The popularity and practicality of recycling has made many people re-think ways to reuse discarded items around the house, including shredded paper. It can be amazing how quickly shredded documents, newsprint, and waste paper accumulate, especially in an office setting. Instead of simply recycling this paper into packing materials or fire-starter, try something a bit more inventive.
Try these six clever ways to reduce and recycle your unwanted paper shreds:
1. Decoupage accessories.
Shredded paper and glue are all that you need to create decoupage, and this can be applied to a number of wood accents and accessories for a unique item that is inexpensive to create. Try using a simple, cheap wood bracelet and laying the saturated strips of paper over it to give it a cool pattern; allow to dry fully before wearing.
2. Willowy topiaries.
A great idea for discarded shredded paper is to make festive topiary trees. You can spray a foam ball or two with adhesive and then gently stick the clumps of paper to the foam surface. Add a stem that is firmly embedded in a container, bucket, or plant-pot filled with sand or stones.
3. Whimsical wreaths.
You may want to wire bunches of paper shreds to a wreath ring to create an airy, feminine wreath that is perfect for a bedroom door or over a kitchen window. Decorate simply with a bow or ribbon. These look especially stunning when you used multicolored paper shreds.
4. Bird nests.
Kids especially enjoy making little bird nests from clumps of shredded paper, which can be spray-painted brown and accented with twigs or branches. Gently glue pom-poms in the nests, for the birds' heads peeking out over the edge. Glue eyes, beaks, or other accents to make your nest unique.
5. Homemade stationary.
Another great way to recycle shredded paper is to turn it into beautiful, handmade stationary; soak the shreds in water and use a blender or mixer to create a mushy paper mixture. This can then be poured over a screen or shaped over a wire form to create a specific shape, such as a bowl. Allow to fully dry and peel your new paper from the screen carefully.
6. Shredded paper treasure hunt.
For a fun afternoon activity, fill a small room or space with shredded paper all over the floor. Bury trinkets tucked in eggs or packages among the shredded paper and let kids hunt for the goodies. This is also a great idea for an Easter egg hunt when the weather outside is poor.
These six ideas are a good reason to dig out your paper shredder and start accumulating the materials needed to create these whimsical wonders. These also make a great rainy-day project for kids which will help to foster a sense of stewardship and environmental awareness in young recyclers.
To learn more about document shredding, contact a company like Vital Records Control.