Baking paper can be washed and reused again, and again.  We’ve found that in a very hot, bread making oven, baking paper can be reused three times before it turns brown and flakes apart.


When one of your bath towels gets tatty, it’s time to get out the sewing machine and scissors. Create a hand towel or two from the ‘good’ fabric that’s still contained in an old bath towel. When hand towels get tatty, use them for kitchen rags. The off-cuts from 100% cotton towels can be put into the compost or worm farm as can the kitchen rags.  


The ingredients are coloured bottle tops and glue.  Stick the bottle tops onto paper, to make a design. Bottle tops also make great ‘necklaces’ if a hole is drilled/ punctured in the middle and they are threaded on a string.   


Take some cardboard packages, clean plastic bottles, add some sticky tape and you have perfect ingredients for box construction.  This craft brings joy to many small children. Many a family has suffered the box construction invasion.


Cleaning out your closet? Think how you can prevent clothes from going to landfill. In CBR, Material Pleasures will buy your more recent and nice clothes. Or, what about hosting a clothes swap? Check out our guide under Guides on how to do this.

compost your food scraps

Composting can be done by anyone, anywhere. There are a multitude of options available including composting, worm farming, bokashi binning and even donating your waste to a community garden or an individual (ShareWaste can connect you with someone locally) who can compost it for you.

electrical goods

Did you know that the most requested items on online charity GIVIT’s list are washing machines, fridges and laptops? Donate your quality, pre-loved electrical goods to someone in need at GIVIT.


Plastic tubs make a great storage buckets. Use the plastic tubs for food scraps in the kitchen, ready for the chickens or the worms. If there’s extra, kids like to use plastic tubs to store small toys or ‘treasures’ from nature walks.


On a rainy day, go through the odd sock pile and make sock puppets.  A simple puppet needs just some heavy duty textas. Use the textas to draw on some eyes and nose to the ‘sock’.  If you’re feeling fancy, stick on some craft materials to create hair, jewellery or even insect antennae.


Parcel packages can be reused. Simply tape a small label over the top of the used address spaces and your parcel is ready to go! Reuse bubble wrap at home when sending your own parcels, or ask your local post office if they’d appreciate some extra.

Plastic free lunch

Never buy cling wrap again. Use re-useable containers, re-useable coffee cups, bring your own water bottles or invest in some beeswax wraps (make your own).


Just old magazines, scissors, glue and a scrap book are needed to create works of art.  Great for developing children’s coordination and learning to use scissors.


When the bristles are all turned out, it’s time for a career change.  Time to switch from tooth brushing to kitchen scrubbing. Toothbrushes are great at getting into small spaces for cleaning specialty kitchen items.  They’re also great for cleaning around the house, for getting into small and hard-to-reach places.


Remember a fabulous bottle of wine by turning it into a decorative interior piece.  Place a candle in the bottle’s neck as a rustic, romantic table piece. Fill the wine bottle with water and pop some cut flowers or plants that grow in water on the window sill.  Herbs that grow in water include rosemary, mint, basil, lavender and sage.




gardening and outdoor equipment

A lawnmower could be the answer to a single parent keeping their rental; a bike could be the answer to a recently arrived family exploring their new neighbourhood. Donate your quality, pre-loved items to someone in need at GIVIT.

garden scraps

‘Grasscycle’ by leaving grass clippings on your lawn. The clippings will return nutrients to the soil. Leaves can be added to compost or used as mulch. Weeds can be added to compost or turned into weed tea fertiliser by drowning them in water.

green bins

Take advantage of the new green bins in Canberra. Residents are able to opt in to a green waste collection service.

old plants

Donate healthy plants that you want to replace to community gardens, parks and schools

wood burning fireplace

Save the ash and, once cooled, mix into your compost heap to provide nutrients for your garden.