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Things you can do with cardboard tubes

Don't throw away your old cardboard toilet paper or paper towel tubes. Try some of these ideas to recycle or re-use them.
Kid Project! = Kid Tested!
Cross Stitch Storage - I use old cardboard tubs to store my cross stitch work. It keeps them neat and clean while I'm working or storage before framing. Contributed by jvick

Make a Christmas Angel - Instructions here

Paintbrush Carrier - I use them to transport my paint brushes back and forth to painting class. Just stuff a paper towel in bottom and drop brushes in. This keeps them from getting crushed in my tote bag. Contributed by Sandy D'Ambrosio,

Crafter's Desk Organizer - use cardboard tubes along with an empty cardboard tissue box to make a crafters desk organizer. Take the tissue box and snip the corners diagonally on the top,fold down the flaps to the inside and glue-this reinforces the box.Then take the tubes and cut them off so they are the same height as the box. Hot-glue (or use tacky-glue) in rows in the box (it takes about 15 toilet paper tubes). If you use a tissue box with a floral or decorator design it's very pretty. Then store all your markers,pens,glue sticks,scissors,hole punchers etc.on end in the tubes, within reach on your craftbench! Contributed by

Store Pantyhose - Each empty toilet roll core can hold a pair of pantyhose. I usually fold my pantyhose to about palm-sized, and stuff it into the core. Each pantyhose should fit nicely into one core, without much of it dangling out. And when I travel, I just pop as many filled cores as I need in the luggage, and I don't have to worry about tearing the pantyhoses accidentally! Contributed by Angie B.,

Grocery Bag Storage - Re-use paper towel cardboard tubes to store those unruly plastic grocery bags. fold the grocery bags fan style in the palm of your hand and stuff in the tube. Stores nicely in a drawer or under the cabinet. Keep one in every bathroom and the utility room to use the bags as wastebasket liners. Contributed by Maria A. Alvarez-Lundie,

Bracelets - Cut tube down one side, then cut into sections (same size as napkin rings). Then cover with wrapping paper or material, using glue stick. Use clear adhesive shelf paper to cover bracelets. Little girls like these and it's easy to make a few at a time. and different styles. Contributed by V.Grl,

BinocularsKid Tested! - Here's an idea we use at playschool. Take two rolls and staple them together side by side. Punch holes in the top sides of the rolls and put yarn through to hang around the child's neck. They can let their imaginations go wild decorating them, whether it's simply coloring them or glueing odds and ends on. When they're done, they have a pair of binoculars. The kids at playschool LOVE these and always enjoy going on a jungle safari with them. You can also use an elastic to put on some colored cellophane on the end of them. Contributed by Tracy,

Make Rain SticksKid Tested! - great activity for kids. Instructions here! Contributed by Roberta,

Cord Organizer - They make an excellant way to store all those extention cords tangled up in your drawers. Fold extention cord back and forth about 10 inches long and stuff in tp tube. Mark length on tube for future use. They will also hang well on a nail in the closet.
Contributed by Cathy Williams,

Fire Starters - Fill an empty roll with dried leaves in the fall. Wrap it with newspaper, 4 inches longer than the roll, and twist the ends of the paper, for easy lighting. If you wrap them with decorative paper and put them in a basket they make a nice accessory to a fire place. They can also be covered with Christmas wrapping paper for the holidays.
Contributed by Claycrazy,

Party Favors - One year I took toilet paper rolls, or cut paper towel rolls and put small gifts inside. Since all the men in my family are fishing nuts I put a lure in each of theirs, for the women I put small bottles of bath gel, lotions or perfume. There are many things for the kids. I wrapped & tied each end with ribbon & set them on their dinner plates. The little ones couldn't wait to open their gifts.
Contributed by Kathy,

Party Poppers! Instructions here

Build stuff - Using several lengths of tubes and clothes pins my children love to connect the tubes to build structures.
Contributed by

Make a Christmas Wreath - Instructions here Kid Project!

Lincoln logs - You can easily make your own lincoln logs out of cardboard tubes. Just cut a notch in the ends.

Megaphone - Kids discover this one pretty quick... and parents get tired of it pretty quick. :)

Boot savers - Stuff several paper towel tubes into your boots to help them hold their shape.

Napkin rings - Really! We made some very elegant napkin rings using ribbon and toilet paper tubes. Instructions here.

Knitting needle storage - Paper towel tubes can be used to store your knitting needles. Keeps the plastic ones from bending and breaking.

Christmas light storage - Wrap your lights around a paper towel tube to store them for next year. They won't tangle up as easily!

Tree guard - Cut a paper towel tube in half lengthwise and wrap around the base of small trees to prevent scarring when you're weed eating around its base.

Poster / document saver - roll up old posters or documents and slide them inside a cardboard tube. For large posters, use the cardboard tubes left over from wrapping paper.

Build a doll house or castle - We built a fairy castle completely out of cardboard, plastic containers, old wall paper, all kinds of scraps. Instructions here.

Use to paint circles - Dip one end of a toilet paper tube into some paint. Press gently down on paper to paint a perfect circle. Make a whole picture with just circles, and fill in the spaces between the circles with different colors for an abstract work of art.

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