10 Ways to Reuse Waste Paper


Author: Sangeetha Murali

There is no doubt we are living in a country filled with garbage today. Currently, India produces around 100,000 tons of municipal solid waste every day, which sums up to about 36.5 million tons annually. Civic authorities are spending about INR1000-1500 per ton for handling this solid waste.

Waste management primarily involves the collection of garbage, transport to a treatment site, treatment, and then disposal. In this, the biggest expenditure of about 65% occurs in the collection of waste. To prevent such costs in waste collection, this article focuses on the reuse of paper and plastic waste to reduce the amount of waste produced.

Why should we re-use paper?

Nearly 93% of the paper we use is derived from trees. To produce one kilogram of paper, 324 liters of water is used, while one sheet of A4 paper takes up 10 liters of water. To meet this ever-increasing demand for paper, trees are being cut rapidly and we are faced with serious repercussions of deforestation. While it was estimated that the ongoing electronic revolution will reduce the demand for paper, the lack of equal distribution and opportunity to access electronic benefits has meant that the demand for paper continues to rise in developing countries and, it is predicted to double by 2030.

10 Ideas to Reuse Waste Paper

John C Sawhill once said “A society is not defined by what it creates, but by what it refuses to destroy.” Have you created any innovative items out of waste paper? We at Ecoideaz have compiled some simple yet wonderful ideas to reuse waste paper lying at home:

1Paper Mache Decoration Item

Recycled Paper Mache


Paper mache is a paste formed by mixing 1/4th of water and glue to 3/4th of paper. Use waste paper strips along with the paste to create decoration items of different shapes and sizes.

2Paper Mache Paper Bowl

recycled Paper bowl


To make a paper mache bowl, use a plain bowl (glass or steel) and stick bits of paper all around it until you get the desired thickness is achieved. Let it dry for at least 10 hours.

3Newspaper Baskets

News Paper-basket


Baskets can be weaved using strips of newspaper moulded in varying patterns, but this needs skills of basket weaving!

4Recycled Paper Photo Frames



Photo frames can be created by lumping together sheets of paper into the sides of frame. You can also add in ornamental items made from paper onto the frames.

5Recycled Paper Bags

Recycled Paper-Bags


Use two sheets of newspaper folded horizontally and stapled at the loose ends to create one paper bag. Pitch in old cloth strings or jute threads for the the support or handle.

6Recycled Ice Cream Sticks Bookmarks


Collect ice cream sticks and paint them in different patterns. For children, go with animal and cartoon shapes while readers can choose short quotes or name of the book’s author on the stick.

7Pen Stand

Recycled paper Pen-Stand


Collect and shape strips of newspaper into sticks. You can also use colorful paper tapes to keep them from disassembling. Use a cardboard piece as the bottom. Place the sticks together using glue or stitch them together using cotton threads.

8Recycled Paper Wall Hangings



Cut variously colored newspapers into circle-shaped pieces. Use a rubber or plastic ball as the base. Apply glue or double side tap over the circumference of the ball and stick the pieces onto them.

9Recycled Paper Bracelets



Immerse the sticks in boiling water for 30 minutes. Drain the water and bend them. Let the sticks cool. Use a glass tumbler to give the sticks the appropriate shape.

10Upcycled Paper Ear Rings



Paper earrings need to be created using thick-sized sheets. You can find these in magazine covers or also using paper mache paste. Use paper tape to bring the sheets into circular or any desired shape. The advantage of using paper tape is that you can paint it to the color you wish before gluing them together to complete the earring.



  1. […] Old tires are retreaded to be reused but they cannot be recycled to form new tires, because the proportion of natural rubber recovered from them is just about 10%. Although they would lost their elasticity and strength, that doesn’t mean this scrap material is useless. You can easily utilize these scrap tyres to create some amazing and cost-effective do-it-yourself recycling projects: […]

    • Hi Karen,
      thank you very much for your concern. If proper gum is used, paper can last quite long

  2. We should use and recycle our wastage and only this way we can meet the challenges of energy fuel etc. Our resources of energy and fuel are valuable and they will last gradually. Wastage is the thing which we get free and we get it daily. So we should use it very frankly. We should use municipal wastage.

    • Hi Mukul,
      Thank you very much for your interest in waste recycling and energy saving. yes, it is the only way our country can attain energy independence

  3. Hi everyone… i really like the innovative ideas of making tools out of paper waste. But my concern is, even if we convert the paper waste into these items, are we really reducing the manufacturing of paper from trees? Our aim isnt just managing paper waste. Our aim should be how to reduce cutting down of tress to make papers. If we can reduce that than we can easily manage everything. This is my point of view. I would like to see your pov also. Thank you.

    • Hi Sajan,
      Thank you very much for your thoughts. Yes, we all need to reduce paper waste but how? I request you to suggest some solutions that we can implement

  4. Hi Levine.
    Thank u for appreciating my thoughts.. i m from a country where preservation of environment comes first. So now my concern is how we can save our environment from getting depleted by waste. So recently i have started doing research on how we can manage our waste which is the major issue not only in my country but all over the world. So i m in the process of doing some research and for that i need your help and others help too. So please help me guys ro save of environment and save our beautiful mother earth. I will be looking for your possible helps. Thank u

  5. Hi
    I like your innovative idea on reusing or recycling waste paper. My home University burns a huge amount of waste paper per year. No one considers to recycle or produce some thing from this waste paper.

  6. I’ve learned a lot about how to re-use paper. Looking forward to more articles written by you.


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