As the world works towards being less wasteful and more environmentally friendly you may be trying to do your bit by avoiding plastic packaging, or walking more instead of driving. One thing you may or may not have considered is reusing the paper that you have lying around the house like old letters, newspapers and even scrap paper. There is a wealth of uses to save your paper a little while longer from the fate of the recycling bin.
If you are a regular card-sender or parcel-poster then you can use your old paper to pad out mailing bags instead of bubble wrap or even make your own envelopes or eco gift bags. These are perfect eco-friendly alternatives to plastic and will also find use for the spare paper lying around your home.
If you have started building a collection of non-plastic bags in your wardrobe then you will know the pain of reaching for your favourite canvas or jute shopping bag and finding them completely crumpled and deformed. To prevent this, when your bags aren’t in use, you can stuff them with crumpled paper to help it hold their shape. Remember not to over stuff your bags and be careful with zips as you don’t want the paper getting caught when you come to use the bag.
Maybe using old bank statements shouldn’t be your first choice for gift wrap but if you have any old newspapers or magazines lying around they can be perfect for wrapping up gifts, using matching bows or string can add a decorative touch and tie the whole look together.
When the winter months draw in and you want to protect your precious garden plants from the icy elements, scrap paper can be a good way of forming a protective barrier around your plants. For larger plants, it can be a good idea to tape a number of sheets together before folding around to give more space. It is important to note that newspaper will be the most insulative however this method is not waterproof so will only work in frosts or other dry spells of weather.
If you run out of sawdust for your pet hamster or want to find a different material to add to their bedding to keep them warm, shredding up paper can work really well. If you own a paper shredding machine then that will shred the paper up perfectly for being placed in your pets cage however tearing it up by hand can work the same. Just make sure that the paper you are using doesn’t have any toxic inks that could harm your pet if ingested.
Although you may be inclined to chuck your left over and scrap paper straight in the recycling bin, it would be far more environmentally friendly to find one last lease of life in it. These are just a number of suggestions from an extensive number of uses for your old paper but there are many more.