How to Use Recycled Items to Decorate Your Home

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Buying home furnishings and decorations can be expensive, but with some old items around the house and a little innovation, you can make one-of-a-kind decorations that are cheap and unique. The best part of DIY décor? It’s environmentally friendly too! Learn how to give life to 7 items you may have thrown away help you save money and the environment.

DIY Upcycling Projects for Home Décor


Once a bottle is empty, there is still so much you can do with it. Bottles can be transformed into vases, jewelry holders, lamps, organizers, bird feeders, and so much more. Paint and display different size bottles as a centerpiece, or cut bottles in half to use the bottoms as storage for loose items. Otherwise, turn plastic bottles on their side cut slits in the side to use the bottles as planters.

Empty Jars

After a candle is burned to the end of the wick or the food in a jar is finished, you can clean the jar out and use it around the house as lantern, terrarium, planter, table centerpiece or vase. Whether you paint the jar a different color or leave it clear, empty jars make great decorations and see-through storage. If you decide to use the jar without its lid, turn spare lids into coasters, wall décor, or trinket trays.


A glue gun and scissors are your best friend when it comes to recycling old paper into beautiful works of art. Take old newspapers, magazines, and junk mail to add accents to plain mirrors, label jars for organization, or create unique paper shapes and lanterns. Printed paper can also be used to cover and revamp boring photo frames, spruce up drab candle jars, and line the inside of drawers for a fresh and vibrant feel. If all else fails, you can always paper mache a masterpiece to hang on your wall.


Corks are good for more than resealing a bottle of wine – they can be glued together to make holiday wreaths, bathmats, flowerpots, lampshades, coasters and much more. If you would rather display your cork collection, cut the corks in half the long way, invest in a shadow box, and glue the corks for homemade décor and memorabilia.

Egg Cartons

Whether you use the whole egg carton or cut it up, the possibilities are endless. Use the entire egg carton to make a flowerpot or centerpiece; cut the egg cartons into pieces and reassemble it as a string of lights, hanging lamp, one big canvas, or makeshift cork board. Egg cartons can even be used as jewelry holders or gift boxes to give to a friend. Paint the carton for a cleaner, store bought look, or leave it natural for a more country feel.

Toilet Paper Rolls

Like egg cartons and corks, empty toilet paper rolls can also be cut and glued into incredible wall art and other unique crafts. Cut toilet paper rolls in half and glue them onto an unused board for a DIY planter or flower holder, or suspend different shapes like stars and snowflakes to create custom made decoration for every holiday. Toilet paper rolls can also be transformed into floating lanterns to decorate a deck or patio.

Recycling in New Jersey

Crafting your own decorations out of items around the house is not only good for your wallet, but also good for the environment. In addition to recycling services, Jefferson Recycling offers residential and commercial services such as dumpster rentals, onsite crushing, and demolition. For more information, contact us today!