Did you just polish off a jar of pasta sauce or jelly? Don’t toss that empty in the container! You can wash and save old glass jars for all kinds of crafty uses.
When it comes to recycling, glass is pretty efficient. The turnaround is quick, and there’s a big market for recycled glass. Like a lot of other recycling, though, the process at the recycle center is better called “downcycling.” Glass jars don’t usually get melted down and turned into more glass jars. Instead, recycled glass is used to make a lower-quality product. Jars, according to Earth 911, might be ground up and used to make fiberglass, for example. After enough rounds of recycling, that glass becomes too low-quality to recycle, and then it’s off to the landfill.
Related Reading: 25 Ways to Reuse Junk Mail
Kind of a bummer, I know, but don’t let this news get you down! Instead of tossing that jar in the bin, you can use your crafty skills to turn it into something just as useful as a pasta-sauce-holding-vessel. Heck, you’ll probably get even more use out of these upcycled glass projects than you did from the jar in its original form!
When you take something that was headed for the recycle bin or landfill and up its value, you’re upcycling instead of downcycling. Not only does upcycling help reduce waste, but when you choose to craft with reclaimed materials like those empty jars, you’re skipping a trip to the store for those materials, which is a double win!
Ready to get your glass jar craft on? Check out the awesome project ideas on the next pages!