Wednesday, March 24, 2010

recycled crayons & reader guest posts

We often get requests from readers for tutorials of specific projects. But recently we received pictures of a new project we hadn't tried yet. Instead of taking the time to try the project myself, I asked this reader if we could post her tutorial for our other readers. Then we got to thinking, why not make this a regular feature?

Each month we'd like to feature one reader's tutorial. Even if you're not a blogger yourself, we know you're still out there trying new craft projects all the time, just like us. So send them to us! Just a short write up and some accompanying pictures will do. We'll pick one reader each month to publish. And if you are a blogger, include a link to your blog and we'll make sure all our readers check it out!

Our first reader tutorial is by Bonnie Rains--a local friend in Seattle! I've seen these cool recycled crayons before (my preschooler got a heart-shaped one for Valentine's from a classmate--thanks Maddie!), but I'd never made them myself. Bonnie makes it sound even easier than I imagined! So without further ado, here's Bonnie!

Recycled Crayons Tutorial

Who doesn’t have broken crayons at their house? Instead of throwing them away, recycle them into fun new crayons! This is a great project for kids to help with.

First, find all your broken crayon pieces and remove the paper from each. Then break them into smaller pieces (about one third to one quarter of the regular size crayon). Then have your trusty assistant help you sort them by color into your favorite silicon mold (or you can use regular cupcake pans with foil liners). I chose to use a star design because I thought each point on the star would make a nice new pointy crayon.


Place your silicon mold with crayon pieces on a baking sheet and put it in the oven at 200 degrees. Heat your crayons so the wax melts completely. I thought this would take 15-20 minutes, but actually took closer to 30-40 minutes. When the wax is melted remove the pan and let your crayon’s cool. Once they are cool you can easily pop them out and admire all the pretty color combinations you created in your brand new crayons!


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46 Comments

46 Responses to “recycled crayons & reader guest posts”

deros said...

super idea! i will try:)))

Claudia Ayotte said...

I LOVE this idea! I can't wait to try it our :0) I've seen them before but didn't know how they did it so THX for sharing :0)

just me and z said...

wow, that is awesome! i love how they stayed colorful... i would've thought the colors would mix to a brown. lol :)

Monica said...

Recycling ROCKS! I placed a bucket in the teacher's breakroom at my son's elementary school for this very project. The star is a great idea! Thank you so much for all your fun information.

The Fifield Kail Family! said...

I've been doing these latily and they turn out so great! I really love the stars, they are so vibrant. Do you have any helpful hints on cleaning the silicon molds? Mine are now white and dusty looking no matter how many times I clean them.

SGiles said...

What a great idea!!! I found some Sesame Street ice cube trays at the local Dollar Store the other day...this is a perfect use for them!!!

(And they'd make great favors at my daughter's upcomming birthday party!!!)

Crafty JuJu said...

WoW what a great idea :D I know what I'll be doing now with the tin full of odd bits :D x

Lynn from For Love or Funny said...

What a great way to turn some icky into something nifty!

Diana said...

That is so neat!

speechygirl said...

Now that is a super idea! I'm a teacher and HATE to throw out crayons, even when they're all busted up. I'm definitely gonna try this! Thanks!

Lynn said...

Brilliant idea! ... Trouble is, after keeping lots of old broken crayons in a plastic tub for years (sons are now 20 and 14) because I just knew that they would be useful someday, I finally threw them out a few months ago. LOL

Lynn x

Brandi @ Frugal Farmhouse said...

love this idea, i've done it for my cousins a few times! thanks for the pictures. I love to see how others turned out :)

Midwestern gone Idahoan said...

Way cool and easy!!! Thanks!!

Amanda Jones said...

This is a great idea! I tried this years ago with broken crayons but I melted the similar colors in a double boiler and then poured that hot wax into candy molds. It was a messy (and very long) process. Your method is a million times easier. Thanks!

Dani Souza said...

I loved this idea! I've translated your post to Portuguese and added a link in my Brazillian blog to the original post in yours. Hope you don't mind!
Hugs from Brazil
Danielle

Dani Souza said...

I've just noticed your copyright policy about pictures so I removed them from my post and let people know I didn't add them there because I wasn't allowed to.
This is the link:
http://primariasudonline.blogspot.com/2010/03/passo-passo-giz-de-cera-reciclado.html

There's a google translator tool right at the top of the page.
Hugs from Brazil
Danielle

Marilyn said...

So clever! And how fun to color with different shapes.

My Big Mouth said...

