Itty Bitty Greenie

eco-fabulous finds for kids

Posts Tagged ‘upcycling craft ideas’

Six clever ways to upcycle kids clothes

You don’t have to be a Greenie mum to appreciate second-hand baby clothes. Since we all know how quickly children grow out of their clothing (especially babies), accepting hand-me-downs from family or friends is a great way to prolong the life of garments and (yes) it’s also a sensible option if you aim to keep things eco-friendly by reducing and reusing. I love seeing my children’s old clothing worn by one of my friend’s kids — it always brings back memories. But what about those pieces that you want to hang on to for sentimental reasons, or the ones that are so worn they are beyond repair?


Here are a few clever ways to re-purpose used clothing and, if you are feeling crafty and inspired, create something even more special.


1) Make a memory quilt or pillow

While those baby days may seem long, before you know it your child will be ready for their big-boy/girl bed, and wouldn’t it be nice to have a personal and hand-made quilt or pillow for them to cuddle up with? Using special baby clothes that they’ve outgrown, you can design something truly unique and heirloom worthy, whether you have the sewing skills or not. Websites like and allow you to create your own design in collaboration with someone who will do the handiwork for you. Hooray!


2) Make a soft toy

Have an old sweater that hasn’t been worn in a while but you don’t want to part with? Consider making a new toy for your little one. I love these soft balls, that would make a colourful and unique baby gift. Or you can use scrap pieces of fabric to create a unique soft toy that your child can help to design – perhaps based on their favourite animal. Feeling even more ambitious? How about making a set of letters to introduce your little one to the alphabet and spelling?


3) Make a piece of artwork or wreath

I love the idea of using old bits and pieces of fabric and ribbons to create a colourful wreath. In fact, I’m totally doing this for my little girl’s room! Or, if you have an old T-shirt that your child loves but has outgrown, stretch it over a canvas frame for a unique and personal piece of artwork.


upcycling children's clothes


4) Make hair accessories

Put on your crafty hat, take an old T-shirt, cut it into strips, braid the pieces, and voila – a colourful headband for your little girl. There are lots of tutorials for making headbands and hair clips on Pinterest. And goodness knows my little one is always losing hers, so having a few extra would definitely come in handy.


5) Make doll clothes

I don’t know anyone who doesn’t have a few orphan socks (where do they go?). Well here’s a clever and easy idea for creating a Barbie dress with one. Or you could take old baby tops and pants and make them into doll’s clothing with a few easy nips and tucks.


6) Make an activity book

I love this book that uses all kinds of different pieces of clothing to tech kids how to zip, button and snap. The different textures make for a unique sensory experience for little ones, and it introduces them to problem-solving, too.

All images are courtesy of Pinterest. Like these? You’ll love our IttyBittyGreenie Pinterest boards. Check them out and follow us here.


By Donna MacMullin

Creative Communications, Graphic Design, Communications, Blogging, Copywriting, Content Management


5 easy eco-friendly Easter crafts

Easter is one of those family friendly holidays most of us look forward to, and this year, why not get into the spirit with some eco-inspired craft ideas that are easy to do with the kids? The big day is only a couple of weeks away, so hippity hop to it!

1) UPCYCLED EASTER BASKETS:  Use soda bottles, empty tins, a bit of ribbon, cloth or pipe cleaners to make some colourful baskets. Kids will love to add their own personal touches in anticipation of the egg hunt. To make it even more authentic, plant a few grass seeds in the bottom of the basket about a week before the big day – so much prettier than fake plastic grass!

2) NATURAL EGG DYES: Most commercial egg dying kits are made with chemical-based artificial colours that can pose a risk to health, including allergic reactions and hyperactivity in children. There are many natural options for dying eggs that are just as colourful and fun to do, using household ingredients like coffee, beet juice, blueberries and more. Here are some great natural egg-dying recipes.

3) TOILET ROLL BUNNIES & CHICKS: This is an easy craft to do with the kids that has pretty adorable results. Just take some empty toilet rolls and a bit of paint or coloured paper & feathers to create an Easter bunny or chick that’s perfect for holding a few treats.



4) EGG CARTON CRAFTS: There are lots of ways to take a used egg carton and make it into something fun for Easter. I particularly like these chicks and bunnies that are easy to do with toddlers. Just take a few paper scraps to cut out some ears and feet, glue them on, and there you have it! Or if you’re more ambitious, try this gorgeous egg carton wreath made with paint, scraps of paper and material and a bit of cardboard.

5) EASTER GARLAND: Don’t you love it when you find a craft idea that takes one thing and reincarnates it into something completely different? This garland is made with recycled paint chips, and it’s great way to make any room in your home look festive and cheerful for the holiday. Find the how-to instructions here.

Hope these ideas inspire you to get crafty with some items you probably already have around the house. I know my son and I are going to have fun making toilet roll bunnies and chicks. Wishing you and yours a very happy Easter.