The toxic impact of plastic on the environment is well documented by now. However, we often forget that they are highly recyclable and reusable.
Here are 10 innovative ways in which you can help reuse/recycle plastic bottles in your household!
1. DIY Zipper Supply Cases
- You need: Two PET bottles, scissors, a knife, a zipper and glue.
- Cut the neck of bottle 1. The lower portion without the neck will be used as the body of the supply case/pouch.
- Cut the bottom section of Bottle 2. This part will be used to make the opening/closing lid of the pouch.
- Take the zipper and glue it to the open end of Bottle 1.
- Once dry, attach the other end to the open mouth of the lid we created from Bottle 2 using glue.
- Once dry, open the zipper and close. Your pouch is ready. Add your supplies to it.
2. A Soda Bottle Sprinkler
- You need: A 2-litre plastic bottle, electric tape, a garden hose and a screwdriver.
- Rinse the bottle thoroughly under running water.
- Drill 12-14 holes in the bottle using a screwdriver or any sharp tool. These holes will be outlets for the water.
- Once the holes are drilled, add the garden hose to the opening of the bottle and use electric tape to secure it in place.
- Attach the other end of the hose to a tap and start using your newly homemade soda bottle sprinkler to water your green patch.
3. DIY Plastic Bottle Plant Holder
- You need: Plastic bottle, art and craft supplies (optional), plants, soil, acrylic paint, knife and glue.
- Cut the bottle in half or about ⅓ of the way from the neck. The bottom portion will be used as a planter.
- Paint this bottom portion with acrylic paint.
- If you have art and craft supplies like beads, googly eyes etc. stick them on the bottle.
- Fill the bottle with soil and add the plant.
4. Upcycle Laundry Detergent Bottles Into a Watering Can
- Wash the bottle thoroughly.
- Poke many small holes in the lid using a sharp tool.
- Fill the bottle with water
- Put the lid on and tighten it.
- When you tilt it, it will act as a watering can
5. Wall hanging bottle garden
- Lay a 2-litre plastic bottle on its side, horizontally, then cut out a part of its side.
- To hang the bottles, you’ll need to cut out four small holes—two on each side.
- The holes in the bottle should line up with each other.
- Thread through the holes with rope, wire, or twine and tie a knot in the end.
- Cut the rope at the desired length and hang your beautiful bottle garden!
6. Create a Piggy Bank Made From a Reused Plastic Bottle
- Rinse an empty bottle with hot soapy water
- Let it dry.
- Cut out features such as eyes, ears, nostrils and tail using paper and attach them with double-sided tape.
- Cut a slot at the top for coins.
7. Turn a Lotion/Shampoo Bottle into a Charging Dock
- Ensure that the bottle is flat or oval. Shampoo or conditioner ones will work provided it fits your phone.
- Get rid of the labels, wash the bottle in hot water to remove any residue and allow it to dry completely.
- Cut off the neck of the bottle. The rest of the bottle will be used to make the holder.
- Hold your phone against the bottle and cut the front in a U-shape halfway down. The back has to remain intact.
- Place the back of your phone’s charger on the back of the bottle, trace and cut that part out. You can blunt the edges by using sandpaper. You can even spray paint the holder if required.
- Plug the charger into the wall, then slide the holder onto it through the hole, with the pocket facing outward. Plug the cable into the charger, then into your phone. Slide your phone into the holder, and tuck the excess cable inside.
- Your charging dock is ready.
8. DIY Recycled Bird Feeders
- Remove the label and rinse the bottle with warm soapy water. Let the bottle dry completely.
- Use a thumbtack to make 2 holes a little above the base of the bottle to make space for the first perch.
- Widen the holes with scissors just enough for the perch to fit and remain in place.
- Take a pencil and use it as a perch to fit through both holes. It has to pass through the bottle. Make both sides of the perch equal so that the bird feeder will be balanced.
- Add another perch above the first to form a cross shape.
- Cut out feeding holes for birds to access the feed above each perch, use your scissors to widen them.
- Pierce the bottom of the bottle to make drainage holes so that water does not accumulate. Ensure the holes are not very big to avoid the feed from slipping out.
- Create two holes at the neck of the bottle using thumbtack. Widen them using scissors, and use twine to pass through them to make a hanger and knot the ends together.
- Fill the bottle with birdseed.
9. Pet feeder
- You need two bottles for this.
- Lay bottle 1 down (horizontally) and cut a hole on its side using with scissors. This hole should be a little wider than the mouth of the bottle.
- Cut the lower half of the bottle toward the bottom in a manner that when it is kept horizontal, it is shaped like a scooped tray.
- Cut bottle 2 in half.
- Fill the bottom with pet food.
- Once filled, push this container into the half with the neck that you had cut out.
- Open the cap of bottle 2 and fix it into the opening we cut into bottle number one. The feed will thus fall from bottle 2 and reach the tray of bottle 1
10. Kitchen Containers
- Use two plastic bottles of different sizes: Bottle no 1 is a longer one (to be the base) and Bottle no 2 is a smaller one (to be the cover).
- Cut bottle number one a little below the neck.
- Cut bottle number 2 above the bottom that will serve as the lid.
- Fit the two together in a manner that the longer one serves as the holder/container and the smaller one as the lid.
“I have been trying to cut down on using plastic bottles. But since most household liquids that we need come packaged in them, I try to reuse the old bottles in creative ways at home. Believe me, once you start, there are numerous ways to reuse them.”
– Katherine Arora, Homemaker, Mumbai resident.
(Edited by Gayatri Mishra)