How to recycle at Christmas: Part 2

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Christmas cards and tags

5. Re-use last year's Christmas cards

Most of us have still got all the cards that we got from friends and family in a bag or box somewhere.

Turn them into gift tags to use this on this year's presents.

Remove the front of the card and then cut it into the shape of a tag. If you have some pinking shears - the scissors that cut with crinkly edges - all the better.

Then use a hole punch to cut a hole in one corner and thread some cotton through.

Hey presto, you have a homemade gift tag!

6. Give away last year's presents

Let's face it, sometimes we all get some dodgy presents at Christmas.

Whether it's scented candles that you couldn't find a home for, some bathroom smellies you'd never use or a garden ornament that you just don't like, why not re-wrap it and give it someone else this year.

Just because you didn't like it, doesn't mean that someone else can't benefit. A word of warning, though: make sure you don't give the gift to the person who gave it to you in the first place!
Money saver: Around £10 per present

7. Check last year's Christmas box before shopping

One reason we often spend so much at Christmas is because we forget what we've got left over from last year.

Before you hit the shops, check to see if you have anything unused. There'll probably be a half-used box of Christmas cards, festive wrapping paper, and a few Christmas crackers just sitting there waiting to be used.
Money saver: £3 for cards, £2 for paper, £5 for crackers

8. Reuse old pretty wine bottles

Lots of wine bottles these days come in fancy shapes and colours and sometimes with patterns on the glass. Once you've drunk the contents, soak the bottles in warm, soapy water to get the labels off. They could then be used for all sorts of things:

1. Flavoured oils: Drop a combination of fresh and dried herbs (eg: fresh rosemary, crushed whole garlic cloves and lemon zest works well) into the bottom of the bottle. Fill the bottle up with the cheapest olive oil you can find. Use an old cork or a wine stopper to seal the bottle. These make great Xmas presents.
Money saver: £5-10 if used as a present

2. Candlesticks: Most of the time you don't want wax to drip but in this case you do. Find two blue bottles and get a box of cheap white candles. These are most likely to drip.

Warm the base of the candle so it goes a little soft and then push it into the bottle and either tilt the candle or let the candle do its work. This starts to build layers of wax over the bottle. They look great on you mantlepiece or at either end of your table.
Money saver: £10 per bottle

Continued below...

More on Christmas

- Keep your finances under control with our budget calculator
- Save money on Christmas food and drink
- More great money-saving tips for Christmas
- Tips on what to do with Christmas leftovers

All pages in this article

  1. 1. Recycle and save money this Christmas
  1. 2. How to recycle at Christmas: Part 2

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