How to recycle old things to make cool new gifts and ornaments!

As Pagans (and non-Pagans for that matter!) it’s important that we remember that having a deep love for nature and the earth needs to translate into environmental concerns and throwing away less things is a great way to do this.

I recently published an article on how to be green while gift giving, and so here is another on that theme.

But first if there are any sceptics about environmental issues and climate change reading this, here is a very funny but convincing 2 minute ‘rant’ from UK comedian David Mitchell about why you should consider a rethink. (If you want to see more of his stuff, search for Soapbox on Youtube!)

Ok still with me? Good :o)

I just found this great article about all the ways that we can reuse glass bottles, from gorgeous cola bottle lights to rustic table lamps and atmospheric outdoor candle holders.

Whilst in south east asia I saw loads of this kind of thing, particularly in Luang Prabang in Laos where restarurants by the river had chandeliers made from plastic spoons, beer bottles and more – sounds crazy but actually looks really unique and cool.

Here’s the inventive article:

Do you recycle anything and make it into gifts, ornaments or even altar tools perhaps? I’ll send a small free gift to the best picture that gets sent in of something that you’ve made from old rubbish!

Top Tips to Stay ‘Green’ When Gift-Giving

In order to try keep the planet healthy and sustainable, it’s important that we consider being environmentally friendly in as many aspects of our life as is possible.

While Paganism is known as an earth religion, something I noticed when studying the Pagan community is that this love for the earth frequently does not translate into a green approach to living our lives, which when you think about it seems kind of odd, given the condition of the earth at the moment.

So with that in mind I plan to write more about environmental concerns (in a non preachy way!) and here to kick this off is Phill from Late Late Gifts who has written an excellent guest post on how you can integrate this way of thinking and doing into your gift giving.

Top Tips to Stay ‘Green’ When Gift-Giving

Guest Post by Phill from Late Late Gifts US.

Reusable Gift Wrap Cloth used in Traditional Japanese Gift Giving
Reusable Gift Wrap Cloth used in Traditional Japanese Gift Giving

When it comes to gift giving, incorporating your green living practices can be a little confusing. There are many ways however, to give your loved ones beautiful gifts while still remaining environmentally friendly. There is no need to break the bank or go out of your way- many of the best holiday ideas can be found right in your own home! Here are some of the top tips for green gifts for your winter festivities!



Have you received a gift that you didn’t much enjoy, or couldn’t find a use for? We all have, and for some strange reason seem to hang onto these unused items. These make perfect gifts for friends and family! You may know someone who could really use that present you didn’t have need for, it doesn’t cost a thing, and it’s a great way to recycle a great gift. Just make sure you don’t re-gift it to the original sender!

Make it at Home

There is nothing more heart felt than a gift made by your own hands. Homemade presents are especially suitable for Winter Solstice. It doesn’t have to be elaborate, and crafting something yourself gives you the opportunity to put loads of loving energy into the item!

Think simple, and it’ll be even easier. When doing homemade, you even have the option to combine recycling! For example, mittens can easily be made from an old sweater, or a dream pillow from an old sheet or t-shirt you no longer use. The ideas are endless! This is a perfect creative outlet that guarantees you have a unique gift to give someone, all while remaining green!

Mind the Paper

Possibly one of the biggest negative environmental impacts during the holiday season is the massive amount of paper used in wrapping. Tons of paper are used to wrap gifts, and then promptly thrown away. This year, save a few trees by avoiding wrapping paper altogether.

Other options for pretty presentations include using newspaper. Recycle that news you were throwing away. If you want it to be more festive, it’s very easy to paint the paper in any kind of color or design you want.

An even better alternative is to use something less disposable. Consider decorating a wooden box that not only houses the present, but will be usable later too. You can also incorporate the wrapping material into the present itself. For example, you give DIY sachet or dream pillow kits with instructions on how to put them together. Use the fabric that makes up the sachet or pillow as the wrapping paper.

The options for green gift giving during the Solstice and other holidays are endless. All it takes is a little imagination and creativity!


About the Author

This article was written by Phill from Late Late Gifts US.