Paper upcycle old calendars

Published on January 14th, 2012 | by Becky Striepe

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10 Ways to Upcycle an Old Calendar

upcycle old calendars

The new year is all about changes, and that probably means ridding your walls of those outdated calendars from last year, right? It also seems to be The Month of Promotional Calendars, when unwanted calendars from businesses flood our mailboxes. Rather than toss all of that paper into the recycle bin, you can get crafty and turn those old calendars into something new. Here are some crafty uses for old calendars to get you started!

These tutorials are for monthly calendars, but if you’re looking to repurpose a daily calendar, we’ve got some ideas for that right over here!

1. Frame it! Some calendars have really beautiful art on them. Hit the thrift store for some frames, and show them off!

2. Collage. You can use calendar pages as the foundation for a collage, or cut out images you like to use in all of your collagey endeavours.

repurposed calendar

3. Make a treat box. Fold those calendar pages up, origami style, to make repurposed treat boxes.

4. Make envelopes. Use an envelope template to fold up old calendar pages into new envelopes. If your pages have dark artwork on them, you may need to put a white label for the address.

5. Make an altered book journal. A calendar is basically just a bound book. Fancy up those pages to transform it into a journal that you can use right now!

6. Make bunting. I am bunting obsessed, and calendar pages are perfect to cut up and string! Just use our pennant template to cut out your triangles, then string them up on twine to decorate the walls at your next shindig.

paper chain

7. Paper chains. Paper chains make lovely decorations, and they’re also a great way to do a countdown – you remove a “link” for each day until whatever you’re counting down to. Just cut your calendar pages into 2″ strips, and start linking.

8. Paper bowl. Get your glue on! Turn those old calendar pages into a pretty paper bowl.

9. Greeting cards. Turn last year’s calendar into this year’s birthday and holiday cards!

10. Fancy up a box. This calendar reuse tutorial used a box from WalMart (boo!), but you could just as easily find a box at a thrift store to use.

Of course, if crafting with a calendar isn’t your thing, you can always check and see when you can reuse this calendar! You can stash away those 2011 calendars to reuse in 2022, 2033, 2039, 2050, 2061, 2067, 2078, 2089, 2095, 2101, and 2107.

Image Credits: Creative Commons Paper Chain photo by kristy. All other photos by Becky Striepe.

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About the Author

My name is Becky Striepe (rhymes with “sleepy”), and I am a crafts and food writer from Atlanta, Georgia with a passion for making our planet a healthier, happier, and more compassionate place to live. My mission is to make vegan food and crafts accessible to everyone!. If you like my work, you can also find me on Twitter, Facebook, and .



  • Jeanie Robinson

    Another idea is to share your calendars with social studies teachers in your area. Especially if you have calendars with pictures of far off places. When I taught geography, I used my old calendars to decorate my classroom for each unit. When I changed schools, I left them for the next teacher. She tells me that she uses them too! You can glue construction paper on the back to cover up any personal information. I am sure your donation would be greatly appreciated at your area schools.

  • http://truebluemeandyou.tumblr.com Truebluemeandyou

    My mother saves calendars FOREVER usually because she has ones that can be framed or they are personal. i found this website for her http://whencanireusethiscalendar.com/?y=2012 so she can look up if and when she can ever reuse her old calendars. She swears she can use 2006 for this year, but I’ve just forwarded her this link!

  • Mary

    These are cute ideas. I purposely got a calendar this year that is pre-made to be cut into folders and gift tags and such. It’s really pretty, I just wish it wasn’t so expensive.
    http://www.paper-source.com/cgi-bin/paper/item/2012-Paper-Source-Wall-Art-Calendar/3205.001/436902.html

  • http://jorjiapeach.blogger.com jorjiapeach

    awesome tips. i kinda want to bombard my house with paper chains now!

    • http://glueandglitter.com/main Becky Striepe

      If you do, I hope you will send us a picture!

  • http://greenissuessingapore.blogspot.com Agy

    Hi there, I use the old calendars to make board games like Snakes & Ladders. It’s a good way to get the kids brains going too – no computer games, pls!! We have such fun deciding where all the snakes & ladders go!

    I’ve posted a picture here >> http://greenissuessingapore.blogspot.com/2010/01/frugal-board-game-snakes-and-ladders.html

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