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9 Kid Crafts Using Recycled Materials

When the dog days of summer start feeling really looooong for all of you parents and caregivers, it’s time to bring out your secret weapon: crafts. Even better, you can use your household’s recyclable items as the supplies. Keep the kiddos’ hands and heads busy (and quiet, hopefully), maintain your sanity this summer, and be a little more earth-friendly and sustainable by reusing materials. Triple win! 




Superhero cuffs

📷: Rise of the Geeklings

Make all of their Batman or Wonder Woman dreams come true with super easy and fun superhero cuffs made from toilet paper rolls. Get the instructions HERE. As you can probably imagine, there are thousands of toilet roll crafts all over the interwebs. Check out more inspiration with this versatile recyclable HERE and HERE.

Art supplies organizing with cans

Your kids can help keep their arts and crafts supplies neat and tidy with these colorful organizers made from aluminum cans. Supplies and inspiration HERE

Milk carton bird feeder

This craft keeps on giving, because even after they’ve made the cute feeder they’ll have a great time watching the birds fly over to their house for their next meal. Instructions HERE

Plastic lid necklaces

 📷: Projects with Kids

Custom jewelry is only minutes away with these nifty necklaces made from plastic lids. The more colorful the better, and designing necklaces in various themes would be really fun too, like superheroes, unicorns, animals, etc. Learn how HERE

Cereal box puppet theater

📷: Handmade Charlotte

From robots to gift boxes, is there anything you can’t make from a cereal box? Our new fave of the moment is this cute puppet theater, hopefully creating hours of entertainment both in the making of and performance art. Supplies and instructions HERE

Egg carton treasure box

Let them create a repository for all their collected rocks, shells, and brick-a-brack using empty egg cartons! Details HERE. Check out more egg carton crafts HERE

Plastic bottle zipper pouches

📷: Make It Love It

Store pencils and pens, little treasures or trinkets, in these cool little see-through pouches made from plastic bottles. And they’re no-sew too, so you can whip up a bunch of them in an afternoon. Details HERE

Yogurt container planters

Put your yogurt containers to good use while teaching the kids about the process of germination and plant anatomy. Use them as vegetable or herb garden starters, too! Get the how-to HERE

Shoebox diorama

📷: First Palette

Is a childhood without a diorama really a childhood at all? Let their imaginations run wild with the scene or theme. Bonus points: Have the kids make a diorama based on one of the books they read over summer, #parentingFTW. Diorama instructions HERE

Need more ideas, inspiration, encouragement? Check out more crafts using recycled materials HERE and HERE.

Now, give yourself a pat on the back for hosting crafter hours (and a glass of wine)!