Recently in my son’s Kiwi Crate (a really awesome website that sends a box monthly, full of fun craft/science activities on a theme! We really love getting their boxes in the mail.) it was the Love The Earth themed box and one of the activities was how to make your own recycled paper. I got really excited to do this one with Silas because, I had no idea how it was done. I have no recollection of doing this project as a child, and the idea of making my own recycled paper sounded about as “Hippy” and you can get (well, I suppose besides making your own deodorant!). We had a lot of fun learning how to make our own recycled paper using paper scraps and tissue paper, and the process was extremely easy to do.
While at the store recently, we passed by the area where they try to get you to make last minute purchases and saw these cute greeting cards made of recycled paper with seeds in them.
They were plantable flower cards, and they were TEN DOLLARS for ONE card. I was so shocked that they were so expensive that the thought occurred to me, “I can make my own! I just learned how to make my own recycled paper, all I need to do is add the seeds!” I was right!
These turned out absolutely adorable and I am going to send these in the card Syfy made, to my Mother-in-Law! I was actually thinking of her when I chose the seeds. I thought that she might adore having her own lavender plants to plant around her home!
The great thing about this project is you can do use it year around to make gift tags with these or holiday/birthday cards, and more!
Homemade Plantable Lavender Seed Paper
- scraps of shredded paper
- scraps of colored tissue paper, torn into little nickel to quarter size pieces (I like to save all of it from those gift bags people give year around, that way instead of throwing it away it gets recycled!)
- packet of lavender seeds or other wonderful vegetable/flower/plant
- cookie cutters to make shapes
- container with a lid to shake with (or you can do the adult friendly version and just blend it in a blender/food processor)
- fine mesh screen (you can take Popsicle sticks and glue a square of window screen into a square picture frame and either glue or duct tape it to the frame…I bet you could even use a real picture frame. I have also seen people just use cheese cloth and squeezed the pulp out until they were able to shape it.)
1. Combine shredded paper, scraps of tissue paper, and seeds in a container and fill with warm water, filling just over the paper. Put the lid on and shake until thepaper has all turned to mush. Alternatively you can put pieces of your paper and tissue into a blender/food processor and pour warm water in, covering the paper. Give it a few pulses until mush and then add the seeds and stir in with a spoon.
2. Set your chosen cookie cutter on top of the mesh screen. Pour the seed/water/paper pulp mixture into the cookie cutter, pressing down on the pulpy mixture to squeeze out the extra moisture and flatten the paper. It makes it easier to press the last bit of moisture out of the paper if you put an absorbent cloth underneath the screen to suck more of the water out.
5. Don’t forget to tell your recipient to
tear off pieces of the paper and plant it 1/8-1/4 inch deep and
water thoroughly for germination!
There you have it! Not only did you just learn how to make recycled paper, but you took it to another level and made even greener paper to make gift cards and gift tags with! What other Earth loving crafts do you like to do?