At Divine You, we are all about living lighter on this earth.  And we love the idea of reuse and recycling in art and craft; a simple suggestion that can be taken in so many creative ways.  

Look for ways to reuse packaging and other household items both for making your crafts. Ann loves to use the clear Talenti Gelato containers to hold water for painting, and now she has me saving those random plastic lids that no longer have containers to seal.  We use them for paint palettes and glue holders.  They wash up well, and you can let them go into the recycle bin when they wear out or get too stained. And there is so much good cardboard that goes straight into the recycle bin in my house, so I use it as a backing to cut or glue stick on, a protector for my table while painting, and even as a cooling place for fresh-baked cookies.  

And don't get me started on using old or unwanted things to actually make newly crafted art items. I have been attracted lately to some of the amazing things people are doing with old books, old textiles, and even their own old art.  So think before you throw it away. You can use an otherwise unloved old book as an art journal,  and you can fold and cut the pages to create new and different sculptural effects.  If you take poems, sentences, or individual words out of unwanted books, it gives them new life in the piece in which you feature them. Try using scotch tape to pull up words from old paper and then tape or glue them onto your own art, creating a faded and lovely effect.

I have recently seen a beautiful throw knitted from sliced up, worn out blankets, skirts made from vintage table cloths, new collages made from cut up photos, post cards and old sketches, and pretty garden furniture inlaid with china broken in an earthquake.  No need to throw away a keepsake that has shattered, an art piece that didn't quite satisfy or an item that no longer fits your decor. All I ask is that you consider using all or part of it in a new creation. Your previously unwanted items will thank, and just possibly, dazzle you.

Here's to seeing old things (including people) with new eyes,