10 Ways to Repurpose Christmas Gifts

We've all been there on Christmas morning -- opening a sweater that's too big or unwrapping a book we already own. It doesn't mean we're any less grateful for these gifts; we just know they might collect dust. Our creative ideas will help you repurpose Christmas gifts into something you'll actually use.

1. Turn a Wool Sweater ...

... into a throw blanket or pillow.

This craft takes a bit of time, but it's well worth the effort. Start by felting the wool (working the wool fibers in a washing machine until stitches are no longer visible). Then sew together the felted pieces to create a throw blanket or pillow. Make your choice based on how many sweaters you're willing to contribute to the craft. Our throw used about 12 sweaters; our pillow used only two.

See the complete instructions here.

2. Turn Wine Corks ...

... into a funky frame. 

A bottle of wine is the gift that keeps on giving -- even after you've drained the last drop. Keep a collection of corks until you have enough to line a picture frame. Then superglue the corks along the frame's edge.  

3. Turn a Plain Vase ...

... into a modern metallic statement piece.

Gold-color paint makes almost anything look more expensive. If you received a floral arrangement for Christmas, simply mask off sections of the vase with painters tape, then fill in with metallic paint. 

4. Turn Food Gifts ...

... into rustic pendant lights. 

No offense Clark, but if you get a subscription to a jelly-of-the-month club, you're a lucky guy. You can transform empty canning jars into staggered pendant lights with only seven materials. 

Get the full how-to here. 

5. Turn a Book ...

... into vintage wall art

If you already have a copy of the season's must-read novel, rip out a few pages to create these botanical beauties. Print vintage images -- and an old paper background texture if you're using a new book -- onto the pages. Then glue to a linen mat and hang with clips.

6. Turn Vintage Earrings ...

... into chic place card holders. 

If you're gifted a pair of clip-on earrings that aren't your style, don't donate them. Instead, add a touch of sparkle to your dinner table by securing a place card between the earring and its clip. 

7. Turn a Plain Mug ...

... into a personalized one. 

Amp up a basic coffee mug with this easy DIY that only requires six supplies. No worries if you're not artistic: Trace the design instead of freehanding it.

Get the full DIY here. 

8. Turn a Photo Frame ...

... into stained glass. 

Add character to a classic family photo. Remove glass from a frame, mask off lined sections with painters tape, brush on paint with a foam roller. Remove tape, then let dry.

9. Turn Basic Dish Towels ...

... into trendy dyed decor. 

Submerge the towel in equal parts water and Lumi Inkodye paint. Wring out extra solution, then lay the towel flat. Place items -- like string or spoons -- on the wet towel and leave it in direct sunlight until the towel dries and color develops. Remove items, then wash the towel twice with Inkowash detergent.

10. Turn a White Elephant Gift ...

... into a toothbrush holder. 

OK, we know that every white elephant gift isn't, well, a white elephant. But if you're willing to think outside the box, most any gift can be transformed into something else. Make this fun toothbrush holder by drilling 3/4-inch holes in a wooden elephant figurine, then spray with a glossy white paint.

More Charming Craft Ideas

Use cheap supplies to make fun snowmen crafts. Each snowman requires just a few supplies and can be made in minutes.

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