Monthly Archives: June 2011

Adventures in Recycling Wedding Dresses

Sarah and Brennan's Wedding

Creative Commons License photo credit: Jeremy Bronson

We’ve talked about what to do with an old prom dress, so now we’re moving on to another one of life’s big occasions- a wedding. After the wedding, what do you do with the dress?  You might save it in the garment bag that in came in and store it somewhere in the attic or closet, but there are lots of other things you could do to recycle wedding dresses.

Trash the Dress

Although the name may make that sound contrary to advice you’d find on RecycleScene, a Trash the Dress session can be super fun, and doesn’t mean the dress is unusable afterward. The idea is that you’ve made a commitment to your partner so you’ll never need the dress again. A “Trash the Dress” session typically refers to a photo shoot of you in your dress doing things you’d never do in a pristine, white, expensive garment! Standing in the middle of a lake, tromping through a muddy field, lying on the ground, riding a horse, running a marathon, and generally getting creative. You can end up with some gorgeous photos and it’s also a great symbolic gesture. Take a look at some Trash the Dress photos, and you’ll get the idea. Once “trashed” you’re still going to have a dress. If you no longer want to keep it, or perhaps you’re over photo shoots after posing so much on your big day and want to skip the “trashing”, here are some handy tips for what to do with your old bridal dress with an emphasis on reuse.

Links to products featured on RecycleScene are affiliate links. We try and only feature products that close the recycling loop. Make a purchase of recommended products on our site, and we get a small percentage of affiliate commission to maintain our site. Thanks!

Recycled Recycling Receptacles!

Have you ever pondered the irony in recycling items in a bin that was not made from recycled materials? Before you let your mind spiral into the paradoxical abyss that is using virgin materials to help recycle, read this guest article by Carla Kostiak of Busch Systems.

The Benefit of Buying Bins Made with Recycled Content

Whether an environmental fanatic, moderate participant or someone simply seeking information we must work together toward the very real, immediate and necessary conservation of our natural resources and energy. Without such efforts our environment cannot sustain itself. One of the ways in which we can contribute to environmentalism is by encouraging the design, manufacturing and purchasing of products which contain recycled content, such as, recycling bins.

Links to products featured on RecycleScene are affiliate links. We try and only feature products that close the recycling loop. Make a purchase of recommended products on our site, and we get a small percentage of affiliate commission to maintain our site. Thanks!

Light Up Your Garden With Recycled Lanterns

Glowing Jars

Creative Commons License photo credit: rkelland

Add a cheerful, festive feel to your garden or yard with recycled lanterns. They’re easy to make with materials you probably already have lying around.

Paper, Tin Cans and Jars

For a simple craft project that’s great to do with kids, try making these paper lanterns. You can make them different sizes, hang them up individually or tie them to make a string of lanterns. Glue some colored tissue paper on the inside layer and attach a lantern around each bulb of a string of bistro lights and light them up!

You wouldn’t think an old tin can could ever become an interesting or even elegant addition to you garden, but this tutorial shows that it can be done easily.

Adding a candle to an empty jar with the label removed is about as simple and easy as it gets. Wrap some wire around the neck of the jar to create a handle, put some colored stones or a little sand in the base of the jar and nobody will ever guess that jar used to hold pickles or pasta sauce!

If you want a slightly different look, you could frost the jars, like these recycled glass jar star lanterns.

Glue some tissue paper to the outside of the lanterns to give them some color.

Buy Recycled Lanterns

Garden lanterns made with recycled tinIf making it yourself isn’t your thing, there are lots of interesting and fun lanterns to buy made from recycled materials. These lanterns made from reclaimed tin don’t look like something you’d want to make by hand without previous metal working experience, thick leather gloves, and some proper tools. You can bask in the glow of these cheery lanterns without any of the work and feel good about supporting artisans that use recycled materials.

With realistic flickering LED tea lights, candles, string lights, or even simple DIY LEDs (one LED taped to a lithium coin battery), there are many ways to get light into your garden. Safety first! Make sure you choose a safe combination when designing your garden light scheme. Also remember  to use a taper or lighter long enough to reach safely into your jar or can when lighting candles.

Also, to end on some cuteness here’s a really adorable hedgehog lantern.

Links to products featured on RecycleScene are affiliate links. We try and only feature products that close the recycling loop. Make a purchase of recommended products on our site, and we get a small percentage of affiliate commission to maintain our site. Thanks!

9 Ideas for Recycled Wedding Gifts

Recycled, New, Borrowed and Blue

Shopping for the happy couple? Let us provide some beautiful options with recycling in mind. Here are some great gifts from recycled materials for the newlyweds:

Recycled wine barrel tableRecycled wine barrel serving tray

Married life is barrels of fun- that’s what you can tell the new couple when you give them this beautiful table or serving tray crafted from old wine barrels.

