Recycling Plastic Lids for Family Fun

Recycling Plastic Lids for Family Fun

by Deborah Shelton

We all know that there are literally hundreds of uses for old coffee cans, Pringles cans and margarine tubs, but what about their plastic lids? Try these fun and fast ideas, and then come up with your own unique uses for plastic lids.
1. Finger Puppets: Invite friends and family over for a puppet theater performance! Cut two small holes (big enough to fit your index and middle fingers) near the edge of a plastic lid; this is how your puppet will move. Create a face for your puppet with googly eyes, a felt mustache, a pair of glasses made from a chenille stem and lots of yarn, felt or straw hair. To attach the hair without glue, slice a thin opening into the top edge of the plastic rim and insert the hair.

2. Sun Catchers: Capture rays of sunshine with fun and easy- to-make sun catchers. Embellish any size clear plastic lid with plastic gems, glitter stickers, flat marbles and other shiny bits and pieces. When the decorations are complete, poke a tiny hole near the top edge of the lid and thread a piece of yarn through the hole for hanging. Display your new sun catcher near a window for a beautiful light show.

3. Party Garland: Make your next party a colorful success with homemade garland! Decorate several small plastic lids (use clear and colored lids for variety) with glitter, stickers, buttons and special party messages written with markers. Make a tiny hole near the top of each lid and connect them with a long piece of yarn or streamer. Hang your new garland across a wall or from your front porch to let everyone know where the party is.

4. Mobiles: Dress up your room with a one-of-a-kind mobile! Use a large margarine or coffee can lid as the base. Poke several small holes in the lid, around the edge, to hang the other lids and also to hang the entire mobile once it's finished. Decorate several small plastic lids with stickers, markers, or washable paints. Poke a small hole near the top of each lid and thread a piece of string or yarn through the hole and tie off. Tie each lid to the larger lid, at varying lengths. Tie the main hanging strings to the large lid and hang your new mobile for the world to enjoy.

5. Wacky Glasses: With a couple of small plastic lids and chenille stems, you'll be the coolest family on the block with your new wacky glasses! First, use a screwdriver to make a hole in the center of each lid. Make two more small holes, one on each side of the lid, to thread the chenille stems through. Using washable paints or markers, decorate the lids with large eyes complete with big eyelashes. (The center hole should be the center of the eye you make.) When you're finished decorating, thread a small piece of chenille stem through the inner side holes of the lids to connect them (this makes the piece that goes over the bridge of your nose). Attach two longer chenille stems to the outside holes, and bend the ends to fit over your ears.

About the Author

Deborah Shelton is a mother, freelance writer, and author of the brand new book, "The Five Minute Parent: Fun & Fast Activities for You and Your Little Ones." Visit Deborah's website for more family-friendly ideas, and a free email newsletter. Visit


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