5 Ways to Recycle Envelopes

Smart ways to save time using envelopes.

from Extraordinary Uses for Ordinary Things

Shred old receipts faster
The best way to get rid of receipts that may have your credit card number or other personal information is to shred them. But feeding tiny receipts into a shredder is tedious. Instead, place all the old receipts into a few old envelopes and shred the envelopes.

Make a small funnel
You save money by buying your spices in bulk and you want to transfer them to smaller, handier bottles for use in the kitchen, but you don’t have a small funnel to do the job. Make a couple of disposable funnels from an envelope. Seal the envelope, cut it in half diagonally, and snip off one corner on each half. Now you have two funnels for pouring spices into your smaller jars.

Sort and store sandpaper
You know how sheets of sandpaper love to curl themselves up into useless tubes? Prevent that problem and keep your sandpaper sheets organized by storing them in standard letter-size cardboard mailing envelopes. Use one envelope for each grit and write the grit on the envelopes.

Make bookmarks
Recycle envelopes by making them into handy bookmarks of different sizes. Cut off the gummed flap and one end of the envelope. Then slip the remainder over the corner of the page where you stopped reading for a quick placeholder that doesn’t damage your book. Give a batch to the kids to decorate for their own set or to give as a homemade gift.

Make file folders
Don’t let papers get disorganized just because you ran out of file folders. Cut the short ends off a light cardboard mailing envelope. Turn it inside out so you have a blank cardboard on the outside. Cut a 3/4-inch (2-centimeter) wide strip lengthwise off the top of one side. The other edge becomes the place where you label your file.