15 Genius Ways To Repurpose Pipe Cleaners Around Your Home And Garden

Pipe cleaners are significantly more versatile than you may assume. While they might initially look somewhat silly with their bright colors and fuzzy feel, you can transform them into lots of excellent creations. In fact, thousands of photos are devoted to #pipecleanerart on Instagram, showing how useful they can be when crafting. However, they can be used for much more than just creating artwork. To give you some ideas on how to use these inexpensive items, we've listed 15 ways to repurpose them in your home and garden below.

Like most creative projects, pipe cleaner DIYs come at different skill levels. Therefore, while some more tricky projects can be exciting challenges for artists with advanced creative skills, other options are doable for everyone. Of course, many of the pipe cleaner projects can be super fun to do with kids, providing not only an enjoyable bonding activity for you and your young loved ones but also an adorable decoration for the home. Even if you don't have kids, using pipe cleaner DIY projects to embellish your space, clean tight areas, or garden is still a great idea. 

1. Clean your reusable straws

Did you know you can save your reusable straws from getting yucky with a pipe cleaner? It's true, this crafting tool is very similar to the skinny wire brushes that often come with drinking straws, so it can be used in the same way. Just insert a pipe cleaner into the straw, move it around with some dish soap, and finish it off by rinsing both the inside and outside of the straw with some water.

2. Hang decorations across the wall

Are you looking to DIY gorgeous wall decor on a budget but you're tired of the same old string light look? A more affordable and creative alternative to hanging string lights across your wall is to string pipe cleaner art on your walls. Consider bending them into small hearts for a sweet and playful look and use various hues from the rainbow if you want a colorful and bright vibe. Another perk of stringing pipe cleaners instead of lights is that there's no fire hazard, making it a safer option. 

3. Inspire elegance with pipe cleaner swans

People who frequently host dinner parties and other elegant events and gatherings in their homes should use white pipe cleaners to create swan-inspired decorations to display. Once you have the swan shape, you just have to add the little eyes and beak. These decorations will likely spark fun conversations at your events and impress your guests while saving you money on decor.

4. Display floral decor

Anyone who wants to decorate their home with flowers but doesn't like how real flowers have such a short lifespan should create a bouquet out of pipe cleaners. If you have an abundance of pipe cleaners and are patient enough for a more time-consuming project, make a vase out of them, too. Your pipe cleaner flower decoration should last forever — or, at least, significantly longer than real flowers. If you want to take your pipe cleaner bouquets to the next level and make them pop anywhere, add LED lights or another glow-in-the-dark aspect to them as well.

5. Make a unique frame

Why not help your memories stand out by framing them and decorating your frame with adorable pipe cleaner art? Whether you twist the pipe cleaners into floral designs, heart shapes, or any other fun creations, your custom frame should successfully draw attention to some of your favorite pictures. You can simply hot glue these shapes onto the frame, giving it a whole new look. You may also want to consider the photo's vibe when designing your custom frame. For example, if there's a flower in the picture, think about making flower-inspired pipe cleaner art.

6. Embellish your yard or garden

Is there an area of your yard or garden that seems to lack life, like a pot of dead flowers? A convenient method of making it look more appealing for the time being is to bend some colorful pipe cleaners into charming flower outlines. When you place them in the area, you'll add instant appeal (and possibly a slightly-comical, fun vibe) to the otherwise-dreary spot. This could be a fun project to do with kids, as the flower shapes are quite easy to make.

7. Use them to support your plants

On the other hand, if you have a garden filled with thriving plants, you can use pipe cleaners to tie the plants to other sturdy stems to keep them standing up. The fluffy outside of the pipe cleaner should be gentle on your plants, while the inner wire is reliable enough to keep them in place. Use a green pipe cleaner to match the plant theme or add a contrasting pop of another bright color for more interest.

8. Design a pipe cleaner ornament

Do you want to add a more personalized touch to your Christmas tree while saving money? Repurpose your pipe cleaners into ornaments and embrace the festive cheer. There are pipe cleaner ornaments for every skill level, so anyone with pipe cleaners should have no issue with this creative craft. For instance, inexperienced artists who want something quick can make an ornament as simple as just twisting a red pipe cleaner into a circle to hang on the tree. Meanwhile, more advanced creatives may want to explore intricate shapes and details like wreaths or candy canes.

9. Create a trinket box

One of the cutest ways to DIY a trinket box instead of spending money on a fancy pre-made item is to make it out of pipe cleaners. Start by creating the outline of the top and bottom in whatever shape you desire, ensuring the top is slightly-larger than the bottom so it can fit over top. Then, build up the sides of each, bending the pipe cleaners vertically as you go. Finally, line the top and bottom horizontally. If you decide to make a heart-shaped creation, this could be perfect for a romantic present! This box could contain jewelry, candies, or any other small items.

10. Prepare for Halloween with spider-inspired pipe cleaner art

Not every pipe cleaner decoration has to be as wholesome as a flower, heart, or ornament. If you have a darker, edgier side and that's how you prefer to decorate, embrace those darker vibes and use your black pipe cleaners and googly eyes to make a bunch of spooky-looking spiders. These pipe cleaner spiders are also a budget-friendly Halloween decor craft you can DIY and then place on tabletops or mantels.

11. Bring your pencils to life and display them

Plain pencils tend to look somewhat dull, making writing with them feel more boring. Prevent that from happening with pencil toppers. Twist colorful pipe cleaners around the ends of your pencils into every shape your heart desires, and be creative. Why not try an octopus pencil topper made out of pipe cleaners and googly eyes, a pineapple design, or a rose? The options are endless, so have fun, and be sure to put your newly-embellished pencils on display in your office or any other room where you keep them.

12. Organize small office supplies

You can also use pipe cleaners to organize your small office supplies like rubber bands, paper clips, or staples. Simply place about five long pipe cleaners on a flat surface in a snowflake shape where they overlap in the middle, then twist them around each other. Continue bending and twisting until you create small containers for all your items. You can then either place them inside a drawer to hide them away or out on your desk for everyone to see. These DIY organizers allow you to maximize your small office space without spending tons of money.

13. DIY a napkin ring

If you have fancy, restaurant-like napkins that you want to embellish for your events and parties, a pipe cleaner will be your best friend. To make napkin rings, just add some beautiful beads and festive embellishments to the pipe cleaners and tie them into rings to put around your napkins. Feel free to skip the beads and just use the pipe cleaner alone as the napkin ring if you want something colorful but more simple.

14. Close your bag of chips

Are you tired of constantly having to buy new chip clips because they keep breaking or you always misplace them? You can secure bags of chips and your other favorite snacks with a pipe cleaner instead. Lay the bag down flat and put the pipe cleaner straight and horizontal across the top. Then, keep rolling the bag over the pipe cleaner until it's tightly secured. Finally, bend the ends of the pipe cleaner to close the bag.

15. Decorate your phone charger

Although they're a necessary item, phone chargers typically don't appear all that stylish and can sometimes get in the way of an otherwise-chic room. To make your phone charger look more aesthetically pleasing and to give it a cottagecore vibe, consider wrapping it in pipe cleaners for a softer and more colorful appearance. You may even want to use green to create a vine-inspired effect with beautiful leaf-like details, and think about adding floral touches with pipe cleaners in other hues.