Decorate with Zero Waste

In preparation for and during the holidays, each family generates approximately 25% more waste each year, which is about one million extra tonnes of trash[1]. To take a greener step towards reducing our TerraCycle family’s holiday waste, we decided to decorate our Toronto office by only using reused, recycled and upcycled décor.

The first step to decorating, as always, was to dig out some old Christmas lights. Deep in the storage closet were several strands of green and red Christmas lights, which we weaved between the records hanging from the ceiling.

The second step was to wrap garland around the door. Deep inside the magical storage closet was yet again another festive find: an untouched roll of ribbon made from Kit Kat packaging!

Finally, we wanted to get creative and test out one of the many upcycled crafty decorations we had seen online. We found this beautiful upcycled snowflake and gave it a whirl.

For starters, these upcycled snowflakes can be made with any kind of paper and even some fabrics. We used old newspaper and colourful magazines that were lying around the office.

Here are the materials that you will need to create this masterpiece of your own:

  • Some old magazines, newspapers or fabric
  • A pair of scissors
  • A glue gun

Next, fire up some holiday tunes and follow these simple steps below.

Step 1 – Cut out six squares of newspaper, magazines or fabric of equal size.
Step 2 – Fold your squares in half, diagonally, to form a triangle.
Step 3 – Fold the triangles in half once again to make them even smaller.

Step 4 – Make a few parallel cuts into the triangle, from the side most recently folded. Make sure not to cut all the way to the edge. The number of cuts depends on the size of your snowflake and we recommend cutting fewer but thicker lines to build a sturdier snowflake. We wouldn’t want our snowflake to blow away in the wind!
Step 5 – Unfold your triangles to reveal the diamond-shaped cut lines.
Step 6 – Glue the tips of the innermost cut outs to form a tube.

Step 7 – Flip your square to reveal the backside and glue the tips of the remaining innermost cut outs. Continue to flip over your diamond and alternate between gluing each side until you run out of cut outs.
Step 8 – After completing the previous steps for all your squares, glue three of the pieces together. Make sure to glue both the base and the sides.
Step 9 – Glue the two sets together, and there you have it, your very own upcycled snowflake!

Happy Holidays from the TerraCycle team!

 

[1] http://money.cnn.com/2010/12/16/news/economy/holiday_trash/index.htm

 

 

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