How to upcycle used toothpicks into home decor

How to upcycle used toothpicks into home decor

I absolutely love finding new ways to give old items a second life. It’s amazing how many things can be repurposed if you just use your imagination. One item that most people overlook is used toothpicks. With a little creativity, these little wooden sticks can become beautiful DIY home decor.

Gathering Supplies

The first step is gathering supplies. Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Toothpicks – Save used toothpicks or buy packs of new ones. You’ll want a couple hundred at least.
  • Hot glue gun – This is essential for adhering the toothpicks together. Get one with multiple temperature settings.
  • Acrylic paint – Choose whatever colors you want. Metallic and neon paints work great.
  • Paint brushes – Have a few different sizes for detail work.
  • Cardboard – Use cardboard from shipping boxes to create structures.
  • Scissors – Cut the cardboard into desired shapes.
  • Embellishments – Glitter, gems, ribbons etc can add nice decorative accents.

Simple Toothpick Crafts

Let’s start with some easy beginner toothpick projects. These are great to practice on before moving onto more advanced decor items.

Toothpick Frames

One of the simplest ways to use toothpicks for decor is making picture frames. Here’s how:

  • Take a piece of cardboard and cut it into a square, rectangular, circular or unique shape.
  • Use hot glue to attach toothpicks around the edges of the cardboard. Place them close together.
  • Let the glue dry completely.
  • Paint the toothpicks and let dry. Add a second coat for best color coverage.
  • Insert a photo or art print and display!

The gaps between the toothpicks give these frames an open, airy feel. They’re perfect for highlighting vacation photos, inspirational quotes or your child’s art.

Toothpick Stars

Toothpicks also make lovely decorative stars. Follow these steps:

  • Bend 5 toothpicks into a star shape.
  • Glue the points together where they meet in the center.
  • Make as many stars as desired. Let dry completely.
  • Paint the stars in festive colors like red, white, blue or metallic gold and silver.
  • Once dry, you can embellish with glitter, gems or ribbons.
  • Attach a loop of string to the back to hang as ornaments or window decor.

Kids will have fun assisting with this easy project. Mix different colored stars for a whimsical galaxy-themed display.

More Advanced Toothpick Projects

Once you’ve gotten the hang of basic toothpick crafting, try your hand at some more intricate decor items. These make wonderful handmade gifts too.

Toothpick Picture Frame Wreath

Creating a wreath from toothpick picture frames makes a splendid home accent piece. Follow these instructions:

  • Cut cardboard into a variety of square, rectangular and circular shapes.
  • Glue toothpicks around each cardboard frame using a hot glue gun.
  • Paint the frames and let dry completely before continuing.
  • Arrange the frames in a wreath shape, overlapping them at the corners.
  • Glue the frames together where they meet. You may need to trim some toothpicks.
  • Attach a hook to the back to hang on the wall.
  • Insert photos into the frames if desired.

This lovely wreath is guaranteed to draw compliments. Customize it by using frames in different colors and sizes.

Geometric Toothpick Sculptures

If you want a more modern, sculptural decor piece, try using toothpicks to create cool geometric shapes. Here’s how:

  • Sketch out some abstract 3D shapes, like pyramids, cubes, cones etc.
  • Cut cardboard into the base shape for your design.
  • Use hot glue to attach toothpicks around the edges and fill in the shape.
  • Let the glue fully dry before continuing.
  • Paint your sculpture and let dry. Add extra coats for vibrancy.
  • Attach a stand, hooks or mounting hardware to the back for displaying.

The straight, rigid nature of toothpicks is perfect for fashioning mathematical shapes. Group different geometric sculptures together for an artful display.

Displaying Toothpick Crafts

Now comes the fun part – deciding how to show off your crafty toothpick creations! Here are some ideas:

  • Group multiples together – Create a centerpiece or gallery wall with similar items.
  • Combine with other materials – Display next to vases, candles, houseplants etc for an eclectic look.
  • Give as gifts – Toothpick crafts make wonderfully thoughtful handmade gifts. Wrap them up prettily!
  • Use for parties – Toothpick stars and frames are ideal baby shower or birthday party decorations.
  • Craft with kids – Let little ones make their own masterpieces for their rooms. Supervise closely!

However you choose to use them, these upcycled toothpick crafts are sure to add charm and personality to any space. Get creative and make your home unique with this easy DIY project.