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Twenty-Five Days of Giving and Reuse

We at Austin Creative Reuse are so excited to have our center open in time to celebrate the holiday season,we are creating “Twenty-Five Days of Giving and Reuse”, a calendar of activities to share with our loyal fans and customers.  We’ll be offering daily reuse tips online, free workshops, holiday gift wrapping, craft “how-tos” and more. Keep an eye out for the calendar to be posted on our website and facebook page soon!

We’ll be kicking off on December 1st  by celebrating #Giving Tuesday. This global day of giving brings together diverse organizations and communities to celebrate the spirit of generosity and giving back in a way that is meaningful to you. Ideas for how you can celebrate #GivingTuesday will be coming soon on facebook.

So whether you’re looking for creative ideas and materials for making gifts and holiday decorations or want to come do a great project, we’d love to have you visit our center or online for your holiday inspiration!

What Can I Do with Glass Jars?

I was immensely pleased when Austin switched to single stream recycling a few years ago. That meant sorting out the trash was simple and easy. However, when I moved into an apartment I received a list of items that the complex does not recycle and glass happened to be listed. Glass bottles and jars eventually filled up the cabinet beneath the kitchen sink and I would have to take them to Ecology Action’s downtown recycling center (which is now closed, but you can take your recyclables to the City of Austin’s Recycle and Reuse Drop-Off Center at 2514 Business Center Drive, 78744). To make things easier for me and to be environmentally friendly, I learned how versatile glass bottles and jars could be.

Jars

Here are some practical ways I reused glass jars:

When I bought this jar, it was originally filled with kombucha.  Now I use it as a regular drinking glass. If you keep the cap or lid, they make great water bottles when you’re out and about. I suggest washing the jars a few times before drinking out of them especially if they had pasta sauce in it beforehand.

When I bought this jar, it was originally filled with kombucha.Now I use it as a regular drinking glass. If you keep the cap or lid, they make great water bottles when you’re out and about. I suggest washing the jars a few times before drinking out of them especially if they had pasta sauce in it beforehand.

This jar had roasted peppers before I started reusing it to pack my lunches. Don’t put any food that needs to be heated up since it is not recommended to microwave glass jars.

This jar had roasted peppers before I started reusing it to pack my lunches. Don’t put any food that needs to be heated up since it is not recommended to microwave glass jars.

These succulent pots were originally a cookie butter jar, a normal mason jar, and two different sauce jars. Before planting, add rocks at the bottom of the jar since it doesn’t have holes to drain water.

These succulent pots were originally a cookie butter jar, a normal mason jar, and two different sauce jars. Before planting, add rocks at the bottom of the jar since it doesn’t have holes to drain water.

Glass jars make great organizers and help declutter your home. I added candy into a sauce jar, pens and pencils in another, and loose change in a bottle that first had iced coffee.

Glass jars make great organizers and help declutter your home. I added candy into a sauce jar, pens and pencils in another, and loose change in a bottle that first had iced coffee.

These succulent pots were originally a cookie butter jar, a normal mason jar, and two different sauce jars. Before planting, add rocks at the bottom of the jar since it doesn’t have holes to drain water.

 

Bonus: Can you believe that these lego look alikes were baby food jars?!

Bonus: Can you believe that these lego look alikes were baby food jars?!

Glass bottles and jars come in many shapes and sizes, and as you can see they can be reused in countless ways. So before placing them in your recycling bin, wash them up and put them into good use!

How do you reuse glass bottles and  jars?

Buy 5, Give 5 Markers to an educator

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We received an amazing donation of markers from Neuland, a developer and manufacturer of  professional learning tools, that was in Austin for the 2015 International conference for the International Forum of Visual Practitioners (IFVP).

The markers are refillable and come in a variety of beautiful colors.

When you buy 5 of  any of the Neuland Big One, No.One and Artist Markers, Austin Creative Reuse will provide you a gift card for 5 markers to give to an educator.

Stop by the center and check out these amazing markers and the other great offerings.

the fine print:

  • Start Date:  11/05/15
  • End date for purchase: 12/31/15 or until all purchasable Neuland markers are all sold, whichever happens first.
  • End date for redeeming of coupon: March 31, 2016
  • Educator Definition for this promotion
    • anyone that provides instruction to students
      • primary, secondary and higher education (public, private, charter, homeschool)
      • after school teachers
      • day care providers
      • art therapists
      • art organization or other non-profit that provides education
    • Educator must present valid educator ID or recent paystub
    • Homeschoolers should provide verification from their state or local homeschooling organization where applicable.

