Saturday, July 11, 2009

Bottle Recycling

A quick blog entry before I am heading out tonight to a birthday party. Can't go before I have shown my latest creative project, though, which I did yesterday on the spur of the moment. The idea comes from a German craft blog, which I absolutely adore.

Hanna Charlotte Müller is an industrial designer with focus on textile design who regularly blogs on her crafts, paper and textile projects. She does this for the well-known German women's magazine Brigitte under the heading of "Selbermachen!" (do it yourself). Her projects are really unusual but always original, crafty, mostly easy and certainly not the usual pastelly-twee stuff that you find on so many blogs and crafts sites. Please check it out yourself - even if you can't speak German. Her entries have detailed descriptions, illustrated with many photos. Click here.

So after being inspired by Hanna and still being in recycling mode, I made a little multi-purpose container, fashioned from an empty shampoo bottle. All you need for this project is an empty plastic bottle (shampoo bottles, lotion containers, shower gel bottles of all shapes, colours and sizes will do) and (nail)scissors, a sharp, sturdy knife and a pencil, possibly a punch or a ticket punch or a scalpel.

Start by cleaning the bottle and drying it. Then cut off the top. I used a sharp bread knife to give me a headstart because my little nail scissors could not cut through the thick plastic screw top of the bottle.

Then mark the design of your bottle on the plastic with a pencil. For my starter project I decided not to be too ambitous and chose an easy scallop edge design which I marked out by laying the nail scissors onto the bottle and then draw around the edges with the pencil - see the photo.

Next I cut the scallop edge with the nail scissors. It was a bit fiddly but it is not that difficult. My bottle was too small to then punch holes into the edge and I did not have my scalpel at hand, but theoretically you could make lace-y designs by using a ticket-punch or cutting out shapes with the scalpel.

The container took half an hour to make and cost nothing! This is more a decorative object than one with a clear practical use, but I can think of various uses for my new plastic container - as vase, make-up container or pencil tidy on my desk. Here are my suggestions: