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Reusing Styrofoam

Category Reusing
Styrofoam is one of those manmade products that lasts forever in the landfill or ocean, so think about reusing it. This is a guide about reusing Styrofoam.
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Solutions

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July 2, 2010

Make Styrofoam plates into cute hanging stars after rinsing and letting dry (or brushing off crumbs). I used a stencil of a star for my patterns and cut these out using craft scissors. They are strung on regular sewing thread with a few beads at the top.
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This is the result of only 2 plates!

By melody_yesterday from Otterville, MO

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August 20, 20100 found this helpful

Very cute idea! I love it! I really enjoy making things out trash, lol!

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7 found this helpful
June 2, 2009

When planting hanging baskets, put Styrofoam peanuts in the bottom instead of stones. The plants do not stand in water and the baskets will not be so heavy.

By soochatty from Middletown, DE

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March 4, 20110 found this helpful

Great idea. I can't lift a lot of weight like I used to,& this will be a big help as I do still love gardening. And thanks to dse77-I didn't know there were 2 different kinds of styrofoam either.

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2 found this helpful
December 14, 2009

I've been doing a lot of crafting making small felt and cloth toys. They measure about 2 - 4 inches. With so many little pieces (and a dog who waits at my feet for fabric scraps!), I needed some way to keep track of everything. I'd been keeping foam meat trays (bleached and washed), trying to find a use.

Now, my little pieces and patterns are pinned to the back of the tray. Not only do I keep everything, but I can also design things by moving pieces around and keeping them in place with pins! I also put the pins in at an angle so I don't get poked. I 'drill' a hole at the top of the tray with a chopstick, thread a piece of string and hang it from thumb tacks on my cork board! Now I can see my projects and find everything I need!

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By DannieB

Comment Was this helpful? 2
January 6, 20100 found this helpful

I agree with Dee. Why take a chance? Styrofoam is porous and the bleach and soap may not penetrate enough to kill all the bacteria. E-coli is a terrible disease. Buy them from the butcher at low cost or get Styrofoam plates at a big box store.

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March 22, 20052 found this helpful

When filling huge flowerpots, reduce the weight and the amount of soil you need by filling the bottom with recycled Styrofoam peanuts or even chunks of Styrofoam. I get pieces when I need them from the dumpster behind a furniture and accessories store.

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4 found this helpful
November 11, 2009

I cut out the logos from the Styrofoam cups and cover them with see through plastic. I then glue them to a sheet (e.g.) a poem I made up and give as gifts. Or use as a scrapbook page.

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June 5, 2013

Styrofoam as Perlite Substitute

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Perlite is exellent for amending soil used for container grown plants and for starting seedlings in a soil or soiless medium. It insures better drainage and aeration which results in a larger, healthier root system.

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April 30, 20160 found this helpful

Black styrofoam meat tray against a white background

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This is a guide about uses for Styrofoam meat trays. Reusing Styrofoam packaging helps keep it out of the landfill. There are a variety of uses for the trays used for packing meat.

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June 20, 2006

From Styrofoam blocks taken from a new TV box, I created 4 different organizers and a wall flower display with dried or artificial flowers...

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May 20, 20040 found this helpful

Planting large flower pots. Use styrofoam to fill the pots half way. This provides good drainage and makes it easier to move the pots.

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0 found this helpful
May 14, 2008

Styrofoam! I re-use all I can. When drying starched items (ie: ornaments), I cover a strip of styrofoam with plastic wrap, stretch to form and pin to place.

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0 found this helpful
June 27, 2011

Recycled meat tray with child's art

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Styrofoam meat trays or plates make great bases for children's drawings or decoupage projects.

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Questions

Ask a QuestionHere are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community or ask a new question.

August 12, 20040 found this helpful

Does anyone know of what can be done with large pieces of styrofoam like computers and stereos are packed in? I have a bunch and don't want to just send it to the landfill. (Originally published 2000-07-28)

Marianne

Answer Was this helpful? Yes
July 2, 20080 found this helpful

If you have the right tools, there are a lot of things you can do with Styrofoam...crafts, insulation, etc.

Here is a company that sells a variety of foam cutters:

http://www.foamcuttingtools.com

Cheers!

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April 11, 20160 found this helpful

Large pieces of polyethylene foam are particularly valuable for those of us who make bobbin lace. Check out your local needle / handicraft guilds?

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August 1, 20110 found this helpful

Are there any fun or useful suggestions, tips, or samples of items made from Styrofoam trays that meat from the supermarket comes on? Thanks for the consideration and time.

By Dianne

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August 3, 20110 found this helpful

I use meat trays but I wash and dry them thoroughly and put them in the sun for no less than tree days. My grandma used the sun to erase yellow stains on fabric and to "sterilize" underwear so I figure It will help with whatever bacteria is still there.

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August 3, 20110 found this helpful

I found this the other day and thought it was awesome. Looks like something I would see in a boutique somewhere.

http://www.crea  page-lovely.html

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0 found this helpful
April 1, 2012

The hospital I work for throws a lot of Styrofoam coolers away. I hate that; what can I use them for? I now plant my outdoor plants in them, but what else?

By Lisa

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December 10, 20140 found this helpful

Donate them to the humane society. A Styrofoam cooler, tote, and some hay can be used as a shelter for feral cat colonies. The humane society may be able to direct you to some Trap, Neuter, & Release (TNR) programs.

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December 10, 20140 found this helpful

Donate them to the humane society. A Styrofoam cooler, tote, and some hay can be used as a shelter for feral cat colonies. The humane society may be able to direct you to some Trap, Neuter, & Release (TNR) programs.

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0 found this helpful
August 23, 2008

How can I recycle small Styrofoam ice chests? Medication is delivered in these ice chests once a month and they are really piling up. Inside the ice chests are ice packets that I can't find another use for. Any advise on how to recycle the Styrofoam? Thanks for helping.

Satellite from Gainesville, FL

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August 25, 20080 found this helpful

I also use three in my car to carry groceries home from the store...either frozen or not as it helps keep the items from rolling around the back of my SUV. My husband uses them in his trunk to transport propane tanks when he gets them filled. No tipping over!

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August 28, 20080 found this helpful

There are lots of uses for your containers. I have an idea for the ice packs you said came with them. Slip them into hand sewn bags. Keep them in the freezer for ouch bags. Your grandkids or neighbourhood kids would probably enjoy them. Or sell at your next church bazaar. I keep a couple in my freezer for such emergencies. Adults enjoy them too.

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Photos

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August 15, 2011

When assembling an item that comes with squares of hardware such as bookcases, you can put the nails and other hardware in the Styrofoam to keep them from rolling around. You can also arrange them as to which ones you need to be able to get to first.

By Robyn F. from Tri-Cities, TN

Block of Styrofoam with nails and screws pushed partway into it

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August 15, 20110 found this helpful

Great idea!

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December 1, 2010

In trying to keep the landfill free of styrofoam, I clean and reuse mine for a lot of things. I use styrofoam under planters, as trays for under craft projects (like those using glitter), etc.

Today, I was nuking some spuds for fried potatoes and transference them from the glass tray to the cutting board. Spuds tend to roll off if carried far, so I popped on a tray and they transferred just perfectly. You can do the same for hot bowls of cereal, soup, or anything you need a little bit more "friction" and help with spillage. I hope this helps!

By Poor But Proud from Sweet Home, OR

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December 5, 20100 found this helpful

Also, make sure that the food isn't so hot that it starts to melt the Styrofoam. We've actually gotten take-out food and by the time my husband got home, the food had started to melt the container!

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