New Year Upcycling – DIY magazine paper bowl

Happy 2014, everyone!

What better way to start off the new year than with a Good Old Fashioned Spring Cleaning! Oh yes, over in our highrise Owls Nest, I have been very busy writing out my list of Things To Do, and the first three on my list are:

  2. Toy Decimation Retirement
  3. Downsize Redeploy the children’s wardrobe

I have a ton of catalogues that come in through the post, and I can never bear to throw away such a stash of colourful papers that are so great for crafting with. However, during the school holidays, we have been so busy, I haven’t found time to properly sort through the huge stash of junk mail that has been slowly accumulating in great drifts over my study table.

Until now, that is.

We decided to take one of the many catalogues and turn it into a useful container for all the little nicknacks that the kids have collected from various Christmas parties.

J, who is 5 years old, pretty much completed this whole project on his own with very little interference from me.

How to make an Upcycled Magazine Paper Bowl


  1. Magazine pages – torn lengthwise into strips about 1 inch wide
  2. Glue – non-toxic PVA white school glue is the best, but I used plain clear school glue for this
  3. Mod Podge or diluted PVA glue (3 parts water, 1 part glue)
  4. Bowl (to be used as a mould – I used a small stainless steel mixing bowl)
  5. Cling film

Start off with a strip of magazine paper. Fold it lengthwise in half, and then into quarters to make nice equal creases in the paper.


Then, fold both sides of the magazine paper in so that they meet in the centre.

Dab a little bit of glue at one end of the folded strip, and fold it in half lengthwise.

Join all the strips together one by one using glue, making sure they overlap by about half an inch or so. It doesn’t need to be neat. Let the glue dry for a little while before starting to coil the whole thing up.


Keep adding strips and coiling it up tightly until you have a big flat coil of about 10 inches wide (or twice the diameter of the bowl you intend to make). This takes a pretty long time to do, so feel free to spread it out over a few days (or be prepared to step in to help). J took about 4 hours spread out over a few days to complete his coil.

Get a bowl and wrap it tightly in clingfilm. This is to protect the bowl from the Mod Podge and make it easy to remove your project from the mould.

Then, jam the magazine paper coil onto the upended bowl, making sure the sides of the coil overlap each other so that there are no gaps.

Using a brush or a sponge, paint a thin layer of Mod Podge (or diluted PVA glue) over the outside of the magazine bowl and let it dry completely. You can brush a second coat of PVA glue over it if you wish.


Remove your completed bowl and carefully peel off the clingfilm.


A very pretty, upcycled paper bowl! The PVA glue dries clear and hard so it will last a long time, but it won’t be water-resistant so you can’t wash it.

upcycled-recycled-magazine-paper-bowlIt looks so lovely and colourful, I might get J to make a few more of these for my dresser table.


2 thoughts on “New Year Upcycling – DIY magazine paper bowl

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s