 

 

By The Bucket

Our By the Bucket section is OPEN!

Fill a bucket for $5 and take home a wide assortment of goodies.

Wood pieces, metal pieces, wallpaper, old calendars, plastic spirals, carpet samples and anything else you made need for your next art project!

 

Marble Mazes Created from ACR’s By the Bucket section

Hello,
I’ve had such a blast gathering supplies for our school, Acton Imprimis.  It’s a project-based school, so inspiring materials are really appreciated here!
 
The school year is divided up into six week sessions.  At the end of each session, the kids hold an exhibition for parents and friends where they get to show off what they’ve learned and created during the last six weeks.   The students created marble mazes with Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and Joseph Campbell’s Hero’s Journey Monomyth as their inspiration.
 
I wish you could have seen how the kids oohed and awed when they saw the materials I purchased at your store.  Having a variety of supplies really helped spark their creativity!
Thank you for providing such a wonderful resource!  
Haven Mass
Parent Volunteer
8600-2 White Cliff
Austin, TX  78759

 

KXAN Studio512: Recreate with Austin Creative Reuse!

Did you miss Austin Creative Reuse’s appearance on KXAN’s Studio 512? That’s OK, we’ve got the link for you to see it for yourself.

What Can I Do with Bed Sheets?

Growing up there was a closet in my house that produced an avalanche of bed sheets whenever somebody opened it. That being said, bed sheets are bulky and take up a lot of space when not in use. If you have a similar problem and are wondering what you can do with your old bed sheets, here are some options.

bed sheets

Blankets and comforters and duvets, oh my! Photo Credit: Toni Red

Donating is a great way to get rid of your bed sheets. By donating to your local charity or thrift store, you will provide others in need with warmth at night. Regrettably, Austin Creative Reuse does not accept bed sheets, but there are other places where you can donate. For instance, Safe Place, an organization that provides safety for those affected by sexual and domestic violence, accepts full and queen sized bed sheets. Organizations dedicated to animal welfare such as Austin! Pets Alive accepts baby blankets for their kitten nursery and the Austin Humane Society accepts blankets without stuffing.

Here is a list of organizations in Austin that will gladly accept gently used blankets:

Donating Pro-Tips:

  • Check for wears and tears
  • Laundry beforehand
  • If they come in a set, put them together

Remember that reuse is also an option. There are a plethora of ways to turn bed sheets into something else. For something simple, you can tear them up and make cleaning rags. They also provide great protection for plants during the winter. You can even turn them into a hammock or a tent! For the creative types, bed sheets can be converted into aprons or skirts. Those are just a few examples, so if you have extra bed sheets lying around, be creative and put them in good use!

 

 

 

Celebrate National Reuse Day all week.

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Share photos online of how you #reuse and then join us on Thursday, October 22nd from 6pm-8pm to make a make a Rockin’ Box out of a record album cover.

Find out about other reuse events on the City of Austin’s Reuse Week Calendar

Here are some ideas on what to share:

Reuse_Day_Sharing

 

the story of our sign

We were very excited to install our Center’s sign this weekend, with help from most of my family and a little google-searching about mounting things to stucco. Hopefully it will make it easier for folks to spot our location on quiet Middle Fiskville Rd.

Volunteer/husband Bryan puts in the final screw.

Volunteer/husband Bryan puts in the final screw.

Deciding on a sign was a bit of a balancing act (possibly I just have balance on the brain as I look at this photo of my husband on a ladder in flip flops). We wanted something that looked nice and was easy to spot, something in keeping with our mission and passion for reuse, and—as an all-volunteer nonprofit—something that wouldn’t break the bank.

Luckily, ’twas the season for the twice-annual Round Top antique bonanza. These events are a reusers paradise. There are fancy antiques, sure, but also buckets of rusty forks, fixtures from demolished buildings, and, increasingly, reuse artists and craftspeople showing off their skills.

You never know what you’ll find among the acres of tents and barns, but prior experience suggested that old sign letters were to be had. It’s an easy day-trip from Austin and hard to resist a visit in any case, so I was happy to have sign-shopping as an excuse to go. Within the first hour, I’d spotted dozens of cool reuse crafts and opportunities, and then, jackpot:

letter alphabet

A field full of letters just waiting to come home with me. I dragged all the A’s, C’s, and R’s into a pile, picked out two good combinations, and it was all over but the stucco-mounting.

Halloween Decoration Ideas

The weather is finally cooling down and Halloween is creeping up on our calendars! Here are some creative ways to haunt your home this fall.

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Halloween-Pumpkin-Puzzle-Pieces

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