Tuesday, July 13, 2010

10 Ways To Reuse It: Broken Crayons

What Mother doesn't have a box full of broken crayons? When my kids were little they broke them for fun and when they got older they colored so enthusiastically that they broke under pressure. And the frugalista in me just couldn't throw them away so I threw the broken ones into a shoe box, hoping they would still use them. But it seems that a crayon, once broken, loses it's appeal to the younger crowd and there you are, stuck with a box full of sad looking colors. Here are some fun ideas to give them one last use.

  1. Seal A Letter: melt the wax down over the envelope and press your metal seal over the top. It's a lost art, but a fun one.
  2. Make Crayon Cookies: Melt broken crayon bits in various colors in a muffin tin, just until they've run together. After it cools pop it out and you have a multi colored Crayon cookie that kids will love to draw with.
  3. Fix Furniture: Use them to color in scratches in same-colored furniture.
  4. Make Ornaments: Place metal cookie cutters on a rimmed cookie sheet lined with foil. Place broken, unwrapped pieces of crayon in each cutter. Bake at 150 for about 20 minutes or until all crayons are melted. Remove from oven a let cool. Remove from cutter and attach to packages as decoration or tie a ribbon around it and use as a tree ornament.
  5. Make Stained Glass: I remember doing this with the kids when they were littler. We shaved crayons over wax paper, put another layer of wax paper on top and then ironed them on low. They melted and looked just like stained glass. We hung them in their bedroom windows for fun.
  6. Make Fire starters: Put bits of crayon in cardboard egg containers and let set in the sun for the day until they melt. Then when you need to start a fire, tear off one section of carton and light it to start your fire quickly.
  7. Officially Recycle: There is actually a website that recycles your crayons for you. Go check it out!
  8. Decorate Candles: Slightly warm up a long candle in the microwave just to soften it a bit. Then roll them in multi colored crayon shavings for a colorful table top decoration.
  9. Paperweight Gifts: Take some smooth rocks and warm them in the oven on 225 for about 15 minutes. Remove from oven with mitts and then touch broken crayons to them in a decorative design. Watch as they melt onto the rock. Let cool (you can pop them in the fridge to speed this up) and you've got some neat looking paper weights.
  10. Make Safe Crayons for Toddlers: Throw all the broken pieces in the toe of an old pair of nylons. Tie it tight and let your little ones color on a piece of paper with them. This keeps them from swallowing crayon bits and gives them a fun, safe way to color.
For more WFMW ideas go here!


Anonymous said...

Those are awesome ideas!! As a teacher, I find these to be terrific ways to recycle. I love reading all of the great ideas. Please keep them coming!!!

Heather said...

Very creative!

shopannies said...

thanks for the great ideas I think I will try a few of them

Cathy said...

Good ideas. Be aware, though, that the "recycling website" is a for-profit business that collects your crayons, shipping paid by you, to make products they sell. Better to recycle them yourself, or pass them along to local people who recycle them (Craigslist or Freecycle are great resources for this)!

Debbie said...

You can also use it to color wax to make new candles. One gift idea that I've used is to melt down old candles, color them with crayons and then dip pinecones in it. Totally free gift that looks great in a recycled basket. The only cost for this is scent if you want to use it.

The girl with the golden quill said...

I laughed out loud when i read that your kids broke the crayons for fun when they were little. My daughter does that (she's 4) and it used to drive my crazy! Now she sits and colors with the little tiny half-crayons because that's what we have now that she broke them all and she thinks all crayons are small and broken! :)

I love these ideas. We're going to try the Christmas ornaments this year! :)

Keep the great ideas coming. You've been a great encouragement to me!