‘Reduce, reuse, recycle’ is the new mantra to make the earth a sustainable place to live in. With natural resources being depleted from the face of the earth, it is now up to us to restore what is left and help earth to get back up. The use of items like plastic should be stopped immediately. Instead let us use paper, glass or jute which are biodegradable and don’t harm the environment. Some may argue that using paper is not the solution, since it involves cutting down trees to obtain the pulp. But there is a solution- recycled paper.
Recycled paper is safe to use, biodegradable and not does not exhaust natural resources. The best thing about recycled paper is that it is very easy to make. It can be made at home without spending any effort or money. Even children can make it under the supervision of adults. All you need is some scrap paper, a blender, water, a sieve or mesh and a pan. First you need to assemble your scrap paper. You can use any old or used paper that is lying around the house. Cut the paper into small pieces and soak them for a while in warm water. Now put those in a blender and you have a thick pulp ready for recycling. You can put a few drops of vinegar to the mixture to make it whiter. Now going back to the pan, fill about half of it with water. Put the net or mesh into the pan in such a way that it covers it completely. After that it is time you add the pulp to the water in the pan. Spread the pulp across the screen and smoothen it out. It is advisable to add some liquid starch to the pulp so that if the paper is used for writing, the ink doesn’t bleed. When this is done, gently lift the screen or net from the pan and press out the excess water from the pulp. Now place it out in the sun. If you see that there is still some water left in the pulp, place a newspaper over it and press the pulp using force. This gets rids of any excess water that may have been left. Then let it dry in the sun. After it has dried a bit, peel out the paper from the net gently so that it doesn’t tear. When it has dried completely, you are now free to use the recycled paper any way you like.
It is one of the easiest ways of making recycled paper at home. If you don’t have the time to make it at home, you can buy it from shops. Used paper should never be thrown away- always try to recycle them. Nowadays recycled paper is not just used for writing or making toilet paper. It has a lot of other uses. Many household items are now being made from recycled paper. Some are being sold on websites at a very reasonable price. Things like bags, vase, picture frames, placement mats, gift tags, household decorations are now being made with recycled paper. You need not buy them online, you can make them yourself.
These recycled paper items can be made with any type of paper- newspapers, book pages or cardboard. Paper pulp is very much like clay which can be moulded in to any shape you like. Glue is often added to the paper to make it hard. Beautiful decorative vases can be made out of recycled paper. After it has dried, it can be painted with bright fabric colours or decorated in any way you like. Beads or glass decorations can be used to make the vase attractive. These vases beautify homes everywhere and can easily be gifted to loved ones. Apart from vases, pencil bags and tote bags made from recycled paper are also becoming very popular. Paper can be woven intricately to make beautiful baskets as well. These items come in a lot of variety. Buy them in different colours or shapes to make a style statement.
Paper toys and decorations are getting quite well-liked. Christmas decorations are now being moulded out of recycled paper. Even streamers used in birthday parties now come in recycled varieties. Small paper toys can be made for children at home by the children themselves. By engaging in such activities, the children are acquiring a good past time while becoming conscious of the environment.
A lot of craftsmen and artisans are engaged in making recycled paper items. By purchasing these recycled things you will be making a difference in their lives. Help support them in their endeavour. Additionally you will be making a change to our environment. Using paper bags can help reduce the use of plastic bags to a large extent. Paper and jute items are replacing plastic quite resourcefully.
It doesn’t take much time or effort to switch to eco-friendly ways of living. At a time when our planet needs us the most, it is our duty to extend our helping hand. These small efforts would make a huge difference to our lives. Make paper your best friend from now on.