Thursday, May 14, 2009

Reusing Broken Pens and Crayons



Last year, I wrote about how guilty I felt buying pack after pack of Color Wonder markers for my sons, knowing that they’d eventually end up sitting in a landfill for 100 years. But thanks to blogging I found the Pen Guy—a man whom takes dried up pens and makes art work out of them. So I last weekend, I sorted through all my pens and made up a box of the unusable ones to ship to him. You can send your unwanted pens to:



The Pen Guy
2425 Mendocino Ave., Santa Rosa, CA 95403



But wait, there’s more.
A few weeks ago, I came across a company called Crazy Crayons, based in Pelican Lake, Wis. It takes broken, stubby crayons and melts them into hand-crafted, multi-colored crayons. The company claims that it has stopped more than 43,000 pounds of unwanted crayons from going into landfills with its crayon recycling program. So, while I was at it, I sorted through Ethan and James’ crayon bin and made up a box for this company as well. You can send crayon donations to:

Crayon Recycling Program
721 Village Road, Pelican Lake, Wisconsin 54463

I’m so impressed with these folks’ efforts to keep unwanted stuff out of landfills, I don’t mind paying for shipping. Click here for more Thrifty Green Thursday tips.

16 comments:

CrAzY Working Mom said...

Oh wow! What a brilliant idea. I'm definitely bookmarking these sites as I have TONS of both that I would gladly get rid of! :)

Thanks. Have a great weekend,
Tisha

MaryAnn Ashley said...

Those are great tips... especially for teachers

Shadow said...

it's about time, i wish we had those kinda people in this country...

~ April ~ EnchantedDandelions said...

Oh wow. Those are both great ideas! Thank you for sharing!!

pixiemama said...

WAIT!
You can chop the crayons up and bake them in a mini muffin tin to make your own multi-colored crayons. If your kids won't use them, they make a neat gift or halloween/Valentine's treat... especially if you get a shaped pan to bake them in.

I swear - I'm NOT crafty but I have done this.

Christie O. said...

so THAT'S where they all go!!! i KNEW IT!!!!!
hahahahahaha!

Mama Zen said...

That's really cool.

I melt crayons and make these bizarre creations for Baby Puppy. She gets a kick out of drawing with them.

Jannie Funster said...

Now THAT is cool! I actually have a frirnd here that recycles crayons but the pen part is great to know.

the mama bird diaries said...

Oh my god, i love thursdays b/c of you. Brilliant ideas.

Maggie's Mind said...

Wow, I'd never really even thought about either one. Sounds cool!

Abbi said...

I wonder what he does with all the pens? It would be fun to do my own recycling.
We do enjoy recycling our own old crayons. When I was a kid my siblings and I spent hours melting them down in little pans on our wood stove and then pouring them in little molds that were intended for playdough. We had cute little bug shaped crayons when we got done. We also made quite a mess, thank-fully we had a pretty tolerant mama.
Nowadays with my own kids we usually through them into the wax with candles that we are making.

janny226 said...

So interesting that you found these, thanks! DuckyBoy's school librarian is interesting in melting down our crayons, maybe we'll see how it's done and give it a try.

Costas Schuler said...

Wow!!!!Cathy this has got to be one the best blog entries in a long while. I am freelance Graphic Designer and last April I lost my biggest account so I was feeling really low today. Your entry and all the comments are very encouraging and came at the right time. Thank you all so much for sending your pens. I would love to collect hundreds of thousands of pens and make murals, who knows. Here is a link to what I did with gel pens on the inside of the car. http://pen-guy.blogspot.com/2007/08/mercedes-pens-door-panel-finished-using.html

Greenbaby said...

You are so ingenious about finding creative ways to recycle just about anything! I love that pens and crayons can have a second life because as a teacher I end up with a mounting pile of dysfunctional writing gear every spring. Thanks for joining us for Thrifty Green Thursday!

Rebecca said...

I love your ingenious recycling resources. I also like everyone's ideas for melting down crayons and making new ones!

Thanks!

Costas Schuler said...

The New Pen Donation Address is:
The Pen Guy - P.O.Box 994 - Forestville, CA 95436