I love all the neat shapes you can make recycled crayons in.I never have any to recycle unfortunately. I remember tho,somewhere in my father in laws house is a huge box of broken crayons I had seen a year ago.I wonder if I can hunt it down.I even have that same star tray! Yeee!

Quilt Hollow said...

OMG...fantastic idea!!

Watson Ink. said...

I've done this with my daughter's crayons several times and I love it! Great way to save all those scraps!

More like....etc. said...

Oooh!!! :D
I can't wait to try this! thanks! :D

A-B-C to tha Diaz said...

Such a good idea! My boys will love making these :)

obladi oblada said...

All the broken crayons get on my nerves, so Im doing this!

Stephanie said...

I love this idea. Ikea actually has an ice cube mold that is shaped like fat sticks, which would also be perfect for making chubby crayons.

Katherine said...

I've seen this idea before and would love to have an excuse to melt a bunch of crayons down into great fun shapes! Thanks for reminding me about the idea.

Little Miss Sassy Pants said...

what a wonderful idea! I am linking this on my blog! Thanks for the inspiration!

IrishBelle318 said...

These are so cute and fantastic! Love the idea :)

lis said...

Aw, I love this! Shame I got no kids, this comes darn close to a reason for having one (or two?)

Julie said...

I made heart ones for my kids for valentines day. Did your's leave wax in the mold. I would love to use the molds for ice cubes but there is left over crayon in it and I don't know how to get it out.
any help would be GREAT

Erin said...

These stars are darling. We've done hearts for my daughter's Valentines 2 years now! We love it - and it keeps little hands busy for awhile. I always love to visit!!

Meet Virginia said...

This is such an awesome idea! Thanks for the post!

Check out my AWESOME giveaway tomorrow!!

~Morgan

http://meetvirginiaandroo.blogspot.com/
http://www.etsy.com/shop/MeetVirginiaShop

Alpha-Mom said...

What a fabulous idea!

This N That said...

My mom used to do this for me when I was a kid! Great tutorial!

This N That said...

My mom used to do this for me when I was a kid! Great tutorial!

Peggy said...

Aren't these so much fun!! We used to make these when our boys were little. I know some of our friends think I'm nuts but now I ask all the teachers I know for their old crayons. We melt them down and give the new sets to the local womens shelter.

Lisita said...

How fun to be mentioned in a post! These are so easy to make. I love the stars, super fun!!

Lora said...

This is fun! We've made them a couple of times in heart and tree shapes. Silicone is definitely the way to go, too!

Cindy said...

I did this with a heart shaped mold last year to make crayons for my grandkids to give at V-Day at school. They turned out so cute.

The Fifield Kail Family! said...

You can use candle wax remover to clean the molds or Vaseline petroleum jelly. It has the same petroleum base as the remover does, but in milder form.
Good Luck

Bonnie R said...

I've had some of the same problems removing the wax residue so I'm no expert, but as a previous comment mentions I was going to try Vaseline petroleum jelly. I also read some where online that you may want to grease the silicon before putting the crayons in. I also read for burnt on stains (so maybe for crayons too?) you can make a paste with three parts baking soda and one part water. Then use the paste to scrub the stain and leave it on for 30 minutes or so then wash off as usual. I haven't tried any of these techniques yet. I figured the worst case scenario is I'll just use my star mold for crafts. Have fun making your new crayons!! :)

Rowanmayfairs said...

I keep forgetting to chk at the consignment store for a used silicon mold so I can do this.

I've been saving my 2yr olds broken crayons in hopes of trying this one day.

teachermomof2 said...

I have made these crayons in the past, using a heart mold for Valentine's Day treats. The kids loved them!

Amanda said...

I did some in mini muffin tins (got the idea from Land of Misfit Toys) and cooked it at 300 instead of 200. These worked great and only took about 15 minutes. Also--if you spray them with cooking spray before hand it makes for easier clean-up. :)

Stacy said...

I made these for the kids in my 3's & 4's Sunday School class with our broken crayons and the LOVE them. I used to have a hard time getting them to color, but now they beg to color every week. If you use some glitter crayons mixed in, they look really cool.

S said...

I made these last week but they don't color very well? Do you think they were just cheap crayons? Literally you can color really hard and no color transfers to the paper?

Purple Froggie Clay Stuff said...

Hello, I'm your newest follower, I'm about to start this little project, hope mine comes out like yours did!

Cindy@ http://thepurplefroggieclaystuff.blogspot.com/

I always follow back!

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