Suze Orman says chop up your credit cards ... or freeze them or something. But neither credit cards nor gift cards are recyclable (take that, Suze!). Some retailers do sell a bioplastic gift card that degrades in about 40 days (read more here) but for the most part, we pop the PVC suckers in the trash. I get particularly annoyed with online-only retailers like Amazon. They ship out actual plastic cards (I get one every time I cash out my credit card points - irony of ironies) ... even though the only valuable thing on the card is its "code". Then what? I think we should actively craft with them.That's what. So here are some ideas.
Take a look at the amazing work of Bryant Holsenbeck. If he can make a "Card"inal, I can make a pair of earrings. Or a guitar pick.
Here's a super-practical option ... use that spent card to organize a cord or two.
Love this idea from Mama G's Big Crafty Blog: Paint the old gift card with chalkboard paint and it becomes a re-usable tag, for gifts, plant markers etc
Saying bye-bye to the gold card forever? How about a little ironic keepsake ... something by which to remember your ballooning debt heydays? I think Carrie Bradshaw would approve.
Use gift cards (not your credit card, says Suze!) to buy the iPhone and then make your own stand
The incredible mosaic work (the box and journal cover) is just a taste of what you'll find in the inspiring Flickr gallery featuring the work of Jupita Designs
A lot of gift cards (in the US, anyway) are really pretty... and therefore bling-worthy. DIY bracelet care of Recreate Your Purpose
Another bracelet - slightly different technique via Oh So Crafty. Also, check out this credit-crunch bracelet from Scavenging. Finally, creditcards.com has a video tutorial walking you through 4 different crafts: earrings, a bracelet, guitar picks and a pin or magnet.
For lots of jewelry ideas, including the earrings pictured above, head to Prized Possessions. If you want to turn hotel key cards into earrings, check out the tutorial at Embellished Bayou
Great tutorial for this upcycled gift-card necklace at The Creative Goddess / Vicki O'Dell
Lovely cuff inspiration via Etsy
Leave it to Instructables ... these rings are made using plastic cards (gift or credit cards) and it actually looks doable. In fact, the tutorial is a little like peaking behind the curtain - go take a look!
Plastic paper clips /book marks from old gift or credit cards ... care of the ever-instructive Instructables.
DIY luggage tags? Yes ... genius! Get the version pictured above at Serious Whims ... another tutorial available at Craft Crossing.
I rarely mention actual products. But if you want to use old gift cards to make guitar picks, you could probably do with a Pick Punch.
A little credit-card mosaic? Nice.
Flickr inspiration - I love the color work in this wreath
And to close, a little post-consumer presidential portraiture. Care of Amy Orr