Lifestyle

How to Make Upcycled Sustainable Christmas Decorations

Have a more sustainable Christmas this year and get creative with your old packaging.


Upcycling is a great way to transform old packaging into something new. With just a few amends and spare materials, packaging can easily be given new life and in doing so, be prevented from being thrown away. Creating something homemade isn’t just a fun thing to do, but it also helps to reduce the demand on the environment that is associated with manufacturing and delivering a brand new product.

In this guide, we share the step-by-step instructions for 3 fun upcycling ideas.

  1. FlavDrop™ Christmas Tree Decoration
  2. Pill Pot Candle Moulds
  3. Peanut Butter Tub Hanging Planters

Make sure to send us pictures of your creations or tag us on social media @myvegan #Myvegan #upcycledMyvegan for a chance to be featured.

1. FlavDrop™ Christmas Tree Decoration

Upcycled FlavDrops Christmas tree decoration

What you need

  • empty FlavDrop bottle
  • old magazine
  • double-sided tape

Instructions

  1. Get your old magazine and measure 3.5cm from the top of one of the pages, making a mark. Cut along a straight line from the right side edge in the direction of the spine of the magazine, leaving a section connected to the spine.
  2. Grab a handful of magazine pages of this strip, and make 3cm long cuts vertically along the strip until you have created a fringe effect (leaving a top section of paper connected to keep the pieces together).
  3. Remove these ‘fringe’ strips from the magazine spine, choose your favourited coloured pages and place to one side.
  4. Use double sided Sellotape and wrap this around the FlavDrop™ bottle.
  5. Starting at the bottom, stick your loose ‘fringe’ strips around the bottom of the bottle until all sides of the bottle are covered. Then gradually work your way up the bottle by adding more layers of strips until you get the middle of the bottle.
  6. You might need to cut up more strips from the magazine – these should be between 2-3cm in width as you get nearer the top, so the top fringe layers are slightly shorter than the bottom ones.
  7. Once you’ve covered the whole bottle in fringe strips, cut out 2 star shapes from the magazine and stick on either side of the pipette lid.
  8. Display your upcycled Christmas Tree figurine as part of this year’s Christmas décor – why not create another to make a pair!

2. Pill Pot Candle Moulds

Upcycled candle mould

What you need

  • empty vitamin pot
  • old candle wax
  • wick
  • pencil or toothpick
  • metal skewer
  • blue tack

Instructions

  1. Prepare you candle mould by taking your empty vitamin pot and removing the label.
  2. Using the metal skewer, pierce a hole in the base of the pill pot.
  3. Thread the wick through the hole and secure it in place by tying the top end round a pencil or toothpick place across the top of the pill pot.
  4. To prevent wax from leaking out the bole in the base and to help keep the wick taught, press some blue tack over the hole in the base.
  5. Now your mould is made, prepare the wax. Take your old wax and melt it on a low heat in an old pan.
  6. Once the wax has melted, let it cool a little (but don’t let it set). It can’t be poured into the mould too early because if it is too hot, the wax will warp the pill pot mould.
  7. Pour the wax into your mould. If you want to use multiple colours, allow your first layer to set before adding the next colour.
  8. Once your candle has set in the mould, remove it by carefully cutting out the mould. Cutting the based will allow the candle to be pushed out of the mould.
  9. Recycle your waste plastic if not reusable.

3. Peanut Butter Tub Hanging Planters

What you need

Instructions

  1. Remove the label from your old All-Natural Peanut Butter tub and cut off the rim.
  2. Take your glue and wallpaper, and decorate the outside of the peanut butter tub.
  3. Use the twine and rope to wrap around the decorated tub and transform the tub into a hanging planter.
  4. Add your plant and then your planter is ready to hang up.

Summary

There are lots of ways you can transform your old packaging into something new, including Christmas decorations and gifts! We have shared just three examples but the possibilities are endless! Get creative and you will soon find that everything can come in useful for something. By upcycling old packaging, you are reducing waste and creating something that has the planet in mind too.

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Arabella Ogilvie

Arabella Ogilvie

Writer and expert

Arabella has a Bachelor of Science degree in Physiology from the University of Glasgow where she covered health topics ranging from the physiological effects of exercise and nutrition, to psychology and neuroscience.

She has a lifelong interest in sport and fitness, including running, swimming, hockey, and especially rowing. At university, Arabella was a keen rower and competed in the first boat at events such as the prestigious Henley Women’s Regatta, The Scottish Boat Race, and British University Championships, and won Novice Rower of the year in her first year.

In her spare time, Arabella loves to train in the gym and practice yoga and meditation. She is passionate about the natural world and will take any opportunity to be outdoors.

Find out more about Arabella’s experience here.