wikiHow to Reuse Old Newspapers

Do you have so much newspaper that you're not always sure what to do with it? While you could recycle it, here are some fun and useful ways you can reuse some of it too.


  1. Image titled ForHalloween Step 2
    Use newspapers to stuff things. For example, newspapers make excellent stuffing for such things as a scarecrow on Halloween or as fake appendages or body parts for a costume.

    To do this, just open up a section of newspaper, and take one sheet and scrunch it up into a ball. Then gently stuff it into the pantyhose, sock, tube or other item to fill.
  2. Image titled ArtProjects Step 3
    Use newspapers to cover tables and floors when painting a picture, or when kids do crafts or art projects. Take advantage of layers, as using several layers will increase the protection of the surface in case of spills. It also allows you to remove stained layers and reveal fresh layers beneath.
  3. Image titled WashWindows Step 4
    Wash windows with newspaper. Just tear into strips of about 3 inches (7.5cm) in width and ball these up. Use as you would normally use a paper towel. The advantage of a newspaper is that it will not leave lint on your window or mirror.
    • Note that ink may come off onto your hands and any adjoining lightly painted surfaces. Simply wipe off with water if that happens or wash your hands with soap.
  4. Image titled PaperMache Step 5
    Use newspaper in papier mâché projects. There are endless possibilities here, from piggy banks to piñatas.
  5. Image titled PaperPlanes Step 6
    Make origami out of newspaper. Or use smaller sheets of newspaper to make paper airplanes.
  6. Image titled Scrapbooking Step 7
    Use newspaper for scrapbooking. Just be aware that the ink may rub off onto the next page, so a protective page cover is probably a good idea. This is a neat way of saving clippings with a lot of personal meaning, such as photos or stories about family achievements in sport, college and professional life.
  7. Image titled KeepBinder Step 1
    In similar vein to the scrapbooking, keep a binder full of articles you like best. Dramatic changes noted in the news or anything else you're interested in keeping; these are memories!

    When the pages start fading over time, take digital photos of them and store them in electronic form.
    • Be careful not to turn this into an act of hoarding. If you never look at the clippings again, then it's not likely to be a useful thing in your life. Be a conscious clipper!
  8. Image titled Collage Step 8
    Make a collage with articles or pictures you find in the paper. With colored pictures you can make the item very colorful or avoid those and keep the collage theme black and white.
  9. Image titled MakeHat Step 9
    Make a hat. Paper hats can be useful for party wear, costumes and just for cheering up a bored child. Some ideas to help you include:
  10. Image titled MakeBoat Step 10
    Make a boat. A paper boat easily stays afloat. Some ideas to help you include:
    • How to make a paper boat
    • How to make a floating paper boat
    • How to make a waterproof paper boat
    • How to fold an origami sailboat.
  11. Image titled CupforSeed Step 11
    Make a small cup to start seeds for your garden. You can place the cup with the seedling directly in the ground and newspaper will degrade by itself.
  12. Image titled WindowpaneCover Step 12
    Paste the newspapers on the window pane for protection from the sunlight. This should only be a temporary measure as it doesn't look very nice, but it can be helpful while someone is convalescing or to protect a pet or a plant from getting too much sunlight; at least until you can get around to buying a proper window dressing.
    • Newspapers are often used to cover store windows between handovers so that people on the outside cannot see what's going on inside. This is a great use for renovations, remodeling and prior to a relaunch.
  13. Image titled Giftwrap Step 13
    Use newspaper to wrap anything. For wrapping gifts, use colored comic pages or the colored inserts that come with a newspaper, such as the weekend news magazine).

    If you are particularly artistic it is possible to make newspaper wrapping look really cool; including ribbons, nature items, yarn or string, etc.

    For children, this type of wrapping is a really easy and fun way to learn how to wrap a gift, especially since there is no worry about ripping because it's easily fixed with a new piece.
  14. Image titled ForPacking Step 14
    Use newspaper in packing as a cushion for delicate items. Newspaper is very versatile when it comes to packing because it can be laid out flat in layers for shock absorption, scrunched up to fill spaces and stop items from moving or hitting one another, or wrapped directly around fragile items to protect them as they're moved. Newspaper can also be used to protect surfaces that you're using to pack things on.
    • Weight of newspapers becomes a consideration here if shipping. Just compare the weight of your unpacked item and box to any weight thresholds provided by the shipper.
  15. Image titled PlayBall Step 15
    Make a light ball for playing with kids or your pet. Simply scrunch it up and toss. When the fun's over, recycle the balls. Cats are often fascinated with little newspaper balls.
  16. Image titled Birdcage Step 16
    Use newspaper for lining the bottom of your bird's cage. This is easy to change every day and stops you from having to clean the base of the cage every single time.
  17. Image titled AsMatress Step 17
    Use it as a mattress of sorts. At least, newspaper can be laid down anywhere to cover a dirty surface if you're intending to nap or sleep somewhere out of the ordinary, such as during a road trip or when camping out in the Black Friday queues!
  18. Image titled Woven Step 18
    Make a woven sit-upon. This can be made up for sitting upon at concerts, festivals and anywhere else that you managed to forget to bring along a comfortable seat. The newspaper will insulate you from the ground cold, so it's a great quick fix:
    • Simply take about 20 sheets of newspaper (make it an even amount). Make 10 strips by folding as outlined next. First, layer two sheets of newspaper at a time, then fold each long edge to the center and crease, then fold the edge to the center again. Repeat until you have ten even strips.
    • Lay five strips lengthwise in evenly spaced positions. Then weave the five remaining strips width-wise using and over one strip, under one strip weaving method. As you weave, keep pushing the strips in close together to keep them near and straightened. When done, adjust to ensure even length.
    • Tuck in the ends by folding the end over the outside strip and tucking it back into the weaving. Do one side, then flip over and tuck in the loose ends on the other side. It's now ready to sit on.
    • If you want it to be more durable, it will need to be sprayed with an acrylic finish but if it's just an ad hoc fix for the day, simply recycle it after use.

      Be aware that the ink may rub off on clothing unless it's sealed. Hairspray also works well.


  • These can be used as table mats, large of the same can be folded in half to be a folder or book cover.
  • You can even make origami from newspapers, tie all of them to a ribbon, cord or any similar thing and hang it as a decoration in your room.
  • Paper mache does the trick.
  • Image titled 82826798_1fb6a7acc7
    Recycling is always an option when you're overwhelmed by piles of newspaper. If you can't manage to get them to the depot yourself, ask another family member or friend to help out.

Things You'll Need

  • Newspaper
  • Accompanying helpful items such as glue, staplers, paint, etc.
  • Recycling bin for end of newspaper's life cycle

Sources and Citations

Article Info

Featured Article

Categories: Featured Articles | Paper Reuse