Most people are aware that paper can be dropped off at recycling
centers and reused to make new products, but did you know you could recycle it at home? You can recycle paper of all types and turn it into reusable sheets for notes, stationary, works of art, and any other uses you can think of.
Don’t take every scrap of old paper to the recycling center. Save some for the following fun, easy, and creative recycling project. Recycle some of your old papers, and turn them into something useful. You’ll be doing your part to recycle materials that would otherwise end up in a landfill, and you’ll save money on paper you can turn into creative and useful items to give as gifts or keep for yourself. You’ll be amazed by how easy it is to recycle it at home.
To make recycled paper you’ll need old newsprint, old magazines, or any other old paper you want to recycle. You’ll also need additional newsprint, a framed screen, a rolling pin, a bucket, an electric blender, and water.
If you’d like to remove the old ink from recycled paper, you’ll also need bleach. Simply add about a teaspoon of bleach to the following mixture. It will turn out lighter and brighter than paper blended without bleach.
Also, if you’d like your paper to have a satin finish when complete, blend it with a teaspoon of liquid starch. The starch will add luster to the surface as well as make it more rigid.
It’s really very easy to make recycled paper. Simply tear old newsprint into small pieces, and soak them in a bucket of water for about eight hours. Remove about one half cup of paper from the bucket, and place it in an electric blender. Add two cups of water from the bucket, and blend until it turns to pulp.
Place a framed screen over a sink or another location where water can drain, and pour the pulp over the screen. Spread it out evenly, and place dry sheets of newsprint over the pulp. Carefully turn the screen over to remove the recycled material.
Once the paper is off the screen and on a flat waterproof surface, place another dry sheet of newsprint on top, and press out as much moisture as possible with a rolling pin. Peel back the wet newsprint, and replace it with dry sheets. Repeat the process until the recycled paper is as dry as possible.
Allow the recycled material to dry undisturbed for several hours. Once it’s completely dry, you can cut it into smaller sheets that can be used for a variety of practical as well as creative purposes.
Do you want to turn your old recycled paper into pretty stationery? Infuse it with small pressed flowers and foliage. While the pulp is still wet, carefully position dried flowers or foliage of your choice, and press them into the pulp with a rolling pin.
How about scented paper? If you’d like to add a scent, simply blend a few drops of essential oil or perfume into the pulp. Once it dries you’ll have sheets of paper lightly scented with a fragrance of your choice.
Want to add unique sparkle to your recycled papers? Blend about a teaspoon of fine iridescent glitter with the pulp, and turn it into dazzling sheets that shine.
Once the paper is dry, cut out individual sheets with decorative-edge scissors, and use the sheets to make greeting cards or decorative notes. Consider placing the sheets in a pretty basket or tie them together with paper twist. Paper recycled into decorative stationery makes a surprisingly creative gift any recipient is sure to love.