“By thinking outside the box, we can repurpose Christmas cards, bags, wrappers and ribbons into functional as well as decorative items. In this manner, we conserve valuable resources from being wasted,” added recycling specialist Ofel Panganiban, a member of the EcoWaste Coalition’s Steering Committee.
“Christmas cards with their very beautiful and colorful designs are excellent materials for paper arts and crafts that children can create in school or at home with their parents and siblings,” said Ofel Panganiban of Zero Waste Philippines.
2. Keep them to make your own Christmas cards next year. Glue parts of the old cards onto a clean cartolina or oslo paper.
7. Make “building blocks,” i.e., small boxes, out of Christmas cards for young kids to enjoy and learn from.
8. Cut used Christmas cards into different letters, shapes and sizes and paste on cardboards to make educational flash cards for children.
9. Cut different shapes or figures (animals such as birds or fishes, flowers, fruits, leaves etc.) in matching pairs, glue each pair together, punch a hole, then put abaca, raffia or yarn string in them and arrange into a child-friendly mobile or lacing cards.
10. Cut off the backs of used Christmas cards and reuse them into recipe cards by writing personal or family favourite recipes on them.
II. CHRISTMAS WRAPPERS
“Wrapped Christmas presents should be carefully unpacked, not ripped, to save the wrapping for future use. Recycling Christmas wrapper is good for the planet and avoiding its use is even better,” said Sonia Mendoza, Chairperson, Mother Earth Foundation.
1. Fold used wrappers nicely and reuse them for future presents.
3. For torn or wrinkled wrapper, reuse them to clean glass and cabinet windows and table tops.
4. Use spare wrappers as liners for clothes drawers or as stuffings for leather shoes to keep them in shape when not in use.
5. Save wrappers for use in various paper crafts such as Origami animals, flowers and other popular objects.
III. CHRISTMAS GIFT BAGS AND BOXES
“We’ve been using old paper bags for various uses, including as gift bags. After opening the gifts, we set them aside for carrying things or to reuse for the following Christmas,” said Cathy Untalan, Executive Director, Miss Earth Foundation.
1. Save and reuse gift bags for next Christmas and other gift-giving occasions.
2. Salvage crumpled gift bags and reuse them as containers for cooking staples such as onion and garlic.
3. Reuse sturdy gift bags to carry school, office and personal stuff.
4. Crochet plastic bags into fashionable bags or made into functional ropes.
5. Put aside boxes used as containers for gift toys, shirts, pastries, fruit cakes and other Christmas goodies for future use.
“Ribbons come in many pretty colors and designs that are quite popular among young girls. They are charming accessories for my daughter Aya’s hair,” said Bang Palacio of Sining Yapak.
4. Reuse ribbons as doll and toy accessories.
5. Recycle ribbons as home ornaments for future parties and special occasions such as to decorate candles, plants and even the windows and stair rails.