Do you happen to have more dish towels than you need, a drawer full of rubber bands, or perhaps an old cork from a wine bottle? Instead of tossing these items in the trash, try upcycling them. Upcycling, is a great way to get use out of old items you don’t use anymore by repurposing them. This article from Enviro Maids, has several tips for ways to upcycle common items found in most kitchens. Time to turn that would-be trash into something creative and useful.
Upcycle Your Kitchen Item
Dish Towels: Turn all those colorful and decorative dish towels you’ve collected over the years into unique wine “bags.” Simply take a towel (free of any stains), spread it flat on a table and place a bottle in the center; wrap the towel up and around the bottle of wine. Secure the towel to the bottle by tying a piece of ribbon, sturdy string, or raffia around the neck of the bottle.
Egg Cocktail Shaker: Have one too many cocktail shakers taking up space in your cupboard? Turn one into a handy breakfast tool. Use your cocktail shaker in the mornings to make fluffy omelets and scrambled eggs. Add eggs, milk, and your favorite vegetables in the shaker, cover it with the lid, and give it a good shake. Pour the contents out into your skillet and you’re ready to start your mornings off to a tasty start.
Silence a Loud Cabinet Door with Cork: Stop your cabinet doors from making that loud banging noise every time you close them with the help of wine bottle corks. Cut two ¼ inch slices off the edge of a cork and attach the pieces to the inside corners of the cabinet or to the inside corners of the cabinet doors.
Have a Stuck Lid? Rubber Bands to the Rescue: Trying to open a jar of food can sometimes be a slippery situation. Stretching a rubber band around the lid gives you better grip, so you can unseal it easier. Rubber bands are also helpful for getting nail polish bottles that seem to be painted shut opened in a flash. Wrap a rubber band several times around the top, and twist it open. You’ll be polishing your nails in no time.
No Candle Sticks? No Problem — Use Old Wine Glasses: When you want to add the warm glow of candles to your next dinner party, but don’t have any candle sticks handy, put your old wine glasses to use. Flip a few glasses upside-down and prop a pillar candle on top. For an added touch, add a flower or place card inside the bowl part of the glass.
Leftover Wrapping Paper: If you’re like most people, you probably have a bunch of different wrapping paper rolls hanging around with very little paper left. Use those remaining pieces to line a serving tray for a decorative touch. Hosting a holiday party? Use your Christmas or Hanukkah-themed paper. Hosting a ladies brunch? Line a tray with a floral print.
Chopstick Tea Brewer: Like to brew your own iced tea, but struggle to keep the teabag strings from falling in during the steeping process? Tie a few tea bags around a chopstick and rest the chopstick horizontally across the top of the pitcher. No more having to pick labels and string out of your fresh iced tea.
Paper Clips Prevent Stale Chips: To help keep your favorite chips or pretzels fresh, clip the top of the bag with a large paper clip or binder clip.
From Cake Stand to Chip and Dip Server: A cake stand is an elegant way to display a cake, but if you find you rarely use yours, turn it into an appetizer tray. Turn your cake stand upside-down and fill the flat part around the pedestal with crackers, chips, pretzels, etc. If the pedestal is hollow, use this area to fill it with dip, hummus, or olives.
Makeshift Pencil Case: Plastic zipper bags aren’t just for storing food; turn them into a pen/pencil/marker holder. Punch three holes along the non-zippered edge and clip the bag into a three-ring binder.
Aluminum Foil Paint Catcher: Trying to paint around door knobs and kitchen cabinet handles can be a real nuisance. To keep paint from dripping onto door knobs, handles, and fixtures, wrap the area you don’t want to paint with aluminum foil.