And tell 'em we sent ya.

If you're not near NYC, you can order them online at Karma Kiss or at GreenFeet.

The trash can makes a great gift and you can pick up more than one and you don't have to limit it to just plastic bags. Try out some of Kathy's recent creations from t-shirts, paper, and more.

Happy holiday upcycling!

Friday, December 3, 2010

ReMake It! Paper Waste Basket

It's time for this week's ReMake It Trash Can DIY!

The Paper Waste Basket

ReMake It! Trash Can
1 or more magazines
Cereal box
2 Ribbons (approx 12" each)
Box Cutter (optional)
Clear Tape

Time: About an hour

1) Tear 10-15 colorful pages out of an old magazine (if you have a box cutter, cut along the centerfold to avoid tearing). It’s easier to use a magazine with sturdy paper- for example Vogue or Artforum.

2) Cut strips ¾” wide by 4 ½” long.

3) Take the first strip of paper and wrap it around two of the spokes. Tape the end of the strip down taut to the paper to form a paper chain link.

4) Build the first row of chain links by repeating step 3 until you circle around the trash can. There should be a gap between each link.

5) Start a second row on top of the first by making paper chain links that loop together each set of spokes that have a gap in the previous row. The result is a checkerboard pattern that alternates between a gap and a paper chain link. As you build each layer on top of the last, leave one space open the whole way up.

6) Now we’re going to fill in the open space with a trash can label. At the RePlayGround studio, we’re going to use this trash can to sort recycled paper, so I’ve made a corresponding label. Cut out large letters from a magazine, then cut out cardboard squares and glue the letters on to give the label a good backing. Next punch holes in each of the four corners.

7) Take an end of each ribbon and tie it to the top rim of the trash can. You can secure the knot by taping it down with a small piece of clear tape.

String each ribbon through the corresponding top and bottom hole of the first letter, then loop each ribbon around the nearest spoke. Keep stringing until all the letters are in place. Tie off the ribbons and secure again with tape.

Once you’re done, your Paper Waste Basket will put all other trash cans to waste!

Stay tuned for the last ReMake It! Trash Can DIY in this series!

Upcycle away,