I love to create with my kids and our favorite kind of creation is recycling old bottles and other things from around our house. We love to make something fun or useful out of a used up bottle of lotion or toilet paper roll. While our city does take recyclables, they can’t take everything, and reusing containers in crafts is not only fun, but it keeps things out of landfills.
The best part of recycled airplanes and rockets is that after you are done playing with them, as long as you used markers or washi tape to create them, you can toss them in the recycling bin for an extra dose of Earth friendliness.
A 2016 consumer study showed 60% of parents would be more likely to discuss recycling with their kids if it was something they could do together in a creative way. These airplanes are the perfect way to strike up a conversation of recycling with your kids and have some fun along the way.
We participate in the Care To Recycle® program, which is a gentle reminder to recycle your personal care items in the bathroom. One third of regular recyclers admit that they don’t recycle bathroom care products, so it’s a great place to start. Look around your bathroom first for things that would normally get thrown away and save them for a future craft project.
For this craft you will need:
- Empty bottles of Johnson & Johnson Consumer Inc Baby Products (I just keep a basket with empty bottles, milk carton lids, and toilet paper rolls, so we have lots to create from)
- Washi tape
- Hot glue
- Small recyclables (soda caps, milk carton tops, etc.)
- Knife or scissors
You will use one bottle for the wings of the airplanes and the other bottles for the bodies. If you are careful you can get wings and propellers for 4-5 airplanes or rockets out of one bottle.
Mark the wing on your bottle with a marker. Then, using a knife or scissors, cut the wing out. You want the wing to be a small arch with a flat side.
Cut your wing in half and then cover both the bottle and the wings with washi tape. This is my favorite way to make the airplanes because you can use as many different colors of washi as you want. Since washi tape is basically just pretty masking tape, it is easy to pull off again and throw the bottle into the recycling when your kiddos are done with them.
I used four different colors of bright washi tape to make a fun pattern. After your wings and bottle are wrapped, use a small line of hot glue on each wing to attach it to the bottle. Hold the wing in place for about a minute or until it is dried.
For this airplane, we added soda caps to the base and the lid of a food pouch as the nose. Look around for any small plastics that come from food packing for ideas.
You can go in pretty much any direction with these airplanes, just remember to limit the amount of paint you use on them so you can recycle them later.
Everything from shampoo and mouthwash bottles, to soap and bandage boxes can be recycled. To better understand which bathroom products can and cannot be recycled, visit www.caretorecycle.com.
The more you know about what’s recyclable, the more likely you are to do it. For tips and tools to become a better recycler, visit Care to Recycle. How do you recycle your bathroom products?
I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.
Julie is Coco and Cocoa says
I love upcycled crafts! My youngest son will have a blast making an airplane, and I think we'll start with the marker idea. Thanks for the tutorial.
This is a great craft! My kids are all about using our to-be recycled items for their own inventions. I love the use of washi tape here too, I never thought to do that!
Wow! This is such a great idea! I wish I was this creative to think of something like this!
I can't get over how CUTE these are. What a great DIY for Earth Day or anytime of the year.
Cheap Is The *New* Classy says
I am always looking for new craft ideas. This one would be perfect for a summer day. I will have to bookmark it.
Alice Teacake says
This is such a cute and easy craft activity and it's perfect for Earth day too 🙂 Nothing better than putting things you may originally think as 'finished with' to good use.
Those are so cute and fun! I love that it's another way to use washi tape (something I have plenty of!) and it's perfect for Earth Day!
Author TP Keane says
I love that you've incorporated recycling into crafts. It's so fun and so brightly coloured. Love it.
ana de jesus says
I love how you make gold out of trash and the Johnson bottles really scrubbed up well as planes so cool!
What a fun way to recycle! My toddler would love this!
Amanda Love says
Those are just too cute and my 4yr old would have a blast making these. We don't use J&J products however but we can sure find alternatives.
These are super fun – my son loves tape (and washi tape) and we like to make imaginative crafts.
Oh Chic Mom says
My son would love to do this! I have everything it needs laying around the house! Thanks for sharing
Rebecca Kelsey Sampson says
I love all of these little airplanes, such a cute project for kids. They all look so sweet, especially with the handwriting. Crafts don't have to be pricey, I love that these were upcycled.
Shirley Wood says
Very clever upcycle projects. Thank you so much for sharing with us at Merry Monday. We hope you’ll come to the new party. We’re celebrating our anniversary with a big Giveaway.