recycling Archives - Joanna Campbell Slan

Giving in to my Inner Scrounger

My Beta Babes and I went out to eat at Pasta House in St. Louis. I tried to behave, really I did. We had a great lunch and fun talking with each other. But I started lusting after the plastic butter tubs. And the margarine containers. I kept imagining ways I could use them. Then […]

Love, Crafts, and the Fine Art of Dumpster Diving

Two days ago, I noticed a big red Dumpster behind our apartment complex. It looked to be empty. That’s interesting, I thought. Yesterday evening, my husband and I were walking Jax when I noticed the Dumpster had been filled to the brim. Looks to me like the apartment management evicted someone, sending their furniture packing […]

Miniature Basket Tutorial

This is a fun project that keeps another bit of plastic out of the landfill. Here are two finished versions of this project. SUPPLIES: Empty and clean plastic coffee creamer container Quilling strip (or strip of paper cut 3/8 inch wide) Duct tape (optional) Masking tape (cut into half inch pieces) Scissors Punch (optional) Paper […]

What You Can Do With a Ruined Tee Shirt

I have no idea how my red top wound up in the wash with all my white and cream clothes. None. Worse luck, I added a cup of bleach to the mix and let the whole mess sit for a couple of hours. Not surprisingly, this cream top picked up a hint of red (much […]

How to Make Miniature Mosiacs–Or How to Have Your Egg and Eat It, Too

There are tons of ways to make miniature tiles, usually involving Fimo or paper coated with a thick glossy agent, but I think I’ve stumbled on a method that’s easier and more fun…as long as you’re okay with tiles in random shapes. Best of all, it’s a way to recycle and upcycle common items. Behold! […]

How to Create a Literary Vase

A beautiful fall vase! I was in St. Louis last week, visiting the Carondolet Branch Library for their Author Breakfast event. On the tables were lovely vases, created by Sarah Zolezzi. As a gift for us authors, we were allowed to take one home. But I walked off and forgot mine! ARGH! At least I […]

How to Make Paper Beads, Part II

Now that you have a plethora of long, skinny triangles, it’s time to make your beads. For the next step, you’ll need: 1.  A lot of wooden toothpicks or skewers. They have to be ROUND, not squarish. These will be used as spindles. You’ll wrap your paper beads around the toothpicks to shape them. 2. A block of […]

How to Turn One Plastic Baggy into Three Baggies

Sometimes I don’t want to waste an entire plastic baggy on a small amount of stuff. But I still want to separate out my small crafting items. I’ve learned a simple way to divide one baggy into multiples. Time it takes: Shoot, how do I know? (Okay…) About five minutes or less. Supplies: * “ziplock” […]

You're Going to Love 'Beachcomber Art'

Being an author means, you constantly question yourself. “Is this the right idea? Or should I have chosen another topic?” There’s no way to tell if you are working on something really cool…or if you picked a lemon. And your confidence suffers accordingly. I’d had a bad, sad couple of days where my doubts got […]