Crafty by Nature

Crafty by Nature

How to Turn an Item for Recycling into a Beautiful Vase

comments (29) May 29th, 2015     

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erika_kern Erika Kern, contributor
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Spring blooms look right at home in this beautiful cardboard vase.
The light shines beautifully through the corrugated waves of the vase when used as a votive holder.
Check out the recycling bin for this projects materials.
Spring blooms look right at home in this beautiful cardboard vase.

Spring blooms look right at home in this beautiful cardboard vase.

Photo: Erika Kern

So, I just moved and my home is a chaotic jumble of boxes and stuff. I was at a loss for this week's post because my sewing desk is still in pieces and in various stages of being repainted, and all my embroidery materials are scattered to the four corners of my world. What to do? Why, take inspiration from my surroundings, of course! So channeling my inner Jeffery, I went to work on that cardboard and made something beautiful. Want to follow suit? Here's what to do!

You'll need:

  • Cardboard
  • A jar (I used a 5-inch-tall old olive jar that was 8 inches around)
  • Marker
  • X-Acto knife and scissors
  • Measuring tools and self-healing cutting mat
  • Glue

Start by using a marker to outline the circumference of your jar for the base of your cardboard vase. Cut out the base, leaving about a 1/2-inch border around the marked circle.

Cut your cardboard into 1/2-inch strips, making sure to cut against the grain of the corrugation.

A pile of 1/2-inch strips.

Cut your strips into 1-1/2-inch pieces. Your pieces might have to be slightly bigger or smaller depending on the size of your jar.

Figure out how many cardboard pieces you need to go around the base of your vase, making sure your jar will fit. Glue the pieces to the base.

Use only a small bead of glue on each cardboard brick so that the glue won't squeeze out the sides. This will keep the vase neat.

Glue the second layer down using a bricklike pattern to add support and visual interest.

Slide your jar into the cardboard tube throughout the process to make sure that it still fits inside. Continue adding cardboard pieces until your jar is fully hidden.

Once your jar is hidden, slide it out of the cardboard tube and allow the glue to dry overnight. This will ensure that the jar is removable for easy cleaning.

Spring blooms look right at home in this beautiful cardboard vase.



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posted in: green, recycle, cardboard, vase

Comments (29)

amandabrook writes: Recycling and reusing is the way forward to make sure we can keep a sustainable planet that isn't overrun by waste! Erika this is the perfect example of reducing our reliance on a consumption based society. And the best thing is, the vase looks great and I'm sure has really good sentimental value. Great job!
Posted: 2:33 am on August 14th
EdwardThirlwall1 writes: I remember doing some other sort of basket weaving with used magazines that ended up looking something like this! Isn't it really wonderful when you can make good use of the things that you have at home to make something pretty and useful for the house!
Posted: 1:37 am on November 30th
dennisbray writes: Wow, this is an awesome project and a really good way to make use of your own moving cardboard boxes. A friend of mine recently moved home and kept some of the boxes for her child. The kid used them as new toys in addition to his old toys. This in turn made the moving blues go away much faster. Cardboard art or any kind of hobby can really help you in hard times.
Posted: 2:24 am on September 17th
MarcioWilges writes: If people took a little bit more time to look through their items due for the dump to come up with things like these, we'd really do the Earth a world of good. I can just imagine how much more reduced the amount of trash will be and what an easier job removals would be for the government if people were just more conscientious.
Posted: 1:22 am on August 13th
solveig23e writes: I can't believe how simple can it be!
Posted: 4:17 am on July 18th
elizabethmay writes: That's a lovely idea, thanks! Can you give me a tip on what o do with one really old plastic bowl that's not good for food anymore?
Posted: 9:35 am on June 24th
GavinCole writes: This is really cool and simple! Thanks
Posted: 1:49 am on June 22nd
Preethy writes: This is really good.
Posted: 10:58 pm on November 29th
DianeR writes: We have done this in the past using popsicle sticks. My husband also made a very creative dining room light cover for our apartment in the 1980's using popsicle sticks. For Bible School, children could use the popsicle sticks and make a box to store their favorite things. Our children use to make the boxes about 1 or 2 inches high and make a separate lid using a bead as the top handle.
Posted: 9:28 am on March 11th
daly writes: amazing, thanks.
Posted: 8:19 pm on March 10th
diane58a writes: What a great use and great recycling
Posted: 8:46 am on October 12th
craftbyliz writes: OK I haven't tried your project but wanted to show you mine. sorry I didn't do the step by step but if you like I can share them with requests.... I wasn't thinking it was going to turn out this cute!!

Thanks for the share..... I do hope the picture shows if not please stop into my pic gallery... ciao
Posted: 11:57 am on July 30th
craftbyliz writes: Alittle late to comment but it's never too late to post a comment.
I'm going to try this and I promise to post pics when I'm done. I think I'll change somethings not sure. Will keep you posted.
Also, I've done something like this but with towel and toilet paper rolls. I'm doing my best to post it on here soon.
Take care and keep sharing!!!
Posted: 12:43 pm on July 17th
eveh writes: I can't wait to try this. Thanks for such clear instructions. I can see this being used as a candle holder, plant pot, letter box (if you make it square) and so many other things. I will start with a vase though.
Posted: 12:56 am on June 11th
cucicucicoo writes: I love this idea! I still have some boxes hanging around from our move over a year ago and this is a great way to use them! Thanks!
Posted: 9:13 am on June 10th
ariyarga writes: This is a great idea! Gonna try this soon!
Posted: 12:40 am on June 8th
pef1996 writes: This is a great idea! I might have to use this as I've got some ugly looking jars that need to be covered up! Thanks for the idea!
Posted: 8:56 pm on April 29th
erika_kern writes: Thanks all! Having no kids of my own, I never even thought of this as a kid's craft but it would be great! I worked with fairly small pieces but if you use a bigger jar you could use bigger pieces for smaller hands. You could also skip the jar and make it into some sort of basket or bowl.

So happy you all like this! My mom wants me to mention that the flowers are from her yard. Giving credit where credit's due!
Posted: 1:22 pm on April 13th
JenniferStern writes: I looked quick the first time, and I thought that your vase was a basket. That's really ingenious! ...Pretty flowers too.
Posted: 8:31 am on April 13th
Boosha writes: I have 4 grandkids 2- 6 year olds, one 5 and one 3. I think they will love putting together their own vase. Great idea. Thanks!
Posted: 2:57 pm on April 12th
SewFineKY writes: So inspired and creative. This Grammy really likes it. Can't wait to get the kids working on it. I will precut too.
Thank you this will make an excellent summer afternoon project. j
Posted: 2:27 pm on April 12th
Isra95 writes:
Beautiful work
Posted: 12:25 pm on April 12th
Persus writes: Haven't tried it yet, but seems like it would be great to use for a VBS craft! (We'll have to cut the pieces for the kids, of course). Will try it, and also try to spray it with a sealant. Here's something the parents will be proud to display in their homes!
Posted: 12:39 pm on April 11th
studiorouge writes: Looks like a lot of work but a very great idea.
Posted: 11:53 am on April 11th
erika_kern writes: aw gee! thanks!
Posted: 10:15 pm on April 9th
ellenSosnoski writes: way cool
Posted: 8:15 am on April 9th
PetitGateau writes: This is great!
Posted: 4:22 pm on April 8th
hemidemisemiquaver writes: LOVE this!!!!
Posted: 12:17 pm on April 8th
crafty_gal writes: Love this erika!
Posted: 12:09 pm on April 8th
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