Bracelets From Plastic Bottles

I love the possibility of creating something from nothing or turning trash into treasure. Today’s tutorial will show you how to create wearable jewelry made from, get this, empty plastic bottles. We’ll be using fabric, felt, yarn and duct tape to achieve 4 different styles.

What you will need:

  1. Clean, empty, and dry plastic bottles (color does not matter)
  2. Scissors
  3. Hot glue gun or tacky glue
  4. Razor Knife/ Box cutter(optional)
  5. Fabric, yarn, felt and/or duct tape
  6. Ruler
  7. Permanent Marker

Begin with cleaning your bottle completely. Remove the wrapping so all you have is a “naked” bottle.

Grab your box cutter and scissors. Carefully make a slit at the top of your bottle with the box cutter. Where it begins to bend. If you don’t have this you can use a very sharp pair of scissors.

Place your scissors in that open slit and cut straight down the bottle until you reach the bottom. Then cut the bottom and top of the bottle away. We will be using the center piece only. If your bottle is still wet from being washed, now is a good time to dry it off.

Flatten plastic and using your ruler and marker draw straight lines on the bottle to create long lines and a template. Cut along the lines.  The thickness is completely up to you.

Pick the fabric you’d like to use. I’ll be using a cotton fabric and felt for this part, since they both work the same-you’ll see me switching between pictures.

Measure the fabric you’ll be needing. You’ll need to add 1/2″ more at the end. Be sure to cut off any uneven or fuzzy ends. Fold over the fabric to see how much you’ll need to cover your bottle.

Using the marker make a dash at each fold and the end you’ll be cutting. Put dashes at the end of the fabric as well and connect them for an easy to follow straight line.

Glue Gun Alert! Place the fabric inside the bottle loop with the edges touching. Make sure it’s the negative or wrong side pressed against the inside. Glue a straight line(thin, not heavy) on the inside edge of the loop and press the fabric to it. Using a light amount of glue and only working a few spaces at a time, begin to glue the fabric to the inside of the loop(fabric will be inside out).

Continue gluing around the loop, following the traced line, until you reach the other end.

You should have extra fabric sticking out above the plastic and your bracelet should look like this

Begin to fold the fabric over the loop, pulling slightly to make snug.

Once all is covered slide the beginning side into the pocket of the ending. Pull fabric tight under the loop to be sure each side is covered. Glue the top and bottom closed.

Begin gluing the other side down, completely covering the plastic.

TA DA! You just made your first Plastic Bottle Bracelet!

IDEA: Cut fabric or felt in strips and make a colorful stripped bracelet!

Some really fun variations to this project would be to use yarn or duct tape.  Let’s do the Duct Tape first.  Follow the same instructions as above with the cutting and measuring. Only difference is you don’t need the extra tape at the end.   Line up the edge of the plastic with the edge of the tape. Press the plastic down on the tap slowly while keeping it as straight as you can(you can also use a larger piece of duct tape and then cut it down later).

Fold over one side of the tape and then the other.

Using the same tape or a matching color, over lap the edges a little and then connect using the tape.

That’s is! A Duct Tape plastic bottle bracelet!

IDEA: Glue small gems to the Duct tape to make it sparkle!

Last option is YARN! I love yarn, so this is one of my favs!  Once again, follow the same instructions with the measuring and cutting.  Chose your favorite color or colors of yarn. You’ll need to unravel a good amount for this project. To make it easier unravel around 60 inches at a time. You can always add more string as needed. I’m going to be crazy and use 2 colors.

Begin by holding the two ends together. Using your glue gun, draw a small line in the middle and place the end of your yarn on the glue. Begin wrapping your yarn around and around the entire plastic loop.

To change colors, make a small dot of glue on the inside of the loop and press the yarn to it then cut. Add another small dot on top of that and add the new yarn color. Wrap as before. Continue until the entire loop is covered. To finish place a small dot of glue on the inside of the loop and press the yarn to it  and then cut.

There you have it!

IDEAS: Glue beads, gems or felt shapes to this bracelet for a more unique look!

IDEAS FOR USING THE REST OF THAT BOTTLE:
  • The Bottom: paint it a fun color or colors and use it for change or jewelry.
  • The Top: turn it over and it makes the perfect funnel.

“Don’t let the incubus of habit beset your mind.” Frank Lloyd Wright (think outside the box)

I hope you enjoyed this trash to treasure tutorial. See you next time. 

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