Save empty plastic bottles and use these ideas to recycle them for another use.

Design a boat

Make a plastic bottle float by cutting the side to resemble a boat, then test out different types of sails made from craft foam or other waterproof materials to see which one works best. Susie from “Handy with Scissors” has step-by-step instructions on how to turn any bottle into a sea vessel at handywithscissors.com/plastic-bottle-boats.

Use as planters

Cut the top off of a soda bottle and save the base. Paint the outside of the bottle any way you would like to resemble an animal, face or character. Then fill with soil and seeds, add water and place in a windowsill for sunlight. Rachel with “Craving Some Creativity” paints her planters like a frog, pig and bunny and cuts out ears. Find her instructions at cravingsomecreativity.com/soda-bottle-animal-planters.

Paint with the base

The base of most plastic bottles makes a great stamp. Place it in different colors of paint and press it onto construction paper. Try using orange, yellow, pink or red for flowers; add stems and leaves after the “flowers” dry as well.

Make a piggy bank

Kids can use plastic bottles for saving change, and with the help of an adult, can add a slit to the cap for a coin dispenser. Go a step further and decorate the bottle with paint, glitter, paper and more. Michelle from “A Little Tipsy” created her piggy banks using mini water bottles and cut out paper ears. Find her instructions at alittletipsy.com and search for “piggy bank.”

Make a rocket jet pack

Kids can blast off into space with this fun craft. Cut a piece of cardboard the width of your child’s back, and add slits for backpack-style straps. Spray paint two 2-liter bottles with silver paint and hot glue them side-by-side to the cardboard. Natalie from “Doodle Craft” cut red and orange felt to make “flames.” Find her instructions at doodlecraftblog.com and click on “Crafts/DIY.”

Create a sea-in-a-bottle

An empty plastic bottle can transport you to the beach without leaving home. Fill the bottle with water and add a drop of blue food coloring. Add shells, small stones, glitter, plastic gems or anything else you’d like. Christie at “Childhood 101” glued the top for safety and used the bottle as a baby rattle. Find instructions at childhood101.com/baby-play-ideas.

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