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Office Paper Recycling Bins

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There are two things I share here that make me very happy – organizing and repurposing. Organizing makes life simpler, less stressful and makes more room and time to enjoy your life. Repurposing saves money and saves the landfill. Today I want to show you how to repurpose a recycled popcorn tin to create office paper recycling bins. Finding ways to make it easy to recycle means you’re more likely to make it part of your everyday life. 

white paper recycling bin in front of wood file cabinet

I’m big on recycling every scrap of paper. There are two spots in our house that produce the most paper to be recycled – the office and the kitchen. Our household recycling bin is in our kitchen so all that paper was easily recycled, but I found that it was a bit of hassle to walk from the office to the kitchen every time I had paper to recycle. And if it was a hassle for me, I’m positive my family wasn’t recycling paper from the office. I decided to place an office paper recycling bin in the office. I had been looking for the perfect use for a recycled popcorn tin that I just couldn’t get rid of and I knew it was the perfect size for an office paper recycling bin. 

Office Paper Recycling Bins

Supplies

Recycled Popcorn or Other Tin

Spray Paint

Permanent Marker

Scrap Paper

Pencil

blue round popcorn tin with snowman

Spray paint your recycled popcorn tin. It took three or four coats to cover the vivid image on my tin. Take your time and use many light coats of spray paint rather than one or two impatient heavy coats. 

I used the same technique I used on my DIY Pool Storage using an empty kitty litter container to transfer text onto the repurposed popcorn tin. It’s so easy to do and you can personalize the text to any font and size you want. 

Using a word processing program, print out the text that you want to transfer onto the surface of your office paper recycling bin. You can also create the oval in a word processing program. Since this project is all about recycling, be sure to use recycled scrap paper to print out your text. 

pencil next to white paper and scribbles on the paper

Using a pencil color over the text on the backside of the text you want to transfer. 

hand drawing  with pencil around text on paper

Place the text where you want it on your upcycled popcorn tin. Trace firmly over the outline of each letter. 

outline of words on can with paper tempate

The pencil scribbles on the back of the paper will work as a transfer. Once you have your image transferred onto your repurposed popcorn tin, simply use the permanent marker to fill in the text. 

white can with black oval and text "paper recycle" on the front

The upcycled popcorn tin is large enough to hold a lot of paper for recycling and that’s a good thing for the landfill.

white paper recycling bin in front of wood filing cabinet

Having an office paper recycling bin conveniently located in the office encourages everyone in my family to recycle paper. If you make it easy to do, they will recycle. 

white and black paper recycling bin by wood filing cabinet

I could have just stuck the undecorated recycled popcorn tin in the office to recycle paper and it would have worked, but I wouldn’t have been as happy as I am with this simple and lovely office paper recycling bin. Do you recycle your office paper?

collage of colorful upcycled organizers

More Repurposed Containers:

Green storage container with monogramed letter
colorful dishes on table with notepads, paper clips and office supplies

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3 Comments

  1. Very creative, Susan! Those popcorn tins are a nice size, so such a cute idea to find a second use for them:)

  2. I love this idea and happen to have one of those old popcorn cans in my basement. I don’t think I would use this in my office, I already have a can for papers, but I can see using it on my sunporch. I think I would put weeds and things I get from the garden in it. Great idea Susan!

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