Making Junk Useful

Don’t Throw That Away!!

Making Junk Useful


I have a habit I just can’t kick. I save everything that I think I can reuse or recycle into something. I enjoy making junk useful and saving it from the landfill.   When I receive packages I’ve order, most of them come with some kind of packing around the item or they are in small clear packages.  I even save shipping boxes to use for storage.



Just cut the flaps off, spray paint the box and they are perfect to store many things. I have many bottles of essential oils and use one of the boxes for those. Storing  my craft spray paints are a great use of these boxes also. The boxes are a space saver and I don’t have to worry about cans or bottles falling over.  Even the coffee canisters are great to store extra toothbrushes or toothpaste in the bathroom closet.


The clear plastic packing are great to store a variety of things.  I keep some in the refrigerator drawer to keep small pre-packaged items together. The drawer stays organized and it looks neat and tidy.

I also use some of these in my desk drawer to keep small items such as paperclips and rubber bands all together. They are perfect to store change and I keep my memory cards in another. Small items are easy to misplace but with these small clear packages, I am more organized.

A weight scale that I recently ordered the other day had  heavy cardboard protectors on each end of the scale.  It didn’t take long for me to come up with a use for them, they were great to use as a pen and pencil holder!  It’s only about 2″ wide and 12″ long so it fits in the top drawer of my desk perfectly.


But what about empty bottles? Yup, I save them too, especially the ones that have a unique shape or color.  I loved the cobalt blue wine vinegar bottle and when I needed a vase, I added some ribbon and beads around the neck of the bottle and I had a beautiful vase for my roses.  I also had a clear glass vinegar bottle that I added soft pink ribbon around and used that as a vase.




Even the mason style jars that spaghetti sauce comes in have a use, those are great for my iced tea! I add a few slices of lemon or strawberries and if I don’t drink the entire jar, I just screw the top on and store in the refrigerator for next time.



I even save empty jars from facial cream.  Since I’ve been making sugar scrubs I use the empty jars for that.  These make great little gifts and some of the jars are quite fancy so the gift looks very unique.   If you want to make delicious smelling coconut sugar scrub, here is one of my recipes:      Another Coconut Sugar Scrub Recipe




The one thing I can’t seem to part with are things that bring back memories of my family.  I have my grandmother’s old potato masher and when I cleaned out the kitchen drawers, I realized I hadn’t use it in years so I put it in a box to store away.  But when I was looking at my Angel statue collection I noticed I had many small Angels that got lost among the larger ones.  I got the potato masher out of the box and turned it into decorative holder for my Angels!




One of my favorite making junk useful projects was the bird feeding station I made from an old, rusty patio table, a wood pole and left over paint. The birds love the peacock blue paint on the table and an apple green pole.  Hubby attached two old plant hangers on the pole to hold the bird feeders  and it’s so nice to watch the birds stop by the feeding station.  This is the blog I wrote about my Bird Feeding Station for Junk

So whether you have boxes, packaging, old utensils or bottles and even a rusty table, something can be done to turn them into a one of a kind unique new item.  If you have children and grand children this is a great way to get them involved in projects and it will also help teach them about recycling things to save the landfill.


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Martha Demeo

I started my blog to review products. Since then it has evolved and now I teach people how to earn money online from the comfort of their home. Join the conversation. Leave a comment below.

22 Discussion to this post

  1. The Savvy Age says:

    great ideas!!!

  2. Carol Taylor says:

    Wow, some great ideas but I DID tend to save things and never use them so have given up.

  3. LadyInRead says:

    my 11 year old is a DIYer and would love some of these ideas…

  4. What clever ideas. Some I have used, but I love the one about using old jars for drinks. Lately, the gnats are everywhere and invading my drink glasses everytime I put them down. How handy to just screw the lid on between sips!

  5. Abhinav says:

    Amazing stuff and creativity Martha, wish more people can reuse stuff instead of throwing, I do reuse but your ideas are great. Thanks for sharing, wish you best

  6. Kasia says:

    Wow, you’re so crafty. I love the use of empty clear containers. That can be used instead of store bought separators. Genius!

  7. Martha says:

    Thanks Kasia, I havenn’t decided if I’m cheap or frugal but I don’t like to waste money. Even if getting the store bought separators at a dollar store, the dollars add up. I like the variety of sizes from the packing containers! Thanks for stopping by!

  8. Martha says:

    Thanks Abhinav! There are so many was to reuse products that end up in the trash. I like “inventing” new uses for things. Thanks for visiting!

  9. Martha says:

    That’s wonderful that your 11 year old is a DIYer! Starting young, I’m sure will carry on though the ages. If she/he comes up with uses of these things, I’d love to see them. Thanks for stopping by LadyInRead!

  10. Martha says:

    I have gotten to the point where I can’t save everything, but I also donate things to church or schools if I think someone can use them. It’s fun to come up with ideas to make new use of trash. Thanks for visiting Carol!

  11. Martha says:

    Thanks Savvy Age, I guess you could call me a pack rat! LOL Thanks for stopping by.

  12. Martha says:

    OMG, I hate the gnats! I use to put a coaster on top of my glass but I like having the screw on top, no worry about spilling it if it gets tipped over. Thanks for visiting Barbara.

  13. Such a creative and brilliant mind….you’re so gifted…..turning trash to treasure…I love this, well done…I’m going to try something fun with trashes and share…..thanks for the inspiration
    I love your blog and subscribing right away xx

  14. Martha says:

    Thank you for the kind words Victoria, I’ve always been one to save things for “someday I can use this”. LOL I’d love to see what creations you come up with with your trash! Thanks also for subscribing to my blog, I also subscribed to yours. I enjoy finding new blogs to follow!

  15. Perla Jacobs says:

    I did enjoy reading your post, we have a lot in common. I am a keeper too and have all the time “rescue projects’ going, transforming things I don’t use anymore in something useful. Great idea to take photos of all these, the idea of drinking tea from the jar never occurred to me.

  16. Martha says:

    Well you know first hand how much fun it is to turn nothing into something Perla! I’d love to see some of your creations, I’m always looking for new ideas. Thanks for stopping by!

  17. Very creative. Love the way you used your junk items. I will also use it like the way you said here in your article. Love your ideas . Gr8 work. Keep it up.

  18. Martha says:

    Thanks Abhishek, I’d love to see your junk! LOL I enjoy making something from scrap or junk and saving the landfill. The bird feeding station is my all time favorite so far and the birds love it too! Thanks so much for visiting!

  19. Great ideas! We’ve got to be sustainable, and this article is a good start! Thanks for sharing!

  20. Martha says:

    Thanks Corina, I’ve always loved to create things from basically nothing. I also like to save the landfill and recycle so it’s a win win for me. Thanks for visiting!

  21. We are one in the same. I do not throw clothing away. I up-cycle, revamp and sport old clothes and I love it!

  22. Martha says:

    That’s a great way to get “new” clothing J. Shan’Trice! I too like to up-cycle, great way to save. Thanks for visiting.

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