 

 

Fire & Light recycled dinnerwareFire & Light Glimmer Glass Plate made with recycled glass

 

Set the table with Fire & Light beautiful Glimmer Glass recycled plates, bowls and glasses.

Organic cotton and hemp decorative pillows with recycled filling

 

Find beautiful decorative pillows made with organic cotton and hemp and stuffed with an eco-fill made from spun, recycled PET plastic bottles.

Ruffled tea light holders made from recycled glass bottles

Made by Bottled Up Designs, these little dishes, or Bottle Butts, are versatile and functional. While their more sophisticated cousins, the Ruffled Tea Light Holders are an equally fun recycled gift. All Bottled Up Designs pieces come with a card explaining the “Story of the Glass”.

 

Coat rack made from recycled wine bottles

This coat rack helps save glass from the landfill by being made from reclaimed wine bottles.

Kitchen composter to recycle food wasteComposting guide

Wedding gifts don’t always have to be fragile or decorative. This kitchen composter is practical and will get years of good use. Using the Japanese method of Bokashi, this odorless indoor composting system pickles and ferments food scraps much faster than conventional composting methods. The liquids that separate out from the food waste can be drained using the spigot and used as fertilizer for house plants or a kitchen herb garden. How’s that for romance? Once the bucket is full, it takes only 10 days to produce a pre-compost mixture ready to be buried in the garden. The compost converts to rich topsoil in only one month, just enough time for the honeymoon to be over.

Recycled wall art

Awww…because weddings are a time to get sentimental, this piece of wall art is made using reclaimed pine and recycled iron and reads “To My Heart You Hold the Key”.

Remember that a small amount of your purchase through any of these links goes to us to keep the site going and continue to promote recycled products and provide recycling information.

Recycled wedding gifts

And finally, click on the image above for more ideas for unique recycled wedding gifts, and to start your own green wedding registry.

Links to products featured on RecycleScene are affiliate links. We try and only feature products that close the recycling loop. Make a purchase of recommended products on our site, and we get a small percentage of affiliate commission to maintain our site. Thanks!

10 Ideas For Recycled Garden Planters On The Cheap

Recycled garden planter

Creative Commons License photo credit: craigemorsels

 The next time you’re looking for a new pot to spruce up your garden, consider what’s hanging out in your garage or closet, or take a walk down the street to your neighbor’s garage sale or to your local thrift store. Almost anything that will hold soil and can be modified to allow for drainage could be made into a planter. Take a look at some of these fantastic, upcycled garden additions.

Recycling

Creative Commons License photo credit: icathing

P1030273

Creative Commons License photo credit: stu_spivack

08-mar-25

Creative Commons License photo credit: sashafatcat

Make a planter from upcycled takeout cartons, which due to their wax coating and contact with messy foods, cannot be recycled.

shoe planter

Creative Commons License photo credit: cuttlefish

Old shoes or boots are favorite items to reuse and repurpose into recycled garden planters. In fact, the Alamo Square Shoe Garden in San Francisco is an entire garden full of planters made from old, abandoned shoes! Making your own shoe garden is easy! A little potting soil, seedlings, a plastic bag, a sharp object and you’re four easy steps away from an upcycled planter.

  1. Line your shoe or boot (or other improvised pot) with a plastic bag. Cut it to fit your footwear so it’s entirely inside.
  2. Use a sharp object to poke some drainage holes on the sides and bottom, through the plastic bag and shoe. I found a combination of hole puncher and screwdriver works well on sides of old, thin leather, but whatever works for you as long as it is handled safely. For the sturdier sole bottom, you may need a drill.
  3. Fill the shoes with potting soil, all the way to the toe area. To keep the bag in place while you’re filling it with dirt, it helps to use a clothes pin or binder clip. Don’t overfill with dirt- leave about an inch from the top. TIP: It helps if you still have the laces in the shoes and they are tied, to hold in the soil.
  4. Think of the shoe as a peat pot, and plant your seedlings at the same depth. Remember to water it!

You may find that succulents grow well in this type of planter, so you may want mix in sand and peat moss to your soil.

Moisture level is crucial to desert plants as well as any other houseplant. The amount of water needed for each planter depends on the size of the plant, the type of soil, size of your shoe planter, and the time of year. Overwatering is the biggest problem, so remember to keep it well-drained.

Making the Most of Small Space

Do some serious upcycling with these other clever ideas for unique and unusual planters. These two methods of growing vegetables are great for maximizing growing space.

From Somerset, England take a look at this ingenious vegetable garden in a hanging shoe organizer.

Elevate your rows of leafy greens using rain gutters.

We LOVE this idea too. For a more decorative vertical planter, turn an old pallet on its side. It might be neat to paint the pallet first.

Don’t forget we’ve got lots of tips on making recycled seed starters too!

Links to products featured on RecycleScene are affiliate links. We try and only feature products that close the recycling loop. Make a purchase of recommended products on our site, and we get a small percentage of affiliate commission to maintain our site. Thanks!