Weekend Project: Turn Garbage Into Pretty Storage Containers

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Robyn Griggs Lawrence thumbnailThis weekend, as a final touch for my kitchen spring cleaning, I’m making these simple storage canisters to stash the detritus that clutters up my countertops: tea bags, pasta and assorted bags of dried fruits and nuts. Former Natural Home art director Susan Wasinger’s super simple project makes use of oatmeal, raisin and sea salt packages that would otherwise be garbage. To cover the containers, you can mix and match specialty bookmaking papers, wrapping paper, origami paper, old maps and playbills.

Simple Storage Containers 

1. Cut your paper to wrap around the cylinder with about a 1/2-inch overlap. For packages with a cardboard edge, cut the paper an inch taller than the height of the cylinder so the paper can fold over the top. For those with metal edges, cut the paper to fit between the metal rims. 

2. Brush the back side of the paper with diluted white glue or paste.

3. Position it even with the bottom edge and press around the cylinder, smoothing out wrinkles as you go. Burnish the paper firmly with the heel of your hand.

4. Clip the overhanging paper back perpendicular to the canister edge to make folding tabs. If necessary, brush them with an extra dab of glue before folding inside the canister.

5. Cork coasters work perfectly as lids. Thread a wood screw up through the bottom of the coaster, then wind a wine cork onto the screw until finger tight.

 canisters 

Try your local art supply or stationery store for interesting papers. Make sure the paper is thick enough to not become transparent when glued. Photo by Susan Wasinger