Sunday, November 5, 2017

Recycle Newspaper Wall Pocket for the Holidays

It's a crafter's delight this time of year creating all sorts of wonderful projects for the holiday season!  Here's a beautiful decorative wall pocket anyone can easily make (although a bit tedious) using recycle newspaper and a few other items you probably already have on hand! And the best part, it can be painted in your favorite color and embellished with just about anything to fit the occasion!

Let's start by gathering the following items:
  • Newspaper section
  • Thin skewer stick or rod
  • Scissors
  • White glue, brush, small cup
  • Ruler
  • Hot glue and glue sticks
  • Acrylic or chalk paint
  • Painter's tape
  • Clamps
  • Measuring grid mat - optional
  • old large can  
Begin by taking a complete newspaper section like the sports or metro section (22"x12.5"), that includes several pages, fold in half and fold again,vertically into three sections.  Cut out on the vertical folds, giving you three strips per page, 22"long by 4" wide, give or take. It doesn't have to be exact. 

Next, lay the strip of newspaper on a smooth, flat work surface and place the rod or stick on the corner edge of the strip at an angle, as pictured .  .  .

Take the end tip of the paper over the rod , tucking under and start rolling the paper with hands pressed down on your work surface.

Continue rolling the paper on the rod until you get near the end.  You should lift the paper tube up to tighten the roll by twirling the paper and rod. You want to roll a very thin tube. Since there are so many tubes to make, it's easier to pour a bit of glue into a small cup or lid and using a brush, paint on the glue to the paper triangular shape edge and roll together until reaching the end to seal. 

You will need to make 34 tubes for a 16"x16" tube mat.
Next, paint the tubes by grouping them together on a covered (parchment or plastic) work surface, and using the palm of your hands to move the rods back and forth while painting one half side of the rods. I spaced out the painted rods  in a large old clean coffee can so they wouldn't stick together until dry and then painted the other half of each rod the same way. Let the tubes dry completely.

Next, begin placing down the tubes (17) vertically one inch apart and taping all of the ends down (one side) on your work surface, as pictured.
I have a measuring grid mat with one inch lines, which made it easy for me to measure placement of the tubes. If you have anything like a cardboard cutting board that sewers use, or anything with a one inch grid, that would work, too. Or, you can use a posterboard or a large piece of paper and draw a 17" square grid with lines, 1 inch apart.
If you don't want to draw a grid,  just use painter's tape to tape down on your work surface each tube in place, one inch apart, and then place a longer piece of tape over all of them, to secure so they won't move.

Once the 17 rods are taped down, lift up every other vertical rod and insert one rod, horizontal. Remember, for a 16" square mat, you will need to add 17 rods, one inch apart. 

Once you have inserted the tube and line it up correctly and evenly spaced, place a dab of hot glue where the raised vertical rods and horizontal rods meet and pressed down to seal (I turned the photo around to see the tubes better). 

See the red arrows for where to glue.

For each of the seventeen rows, continue lifting every other rod and inserting a new rod, placing it one inch away from the previous rod and sealing the rods in place with hot glue . . .

until you have inserted and sealed all 17 rods. 
Remove the painter's tape and cut off all over-hanging rods on the sides to form a 16"x16" square mat. If, by chance, you accidently glued down rods to your work surface, (like I did) use something like a silicone spatula to gently push and pry it up.
Check to make sure all over or under-lapping areas on the ends are glued down together. 
Next, turn the mat so that the pointed corners are at the top and bottom.  Gently grab the side corners and overlap the ends, in front, matching tube lines as evenly as possible.  Glue tubes together, clamping in place, until dry.

Gently fold up the bottom, like an envelop, to the center, matching tube lines. Hot glue and clamp together until completely dry. Pay close attention to the corner edges, matching lines and pressing the tubes down in place for a neat and uniform look. Check for areas that may have come apart during the folding and glue down again using clamps to hold in place until dry. You can also touch up any missed painted areas, too!

Time to Decorate!
You can decorate this adorable wall hanging pocket anyway you can imagine!  I made a poinsettia flower out of foam sheets (tutorial) and added a few evergreen sprigs for a lovely effect.

This would look great on any wall or door as a beautiful decorative holiday item, don't you think?

Thanks for stopping by

and take a little time to enjoy,

Happy Holiday Crafting!


  1. Wow! That is very creative! I am thinking of other ways "the grid" could be used in addition to a pocket, also.

  2. Amazing creation! I tried to make a newspaper basket but the rolls were a total mess. I forgot to use a skewer to roll the newspaper around. Maybe I'll try it again. Its such a neat look.

  3. That's amazing! I almost can't believe you did that with old newspapers! Thank you for sharing at The Really Crafty Link Party. Pinned!

  4. This looks great, Gail! I never would have thought you used newspaper for this. How pretty! Thanks for partying at Snickerdoodle. Pinning.

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