15 Crafting Materials You've Never Tried

Be a Designer Macgyver: Transform everyday materials and ready-for-the-trash items into clever home decor projects.

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Photo By: Layla Palmer

Photo By: Melissa Edgemont

Photo By: Rachel Faucett

Light Bulbs

Transform burnt-out bulbs into cute craft projects, like this tiny terrarium from Juliette Melton of The Hipster Home. Get more light bulb craft ideas.

Tin Cans

Before you recycle, why not upcycle? Rescue vegetable cans and coffee tins and repurpose them as colorful utensil storage bins. Dress them up with paint and washi tape, then use a "S" hook to attach to a kitchen towel bar. Find more creative ways to repurpose tin cans.

Wine Crates

Like milk crates, these sturdy boxes are surprisingly simple to transform and have a certain rustic flair. Turn the vessel for your bulk wine purchases into mobile toy boxes like Brian Patrick Flynn did here, or try more of our wine crate craft ideas. (Don't forget to use the wine bottles and wine corks!)

Garden Tools

Bring your green thumb indoors by repurposing old garden tools as home decor. Have a leaky watering can? Turn it into a planter. Garden tools with broken handles can be repurposed, too, like this rake-turned-jewelry rack. Find more creative garden tool craft ideas.


Old silk neckties are a thrift-store staple. Give retro ties new life by using them to tie back curtains like designer Brian Patrick Flynn did here. Or, learn 5 more clever ways to repurpose neckties.

Vintage Scarves

This common thrift store find isn’t just for retro fashionistas – you can also transform it into home decor. Pick a brilliant pattern and let it stand on its own as art like designer Hilari Younger did here, or transform it into a pillow, table runner and more. Get more crafty ideas for vintage scarves.

Old Books

Bibliophiles, stay with me: Book crafts aren't for your rare or treasured tomes, but there are plenty of ways to repurpose damaged or unwanted volumes. Turn a book into an unexpected succulent planter, or read about more fun book projects.

License Plates

Snip up some old license plates and put them to work on your fridge as magnets, like Brian Patrick Flynn did here. Just be sure to use steel plates (not aluminum) so the magnets stick! Find more fun license plate craft ideas.

Baby Food Jars

Once you've collected a few of these pint-sized jars, paint in ombre hues and wire together to make a hanging vase or planter. Or, discover 5 more adorable uses for baby food jars.

Decoupage Map Kids' Chairs

Plain wooden chairs for little explorers are a lot more appealing after a decoupage map makeover! Follow Brian Patrick Flynn’s tutorial and jazz up your kids’ bedrooms or playrooms on the cheap. See more wordly map craft ideas.

Coffee Filters

Coffee filters are good for more than just a fresh cup of joe. Dip (fresh) filters in fabric dye to create a colorful, flower-inspired piece of temporary wall art. Get more coffee filter craft ideas.

Old T-Shirts

You know that overflowing drawer of free T-shirts? Turn them into something functional, like this recycled shirt rug. Find more ways to reuse old shirts here.

Leather Belts

They're not just a stylish accessory: Leather belts can be used for everything from curtain tiebacks to woven benches to rustic drawer pulls. See more leather belt craft ideas.

Vintage Suitcases

These time-worn treasures can hold more than socks and underwear — try fitting the bottom half of a suitcase with a custom cushion to create a comfortable, stylish bed for Fido. See more suitcase craft ideas.

Duct Tape

Okay, you've probably heard of duct tape crafts. But take a cue from Rachel Faucett of Handmade Charlotte and think outside the, ahem, roll — she used it to create a chevron border, bed skirt and more. More duct tape crafts you must see to believe.

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