A couple of months back I preordered some art books for my kid, and last week they finally arrived. I try to recycle all the boxes and packing materials I receive via my own shipping, but this package came with a strange mound of five folded cardboard filler pieces:
Generally I toss pieces like this in my paper recycling box to use for mailing photos I don't want bent or as frame backing, but these pieces are all brand-new, and the way they're folded and preforated intrigued me. I decided to make them my next recycle/upcycle project, and challenge myself to find five different ways to make them into something else.
The first idea I had involved the most banged-up, creased piece:
I carefully separated it down the middle along the preforartions:
I then got some old manuscript pages from my paper recycling box and cut them in half:
Using one side of my three-hole punch, I punched two centered holes in the top of the carboard pieces and the short end of my trimmed papers:
To put them together, I thought about using binder rings, ribbons or even some twist ties. Then I remembered I had some of the larger size of Tim Holtz's Idea-ology brads leftover from another project, and grabbed those:
Together the brads, paper and cardboard pieces make two nice refillable note pads (of which I can never have enough):
Making your own notepads saves money, recycles used paper and even junk mail; all you need is something with a blank side. You can also customize this easy project with your own touches by covering the cardboard with pretty fabric or paper and/or using different-colored paper and bindings for the note part.
Stayed tuned in the weeks ahead for more ideas on how to recycle cardboard into writer stuff as I use up the other pieces.