upclyling old cds in a circle shape with brownish background

Upcycling old CDs: Crafts and projects

Why Upcycling Old CDs is Eco-Friendly

Upcycling old CDs is not only a creative way to repurpose these obsolete items but also an eco-friendly choice. Instead of throwing them away, upcycling allows us to give new life to these discs and reduce waste. Here are some of the benefits of upcycling CDs instead of discarding them:

1. Reduces landfill waste

CDs are made of polycarbonate, a type of plastic that takes hundreds of years to decompose in a landfill. By upcycling CDs, we can prevent them from ending up in the trash and contributing to the growing waste problem. This helps reduce the strain on landfills and minimizes the environmental impact of discarding CDs.

2. Saves energy and resources

The production of CDs requires significant amounts of energy and resources. By upcycling old CDs, we can conserve these valuable resources and reduce the energy consumption associated with manufacturing new discs. This contributes to the overall conservation of natural resources and helps in the fight against climate change.

3. Encourages creativity and innovation

Upcycling old CDs provides an opportunity to unleash your creativity and think outside the box. Instead of simply discarding the discs, we can transform them into unique and artistic creations. This process stimulates innovation and encourages us to find new uses for items that would otherwise be considered waste.

4. Promotes sustainable living

Choosing to upcycle old CDs aligns with the principles of sustainable living. It promotes the idea of reusing and repurposing items rather than constantly buying new ones. By incorporating upcycled CD crafts into our lives, we can reduce our consumption and make a positive impact on the environment.

Creative DIY Crafts Using Old CDs

Upcycling old CDs opens up a world of creative possibilities. These shiny discs can be transformed into stunning crafts and artworks. Here are a few DIY ideas to get you started:

1. Mosaic Coaster

A mosaic coaster made from old CDs can add a touch of elegance to your home decor. Here’s a step-by-step guide to creating your own mosaic coaster:

  • Start by breaking the CDs into small, irregular pieces. You can use a hammer or pliers to do this.

  • Prepare a wooden or cork coaster base. Apply a layer of adhesive or glue to the surface.

  • Arrange the CD pieces on the coaster base, creating a mosaic pattern. Be creative with your design!

  • Allow the adhesive to dry completely, following the instructions provided by the manufacturer.

  • Once dry, apply a layer of clear varnish or sealant to protect the mosaic and give it a glossy finish.

Voila! You now have a beautiful mosaic coaster made from upcycled CDs.

2. Decorative CD Wall Art Piece

Old CDs can be transformed into eye-catching wall art pieces that add a unique touch to any room. Here’s how you can make your own decorative CD wall art:

  • Gather a collection of old CDs in various sizes and colors.

  • Decide on a design or pattern for your wall art. You can create a geometric pattern, a sunburst design, or any other creative idea.

  • Arrange the CDs on a flat surface, experimenting with different configurations until you’re satisfied with the design.

  • Once you have your desired arrangement, use strong adhesive or a hot glue gun to attach the CDs to a wooden or cardboard backing.

  • Allow the adhesive to dry completely before hanging your decorative CD wall art piece on the wall.

Your wall art is now ready to be displayed and admired!

3. Unique Jewelry

Old CDs can be transformed into one-of-a-kind jewelry pieces that are sure to make a statement. Here are a few ideas to inspire you:

  • CD Earrings: Cut small shapes or designs from the CDs and attach them to earring hooks using jump rings.

  • CD Pendant: Cut out a larger shape from the CD, such as a heart or a star, and attach it to a necklace chain or cord.

  • CD Bracelet: Cut the CD into small, rectangular pieces and string them together to create a unique bracelet.

With a little creativity and some basic jewelry-making supplies, you can turn old CDs into fashionable accessories that are sure to turn heads.

Upcycling Old CDs with Kids

Upcycling old CDs can be a fun and educational activity to do with children. It allows them to explore their creativity while learning about the importance of recycling and repurposing. Here are some fun and easy CD craft projects for kids:

1. CD Spinners

CD spinners are a simple and entertaining craft project for kids of all ages. Here’s how to make them:

  • Decorate the shiny side of the CD with markers, paints, or stickers.

  • Attach a string or a piece of yarn to the center hole of the CD.

  • Hold the string and spin the CD, watching the colors and patterns blur together.

CD spinners are not only visually appealing but also provide a hands-on experience with the concept of motion and optical illusions.

2. CD Sun Catchers

CD sun catchers are a great way to add some color and sparkle to any window. Here’s how to make them:

  • Decorate the shiny side of the CD with transparent paints, markers, or adhesive gems.

  • Attach a string or a piece of yarn to the top of the CD for hanging.

  • Hang the CD sun catcher in a sunny window and watch as it reflects the light, creating beautiful patterns and colors.

This craft project not only allows kids to express their creativity but also teaches them about the properties of light and how it interacts with different materials.

Upcycling Old CDs for Gifting

Upcycled CDs can make unique and personalized gifts for various occasions. Whether it’s a birthday, anniversary, or holiday, here are some ideas for using repurposed CDs to create memorable gifts:

1. Photo Frame

Turn an old CD into a personalized photo frame by following these steps:

  • Choose a CD with a design or color that complements the photo you want to display.

  • Cut out a square or rectangular window in the center of the CD, leaving a border around the edges.

  • Print or trim a photo to fit the window and attach it to the back of the CD using adhesive or double-sided tape.

  • Add a stand to the back of the CD so that it can be displayed on a desk or shelf.

This upcycled photo frame is a thoughtful and unique gift that showcases a special memory.

2. Coasters

Upcycled CD coasters are both practical and visually appealing. Here’s how to create personalized coasters using old CDs:

  • Choose CDs with designs or colors that reflect the recipient’s interests or preferences.

  • Attach adhesive cork or felt to the shiny side of the CD to create a non-slip surface.

  • Personalize the coasters by adding initials, quotes, or decorative elements using markers, paints, or adhesive vinyl.

  • Seal the coasters with a clear varnish or sealant to protect the design and make them water-resistant.

These upcycled CD coasters make a practical and stylish gift that can be used every day.

3. Music Mix CD

For music lovers, creating a personalized music mix CD can be a thoughtful and nostalgic gift. Here’s how to make one:

  • Choose a selection of songs that hold special meaning for the recipient.

  • Burn the songs onto a blank CD using a computer or CD burner
  • Decorate the CD with a personalized label or design using markers, paints, or adhesive paper.

  • Create a tracklist or include a handwritten note explaining the significance of each song.

This upcycled music mix CD is a heartfelt gift that allows you to share your favorite songs and memories with someone special.


Upcycling old CDs is not only an eco-friendly choice but also a creative and rewarding activity. By repurposing these obsolete discs, we can reduce waste, conserve resources, and promote sustainable living. Whether it’s creating mosaic coasters, decorative wall art, or unique jewelry, there are countless ways to upcycle old CDs and unleash your creativity.

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