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Recycle the Fun: Ideas for Repurposing Old Mylar Balloons

Everybody loves balloons. From children’s parties to corporate events, balloons add fun and cheer to an otherwise boring venue. The only drawback to using balloons is what to do with all of it afterwards. Considering the fact that many kids would want to take a few home, how the rest is disposed of plays a major role in helping the planet’s waste problem.

Use and ReUse

Latex balloons are considered biodegradable, and will naturally degrade in a few months. Mylar balloons on the other hand, are not and it could take a very long time for these to degrade, so what you do with it after an event is really important. The good news is that mylar balloons can be repurposed.

Here are a few projects you can do at home to repurpose your old Mylar balloons:

Emergency Blanket – When the old mylar balloons are deflated, cut them up in equal 10x 10 squares using a rotary cutter and use an old iron to fuse them together until you form eight rows. You won’t need any tape or adhesive as mylar bonds to itself when exposed to high heat. Make sure you use an old cloth over the iron so the mylar won’t stick to it. Once you have the final giant piece, iron all the rows. Only the shiny sides will fuse together.

Thermal Shades – Excellent for keeping the sun out and your room nice and cool. Use the same cutting and fusing techniques in making an emergency blanket. Try cutting along the seams of the mylar balloons to get the biggest piece. Cover the printed side with an old blanket or quilt by sewing the final mylar shade into it, and place your new thermal shade on the window with the shiny part facing the outside.

Gift Wrapper – The great thing about mylar balloons is the vibrant colors and prints it comes with. Use it to your advantage and wrap a gift with it. Same process applies here, and the only time you need to fuse them together is when you need a bigger wrapper. If the gift is small enough, the only part of the balloon you need to cut is the bottom part. You can insert the gift and use it as a gift bag.

Keep Animals Away – Cut the mylar balloons into strips and hang them on areas where you want to keep deer or birds away. Make sure that your mylar strips blow easily with the wind, because the shine and movement may deter animals from going where you don’t want them to.

Re-inflate – If the mylar balloons don’t have any holes or damage and if the colors are still good, take them to a store to be re-inflated. At least you won’t have to buy new balloons. Consider using plain old oxygen instead of helium. Tie a string on top of the mylar balloons and tape it to the ceiling to make it look as if they’re floating.

Arts and Crafts – You can do a lot of cool things with old mylar balloons. You can cut them up in little strips and weave a basket or a placemat. You can cut bigger pieces together and fuse them to make a table runner for a children’s party. The only limit here is your creativity.

Solar Cooker – If you have an old satellite dish lying around unused, put it to good use and stick some mylar on it. When the sun’s rays reflect off a shiny, parabolic surface, the intense concentration of heat can ignite paper and even wood. Harness the power of the sun by making your own solar cooker. You’ll need an old tripod to hang your pan from. Three tent poles would work, but you need tie and secure one end and make the bottom is wide enough to fit the dish.

Consider your Next Balloon Purchase

When you’re looking for a supplier for latex or mylar balloons, look for companies that sell only naturally biodegradable latex balloons. The new batch of balloons you buy will have an environmental impact, so please be responsible and make it a positive one. Repurpose old balloons when you can. The world will thank you for it.

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